Bookmark This Page

HomeHome SitemapSitemap Contact usContacts

Official Little League Baseball Rules

Baseball and action were relegated to one group of boys ,or girls, or a mix of boys and girls pitting their teams against the opponent until spectators started to watch and clamor. The action was somewhat slow and easy going with rules justifying the determination of a winning team.

From about the mid 19th century, 1845 or so, we allowed our game of American baseball to progress joyfully along with team play of one group against another group usually a club from across town. these games eventually turned into rivalries.

The rules in the early years were by today's standards more for the Sunday picnic crowd than the soon to become fierce fight to win take no prisoners game.

The rules of play were heavily weighted in favor of the team at bat. You can see from the very beginning of our game of baseball there was and always has been an insatiable desire for the explosive output for scoring versus the mundane element of defense.

How can it be you might ask? Here are some of the early rules and you can see for yourself. The action was, is and always will be to favor the hitter as king.


1. Pitcher had to pitch underhanded and later side arm pitching was allowed.

2. Batter could call whether he wanted the pitch "High" or "Low."

3. Nine balls were required to earn a walk.

4. Home plate was square.

5. Catcher stood straight up.

6. No one used gloves.

7. Four strikes were required for a strikeout.

8. Batted ball bouncing foul before it reached first or third base was ruled a fair ball.

Playing the game stayed pretty mellow thru the 1870's. It began to change when the loosely fabricated American Association of Clubs attempted playing a somewhat organized league and scheduling games.

Five years this ragtag rag-a muffin consortium of baseball teams tried to make a go of it. The American Association of Players failed but enough was seen by men of means and foresight to recognize that with a little management control and discipline organized baseball could become a profit making entertainment venue.

In 1876 some of the wheeler dealers with deep pockets and management skills and one individual in particular, Mr William Hurlbert, created a new League and The National League of professional baseball played their first game on April 22, 1876 with Boston beating Philadelphia 6-5.

The American game of baseball has never looked back and in 1901 The American League was formed giving professional baseball two separate and distinct Leagues of Major League Baseball. From 1901 to the present day we have The National League and The American League of major league professional baseball.

What drives this choo-choo called baseball? Fans, profit, action. Without either one of these elements, our game of baseball would revert back to the playgrounds, backyards, pastures and the town square.

Owners of these teams driven by the profit motive will do the natural and common deed of what it takes to keep fans coming and profits rolling. Lets get it on. Remember I briefly mentioned rules favoring the team at bat or the hitters ? Well, rules change but emotions and the norms of the fans have never changed.

The excitement and the thrill of watching a baseball hitter lace into that baseball and knock it over the fence will ,has, and always will bring the crowd to their feet and cheers are spontaneous.

Now there is the action part of this three elements of baseball. FANS-PROFIT-ACTION

Major Wiley B. Channell USMC (retired) bringing something about baseball to all baseball fans at http://www.baseballfarming.comBecome an active fan and visit with us from time to time.