| RULES AND REGULATIONS
GAME OF BASE BALL,
ADOPTED BY THE
NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF BASE-BALL PLAYERS
Held in New York, March 14, 1860.
Sec. 1. The ball must weigh not less than five and three-fourths, nor more than six ounces
avoirdupois. It must measure not less than nine and three-fourths, nor more than ten inches in
circumference. It must be composed of india-rubber and yarn, and covered with leather, and, in all
match games, shall be furnished by the challenging club, and become the property of the winning
club, as a trophy of victory.
Sec. 2. The bat must be round, and must not exceed two and a half inches in diameter in the thickest
part. It must be made of wood, and may be of any length to suit the striker.
Sec. 3. The bases must be four in number, placed at equal distances from each other, and securely
fastened upon the four corners of a square, whose sides are respectively thirty yards. They must be so
constructed as to be distinctly seen by the umpire, and must cover a space equal to one square foot of
surface. The first, second, and third bases shall be canvas bags, painted white, and filled with sand or
sawdust; the home base and pitcher's point to be each marked by a flat circular iron plate, painted or
Sec. 4. The base from which the ball is struck shall be designated Home Base, and must be directly
opposite to the second base, the first base must always be that upon the right-hand, and the third base
that upon the left-hand side of the striker, when occupying his position at the Home Base.
Sec. 5. The pitcher's position shall be designated by a line four yards in length, drawn at right angles
to a line from home to the second base, having its center upon that line, at a fixed iron plate, placed at
a point fifteen yards distant from home base. The pitcher must deliver the ball as near as possible over
the center of the home base and for the striker.
Sec. 6. The ball must be pitched, not jerked or thrown to the bat; and whenever the pitcher draws back
his hand, or moves with the apparent purpose or pretension to deliver the ball, he shall so deliver it,
and he must have neither foot in advance of the line at the time of delivering the ball; and if he fails in
either of these particulars, then it shall be declared a baulk.
Sec. 7. When a baulk is made by the pitcher, every player running the bases is entitled to one base,
without being put out.
Sec. 8. If the ball, from the stroke of the bat, is caught behind the range of home and the first base, or
home and the third base, without having touched the ground or first touches the ground behind those
bases, it shall be termed foul, and must be so declared by the umpire, unasked. If the ball first touches
the ground, or is caught without having touched the ground, either upon, or in front of the range of
those bases, it shall be considered fair.
Sec. 9. A player making the home base, shall be entitled to score one run.
Sec. 10. If three balls are struck at, and missed, and the last one is not caught, either flying or upon
the first bound, it shall be considered fair, and the striker must attempt to make his run.
Sec. 11. The striker is out if a foul ball is caught, either before touching the ground, or upon the first
Sec. 12. Or, if three balls are struck at and missed, and the last is caught, either before touching the
ground or upon the first bound,
Sec. 13. Or, if a fair ball is struck, and the ball is caught either without having touched the ground, or
upon the first bound;
Sec. 14. Or, if a fair ball is struck, and the ball held by an adversary on the first base, before the striker
touches that base.
Sec. 15. Any player running the bases is out, if at any time he is touched by the ball while in play in
the hands of an adversary, without some part of his person being on a base.
Sec. 16. No ace nor base can be made upon a foul ball, nor when a fair ball has been caught without
having touched the ground, and the ball shall, in the former instance, be considered dead, and not in
play until it shall first have been settled in the hands of the pitcher; in either case the players running
the bases shall return to them, and may be put out in so returning in the same manner as the striker
when running to the first base.
Sec. 17. The striker must stand on a line drawn through the center of the home base, not exceeding
in length three feet either side thereof, and parallel to the line occupied by the pitcher. He shall be
considered the striker until he has made the first base. Players must strike in regular rotation, and,
after the first innings is played, the turn commences with the player who stands on the list next to the
one who lost the third hand.
Sec. 18. Players must make their bases in the order of striking; and when a fair ball is struck, and not
caught flying (or on the first bound), the first base must be vacated, as also the second and third bases,
if they are occupied at the same time. Players may be put out on any base, under these
circumstances, in the same manner as the striker when running to the first base.
Sec. 19. Players running the bases must, so far as possible, keep upon a direct line between the
bases; and, should any player run three feet out of this line, for the purpose of avoiding the ball in the
hands of an adversary, he shall be declared out.
Sec. 20. Any player, who shall intentionally prevent an adversary from catching or fielding the ball,
shall be declared out.
Sec. 21. If the player is prevented from making a base, by the intentional obstruction of an adversary,
he shall be entitled to that base, and not put out.
Sec. 22. If an adversary stops a ball with his hat or cap, or takes it from the hands of a party not
engaged in the game, no player can be put out unless the ball shall first have settled in the hands of
Sec. 23. If a ball, from the stroke of a bat, is held under any other circumstances than as enumerated
in Section 22, and without having touched the ground more than once, the striker is out
Sec. 24. If two hands are already out, no player running home at the time a ball is struck, can make
an ace if the striker is put out.
Sec. 25. An innings must be concluded at the time the third hand is put out.
Sec. 26. The game shall consist of nine innings to each side, when, should the number of runs be
equal, the play, shall be continued until a majority of runs, upon an equal number of innings, shall
be declared, which shall conclude the game.
Sec. 27. In playing all matches, nine players from each club shall constitute a full field, and they
must have been regular members of the club they represent, and of no other club, for thirty days prior
to the match. No change or substitution shall be made after the game has been commenced, unless for
reason of illness or injury. Position of players and choice of innings shall be determined by captains
previously appointed for that purpose by the respective clubs.
Sec. 28. The umpire shall take care that the regulations respecting balls, bats, bases, and the pitcher's
and striker's positions, are strictly observed. He shall keep record of the game, in a book prepared for
the purpose; he shall be the judge of fair and unfair play, and shall determine all disputes and
differences which may occur during the game; he shall take especial care to declare all foul balls and
baulks, immediately upon their occurrence, unasked, and in a distinct and audible manner.
Sec. 29. In all matches the umpire shall be selected by the captains of the respective sides, and shall
perform all the duties enumerated in Section 28, except recording the game, which shall be done by
two scorers, one of whom shall be appointed by each of the contending clubs.
Sec. 30. No person engaged in a match, either as umpire, scorer, or player, shall be, either directly or
indirectly, interested in any bet upon the game. Neither umpire, scorer, nor player shall be changed
during a match, unless with the consent of both parties (except for a violation of this law), except as
provided in Section 27, and then the umpire may dismiss any transgressor.
Sec. 31. The umpire in any match shall determine when play shall be suspended; and if the game can
not be concluded, it shall be determined by the last even innings, provided five innings have been
played, and the party having the greatest number of runs shall be declared the winner.
Sec. 32. Clubs may adopt such rules respecting balls knocked beyond or outside of bounds of the
field, as the circumstances of the ground may demand; and these rules shall govern all matches
played upon the ground, provided that they are distinctly made known to every player and umpire,
previous to the commencement of the game.
Sec. 33. No person shall be permitted to approach or to speak with the umpire, scorers, or players, or
in any manner to interrupt or interfere during the progress of the game, unless by special request of
Sec. 34. No person shall be permitted to act as umpire or scorer in any match, unless he shall be a
member of a Base-Ball Club governed by these rules.
Sec. 35. Whenever a match shall have been determined upon two clubs, play shall be called at the
exact hour appointed; and should either party fail to produce their players within fifteen minutes
thereafter, the party so failing shall admit a defeat.
Sec. 36. No person who shall be in arrears to any other club, or who shall at any time receive
compensation for his services as player, shall be competent to play in any match.
Sec. 37. Should a striker stand at the bat without striking at good balls repeatedly pitched to him, for
the apparent purpose of delaying the game, or of giving advantage to a player, the umpire, after
warning him, shall call one strike, and if he persists in such action, two and three strikes. When three
strikes are called, he shall be subject to the same rules as he had struck at three fair balls.
Sec. 38. Every match hereafter made shall be decided by a single game, unless mutually agreed upon
by the contesting clubs.