HERE'S WHAT YOU GET TO EXPERIENCE...
BALLS & STRIKES: 7 Balls = Walk, 3 Strikes = Out
OUTS: 3 outs retires the side. Outs are called "Hands".
STRIKE ZONE PREFERENCE: The batsman or "striker" selects his preferred strike zone. EITHER "High" from the belt to the shoulders or "Low" from the belt to the knees.
BATSMAN HIT BY A PITCH: The batter is NOT awarded first base, and the pitch is counted as a ball.
PITCHER'S BOX: There is no mound or rubber. A pitcher must begin and end his motion within a 4’ x 6’ box, the front of which is only 50’ from home plate. And he (or multiple players) may be in the box without a baseball in hand.
QUICK PITCHES AND FAKE THROWS: Because there is no pitcher's mound, there is no requirement of take your foot off the mound to throw to a base. Fake throws and quick pitches are legal. Once invited to the plate by the umpire and a strike zone is communicated, the pitcher is free to throw the ball regardless whether the batter is ready or even in the batter’s box. The pitcher may not fake to home. He MAY fake to any base and throw home immediately, though.
NO INFIELD FLY RULE: The batsman is NOT automatically called out if he hits a fly ball into the infield. Therefore, savvy basemen can and will “accidentally” drop such fly balls to create a double play--or triple play--situation. From an umpire's point of view, the drop must be or appear to be a bona fide drop so base tenders (as they were called) learn to be slight of hand artists.
BASES: The bases are not secured down, 1st thru 3rd are bags of sawdust, flour, or grain. Home plate is a piece of wood cut in a home plate shape. They will all move. Watch for a REAL stolen base.
FOUL BALLS: Not counted as strikes. Howerver, foul balls can be caught on one bounce for an out.
DROPPED 3RD STRIKE: On a dropped third strike, the batter automatically becomes a live runner, regardless whether first base is occupied or not. All runners MUST advance no matter the count or outs, just as if the ball had been batted into play on the ground. Again, savvy catchers can and will “accidentally” drop third strikes to create a double play situation.
SCORE BEFORE FORCED 3RD OUT: If a runner crosses the plate before a force out is achieved for a 3rd out, the run COUNTS.
GINGER RULE: On a foul ball (officially called an "unfair hit"), runners must return to their staring base before the hit ball is returned to the pitcher; a pitcher may relay to the base to beat the runner back and, if so, the runner is out.
ABSOLUTELY NO ARGUING WITH THE UMPIRE: The umpire is addressed at "Sir" and only the one pre-designated team Captain from each team may call for timeout or discuss a call or express disagreement to a call towards the umpire. There is also only one basecoach allowed on the field.
HIDDEN BALL TRICK: Because there is no mound, the pitcher can set up in the pitcher's box without having the ball. The ball can be hidden elsewhere on the field, i.e. under one of the bases, litterally up a baseman's sleeve, and more. So be aware! There is also no rule about "foreign objects" on the field. Rules prohibit more than one base ball on the field at a time, but there is nothing in the books about foreign objects that look like base balls. Ergo, surprise items find their way into games from time to time. You have to be on your toes and both a player AND a fan; keep any eye out for who is holding the real ball. Vintage Base Ball showcases many game changing (and hilarious) VINTAGE SHENANIGANS!