How Long is a High School Baseball Game?

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Question: How Long is a High School Baseball Game? Answer: Baseball games for fans who like but find it difficult to remain in a professional game may be an excellent option. What teams and players may lack in enthusiasm and effort compared with major managers. In addition, secondary school games last only seven innings, two innings less than a professional game. These two inputs make an enormous impact in the duration of a game.

The typical baseball high school game lasts from one hour and a half to two hours. The duration of the game relies on many factors like how fast outings are done, the number of pitches utilized, the number of runs marked and many more.

Times are common at lower baseball levels but rare at secondary school level. This implies that the game will never end until all 21 outs are finished unless the rule of mercy / run (to be explained later) comes into force.


How Long is a High School Baseball Game


How Many Innings In High School Baseball?

One question we hear frequently is how many entries in high school baseball.

Baseball high school games are 7 innings long. While 9 innings are played by the MLB and 6 by the Little League.

There are many reasons for the varied durations of games and most of them are very well thought-out.

Below you will find a comprehensive review of Innings and Game Length and the subject of High School Baseball.

  • Why 7 high school baseball entries and 9 MLB entries
  • How much time does a 7-star game take
  • What if the game is bound at the end of 7 inches?
  • How many inputs to become a high school baseball official
  • Does baseball have a time limit?

Not every high school game is played with limitless daylight on a beautiful weather day! Seven inning games are meaningful!

What are the Variables that Contribute to the Length of a Baseball Game?

One of the factors that significantly affect the duration of any baseball game is the rapid output, and high school games are no different. If batters often go far into numbers vs. get a hit or go out within the first 2-3 pitches, the game will probably continue longer.

This forces the pitcher to throw more pitches, making the pitcher less likely to pitch the whole game. High school organizations usually have restrictions on pitch numbers that lead to more frequent pitch changes. Every pitch change comes with mound visits and games breaks to warm up the new pitch. This simply gives the game more time.

That is why Major League Baseball has established a regulation limiting the number of trips a club may make to five every game. Some high school organizations may have adopted a similar regulation, although at present moment this is not necessarily a national norm.

High-level games tend to last considerably longer than low-level games since more runs are a by-product of a lot more baserunners. The longer an inning lasts, the more baserunners (whether by hit, walk, error, etc.). Most high school leagues do not have run restrictions each inning, like some little legs do, therefore it is up to the defensive team to complete all three outs before they get in.

When a team fails to get individuals out, the game may truly go on. When both sides want to get fans out, a high scoring contest may go a lot longer than the typical two-hour game.

There are many more variables, but these three appear to be the major contributors to the game.

Why 7 innings in high school baseball and 9 in MLB?

Baseball at the high school is typically played after the school and can only begin about 4:30, with limited areas with lighting, total pitchers on a team, and possibly chilly weather in the early spring, making 7 intakes a reasonable time for a high school baseball game.

Major League Baseball rosters feature a total of 25 players with 14 of them pitchers. 5 are usually in the first rotation, leaving around eight or nine to work out the bull.

The high school rosters do not have the luxury of having such rosters, particularly at smaller institutions. MLB players are a position player or a pitcher. Very few do both in recent history.

In addition, the absence of field illumination frequently means that games finish before the evening. With a lengthier 9 inning game, this may be tough. The 7 starting game is usually enough to determine the best squad that day.

Many high school baseball teams in the US start their season in March. The weather is frequently chilly, so a 9 inning game might be unpleasant for 3 hours outdoors.

What is the Mercy Rule/Run Rule in High School Baseball?

Many high school organizations have what is called a run rule (sometimes referred to as the grace rule) in order to avoid the embarrassment of a team.

Each league has a defined amount of run differences over a specific number of inputs that enforce the run rule and instantly finish the game. The NFHS, the regulatory organization that most high school basketball associations follow, permits a ruling to be enforced when one team leads the other by 10 or more runs after five inning sessions (or four and a half if the home team is ahead).

Some leagues additionally have regulations for 3 and 4 inputs, if the lead is greater than 10. For example, some leagues may enable a run rule to occur if a team leads by 15 or more runs after three runs.

Typically, a game is not considered to be a full game until for five complete innings, however some organizations have determined that 15 or more run differences after just three inings are sufficient to summon an officer. This spares the losing team from humiliation and a little time.

The primary aim of this running rule is to keep teams out of the score and not destroy young players’ self image, but it also saves players and spectators some time at the stadium. Very few people want to stay around and see all seven innings of a blowout game. That may take up to three hours and secondary school athletes cannot afford to be out in school evenings too late.

How many innings for a game to be official in high school baseball?

The game is deemed official after 4 innings are completed. Were there to be rain or darkness anytime after the 4 innings and the game could no longer be played, the team that wins after the 4th inning would be considered the winner.

This has been a problem at the high school level since many teams have no tables to cover fields and take a long time to rain. MLB clubs have the luxury of a ground staff and are trying hard to finish the game.

It is tough for teams to start and halt a baseball game at all levels on the pitches. Umpires have their ultimate judgment on the safety of high school conditions once the game starts.

You will keep an eye on lighting and other uncertain circumstances that may damage athletes or coaches.

Rules of High School Baseball

The National High School Federation has drawn up a set of regulations for high school baseball in the United States. Although every state may have its own set of laws which can lead to minor difference, high school baseball has comparable rules and regulations in all parts of the country.

Length of Game

An official baseball secondary school game is 7 innings long. If the home team is ahead of the seventh after the visiting team bats, it doesn’t have to fight. After four innings, a game is official. If both of the teams played four innings and the game is halted due to the disruption of the weather – rain, snow or lightning – the game is deemed official. However, if the game is halted because of the dark, both sides may agree to continue the game from where it left off if the issue was addressed before the start.

Designated Hitter

In all high school baseball games, a designated hitter may be utilized. In contrast to professional baseball, the batter must not be utilized in lieu of the pitcher. The secondary school baseball coach may decide to utilize the designated hitter for the weakest batter. No designated hitter has to be included in the lineup. If the head coach uses all his fields in the batting line-up, it’s OK. However, he has no choice if the coach wishes to employ a designated hitter later in the game. The designated hitter must be utilized from the beginning if the coach intends to use it in the game at any point.


The base runner may not come in the way or touch any playful field. If the fieldman is on the base line, the base runner may believe he has the right to cross the feld since he is on the straight route to the base of the runner. The runner must, however, change his route to the base. If the rider is deemed to have interfered with the feld, the rider is out, and all other runners must return to their original foundation.

The longest high school baseball game

What has been the longest high school baseball game ever played?

A few former players from Ponca City High School think they could have played in it very well. The game they remember took occurred in Bartlesville on March 26, 1970. It lasted 22 innings and ultimately won 2-1 at Bartlesville College.

Ron Davis, who is currently the Berryhill assistant coach and defense football coordinator, has been researching a lot on records for longest games. His results are not 100% definitive but he discovered no evidence that the game between Po-Hi and Bartlesville College may possibly be a record holder.

“The OSSAA (Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association) maintains statistics, but there is nothing I could find regarding the longest games,” stated Davis. Davis found a book entitled “Baseball’s Longest Games: a Comprehensive World Record Book” by Philip J. Lowry.

“Lowry didn’t understand our book game,” stated Davis. “I found in my study that a baseball match between Choctaw and the Midwest City of the American Legion took place 24 innings. But I didn’t discover anything more about a secondary game than our own.”

Davis and Jim Dufek started to remember the Bartlesville College game in January. Their talks inspired the study of Davis. Dufek, still living in Ponca City, collected newspaper clippings about his high school career and found a copy of The Ponca City News telling his tale.

“I sent it to me on the 50th anniversary of the game, March 26,” stated Davis.

The cut-off informs us that the game started at 4 p.m. and concluded at 9:30. “Ponca City’s wildcat baseballers are setting the school record for 22 intakes — five and a half hours — before falling out on (sic) 2-1 decision in an Oklahoma Seven Conference game Thursday by competing with Bartlesville College.

The narrative indicates that the game was played in chilly and rainy weather.

“Ponca City got 14 hits off of three hurlers in Bartlesville while Wildcat pitchers David Clark and Rick Waters gave the College nine hits,” stories tell.

“Clark lasted 13 innings and gave up four hits for six innings after keeping the Bartans unsuccessful. He hit eight and walked six. Eight. Five hits of water, five walks and five strikeouts threw nine innings. Both runs Bartlesville—the fourth and twenty-two—were unarned. The lonely run of Ponca City came in sixth. ” In spite of the hitting disadvantage, Bartlesville remained in play on the field, shutting off Wildcat threats with four double games early in the game in a five-inner game.

Davis recalled that he only scored a run for Ponca City. This is confirmed by the news article.

“In the fifth, Ron Davis led the right field line double. (Bill) Sharpe went on to score the cats’ lone run with another double in the hole in the center left.”

Davis recalls seeing the final 15 dugout entrances.

“I doubled and Coach (Bill) Leming placed me into a pinch runner. In the eighth, I had a hit, and I was pulled out again for a pinch runner. I’ve seen the last fifteen.”

Davis said that the two pitchers, Clark at Phillips University and Waters at Tulsa University where he also was playing hoops, were playing baseball.

“Tim Sadowski has been running for me,” Davis said. “His son Clint played baseball in the Major League. Leland Welker was interesting enough, a year older, but he played baseball. His son, Wes, was the famous soccer player.”

As Davis recalled some of the gamblers, “Chuck Bell continued to have a successful career at UCO (Central Oklahoma University playing baseball). Bill McCormick and J.D. Hall have gone through.”

Davis made this remark about the Wildcat coach—”Coach Bill Leming is a wonderful guy.” In the end, Leming quit coaching for insurance.

Dufek then headed to Tonkawa Northern Oklahoma College to play baseball. At NOC he was awarded the “All-Conference” awards. He recalls the high school game as “cold and damp” as the newspaper story says.

“I’ve been No. 3 stick,” said Dufek. “I have just one hit. I’ve been one for six. We had a strong rivalry with College Bartlesville. It was a lot of a game.

Dufek has been working most of the time for his father’s aerial application, feed and seed business in the Ponca City region. His daughter, Taylor, was an outstanding po-hi and NOC soccer player.

Sharpe, who was the catcher of the Wildcats, got four hits on nine official trips to lead the club, according to the news article.

Whether it has proved incorrect or not to claim to have participated in the longest secondary school match, Davis and Dufek are well placed to believe that they took part in history.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average length of a Major League Baseball game?

The average Major League game in 2019 lasted three hours and five minutes, according to It’s five minutes since 2018, when the average game lasted three hours. ESPN reports that the average game of MLB lasted two hours 46 minutes in 2005. This increase in the duration of the game has led the MLB to take steps to speed up the game.

What is the Longest High School Game Ever Played?

Varied countries have different rules and methods to record accurately, thus it is impossible to obtain official data for all high school baseball throughout the nation. In April 2020, the Oklahoma Ponca City News ran a story on a high school game in 1970.

The match between Ponca City High School and Bartlesville College (a high school team) lasted 22 innings, with the 2-1 winner of Bartlesville. The game began at 16:00 and concluded at 21:30 and the typical high school game lasts three times as long.

Ron Davis, a game participant and now a Ponca City assistant coach, states in the piece that he had done a lot of study on the subject and only found one American Legion game lasting 24 innings. He could never locate a high school game over longer hours or more than the game he was playing in 1970.

What are the new pace of play rules?

There are many new regulations introduced by the league to speed up the game. These regulations include restricting the number of trips to the mound, establishing a pitch clock between pitches and limiting the time between entrances.

Why do high school teams only play seven innings?

Time is the primary cause behind this. Obviously, seven innings take less time than innings (on most days). High school pupils simply have no luxury in their time as university athletes and professionals to be flexible. In addition, high school teams have little pitching depth for schools and professional teams. Playing fewer inputs reduces the pitch strain at this level.

What is the Shortest High School Game Ever Played?

In Paintsville, KY, between the Rowan County Senior High School Vikings and the Paintsville High School Tigers in 2001 was one of the shortest full high-school baseball games ever to be played. The seven starters barely lasted 49 minutes.

Paintsville won the game 1-0 because of a throwing mistake, which was the only hit they registered in the game. Both sides combined just three hits and three hits during the game. Both pitchers took their teams the distance.

This again shows that fewer pitch changes and fewer runs result in faster games. The low amount of strikeouts also helped make this game brief, since more batters came into touch with the count at an early stage leading to fewer slots.

As with many high school records, there’s a possibility that shorter games were played that were not recorded.

Final Thoughts

The duration of the games at all levels seems to be suitable and helps keep the game interesting and fun. Parents, coaches and fans generally enjoy a clean, crisp and good game. Face it, not many people want a 4-hour baseball game to sit down.

Baseball has the challenge of ensuring that the product stays enjoyable to players, entertaining spectators and engaging people. It’s a slower sport by nature compared to other main sports since after every pitch or ball there is less action and a break.