Why 9 Innings In Baseball?

This article may contain affiliate links. For details, visit our Affiliate Disclosure page.

Through a long process of trial and error, baseball’s current rules were developed. In the early stages of the game, neither the number of players on either team or the length of time that the game would last was established. There was a lot of back-and-forth before the rules, including the number of innings per game, were settled. Here we will see Why 9 Innings In Baseball?

Why 9 Innings In Baseball?

Initially, the winning team was determined by who reached 21 aces first. Those 21 aces became increasingly rare as players improved and pitching caught up to hitting. Therefore, in 1857, it was decided that each game would consist of 9 innings in baseball.

Major League Baseball with Extra Innings

Extra innings are played in Major League Baseball if the score is tied after nine innings. A runner who was on first when the inning ended will now be advanced to second base to start the new season. Putting a runner on second base is done to hasten the end of the game.

Before this regulation change, teams would have three outs in each extra inning, exactly like they did in the regular nine-inning game. Regardless of who scored first, the side with the most runs after the extra inning would be declared the winner. 

Postseason and World Series Innings in Major League Baseball

Both the MLB playoffs and the World Series are played over the course of nine innings. As in the regular season, the away club will start each inning. In the playoffs, bad weather will not result in game cancellations like it does during the regular season. In the playoffs and World Series, if a game is postponed due to weather, it will be made up the following day.

Minor League Baseball’s Full Innings

Games in the Minor Leagues also consist of nine innings, like those in the Major Leagues. The visiting team bats first in the top of an inning, while the home club bats in the bottom. In the event that the game is still tied after nine innings, it may go into extra frames.

Minor-League Baseball with Extra Innings

In baseball played at the Minor League level, runners are permitted at second base after the ninth inning. When there was a need for extra innings, the Rookie leagues and the World Baseball Classic were the first to use the practice of having the runner at second base and then advance to third base. In 2018, the practice was implemented throughout the remainder of Minor League Baseball.

How Did Pitchers Make Baseball Games Last For 9 Innings?

Early baseball was mostly a game of power hitting. The ball was thrown underhand by the pitcher to the batter. Because of this, batters had an easy time connecting with the ball, leading to high run totals. Similar to cricket, baseball’s pitcher isn’t supposed to be the batter’s adversary. The pitchers were responsible for little more than getting the ball into the batter’s hands.

Even though they knew to duck after a lobbed ball reached home plate, pitchers frequently took direct hits. No one wanted to play the role of a pitcher because of the risk of getting hit by a baseball traveling at a high speed.

Then, a pitcher by the name of Tommy Bond started pushing back by delivering his pitches with a sidearm motion and gradually increasing their velocity. Pitchers refined their skills and began using a wider variety of pitches, such as curves, fastballs, and sliders.

After a game in 1856 finished in a 12-12 tie due to darkness, it was evident that regulations governing the length of games needed to be defined. Alexander Cartwright, the man responsible for establishing the Knickerbocker Club in New York, called for a gathering. The 9-inning game, with each side consisting of 9 players, eventually became the norm.

Time for 9 Innings of Baseball

Baseball games, like those in other sports, have no predetermined ending time. Typically, nine innings takes roughly three hours to complete. However, there are numerous more elements that might extend or shorten the length of a game.

  • Rain typically causes postponements of games. The umpire decides whether or not to postpone a game, and if the game is postponed, it is played at a later date.
  • There are games where the pitcher is outstanding, allowing few hits while striking out many batters.
  • Also, managers often disagree with the umpire’s decision. An instant of indecision is caused when the manager storms out of the dugout and confronts the umpire in an attempt to dispute the call. In order to get a second opinion on some calls, instant replay has been legal since 2014.
  • Sometimes the batters are “hot,” leading to a large number of hits for both teams and a drawn-out game.
  • Game is delayed when the manager steps out of the dugout and summon a relief pitcher onto the field if the starting pitcher allows too many runs. From the pitcher’s mound, the reliever is given time to warm up by throwing to the catcher. Fifteen minutes of game time may be added due to the need for the relief pitcher to come out of the bullpen and warm up. When the other team replaces its pitcher, additional time is added to the clock.
  • When there is a tie after nine innings, play continues into the tenth inning until one team scores the game-winning run. The length of a game can be greatly increased by the addition of additional innings, and any rain that occurs during those extra innings adds even more time to the overall duration. No matter the weather or the length of time the game has gone on, nothing is spared in order to bring it to a successful end.


There are 9 innings in a standard baseball game. Games in Major League Baseball mostly end after nine innings, although in the event of a rainout, games that have played at least seven innings can be considered official. Games in the MLB Postseason and World Series are also nine innings. Games in Little League and High School only go six or seven innings. In a softball game, you only get seven innings.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Average Number of Innings in Minor League?

A Little League baseball game consists of six innings. This level of the play takes roughly an hour and a half.

A Total of How Many Innings is the World Baseball Classic?

There are nine innings in the World Baseball Classic.

How Does Baseball’s New Rule for Extra Innings Work?

When there is a tie after nine innings, the game goes into extra innings. The team that is hitting gets the first base runner, and if they score a run, they easily win the game.

Why 9 Innings In Baseball?
Scroll to top