Ways to Play
There are many ways to play baseball and softball. No matter your age or skill level, there's a game for you.
Join an Organized League
Signing up to play in an organized league is a great way to make friends, learn important teamwork skills and improve your game. To join a team today, click play ball near you.
Participate in Pitch, Hit, and Run
Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run (PHR) is a FREE, exciting skills event providing boys and girls the opportunity to compete in four levels of competition including Team Championship events at all 30 Major League ballparks and the National Finals at the MLB All-Star Game. Click here to learn more and sign up.
Informal Team Games
If you're already in an organized league or just want to have some fun with friends, there are many baseball-related games that are fun and easy to play.
- Stickball: Played with a rubber ball, a narrow bat resembling the handle of a broom and without gloves, Stickball is a great way to improve hand-eye coordination. The game has a rich history in New York City -- including an official Stickball Boulevard in the Bronx.
- Wiffle Ball: A perfect alternative to baseball when space is limited. Played with plastic bats and balls, many wiffle balls have small holes so that the ball dances and darts on its way to the plate.
- Vitilla: A derivative of baseball often played in Latin American countries by using a bottle cap and stick. Vitilla is great for teaching hand-eye coordination and for playing in small spaces where a ball cannot be used.
- Kickball: A great game for kids of all ages. The pitcher begins play by rolling a large rubber ball towards home plate where the batter kicks the ball into the field. Outs are recorded when a fielder catches a kicked ball in the air or throws the ball and hits a runner between bases.
Casual Games & Drills
Don't have enough time or space for a larger game? No problem, try one of the casual games below to have a great time while improving your baseball skills.
- 3-Error Game: A great game to improve your ability to field ground balls. Grab a partner, a glove and a ball. Stand about five feet away and take turns bouncing the ball to your partner. The ball should bounce ¾ of the way between you and your partner, giving him or her a 'short hop.' Make three errors and you're out -- last player standing wins.
- 500: One player, the designated 'thrower,' launches the ball high into the air in the direction of the 'catchers,' assigning a point value to each throw. The first catcher to accumulate 500 points wins and becomes the thrower for the next round of the game.
- Flip: A good way to warm up before playing catch. Stand in a circle, a few feet apart. Players volley or 'flip' the ball to one another using their glove, or some versions of the game allow players to flip the ball with other parts of their body. A player who lets the ball hit the ground without successfully flipping the ball to the next player gets a 'strike.' Three strikes and you're out -- last player standing wins.
- Off-the-Wall: Typically played on a blacktop or driveway, players field a tennis ball thrown off a wall. If a player doesn't field the ball cleanly off the wall, he or she must touch the wall before one of the other players is able to field the ball and throw it to the wall. A player incurs a strike if they are unable to make it to the wall before the ball. Three strikes and a player is out -- last player standing wins.
- Pepper: Another good game to improve your fielding skills. Several fielders stand 15 to 20 feet in front of a batter. The hitter takes a soft, short swing designed to hit ground balls to the fielders. If a player fields the ground ball cleanly, he or she throws the ball back to the hitter. If he or she makes an error, that player goes to the end of the line. If the batter swings and misses or hits a foul ball, they go to the end of the line and the first fielder becomes the hitter.
- Running Bases: Set up two bases 30 to 90 feet apart. Two fielders, one on each base, throw a ball back and forth and try to tag out any base runners attempting to run from one base to the other. There are many variations to the game, but one common rule is runners must leave their current base at least once every four throws.