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United States Patent Application 20170368434
Kind Code A1
Lazaros; Jeffrey December 28, 2017

MODIFIED BASEBALL GAME

Abstract

A modified baseball game includes a field bounded by side walls, a top wall, a strike wall, and a back wall. The side walls, the top wall, the strike wall, and the back wall are substantially perpendicular to the field and the field is substantially smaller than a traditional baseball field. A pitch of a predefined length is positioned proximal to the strike wall. A first and a second team includes at most five players. The first team fields and the second team bats and vice versa at the end of three outs of the second team. A ball is used for pitching by one of the five players the first team or the second team. A baseball bat is used for hitting the ball by one of the players of the first team or the second team based on which team is batting.


Inventors: Lazaros; Jeffrey; (St. Johns, MI)
Applicant:
Name City State Country Type

Lazaros; Jeffrey

St. Johns

MI

US
Family ID: 1000002030497
Appl. No.: 15/189413
Filed: June 22, 2016


Current U.S. Class: 1/1
Current CPC Class: A63B 67/002 20130101; A63B 71/022 20130101; A63B 2102/18 20151001; A63B 69/0097 20130101
International Class: A63B 67/00 20060101 A63B067/00; A63B 69/00 20060101 A63B069/00

Claims



1. A modified baseball game comprising: a field bounded by a plurality of side walls, a top wall, a strike wall, and a back wall for playing the modified baseball game, wherein the side walls, the top wall, the strike wall, and the back wall are substantially perpendicular to the field, and wherein the field is substantially smaller than a traditional baseball field; a pitch of a predefined length positioned proximal to the strike wall; a first team comprising at most five players and a second team comprising at most five players, wherein the first team fields and the second team bats, and wherein the first team bats and the second team fields at the end of three outs of the second team; a ball for pitching by one of the at most five players of one of the first team and the second team; and a baseball bat for hitting the baseball, wherein one of the at most five players of one of the first team and the second team hits the ball using the baseball bat.

2. The modified baseball game of claim 1, wherein the area of the field is about 5000 square feet.

3. The modified baseball game of claim 1, wherein the modified baseball game is free of base running and fly balls.

4. The modified baseball game of claim 1, wherein the top wall and the side walls are nets.

5. The modified baseball game of claim 1, wherein the strike wall and the back wall are masonry walls.

6. The modified baseball game of claim 1, wherein the predefined length of the pitch is based on one of skill levels and age group of the first team and the second team.

7. The modified baseball game of claim 1, wherein the back wall comprises a plurality of markings to determine a value of a hit made by one of the at most five players of one of the first team and the second team.

8. The modified baseball game of claim 1, wherein a number of the innings played by the first team and the second team are predetermined.

9. The modified baseball game of claim 1, wherein the field comprises specified boundaries made for games played with less than five defensive players.

10. A method for playing a modified baseball game, the method comprising: providing a field bounded by a plurality of side walls, a top wall, a strike wall, and a back wall for playing the modified baseball game, wherein the side walls, the top wall, the strike wall, and the back wall are substantially perpendicular to the field, and wherein the field is substantially smaller than a traditional baseball field; and actively playing the modified baseball game employing a first team comprising at most five players and a second team comprising at most five players, wherein the first team fields and the second team bats, and wherein the first team bats and the second team fields at the end of three outs of the second team; wherein a pitch of a predefined length is positioned proximal to the strike wall; wherein the modified baseball game is free of base running and fly balls; wherein a number of the innings played by the first team and the second team are predetermined; and wherein the field comprises specified boundaries made for games played with less than five defensive players.

11. The method of claim 10, wherein balls hit into the back wall are one of hits and outs.

12. The method of claim 10, wherein a plurality of markings are positioned on the back wall to determine the value of one of a hit and an out.

13. The method of claim 10, wherein an offensive player is awarded a run if the offensive player hits a ball on the ground wherein the ball hits the back wall without being fielded.

14. The method of claim 10, wherein a ball that hits one of the side walls is a foul ball.

15. The method of claim 10, wherein a ball that hits the back wall is a foul ball.

16. The method of claim 10, wherein a ball that hits the top wall followed by one of the back wall and the side walls is a foul ball.

17. The method of claim 10, wherein a ball that hits the top wall followed by the ground is a foul ball.

18. The method of claim 10, wherein a ball that is hit off of an offensive player is a foul ball.

19. The method of claim 10, wherein all runs are forced in.

20. The method of claim 10, wherein mercy rules are implemented.

21. The method of claim 10, wherein a ball foul tipped into the strike wall is out.
Description



FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] The invention disclosed herein generally relates to a modified field layout for playing baseball and a method for playing baseball on the modified field layout involving lesser number of players than conventional baseball.

BACKGROUND

[0002] Baseball is a sport played between two teams of nine players each who take turns batting and fielding. Typically, the area of a baseball field ranges from about 11,000 square feet to about 27,000 square feet. A field having an area of this magnitude is hard to maintain. Additionally, amateur players who love to play baseball may not find a field of such area readily accessible and affordable. Enthusiasts of the game who wish to play regularly and looking out for a modified version of the game, similar to indoor soccer do not have such an option for baseball. Additionally, players of different ages and skill levels may not require an actual baseball field with huge dimensions and facilities to enjoy a game of baseball. A modified version of baseball, which makes use of a field with smaller dimensions, which can be maintained easily, is required. Furthermore, a version of baseball, which can be played, by fewer number of players of varying skills and age groups is required. With growing number of children enjoying video games or PC games, the attraction of outdoor games have followed a downward trend. Sometimes, children in a neighborhood wishing to play a game of baseball may not be sufficient in number to play the traditional nine-a-side version. Therefore, a modified version of baseball, which can be played, by fewer number of players is required.

[0003] Hence, there is a long felt but unresolved need for a modified baseball game, which can be played in a small area. Additionally there is a need for a modified baseball game, which requires fewer players. Moreover, there is a need for a modified baseball game, which can be played by a group of players of varying ages and skill levels.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0004] This summary is provided to introduce a selection of concepts in a simplified form that are further disclosed in the detailed description of the invention. This summary is not intended to identify key or essential inventive concepts of the claimed subject matter, nor is it intended for determining the scope of the claimed subject matter.

[0005] The modified baseball game disclosed herein addresses the above-mentioned need for a modified baseball game, which can be played in a small area. Additionally, the modified baseball game disclosed herein addresses the need for a modified baseball game, which can be enjoyed by fewer players. Moreover, the modified baseball game disclosed herein addresses the need for a modified baseball game, which can be played by a group of players of varying ages and skill levels. The modified baseball game comprises a field bounded by side walls, a top wall, a strike wall, and a back wall. The side walls, the top wall, the strike wall, and the back wall are substantially perpendicular to the field and the field is substantially smaller than a traditional baseball field. A pitch of a predefined length is positioned proximal to the strike wall. A first and a second team includes at most five players. The first team fields and the second team bats and vice versa at the end of an inning of the second team. A ball is used for pitching by one of the five players the first team or the second team. A baseball bat is used for hitting the ball by one of the players of the first team or the second team based on which team is batting.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0006] The foregoing summary, as well as the following detailed description of the invention, is better understood when read in conjunction with the appended drawings. For the purpose of illustrating the invention, exemplary constructions of the invention are shown in the drawings. However, the invention is not limited to the specific methods and structures disclosed herein. The description of a method step or a structure referenced by a numeral in a drawing is applicable to the description of that method step or structure shown by that same numeral in any subsequent drawing herein.

[0007] FIG. 1 exemplarily illustrates a perspective view of a field of a modified baseball game.

[0008] FIG. 2 exemplarily illustrates a top plan view of a field of a modified baseball game.

[0009] FIG. 3 exemplarily illustrates a front perspective view of a back wall of a modified baseball game.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

[0010] FIG. 1 exemplarily illustrates a perspective view of a field 101 of a modified baseball game 100. FIG. 2 exemplarily illustrates a top plan view of a field 101 of a modified baseball game 100. The modified baseball game 100 allows for players, for example, from one up to five players to play the modified baseball game 100 in a confined baseball field 101. The modified baseball game 100 is configured to accommodate a game of five on five players, including a full infield of players and a pitcher. The modified baseball game 100 is played on a field 101 bounded by multiple side walls 102, a top wall 103, a strike wall 104, and a back wall 105. In an embodiment, the top wall 103 and the side walls 102 are made of, for example, nets to prevent the ball from being hit out from the field 101. As used herein, the "ball" used for playing a preferred embodiment of the modified baseball game refers to a rubber ball. As used herein, "strike wall" refers to the wall that is pitched to where the batter is standing. As used herein, "back wall" refers to the wall that balls are hit to in order to be awarded outs or hits. In an embodiment, the strike wall 104 and the back wall 105 are, for example, masonry walls. In an embodiment, the side walls 102, the top wall 103, the strike wall 104, and the back wall 105 are substantially perpendicular to the field 101. The field 101 is substantially smaller than a traditional baseball field. In an embodiment, the area of the field 101 is about 5000 square feet. A pitch 106 of a predefined length is positioned proximal to the strike wall 104. The predefined length of the pitch 106 is based on the skill levels and age group of the players involved in the modified baseball game 100. The pitch 106 comprises a first end 106a and a second end 106b. The first end 106a is also referred to as a pitcher's mound. The second end 106b of the pitch 106 is referred to as the home plate.

[0011] A first team and a second team play the modified baseball game 100. The modified baseball game 100 is played between the first team and the second team that take turns playing offense, for example, batting and playing defense, for example, pitching, fielding, etc. The modified baseball game 100 comprises at most five players each in the first team and the second team. Consider a scenario in which the first team fields and the second team bats. The second team is generally a visiting team, whereas the first team is a home team. Once three outs of the second team are recorded, the first team are sent in to bat while the second team position themselves on the field 101 to try to make the first team out. A pair of turns, one at bat and one in the field, by each team constitutes an inning. In an embodiment, number of the innings played by the first team and the second team are predetermined prior to the beginning of the modified baseball game 100. The goal of the game is to score more points or runs than the opposing team. A ball is used for pitching by one of the five players of the first team or the second team. The player who pitches the ball is referred to as a pitcher. In an embodiment, the field 101 is a synthetic turf-playing surface. Additionally, in an embodiment, walls and fencing, a covered top net, and graphics to replicate different playing venues enclose the field 101.

[0012] After determining the teams/players that will compete, a first team will take the field on defense, with a maximum of five players. Additional players can remain on the bench and participate as substitute players. The second team, for example, the batting team will take to their respective bench with one player entering the field and position him/her proximal to the second end 106b of the pitch 106, for example, the home plate exemplarily illustrated in FIGS. 1-2. The teams will predetermine a common pitching distance for the game to be played, as there will be three different distances to accommodate different age groups and skills levels. A player of the second team bats at the second end 106b of the pitch 106. At the beginning of each half-inning, the five players on the fielding team arrange themselves around the field. One of them, the pitcher, stands on the first end 106a of the pitch 106, for example, the pitcher's mound. The pitcher begins the pitching delivery with one foot on the rubber, pushing off it to gain velocity when throwing to the second end 106b of the pitch 106. The pitcher throws a ball, for example, a rubber ball to the strike wall 104, which forms a portion of the boundary for the balls and strikes to be called. Any pitch thrown into the box or on the line of the box is determined to be a strike. Any pitch thrown outside of the box is called a ball. A ball pitched that hits a batter is also a ball.

[0013] A ball that is swung at and foul tipped is a strike. As used herein, a "foul tip", refers to a ball tipped off the bat which goes straight back almost as if the bat missed it and strikes the strike wall 104. Pitched balls, which are not hit, strike the strike wall 104 and bounce back to the pitcher, therefore no catcher is required. It is sometimes hard to tell if a batter has foul-tipped a ball unless someone is close enough to hear the contact. A foul tip is always a strike, and is a strike out if there are two strikes on the batter. Balls that are hit must remain inside of the foul lines 107, exemplarily illustrated in FIG. 2, until it is played by a defensive player or strikes the back wall 105 of play in fair territory. Any batted balls that strikes the side walls 102, the back wall 105, top wall 103 followed by any wall, top wall 103 followed by the ground, or hits off of the batter is considered to be a foul ball. Balls hit directly into the upper net and fielded cleanly by a defensive player is an out. Batted balls that remain fair, whether hit directly at a player or hit into the ground toward a player and fielded cleanly is declared an out. Moreover, the back wall 105 comprises a plurality of markings to determine a value of a hit made by an offensive player, for example, a batter of one of the first team and the second team as exemplarily illustrated in FIG. 3.

[0014] The batter does not run to first base or any base as in traditional baseball. Balls that are hit directly into the back wall 105 positioned behind the defensive players are hits or outs. Lines and markings are positioned to determine the value of the hit or out. Any ball hit on the ground that then hits the fair ball wall without being fielded is a single. Any ball that is hit directly or off the ground at a player and is not fielded cleanly or falls to the ground after being touched is deemed a single. Outs and base runners are declared between batters. As in traditional baseball rules, four balls equals a walk, three strikes equals an out, etc. A batter can foul off as many balls as he or she can before getting a hit or making an out. In the modified baseball game 100, no base running is involved. When hitters get hits, runners are assumed in position. In force out situations with less than two outs, grounded balls fielded cleanly are declared as outs to the leading runner. The ball can then be immediately thrown from the fielded position into the strike zone box for a double play and a second out is awarded to the defensive team. After three outs are made, the teams switch positions and continue play. The number of innings is predetermined prior to play.

[0015] In another embodiment, mercy rules are implemented. According to mercy rules, games can be played in predetermined lengths of, for example, 3 innings, 5 innings, 7 innings, 9 innings, etc. No mercy rule is implemented for 3 inning games. In a 5-inning game, if a team is winning by 10 or more after 4 innings is considered a mercy. In a 7 inning game, if a team is winning by 12 runs after 5 innings or 10 runs after 6 innings will be considered a mercy. In a 9 inning, game if a team is winning by 15 runs after 6 innings, 12 runs after 7 innings, or 10 runs lead after 8 innings will be considered a mercy. Additionally, in another embodiment, specified boundaries are made for games played with less than five defensive players in each team. In other embodiments, all runs are forced in and foul balls caught before striking the ground can be declared outs. While there are no actual base runners, in a forced in run game, all bases must be occupied in order to force in runs. Pitched balls not hit, bounce back to the pitcher, therefore no catcher is used. The foul tip rule is also referred to as tick box. Only balls foul tipped into the strike box when a batter has two strikes will be considered an out. This rule is to be predetermined prior to the start of a game.

[0016] In the method disclosed herein, a field 101 bounded by a plurality of side walls 102, a top wall 103, a strike wall 104, and a back wall 105 for playing the modified baseball game 100 is provided. In an embodiment, the side walls 102, the top wall 103, the strike wall 104, and the back wall 105 are substantially perpendicular to the field 101, and the field 101 is substantially smaller than a traditional baseball field. In the method disclosed herein, a first team and a second team are employed for actively playing the modified baseball game 100. In an embodiment, the first team and the second team comprise five players each. By way of example, the first team fields and the second team bats initially followed by the first team batting and the second team fielding at the end of three outs of the second team. A pitch 106 of a predefined length is positioned proximal to the strike wall 104. In an embodiment, the modified baseball game 100 is free of base running and fly balls. Additionally, a number of the innings played by the first team and the second team are predetermined. In another embodiment, the field 101 comprises specified boundaries made for games played with less than five defensive players.

[0017] FIG. 3 exemplarily illustrates a front perspective view of a back wall 105 of a modified baseball game 100. The back wall 105 of the modified baseball game 100 is divided into multiple sections as exemplarily illustrated in FIG. 3. When a hitter hits the ball to the back wall 105, the ball hits the back wall 105 in one of the predetermined sections. Each section has a value as shown. Moreover, if a hitter hits the ball to the sections marked `0` on the back wall 105, the hitter is ruled out. If the ball hits the sections marked `1`, the offensive team adds a base hit to the score. Alternatively, if the ball hits the sections marked `2`, the offensive team adds a double to the score. Similarly, if the ball hits the sections marked `3`, the offensive team adds a triple to the score. The offensive team scores a home run if a hitter hits the ball to contact the sections marked `4` on the back wall 105. In an embodiment, the area of the sections, the score attributed to each section, etc., is modified based on the decision of the teams playing the modified baseball game 100. In an embodiment, the different sections are marked with the value of the runs that will be gained. In another embodiment, the sections offering similar runs are colored similarly.

[0018] The foregoing examples have been provided merely for the purpose of explanation and are in no way to be construed as limiting of the modified baseball game 100, disclosed herein. While the modified baseball game 100 has been described with reference to various embodiments, it is understood that the words, which have been used herein, are words of description and illustration, rather than words of limitation. Further, although the modified baseball game 100 has been described herein with reference to particular means, materials, and embodiments, the modified baseball game 100 is not intended to be limited to the particulars disclosed herein; rather, the modified baseball game 100 extends to all functionally equivalent structures, methods and uses, such as are within the scope of the appended claims. Those skilled in the art, having the benefit of the teachings of this specification, may effect numerous modifications thereto and changes may be made without departing from the scope and spirit of the modified baseball game 100 disclosed herein in their aspects.

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