The Rules of Pesäpallo (Finnish Baseball) – EXPLAINED!


Ninh explains, the Rules of Pesäpallo. The object of the game is to score more runs
than the other team. Pesäpallo sometimes referred to as ‘Finnish
Baseball’, is the national sport of Finland and is derived from American Baseball. But a word of warning to my American friends:
Do NOT assume that this is just like American Baseball. It’s not. Comparing Pesäpallo with American Baseball
will most likely lead to confusion and your lack of understanding. So keep an open mind and think of this as
a completely different sport altogether. To score a run, you must hit the ball within
the area of play, and run across three bases, and back to home. The field of play is long and narrow, generally
a maximum of 96m x 42m The bases form a zig-zag shape and each base
is further away than the last. If you hit the ball outside the area of play,
this is a foul ball and the batter is not allowed to run. So hitting the ball as far as you can, won’t
do you much good here. The defending team will put 9 players on the
field, whilst the batting team will stand around home base in a semi-circle. The job of the batting team is to score as
many runs as possible by hitting the ball and running around the bases. They will send a batter to meet the defending
pitcher at the pitching plate. The pitcher’s job is to pitch the ball vertically
in the air, at least one metre above his head, and for the ball to land on the pitching plate. A strike is any legal pitch, and a batter
is allowed three strikes before he must become a runner. If the pitcher throws the ball at least a
metre in the air, and it lands on the plate, it’s a strike. If the batter swings and misses any ball,
it’s also a strike. If the batter makes contact with the ball,
it’s a strike. If you hit the ball within the area of play,
you are eligible to run, but you don’t have to. Remember, you can use all three strikes to
decide whether you want to run or not. An illegal pitch, is known as a ball or a
bad pitch. If the pitcher misses the plate, it’s a
bad pitch. If the pitcher doesn’t throw it at least
one metre in the air, it’s also a bad pitch. Or if the pitcher does else something wrong,
it’s a bad pitch. If there are no runners on the bases, one
single bad pitch is all it takes for a batter to walk to first base. If there are runners on base, two bad pitches
will allow the point runner (who is standing on the highest numbered base), to walk to
the next base. The job of the defending team is to remove
batters from the line-up and get players out of the game. In Pesäpallo, being caught and being out
are two different things. If a batter hits the ball in the air and it’s
caught on the fly by the defending team – anybody trying to run for a base has been caught. This prevents them from scoring, but this
does NOT mean that they are out. The only way the defending team can get players
out, is if they throw the ball to the base that they are running to. If the ball that beats the batter to the base,
they are out. Also, if the batter hits a foul ball on the
third strike, the batter is automatically out. Once three players are out, their half of
the inning is over, and the other team gets to bat. Once both teams have batted, this is known
as an inning. The game is played in two periods of four
innings each. Winning two periods, wins the game. If both teams have won one period, an extra
period of one inning, will be played to determine the winner. That’s basically the rules in a nutshell,
but there’s a few other things you need to know before playing or watching Pesäpallo. For example: Jokers
For one inning, a batting team can add three additional players to their batting line-up. This means that you can temporarily have 12
players in the batting order, as opposed to the normal 9. These are the jokers, they wear a different
coloured jersey and they can play in any part of the batting order they want. Their job is to increase the number of runs
scored, especially if they are down on runs. Home Run
If a batter manages to hit the ball legally and run to third base, this is a home run
and this scores one run automatically. The batter then stays on third base, and can
run back to home base, on a later play for an additional run. This means that a batter can potentially score
two runs by themselves. Inning over. Another way for an inning to be over is if
all the members of the batting line up fails to score at least 2 runs. If the entire batting line-up has taken their
turn to bat, and has scored one run or less, the inning is over. Strategy. The strategy of the batting team is the hit
the ball in areas where it is difficult for the defending team to get players out. They generally hit the ball away from the
bases that their players are standing on. As previously mentioned, hitting the ball
as far as you can won’t do you any good here, you have to be selective where you hit
the ball. The strategy of the defending team is to predict
where the ball will be hit, and position fielders to try and get catches and outs. Remember, do not compare it to the rules of
American Baseball – treat this as a completely different sport and it’s a lot easier to
understand. If you have found this video at all helpful,
please be sure to like, share and subscribe. It takes me ages to make one of these things
and good karma is very much appreciated. Be sure to follow me on Twitter also, but
in the meantime, enjoy Pesäpallo. Ninh Ly – www.ninh.co.uk – @NinhLyUK

100 thoughts on “The Rules of Pesäpallo (Finnish Baseball) – EXPLAINED!

  1. Ninh explains the Rules of Pesäpallo – Finland’s national version of Baseball.
    Boy this wasn’t an easy one to make! But special thanks to Tony Jones @ The Finnish Baseball & Softball Federation for double checking this video for me and helping me with corrections.
    After watching hours of Pesäpallo to understand the rules – I must admit that it’s actually a brilliant game! There is A LOT of strategy involved in this game, even more than American Baseball – I think it could catch on if the circumstances were right.
    Like, Share and Subscribe 🙂

  2. One cool fact that I did not notice you mentioning, is that pesäpallo was originally developed to train Finnish men for war. Throwing the ball resembles throwing a grenade and diving to a base (in a Finnish way) will save your life when you are running from artillery fire for example. Pesäpallo was very popular in White Finland's Civil guards, especially in the 1920s and 1930s, but that connection has since been severed. Great video altogether!

  3. I had never, in my life, heard of Pesäpallo and I feel like I've been missing out. I want to play a Pesäpallo video game.

  4. After viewing this video and the one on bandy I am intrigued by the uniforms of both sports. I wonder if anyone either in Finland or elsewhere in Scandinavia has considered marketing these to a North American clientele? It's possible they could catch on here.

  5. Had never heard of this game before. Really a lot different from baseball. The uniforms are definitely colourful.

  6. This is a really cool looking game. I think that US baseball fans who are fans of "small ball" especially would like Pesäpallo a great deal. I'd love to see some MLB speedsters give it a shot some day – can you imagine Rickey Henderson if he had played this sport?
    Are runners allowed to take a lead off of the base or steal? Is bunting allowed?

  7. Since there is a difference between caught and out, is there a rule about forced runs and how many people can be on a base?

  8. So between Hydraulic press channel, dudesons, and sons of explosions. And now this I am convinced Finland is completely tucking cool and I need to move there.

  9. Ive been trying to tell my fellow New Zealanders about this for over 30 years. Now I can SHOW them. Thanks.

  10. One thing that confused me, several example clips show the ball bouncing in bounds before leaving the field of play, particularly to the sides. Are those foul, or are they fair?

  11. You keep saying that it's easier to understood when not compared to baseball….. I don't exactly agree….. your explanation at least is very similar

  12. Ninh
    Which is the sport you found hardest to learn overall ??
    And how long does a pesapallo game last? Like the duration of it on an average

  13. I wonder how many decades it will take for this sport to take over. Because it's amazing. So much more exciting than normal baseball.

  14. everything i learn about finland just proves how weird they are. i dont mean that in a negative way. theyre just odd

  15. The day the Finnish guy saw american baseball and decided to start the sport in Finland must have been half price beer day.

  16. Some fairly obvious connections to cricket as well. You will need to brush up on those rules and do another pesapallo video!

  17. The cool thing I like about this is the fact that there are adult female teams (unlike softball here in America). Just seems like there is so much restriction for females to be competitive in my country. Now while the rules are indeed a bit confusing, it seems like its more friendly and not about trying to go crazy with blasting balls out of the field.

  18. Is every play a force out (where a defensive player gets a runner out by simply touching the base while in possession of the ball) , or are tags sometimes necessary? And can the pitcher throw the ball slam dunk style? Thanks for answering.

  19. It's hard not to compare it to baseball when they are using the exact same bat, a baseball, running to 4 bases… need I go on

  20. Best possible hit is home run, you can hit it out of field BUT it must first touch the ground in the playing field. So you bounce it of the game area and out of field, that is best possible hit. If you have guys on all three bases youll have them score 3 runs and you get 1+1 homerun yourself as a hitter. Hitter is still the coolest job in game, but you must try to fool the field and find openings on field that you can land that ball on without anyone catching it. Good 3 dimensional thinking helps, like "over those guys, between those guys, and off the field". You also see alot of fake shots where you wind it like you are going for home run and then on last second you take off the power and barely touch it, ball only flies for 3meters or so. But as it comes as surprise to everyone you have enough time to go the 1st base.

  21. I like the angry "this isnt finnish baseball!" Crying in the beginning. The entire video all i was thinking was "yeah, this is finnish baseball"

  22. It looks much more fast paced than American baseball…since it’s not about pitching. Looks like a lot of fun! Thanks for the explanation!

  23. Why do the other players on the team that's up stand around the batter with their bats over their heads?

  24. really cool that these type of things exist hah. It does seem like a way lower skill ceiling than American Baseball. Without the pitcher really doing anything and all balls just being lobs, but still seems fun.

  25. So the "jokers" are basically like DH's? Which means they just have to be good at hitting – so this is where you put the heavier, slower guys – which is why they have to wear jerseys with a Subway logo.

  26. i moved to Finland when i was young, and we did alot of finnish baseball in school, having played it many times, the rules were always generally quite clear to me.

  27. The guys at MLB Network once played vitilla with Pedro Martinez.
    I'd like to see them try to play this. Gotta say, as an American, it looks pretty neat!
    Thanks to Jomboy for introducing me to this!
    Though judging by the field dimensions, you'd think that Finn had seen a game not in Boston, but at the Polo Grounds…

  28. Seems a bit silly really. I mean baseball is derived from cricket, and poesalo from baseball, mabey the original form of bat and ball games, got it right.
    5 days of test match cricket for a draw, anyone?

  29. The other feature that's worth mentioning is that if you hit a ball in the area of play and it bounces out, there is no "out-of-bounds" area….the defense has to go get the ball if it goes into the stands, a river, etc.

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