A typical baseball game is nine innings, although that isn’t set in stone, says long time college coach Gary McClure. In the following brief Q&A, McClure wraps up a three part series on baseball rules and terminology by explaining how a winner is determined and how long a game can last until the final call.
Q: What is an inning?
Gary McClure: An inning consists of each team playing defense, in the field, and offense, at bat. There is no time limit for an inning and a standard MLB game is comprised of nine innings.
Q: How are tied games handled in professional baseball?
Gary McClure: Ties are a rare occurrence. If both teams have the same number of runs at the close of the bottom of the ninth inning, they may play extra innings until the game has a clear winner. In September of this year (2016), the Cubs and Pirates played a game that ended in a 1-1 tie in the sixth due to a downpour that lasted over an hour. This was the first MLB game to result in a tie since 2005.