Baseball (Card Game) Rules and Instructions

If you’re looking for something a bit different than your typical game of poker, check out the Baseball card game rules to learn poker with a twist.

Sometimes poker games become a tad too predictable, especially if you’re playing with someone who is an expert.

But different versions like Baseball or Follow The Queen Poker add different rules into the game.

This means almost anyone can gazump players who aren’t familiar with this version of the rules.

If this sounds like a version of the game you would like to know more about, keep reading our guide on how to play the baseball card game.

What Is the Baseball Card game?

Baseball Card Game Info Image

The Baseball card game is a variation on stud poker where the 3, 4, and 9 are special cards that act differently depending on when they’re drawn.

The reason why these 3 cards special refers to numbers used in Baseball – there are 3 strikes, 4 balls, and 9 innings per game.

Number of Players Required: 2 – 9 players.

Who Can Play It: Usually played by Adults.

Difficulty: Medium.

Length of Play: 5 – 15 minutes per round.

Similar to: Texas Hold’Em Poker; 5 Card Draw; Tripoley;

Main Objective: Win the pot by either having the best hand or by bluffing, so all the other players fold first.

Why We Love It: A twist on the classic game of poker adds a little bit more strategy into the game, as well as rewarding players who are feeling lucky.

Playing Baseball – What You’ll Need.

Like all other forms of Poker, Baseball requires the same components before you can begin playing.

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And as you would expect, you’ll need plenty of poker chips too, which also acts as the score as well. 

Aside from that, make sure you have a table large enough for everyone to be able to sit around while also keeping their cards hidden.

How To Set Up Baseball

Start setting up by shuffling the deck of cards and handing them out to players one at a time.

The first player who receives a Jack becomes the first dealer for the game.

Ensure that the dealer hands out the poker chips to all players equally, as players will use these to bet throughout the game.

That player then reshuffles the deck and hands 1 card out to each player face-down, this is the hole card, and players must keep it face down at this stage.

Players can look at this card but shouldn’t reveal it to anyone else. 

Hand an additional card out to each player, this time, this card gets left face-up next to the hole card.

The person dealing decides whether or not there is an ante for the round in which they are dealing.

The ante is where players need to ‘buy in’ with the number of chips that the dealer requests.

It’s optional to have an ante and to buy in, but only players who agree can play that round.

Baseball Card Game Rules

Just like most card games, the rank of cards in Baseball goes from lowest to highest 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, Jack, Queen, King, Ace.

Starting the Game

The player with the highest value face-up card is the player who starts the round.

If there are 2 players with matching highest value cards, then the player closest to the dealer begins.

The starting player needs to bet as many of their chips as they like depending on their confidence to win the hand.

One at a time going around the circle, players need to either match the bet (check), raise the bet by increasing the number of chips that they are betting, or folding if they do not wish to partake.

Anytime a player raises the bet, all the other players must check it to stay in the round; if they are unwilling to, then they must fold and lose any chips already committed in that round.

How to Play Baseball Card Game

Once players have agreed to the bet and no one else folds, the dealer hands out a 3rd card face up to the players left in the game.

Just like before, the player with the best hand at this stage repeats the betting process, with players either checking, raising, or folding depending on their cards.

The dealer hands out a 4th and 5th card, repeating this same process until there is either 1 player left who wins the round or until everyone left has checked after the 5th card gets dealt.

If there are 2 or more players left at this stage, the game goes to a showdown where players reveal their cards, including the 1 that is face-down.

Whoever has the best poker hand wins the hand, the round, and takes any chips that are in the pot for themselves.

Baseball has a twist that makes it different from other poker games, however.

Baseball Special cards

The 3’s, 4’s, and 9’s are the special cards that can affect the game if a player has them in their hand.

If 3 gets drawn as the hole card, this card becomes wild.

If the 3 gets drawn face up, that player can choose to match the pot with their own chips, which also makes all other players 3’s wild.

However, if they don’t choose to do this though, that player must fold but stops the 3’s from becoming wild.

Players who get dealt a 4 at the faceup stage get dealt another card immediately.

That player can still only have more than 5 cards still, but can only pick 5 to use at the showdown stage.

Any player managing to draw a 9 as either their hole card or face-up can use that 9 as a wild card.

Scoring in the Baseball card game

Scoring gets worked out depending on the number of chips each player has at the end of the game.

As players start with an equal number of chips and bet them throughout the game, whoever has the most chips at the end of the game is the winner.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are wildcards in the Baseball card game?

When a card is wild, it means that it can act as any other card that the player may need to complete their hand.

There are no limits as to what the wild card can act as which; players cannot change their minds once they’ve announced what their wild card is acting as though.

How many cards do you deal in the Baseball card game?

A maximum of 5 cards gets dealt with each player per round, 2 cards to start with 1 face-down and 1 face-up.

Each additional round that you play gives players who haven’t folded another card face-up until you reach the limit of 5 cards.

What do the Baseball card game rules say to do if a player runs out of chips?

Anyone who loses all of their chips at any point in the game gets eliminated from the game and cannot re-enter until the game is over.

Alternative Games to Baseball Card game

A fan of Rummy? Then be sure to take a look at the Kemps card game and learn the Tonk rules to learn 2 ways that you can play this game.

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