Columbus Kickball Leagues

During your days in elementary school, do you remember playing a game where you kicked a ball and ran around the bases? Almost everyone has childhood memories of playing kickball in gym class, but did you ever imagine playing kickball as an organized sport?

Kickball is played with four bases – but instead of someone pitching a ball to someone at home plate – the ball is rolled and the “batter” uses his or her feet to kick the ball and run around the bases to score runs. It’s similar in many ways to baseball, but with some different rules to maximize enjoyment instead of competition.

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The Columbus Arena District Kickball league is an 18 and up co-ed summer league that begins in June and with the playoffs continues through Labor Day Weekend. The league games are played on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday nights at McFerson Fields between McFerson Commons, the three acre park anchored by the Union Station Arch between Nationwide Boulevard and Spring Street. The league’s age range is for young adults’ between the ages of 23 through 38. The league is about 50% competition and about 50% fun.

The league consists of 39 teams divided into 3 divisions that play on their division day of Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday night. The playoff format this year is a sweet 16 single elimination tournament. The top 5 teams from each division and the team with the best record remaining make the playoffs. The first round games of the playoffs start on Tuesday, August 26th, Wednesday August 27th, and Thursday August 28th. After the first round of the playoffs, the 8 teams that won will advance to the second round games on Tuesday, September 2nd. Two days later, on Thursday, September 4th, the final four will be played followed by a championship game as well as a consolation game. The winner of the playoffs for the Arena District League receives a trophy and plays the winner of the playoffs from the Statehouse Lawn League.

Thirty-three year old Joe Polshaw, a corporate recruiter for American Electric Power from Grandview Heights on team R-BAR, has been playing kickball for three years. He noted, “I continue to play because it is convenient and it is near social hot spots. I would only play in the downtown league.” Assistant Commissioner Steve Levert, remarks, “It is a great activity for people after work.”

People come together and organize their own teams. Many of the team names are humorous, such as “Drunk Again & Looking to Score”, “Saved by the Balls”, and “Stoned Pizza.”

Twenty-eight year old Ryan Garrison from Hilliard has been playing kickball for three years with the Saved by the Balls team. When asked if there was anything he disliked about kickball, Garrison said, “I don’t like the can’t slide rule.” The rule is that if any player intentionally slides, it will result in an out.

Over last few years, the team members on Saved by the Balls have stuck together. Before playing kickball, most of the team members knew each other during their days as students at Ohio University. The team has only lost two games in the last three years, but has never won the playoffs.

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Any team in the Arena District Kickball League can have up to a maximum of 24 players on a team. There are a total of 10 players on the field. The minimum number of players on the field is 8, and 4 of those players must be female. The kickball league games are either 7 innings or 45 minutes. Five innings is a complete game. The kickball games have a minimum of at least 1 umpire from the Arena Club staff. There is a limit of 20 runs per inning per team, except for the last inning. If a team is winning by more than 20 runs after four innings, the “Mercy Rule” applies and the game is concluded.

When a team wins, it receives 3 points in calculating the standings. If a team ties it receives 1 point, and a loss results in 0 points.

This Arena District Kickball League began in 2005 with 16 teams. The league has expanded substantially this year with 39 teams playing on three fields. Some of the games this year have been rescheduled and played as make-up games in August.

In the standings, the current first place leaders are Killer Balls of Tuesdays League, Stoned Pizza of Wednesdays League, and undefeated 8-0 R-Bar of Thursdays League.

3 Responses to “Columbus Kickball Leagues”

  1. mikey112 says:

    a kickball league? that’s crazy. doesn’t columbus support anything other than OSU football?

  2. […] Source: Columbus Kickball Leagues […]

  3. This league sounds fun but it’s only one season. I’ve played with Sports Monster in Columbus because they offer cheap leagues and run all year including indoor leagues. Just another option.

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