A few Interesting Baseball Facts

Collecting baseball facts and trivia can be an engaging pursuit for a baseball enthusiast, for the game known as “America’s Pastime” has been around for well over a century. From little-known rules to remarkable events on the field, baseball has a rich and exiting lore. This article will discuss just a few of the many interesting baseball facts there are.

One of the things which makes baseball distinct from the other popular team sports in America is its lack of a clock. The analog of a clock in baseball is the out: twenty-seven outs equal one game.

However, if those outs are never recorded, the game – or even a single inning – can theoretically go on forever. Of course this never actually happens, but anyone who has watched baseball for years has witnessed that nightmare inning in which their pitcher gets the first two outs easily, but an innocuous little infield single leads to eight runs scoring before that final out is recorded. On the other hand, he or she has also seen the miracle inning in which their team scores eight runs, all with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, to shock the opposing team and come away with their greatest win of the season. Because of this fact, no baseball game is ever over, until the final out is recorded; the concept of being “out of time” does not exist in baseball as it does in other sports.

Among the more interesting events that can occur during a baseball game is the scoring of a run without a base hit. Take the following inning, for instance: the leadoff hitter walks, and then steals second base. The next hitter hits a sacrifice bunt to move the runner to third, now with one out. A sacrifice fly to the outfield scores the runner from third, and a strikeout ends the inning. Innings like this occur every now and then over the course of a season; these become even more interesting when they occur in the context of a no-hitter.

The term no-hitter, sometimes shortened to “no-no,” is a shortening of “no-hit game.” It refers to a complete nine-inning game pitched by a starting pitcher in which he allows no hits. No hit games pitched by multiple pitchers can also occur; Major League Baseball considers a game to be a no-hitter as long as nine innings are completed and no hits allowed, regardless of how many pitchers appeared in the game. There have been two hundred and fifty-five no hitters in Major League history since 1876 (including the American Association, Federal League, Player’s League, and Union Association in addition to the surviving American League and National League). The first occurred on July 15, 1876, a 2-0 win pitched by George Bradley for the St. Louis Brown Stockings over the Hartford Dark Blues, and the most recent occurred on September 1, 2007, when Clay Bucholz of the Boston Red Sox no-hit the Baltimore Orioles in a 10-0 Boston win.

Of these two hundred and fifty five no-hitters, a run or more was allowed in twenty three, most recently on September 8, 1993, when Darryl Kile of the Houston Astros defeated the New York Mets 7-1. The most runs allowed in a no-hitter is two, which has occurred five times. Once has a team pitched a no-hitter and lost; this occurred during a game on April 30, 1967 between the Detroit Tigers and the Baltimore Orioles. Steve Barber and Stu Miller combined to pitch a no-hitter for the Orioles, but the Tigers scored two runs in the ninth inning, one on a wild pitch and the other on an error, to defeat the Orioles 2-1.

The youngest player to appear in a Major League game in the modern era was Joe Nuxhall, who in 1944 pitched two-thirds of an inning, allowing five runs, at the age of fifteen for the Cincinnati Reds. If we go back even further, we find that in 1887, fourteen year old Fred Chapman pitched five innings for the Philadelphia Athletics of the American Association (this was his entire Major League career).

At the other end of the scale, the oldest player to have played in Major League Baseball was fifty-eight year old Satchel Paige, who pitched 3 innings for the Kansas City Athletics in 1965. Paige was one of the best pitchers in the Negro Leagues, a segregated league of colored baseball players that existed from 1920 to 1951 (at least, when they were considered “major” leagues; segregated leagues existed as early as 1885 and as late as the 1980s). Paige did not pitch in Major League Baseball until 1948, when he was already forty-one years old. He pitched as a regular starter until 1953 (he was forty six), and sat out for a dozen years until his final appearance in 1965. Two other players, Minnie Minoso (54) and Charley O’Leary (51) played in Major League Baseball in their fifties.

This is just a sampling of the vast lore of interesting baseball facts that exists. There are people who have devoted themselves to studying the history of baseball, though we may never know everything there is to know about baseball history; most people are happy just to recall the more interesting events they have seen in the time they have watched baseball . A subject that is the topic of many a book, baseball lore will never cease to fascinate the fans of America’s Pastime.

Tips on Baseball Pitches

Baseball pitches are at the heart of this fine game that is baseball, for it is the interaction between batter and pitcher that is the core of the game. To understand this central interaction in baseball, we must ask: what is a pitch, and what pitches do pitchers throw? This article will explain pitches and what they are.

A pitch is a throw delivered from the pitcher, standing on the pitcher’s mound, to home plate, sixty feet and six inches away.

Note about gloves, If pitcher is a youth then she or he must use the baseball gloves for youth. If don’t youth they can pitch by normal gloves.

Standing beside home plate in the batter’s box is the batter, whose job is to try to hit the ball. A good pitch isn’t just a throw, however; pitches are distinguished by the characteristics of speed, movement, and location.

Before I describe what kinds of pitches there are, there are a few things to keep in mind regarding pitches. First, it has been held by such notable pitchers as Greg Maddux, widely regarded as a shoo-in for the Baseball Hall of Fame, that of the three characteristics of pitches, it is location that is the most vital. Second, baseball pitches do not stand alone, but rather as a package.

For example, consider those pitchers who throw hard, yet get few swings-and-misses, and few strikeouts, like the Mets’ Mike Pelfrey. This happens because no pitcher can throw hard enough to strike out batters by the dozen without quality secondary pitches. On the other hand, there is Pedro Martinez, who by 2005 had lost enough steam off his fastball that he wouldn’t have been considered a hard thrower, yet who still struck out nearly a batter per inning (208 in 217 innings). This is because his secondary offerings were among the best in baseball, and also because of his immense pitching intelligence and ability to locate pitches precisely.

Pitcher

The most basic of the baseball pitches is the fastball, so named because it is fast, or at least, a pitcher’s fastest offering. Because the fastball is also the pitch that generally has the least movement, it is often the easiest to hit. It is the staple of pitching, however, because it is usually the easiest for a pitcher to control. The fastball can be made to sink in order to induce ground balls, in which case it is called a sinking fastball, or sinker. Many “power” pitchers, on the other hand, throw fastballs higher in the strike zone which may appear to the batter to rise, and/or have “tailing” action – that is, lateral movement. Such pitchers tend to generate more fly balls, but may strike out more batters than a typical ground ball pitcher.

Among the most popular secondary pitches is the changeup. Named as such for “changing up” off of the fastball, it may be described as a slowball. The best changeups are the most deceptive: thrown with the same arm action as the fastball, they catch the batter off guard.

The oldest of the secondary pitches, the curveball has been thrown since the late 1800s. It can be the slowest of pitches, but also the pitch that moves the most. The “classic” curveball is a slow pitch which starts high and drops far, far down. Power curves thrown harder and with sharper breaks and “slurves” that break on an angled plane can also be thrown.

The slider and cutter are pitches which are often confused: a pitch that one individual calls a slider, another may call a cutter. The slider can be described as a compromise between a fastball and a curve: faster than a curve but with more break than a fastball. A typical cutter generally breaks more laterally.

Other common pitches include the split-fingered fastball, or splitter, which is named after the unique grip employed which involves holding the ball between the split index and middle fingers. This pitch is meant to look like a fastball to the hitter as it comes out of the pitcher’s hand, but has a hard, late downward break.

With pitches such as these, a pitcher can confuse the batter, induce weakly hit balls, or even induce a swing-and-miss. To pitch successfully, one must not only master the pitches, but also when to throw which pitch, and how to locate it. It is not easy work to defeat a batter who has dedicated himself to hitting the ball!

Baseball School

Baseball has become such a serious issue for some that a world of baseball schools has opened to serve aspiring players. Baseball schools (or baseball camps, or baseball academies) exist for players at many different ages and skill levels. Additionally, many Major League baseball teams have opened “baseball academies” in Latin American countries such as the Dominican Republic. This article will discuss the many types of baseball schools that exist.

For many parents, summer camps have become a popular way to engage their children in healthy and enjoyable activities (and earn some free time). Among the many choices in camps that exist are sports camps, which may specialize in sports such as tennis, basketball, wrestling, or baseball; it is the last of these which will be of interest to us. Such camps may be used to develop the skills of proficient players, though many camps offer programs for less proficient players; players may be grouped in teams according to skill level.

Like other summer camps, baseball camps take place during summer breaks from school, and may last between three and eight weeks. While these camps may specialize in baseball as an activity, many offer attendees a range of activities beyond baseball. At a good baseball camp, the focus is on the development of the entire child, as a person, a teammate, and a friend, as well as an athlete. A good camp aims to instill a good sportsmanlike attitude in its participants; teaching children that there is more to life than winning baseball games, and how to lose gracefully. One of the greater benefits of a camp may simply be the chance to meet other players and form friendships.

More specialized baseball schools also exist, for skills such as hitting or pitching. These may take the form of short but intensive workshops, longer programs, or coaching sessions. A commonly used means of practicing batting skill is the batting cage. There are countless facilities across the United States that offer the use of a batting cage (an area enclosed in some sort of protective fencing or netting), a pitching machine, and a certain number of balls. Many batting cages offer coaching from experienced players, regardless of the skill level or experience of the participant.

A recent phenomenon is the construction of Latin American baseball academies sponsored by Major League baseball clubs. Baseball is extremely popular in parts of Latin America, and a large fraction of Major League Baseball players are Latino (28.5% according to a 2005 report). Hoping to find the next Latin superstar, many baseball teams have invested millions in sprawling complexes for young players in Latin American countries. While there is some controversy surrounding these facilities, with some accusing Major League Baseball of exploiting young Latin players, many academies will offer some level of basic education as well as baseball instruction.

Whether one is chasing the dream of making it to “the show,” or simply trying to one-up his or her friends, there are baseball schools available for all ages and skill levels; a simple search online or in the yellow pages can produce a multitude of choices. At a baseball camp, one may make friends and have a fun time – and this is the key. The best thing that can be learned at a baseball school, is that baseball is fun!

More Advanced Tips on How to Play Baseball

Even if you are already playing baseball, there are a few baseball tips you might want to keep in mind. The main page of the website covered tips for beginners; now we will look at helping slightly more experienced players. Of course, this is no substitute for hands-on coaching, but these general rules describe the best approach to succeeding in baseball.

Our first baseball tips become especially handy over the course of a long season. The first, is to remember that one is never as good as one looks while in a hot streak, nor as bad as one looks when slumping. Professional hitters are able to bring the same approach to every at-bat, helping to keep on an even keel throughout the season. This can be less draining than riding the highs and lows; a cool mind is a benefit in the field. Moreover, Choosing the types of baseball bats using in the matches is also important. The little leagues usually use little league bats usa approved and the larger leagues use the other type of bats.

This leads us to our next tip: leave your batting behind you when you field and your fielding behind you when you bat. There are many talented baseball players in the world; what separates the successful players from the used-car salesmen is their mental approach. To make the most of your baseball talents requires focus above all else.

The next baseball tips involve your unique identity as a player. First, keep in mind that it is best to find a coach that will adapt himself to your unique style of play. Nothing can ruin a player more than being molded into something that he isn’t – a square peg does not fit in a round hole. The best coaches are those that aim to tweak your style of play to get the most out of it, and that have no preconceived notions about what a player “should” be.

Hitting Ball

A crucial baseball tip which follows from the last paragraph is that there is no “right” way to bat and no “right” way to pitch. The best way for one to bat or pitch is the way that works best for him or her. If you are a pitcher without a real strikeout pitch, focus on limiting free passes and power. If your success relies on a wacky pitching motion that fools the hitter, don’t fix it if it’s effective. If you are a hitter who is productive despite taking your fair share of strikeouts, don’t sweat it. Consider that many of the best hitters in the major leagues take their share of punchouts – from Manny Ramirez to Jim Thome to Miguel Cabrera, etc. The secret of these hitters is that when they do make contact, they hit the bejeezus out of the ball; their batting line “on contact,” or with strikeouts removed, would dwarf the best overall lines ever posted. If they cut down on the strikeouts at the expense of losing that heavyweight punch, the trade-off might not be worth it.

Preparing

These baseball tips are descriptive of the best players in the world: those that play in Major League Baseball. If you can adapt the approach of the professionals, it will help raise your game to the highest level it can reach. After all, once one has mastered the physical skills of any sport, all that remains is to master the mental side. In the immortal words of Yankees legend “Yogi” Berra, “Half of this game is 90% mental.”