Baseball: A National Pastime Essay

1340 words - 5 pages

Baseball today is a sport which everyone enjoys. This national pastime will always play a major role in American culture. Most countries have a game which requires a sort of stick and a ball. The most widely known sport involving these things is cricket. "While the exact origins of baseball are unknown, most historians agree that it is based on the English game of rounders "(Encarta, 1). Baseball is a game played with a ball "made of yarn wrapped around a rubber and cork core" (Sharp, 1). Baseball is one of the oldest and popular sports around. The game today attracts millions of fans to their stadiums and draws even more to the radio and television.A baseball game is has nine innings which are basically periods. The innings are divided into two sections the top and the bottom. During each section the teams take turns at batting. In order to end the other teams turn at bat the other team must get three of the opposing team's batters or runners out. To get a player out the team must tag the person out, throw the ball to the base before the runner gets there, or catch a fly ball. The team with the most players scoring at the end of nine innings wins. A play starts when the pitcher "standing 60ft 6in away" (Encarta, 3) throws the ball across the plate where the batter on the opposing team stands. In order to get on base the batter tries to hit the ball into the field. Another way the batter can get on base is by being thrown four unhittable balls ¬located outside the strike zone are called balls. The strike zone is from the batters knees to the letters across the front of his uniform. If the ball is thrown across this area it is considered a strike and the batter receives three strikes before done with their turn at bat. Players score runs by hitting the ball and running around a series of bases before a player in the field can put them out. Batters and runners can be put out in a variety of ways.Baseball is played on a level field, with a playing area that is divided into the infield and the outfield. Together, these two areas make up fair territory. The rest of the field is called foul territory. The infield is a diamond shaped sandy area, which "measures 90 ft (27 m) on each side" (Encarta 4). Each corner has a white canvas piece called a base. The bases located at three of the corners are shaped like squares and the one that is located where the batter stands is a pentagon. Batters hit the ball from a position on either side of home plate, depending on their handedness. There are white lines that go from home plate to first base and from home plate to third base. These lines go out to the outfield and mark the fair and foul territory. There are also lines that go from base to base used to mark the path of a runner.The equipment used in Baseball is minimal. Basic equipment includes a hard ball, a wooden bat, and a padded leather glove for each fielder used to catch the ball, cleats, and protective helmets for batters. Catchers wear extra gear...

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