For an outsider looking in, baseball can look very complicated especially so after seeing disputes and shouting matches within a professional game. To learn baseball intuitively, one must view it first as part of the audience.
For the layman, the object of the game is for the teams to actually make more runs than their opponents. (A run is making it safely through all the bases.)
Anybody who has the ball can tag you out if you are not in your rightful base plate. The pitcher will use all his powers to strike you out of the game.
Young baseball players usually start out by watching the sport first. Later, they will try out with a team and play the game.
However, the coaches are the ones who will make sure these youngsters will understand rules thoroughly. The following are some of the important ones.
The batter should know how to assess and cover the entire strike zone. This is a delicate subject because this varies from umpire to umpire.
Basically, however, the strike zone is the space over the home plate between the batter’s shoulders and the top of his knees (when he is at his natural positional stance).
A ball that had been batted is considered fair ball if it lands in the field of play. It is still a fair ball if it touches or passes first or third base within fair territory.
The big point is to simply run hard enough to first base when you hit the baseball.
A batter is out if the catcher catches a third strike during an “at bat” position. However, if the catcher drops the third strike, or the ball gets past by, and there is no base runner at first base, then the batter can run to the first base and try to arrive there safely before the catcher throws the ball there.
Tie goes to the runner
Put simply, the umpire is the ultimate judge whether the base runner is safe or out. If the runner arrives at a base at the same instance the fielder catches the ball, the runner is considered safe.
Running the bases is probably the most fun in baseball. However, there are many rules regarding base running.
A runner has to touch all the bases going around the infield. He has to touch first, second, third and then the home plate before he can score a run. (He has to go back to that plate if he misses touching them.)
He cannot pass a fellow runner in front of him.
A fielder must touch a runner to tag him out, either with the ball or his glove when the ball is in. He cannot tag the runner with his glove but has the ball in his other hand.
Umpires make the decisions and can disqualify anybody for good reason. Players do not argue balls or strikes. Respect for umpires, coaches and players must be up at all times. This tops everything in your drills and skills.
All in all, to learn baseball is actually being able to follow rules and play them – no arguments and questions, but just to have fun.
Are you already drowning with too much information that you have to ingest as you try to learn baseball? It will not hurt if you are going to slow down while taking everything in. You can relax for some time and prefer to watch real games on TV. After such down time, you can go back on the learning process because there are still many things to learn about this national sport in the US and a favorite hobby of many people across the globe. You already know how the game is played. You even have a complete list of the equipments that a player needs to get on with it. So what else do you have to be briefed about? Aside from the basics, there are many special rules that you have to learn to know the game better.
This sport is actually easier explained in words. Once you are out in the field, you will understand that it is indeed complex with so many rules that you have to bear in mind as you get on with the game. Here are some samples that can help you get started with these special rules.
Foul pole. In the playing field, there are poles that are set up on the left and right sides of the fields to serve as the foul line. This is done to measure the ball as it travel in the air. When the ball hits one of these poles, it will be called a fair ball and a home run is going to be announced.
Ground rule double. In contrast with the first rule that the ball will be called a home run when it hits over the outfield fence, an automatic double is going to be called when the ball bounces over the fence.
Dropped third strike. The batter is considered out if they committed three strikes. In the case of the catcher, when they drop or doesn’t catch the pitched third strike, the batter is still capable to be awarded with first base. This can be achieved if he’ll be able to reach it before the catcher can tag him or throw the ball towards the first base. This kind of strikeout is not part of the three outs during the half inning.
Tagging up. A runner that is positioned on the base cannot advance until the ball hits the ground. When the ball is caught by a fielder, the runner can only advance when the ball is caught. The fielder aims to create a record of an out by assisting his teammate through tagging. Through this, the game can level up into a close play at the home plate.
Infield fly rule. When a ball remains in the air, the runners must stay on the base. So when there are two or more runners out on the base with less than two outs, an automatic out is going to be called in case of a fly ball that is not hit strong enough to move farther in the field.
There are many other rules that you will know more about as you learn baseball. Make sure that you are always open to new ideas, game tactics and techniques that can help you become a better player in no time.
Are you in for an action-packed baseball in the field? Just like in other games, it is very important that you familiarize yourself first with the different terms that are used to refer to the plays and moves in baseball. If you go the field without any knowledge even about the fundamental baseball lingo, then you will barely have an idea of what your fellow players are talking about.
Thus, you have to learn baseball terms so that you won’t be left out in the game. Even if you’re not playing baseball but happen to be a fan, you will appreciate the sport more if you are familiar with the different terms used in it. The following are the most common and important baseball terms that you must learn before you head over to the field:
1. Ace – The ace is the best starting pitcher in a baseball team. Usually, the coach places this player at the start of a game.
2. Bing-Bang Play – It happens when a fielder catches a ball, which lands close to his belt or waist level. Since the ball has been caught below the level of the waist, this catch is considered a tricky one.
3. Bunt – It is a valid batting of the ball, even though the player did not swing it. The ball is just deliberately hit by the bat and tapped within the field.
4. Caught Looking – This term is used when a batter gets the third strike without any attempt to swing at the pitch.
5. Force Play – When the current batter becomes a runner, the current runner loses his right to stand on the base. This play is called force play.
6. Forfeited Game – A baseball match becomes forfeited when the umpire declares it should be ended because a team has violated the rules. The other team gets to win the game.
7. Fungos – This term refers to the drills that players do to warm up before a baseball game. The drills involve hitting a ball to a fielder during baseball practice.
8. Homer – Also referring to home run, this commonly used term describes the hitting of the ball that causes it to go past the reach of the farthest players in the field.
9. Infield – The infield is the playing field’s diamond-shaped area with four bases bordering it.
10. Pepper – This is also a warm-up drill routine for players before every game. A player peppers by standing and bunting grounds to his fellow players who are standing from 10 to 20 feet away.
11. Run – When an offensive player has passed the bases and gone back to the home base, the team gets one score. This is referred to as a run.
12. Southpaw – It refers to a left-handed pitcher.
These are just some of the many terms that baseball players, coaches, and the umpire use in the game. There are more terms that are worth learning if you are serious in becoming a professional baseball player or coach. You must learn baseball terms to understand the rules of the game.
If you love watching baseball games, chances are there are judgments of the umpires that you may see differently. To improve your appreciation of this game, it is good if you learn baseball rules. Baseball is an uneventful game and most of the time scores are calculated based on real life situations. Learning baseball rules lets you know when you should call the attention of an umpire for questions of his judgment. It also enhances your appreciation of this America’s all-time favorite ball game. Here are some quick overviews of baseball rules that commonly come up during games:
1. Batting – The first rule is this: the visiting team bat first and the home team will bat second. In a case where all teams use the same fields, the home team is predetermined by league officials. If the home team has not been predetermined, a coin toss can be used by the umpire in chief to determine the home team.
The coach of each team must submit the batting order to the umpire in chief before the game. An extra copy of the batting order must be given to the scorekeeper and the opposing coach. The batting order is a list of full names of the players, list of available substitutes and the player’s corresponding uniform number. The batting order must be strictly followed in the game.
Bunting is not allowed. Players must use a full swing in each attempt of hitting. If the ball swung and missed it is considered strike.
2. Scoring – A base run is scored if an offensive player touches first, second and third bases and home plate to avoid being called out. The batter may be called out because of a strikeout, a ground out, a fly out, a tag out, or a force out. A strikeout happens when three strikes are called on the hitter. Ground out happens when the batted ball touches the ground before being caught by a fielder and is thrown to the first baseman. Fly out, on the other hand, happens when the batted ball is caught by a fielder before it touches the ground. A tag out is when the runner is tagged by an opponent who is in possession of the ball. Force out happens when an opponent who is in possession of the ball touches a base before the runner arrives and the runner cannot retreat to the previous because a teammate is already running towards there. The team with the most runs wins the game.
3. Schedule – All games will be played according to a schedule. Schedule can be cancelled due to extreme circumstances with permission from the Sports Office.
4. Game duration – Game time is forfeit time. The game shall be one hour long. The official time is based on the umpire’s watch. Umpires will announce the last batter. No game will last longer than 7 innings or one hour.
5. Base running – The ball becomes dead once the pitcher or catcher has control of the ball inside his or her circle. Runner less than half way to the next base must return to the original base. Runner more than half way to the next base must be entitled to the base. You can also learn baseball rules from books like “The Official Rules of Baseball Illustrated” written by David Nemec. Umpire manuals also contain baseball rules.