Baseball Essay Research Paper Baseball is an — страница 3

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placement within the strike zone (the area over home plate and between the batter’s knees and armpits). Substitutions are allowed throughout the game but preclude a player’s return. The defending players wear a leather glove on one hand. The catcher’s glove, the largest (up to 38 in/96.5 cm in circumference and 15.5 in/39.4 cm from top to bottom), is round and heavily padded. The first baseman’s mitt is more flexible and has one compartment for the thumb and another for the other fingers. The remaining players use gloves with separate compartments for each finger and a webbing between the thumb and index finger. The bat, up to 2.75 in (7 cm) thick and 42 in (106.7 cm) long, is round and wooden (in amateur games, aluminum is allowed). The ball consists of three layers: a

cork-and-rubber sphere forms the central core; woolen yarn is then tightly wound around the core; and a leather casing is stitched together around the whole. A regulation baseball is 9-9.25 in (22.9-23.5 cm) in circumference and weighs 5-5.25 oz (141.7-148.8 g). Each team’s half-inning consists of three outs. An out occurs most commonly when a ball is caught before bouncing (a fly ball), when a ground ball is caught and thrown to first base before the batter arrives, when a base runner is not touching a base and is tagged by a fielder holding the ball, when a fielder who has the ball touches a base other than first when there is a runner approaching that base and each previous base, when a player has left a base and is unable to get back before a caught fly ball is thrown to

the base, and when the pitcher gets three strikes on a batter. A strike is any pitch at which the batter swings and misses, any pitch that travels through the strike zone, and any batted ball that lands outside the straight lines running from home plate through first base and from home plate through third base to the outfield fence (called a foul). If the batter already has two strikes, a foul is not considered a strike unless it is a foul bunt or a tipped foul caught by the catcher before it bounces. The team at bat tries to get players on base and advance them until they round all four bases to score runs. The team with more runs after nine innings wins. If the score is tied at the end of nine innings, the teams play extra innings until one team scores more than the other and

both teams have had an equal number of turns at bat. A batter reaches base if hit by a pitch, if he or she receives a walk by taking four pitches (called balls) outside the strike zone, if a defensive player misplays the ball for an error, if the catcher interferes with a swing, and if the catcher fails to catch the pitcher’s throw on a third strike and does not throw the ball to first base before the batter reaches the base. But the most common way of reaching base is with a hit. Hits come in many forms: deliberately gentle bunts to unreachable parts of the infield, hard-hit ground balls that travel between infielders, bloopers popped in an arc beyond the infield but out of the outfielders’ reach, line drives in front of or between the outfielders, and clouts smashed over

the fence. Both the batter and runners may advance as far as possible on any hit. A one-base hit is a single, a two-base hit a double, a three-base hit a triple, and a four-base hit a home run. The most common kind of home run is a fair ball over the fence on a fly, but a batter may also run around all the bases before the fielders can retrieve a ball hit inside the park and throw it to the plate. Runners may also advance by stealing a base, on a balk (improper procedure by a pitcher), on a sacrifice (a bunt intended to move the runner even though the batter will be out), or on a sacrifice fly (a fly ball caught by an outfielder but not returned to the proper base before the runner reaches it–provided the runner does not leave his or her original base before the ball is

caught). Four umpires, one near each base, regulate the game, enforce the rules, and call balls and strikes, foul and fair balls, and safe or out. The umpires may also eject players from the game for improper behavior and call a forfeit for serious infractions. Some amateur games have only one or two umpires; the Championship Series between the American and National leagues, and the World Series have six. Baseball has two basic styles of play. Inside baseball, prevalent until the 1920s, emphasizes speed, defense, and good pitching. The second style emphasizes power hitting. The New York Yankees dominated baseball with the latter, winning 29 pennants and 20 World Series between 1921 and 1964. The use of relief pitchers and artificial turf has returned inside baseball to favor, but