101 Things You May Not Have Known About Baseball
That means building a solid base in the minor leagues that continually supplies the major league team with a stream of quality players, both position players and pitchers. It also means not only drafting and scouting players, but getting the most out of their ability, and utilizing them to their strengths to become the best possible player they can be.
You have to be able to develop them and you have to be able to develop stars. That will keep your costs down on the major league roster and is the only way to build a successful team for the long term year in and year out. There are many steps involved in building a championship franchise. Having a plan is the key.
Those teams that are successful have a way that they do things and a philosophy in place. Just because they are athletically gifted does not mean they know the game. Charlie Manual, manager of the World Champion Philadelphia Phillies became a manager in the minors a long time ago and admitted that even though he played professional baseball for many years, that he knew very little about the game of baseball and had to learn on the job. I would have classroom study in every aspect of the game throughout the minor leagues starting in rookie ball all the way through Triple A.
Speaking to Dusty Baker several years ago, he mentioned that a player running the bases should be able to do it without even looking at the base-running coaches. He used Willie Mays as an example when he played. There should be a plan and it should be carried out through the minor league process at every level. There should be an organizational way of doing things, and if you want to advance in the organization, you will follow those guidelines.source
Baseball 101: The Right Way to Build a Team and Play the Game
Of course there are examples of great bad ball hitters like Roberto Clemente and Vladimir Guerrero, but hitters as gifted as them are few and far between. Make him work and look for a pitch that is in your zone. A hitter that can work the count and adapt not only helps himself but he helps the whole team. He makes the pitcher throw more pitches and helps get you into the bullpen sooner, where normally you will face weaker pitching. How often do you see players lunging across the plate and trying to pull the ball? Hitting to all fields is a quality of smart ballplayers.
Every extra run you score means the other team has to score two to beat you.
101 Things You May Not Have Known About Baseball
Scoring first is also a key. If you can score before the other team, statistically that team wins a good majority of the time. Check out the records of bad teams and see how good their record is when they score first. Once you get two strikes, you must adjust and try to make contact and put the ball in play.
Being a threat to bunt for a base hit keeps the fielders in, and makes it easier to drive the ball past them. If you keep them honest, it makes everybody a better hitter and gives your team more opportunities. Part of base-running is watching the ball as its hit and being able to read it off the bat. You also have to watch where the fielder is going. Is he running straight in, or is he running side to side? What kind of an arm does he have?
How fast can you run and more importantly, how well do you know how to run the bases? Speed helps, but being smart helps even more. How good is the outfielders arm? Is he coming in or does he have to run to the side to get the ball, which makes it much harder to throw. How well do you run the bases?
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Do you cut the base at third, or do you take a wide turn? A split second is the difference between being safe and out. You always want to make sure a low line drive gets through the infield before committing, but the better you can read the direction of the ball off of the bat, the better base-runner you will be. You can fake a run to draw a throw and maybe they will throw it away, but knowing your limitations keeps you from running into stupid outs.
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Again you have to read the fielder. Is he running back to catch the ball so he has no momentum to throw the runner out? Even running sideways gives the same disadvantage to the fielder. How strong is his arm? If he has a weak arm, you can definitely run on him. Reading a pitcher involves knowing his tendencies and how good a move he has to first base. The bigger lead you can get, the more bases you can steal. Sure speed helps, but why can guys like Albert Pujols and Chase Utley , not traditional speed merchants, steal bases and very rarely get thrown out, or in the case with Utley last year and in , not get thrown out at all?
Anyone can steal a base, if you just take the time and do the work to become good at it. You may not lead the league in steals, but you can definitely help your team win more baseball games. How many times do you see a runner steal second and the ball goes into center, but the runner wasn't paying attention and slides and ends up staying on second when he could easily have gone to third?
The same thing happens at third. How quick is the pitcher throwing to home? Some pitchers just invite you to steal on them, so you might as well take advantage of that. I would hire former great base-stealers and base-runners to teach the players how to run the bases and to steal.
I would drill them until it was second nature.
The less you have to think and the quicker you can react, the better runner you will be. If you consistently get ahead of the hitter, you are in control.
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We tried to keep it as short as possible, so you can understand the basics of the game. Baseball games consist of innings. An inning has both a top-half and bottom-half where teams switch off from playing defense fielding and offense batting. In Major League Baseball , the games last nine innings.
The team with the most runs at the end of the ninth inning is the winner. If the score is tied, additional innings can be played called extra innings. The pace of baseball game is often said to be slower than other sports. The reason being is that there are no clocks that keep track of time. In fact, baseball games can technically last forever if the score remains tied at the end of nine innings. Each half-inning ends and the teams switch from offense to defense and vice versa when three outs are made. An out is a concept in baseball where the Umpire will remove a batter or base runner from the field if they get "out".
So, what are the ways to get out in baseball? There are lots of ways to get out in baseball. A batter gets three strikes. This is called a strikeout. A fielder catches a hit ball in the air before it touches the ground.
A base runner is tagged with the ball. A base runner illegally runs past another base runner out of order. A fielder touches the base with the ball in his possession for a force out. There are nine positions in baseball called the pitcher , catcher , 1st baseman , 2nd baseman, 3rd baseman, shortstop , left fielder , center fielder , and right fielder. Each player is responsible for fielding a different area of the field. For example, the outfielders are stationed in the outfield , while the infielders are positioned in the infield.
The most important players you should know are called the pitcher and catcher. The pitcher is responsible for throwing pitches the catcher that players on offense , called batters , try to hit with a bat. The catcher will attempt to catch any pitch that the batters fail to hit. There isn't a lot of equipment needed to play baseball.
Technically, you only need a field , the ball , a bat , and gloves for the fielders. However, in Major League Baseball , teams have every advantage. The sport's claim to faim has to be the baseball cap. Every player wears one when they get on the field. It's such a big part of the game, that fans line up at concessions to get their favorite team's hat.
Jerseys are also a big part of the identity of a team. Every team in the MLB has their own jersey and uniform that features a logo and specific colors. One of the coolest things about baseball is that you don't need a lot of equipment to play the game. Fielding is one of the most important parts of the game. The team on defense is standing at various parts of field.
For example, the baseman stands near first base , second base , and third base. The outfielders stand in the center field , right field , and left field. Every fielder is equipped with a glove and uses it to catch any flyball that lands in their part of the field. Anytime a fielder catches the ball out of the air before it touches the ground, an out is recorded by the Umpire. After three outs , the half-inning is over. We already discussed the pitcher. The pitcher is a fielder who throws the ball to the catcher in hopes of getting the batter out. The act of throwing the ball is called pitching.
There are rules in baseball for how the pitcher can pitch. For example, pitchers must use one of two legal throwing motions called the set position and windup position. Any time a pitcher illegally throws a pitch it is called a balk. On every pitch, the batter either gets a strike or a ball , which is recorded by the umpire based on the strike zone.
The number of balls and strikes for the current batter is called the count. The count resets after every at-bat. The pitcher holds the ball, picks a type of pitch and delivers it to the batter up at-bat. The defense wants to make an out. They only need three to end the half inning and switch the roles on the field.
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The team that is one offense is at-bat , often called batting. Based on a lineup card , the order in which the players bat , one person at a time steps up to the plate with the goal of hitting the pitch. Batters stand in the batter's box , an area of the field directly outside of home plate. The Umpire stands behind him and will call pitches that the batter chooses not to hit as strikes and balls based on something called the strike zone. If the batter gets three strikes during his at-bat, he will be called out of the game.
If the batter is successful at hitting a pitch into fair territory , he becomes a base runner and must get to first base to be called safe. At any point, the batter can be tagged out by a fielder with the ball. When a batter steps into the batters ' box his goal is to earn runs for his team.