4/15/08

"Drag me out to the ballpark"!

Yesterday afternoon the Grade school got to watch a Junior High Baseball tournament, this was my first experience with 'live' Baseball.

The Hubster is a Cubs fan and he has tried to get me interested and explain the sport to me, but it's sooooo SLOOOOOOW and I rapidly get bored. I do realise there is some irony in me finding it too slow, what with me being a cricket fan and all, but at least I know what's going on with cricket!

Once we had the kids settled, some of the other teachers kindly and patiently tried to explain to me what constituted a strike, foul ball and good ball.....but I have to say I still don't really get it. I do kind of understand the batting area now, after one of them told me to imagine a column rising from the plate and the ball has to stay between the knees and chest in that area - that helped.

I get the base thing and scoring runs, as that is the same as softball and rounders, but it's still going to be awhile before I develop any love for this sport I think. Having said that, it's alot better than American Football which I find impossible to take seriously having grown up on Rugby! But I also need to work on that too, as this schools team have been State Champions in their particular class for the past 5years and it's a big passion around here.

Actually most of yesterdays game I spent looking not at the pitch but at my 4th Grade kids in the back row! At the start there were 18 of them up there, by the end there were only 8, as 10 of them had misbehaved enough to be moved to the front row...LOL. I was surprised I didn't have a crick in my neck by the time we left and I was pretty hoarse from all the shouting I did!

These kids are really good in the classroom and in their usual routine, but take them out to the ballpark and oh boy did that ever change! Anyway today they are back to being little angels again and I can't fault them :-)

So I will continue to give Baseball a chance, to show my support for both the local teams and the Hubster and his Cubbies.

3 comments:

pamokc said...

Sarah, the trick to watching baseball is to study the pitcher.
It is all about NOT getting hits. Every pitch is a new ballgame and that's where the saying comes from -- It ain't over 'til it's over (Yogi Berra).

The pitcher will do everything in his power to NOT let the batter hit the ball. This is why it is a slow-moving game. But once you start studying the strategy in the pitching, then it becomes very interesting. I know you like sports so am sure you can catch on to the subtleties.

The catcher is giving signals to the pitcher, the coaches are giving signals to the pitcher, it is all very exciting once you catch on.

Suppose you have the bases loaded and a strong hitter is next up to bat. What does the pitcher do to keep him from hitting a ball? This would be a different strategy than if there were no runners on base and the pitcher's team were ahead by a few runs. In this case, you don't want him to get a hit and make it to base because that will let a run come in from third base. If the bases were empty, you could let the guy hit his double and wait for the next guy that you know you could strike out and leave the other guy stranded on base.

Or, maybe that pitcher has been in for the whole game and now his arm is getting weak. Do you pull him and send in another pitcher?

There is LOADS of strategy to baseball that goes above and beyond the rules of the game. But, it is all about the pitcher, #1. Look for the strategy behind every single pitch and there you will find the excitement of baseball.

Written by the daughter of a long-time little league coach who had a player go on to be MVP of the World Series one year!!!!

BritGal' Sarah said...

Thanks Pam, I will give that a go, as you're right I do enjoy sports. I appreciate your detailed reply

Pete Taylor said...

Hi,

Your page came up when I googled the title of my book. If you're still baffled with baseball, check me out
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_6?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=brit+at+the+ballpark&sprefix=brit+a