Bat-and-ball games (or safe haven games) are field games played by two opposing teams, in which the action starts when the defending team throws a ball at a dedicated player of the attacking team, who tries to hit it with a bat and run between various safe areas in the field to score points, while the defending team can use the ball in various ways against the attacking team's players to prevent them from scoring when they are not in safe zones. The best known modern bat-and-ball games are cricket and baseball, with common roots in the 18th-century games played in England.
The teams alternate between "batting" (offensive) role, sometimes called "in at bat" or simply in, and "fielding" (defensive role), also called "out in the field" or out.Only the batting team may score, but teams have equal opportunities in both roles. The game is counted rather than timed. The action starts when a player on the fielding team puts the ball in play with a delivery whose restriction depends on the game. A player on the batting team attempts to strike the delivered ball, commonly with a "bat", which is a club governed by the rules of the game. After striking the ball, the batter may become a runner trying to reach a safe haven or "base"/"ground". While in contact with a base, the runner is safe from the fielding team and in a position to score runs. Leaving a safe haven places the runner in danger of being put out. The teams switch roles when the fielding team puts the batting team out, which varies by game.
In modern baseball, the fielders put three players out. In cricket, they retire all players but one, though there may also be time limits or limits on the number of legal deliveries. In many forms of early American baseball (townball, roundball), a single out ended the inning. Some games permit multiple runners and some have multiple bases to run in sequence. Batting may occur, and running begin (and potentially end), at one of the bases. The movement between those "safe havens" is governed by the rules of the particular sport, and runs (points) may be scored when the batting team's players go from one safe haven to another.
This list may not apply to all bat-and-ball games, but covers certain features common to many of them:
In cricket and baseball, the playing field is large (at the highest levels of each sport, the minimum distance between the two furthest ends of the field is about 400 to 500 feet (120 to 150 m) ), and is divided into an infield and outfield (based on proximity to the objects the fielding team can touch with the ball to put out runners).
Cricket has the delivery and hitting of the ball done in the same area where the batters can run (the cricket pitch), while baseball does the running in a separate area. The distance between the two batsmen's grounds in cricket (the areas that batsmen run between to score runs) is 58 feet (though batsmen may run slightly less distance, since they are allowed to use their bats to touch their grounds), while the distance between bases in baseball is 90 feet.
Most bat-and-ball games have playing area in front of the batter (such as Schlagball), but may (like baseball) restrict batters from hitting the ball behind themselves or too far to the side; see foul territory.
Bat-and-ball sports can be modified to be played in an indoor court. For example, indoor cricket takes place in a 30 metres (98 ft)-long facility.
In baseball-like games, the fielders (also known as "position players") operate in a standard set of baseball positions because it is generally possible to cover most of the field by spacing the fielders out in certain ways. By contrast, the significantly larger cricket field has many possible cricket fielding positions, with the 11 fielders occupying the slips cordon behind the batter, or other areas of the field.
T20 cricket and baseball both last about 3 hours, while other forms of cricket can last either multiple days or less than three hours. Informal bat-and-ball games may take place in shorter periods of time, and in general, the possibility of a team's batters getting out rapidly in succession makes it theoretically possible for certain periods of play in most bat-and-ball games to end quicker than usual, with the opposite also being possible.Both baseball and cricket can theoretically go forever, since baseball games end only after a certain number of outs and innings in cricket can be prolonged by illegal deliveries; however, in limited overs cricket, fielding teams are penalized if they do not bowl enough legal deliveries at a certain rate, essentially imposing a time limit of sorts on these types of games.
Bat-and-ball games are played until:
Ties can be dealt with in several ways:
When one of the teams is not leading and only they have completed all of their allotted batting turns, this allows the other team to win automatically by surpassing the number of runs scored by the first team. In cricket, this situation is referred to as a "run chase", with the "target" of the batting team being the number of runs scored by the other team plus one. In baseball, the home team can be considered to be chasing, with the aim of scoring the "walk-off" (winning) runs, when they are not leading after the eighth inning, as a regulation game sees the trailing team bat at least nine times and the teams alternating the batting, with the home team always batting last.
In addition to the number of runs a team won by over their opponents, other factors which are relevant to determining which team wins, such as the number of outs or legal deliveries that were remaining in the batting team's turn (if they won/there was a limit on either resource), can be included with the statement of the result. The result may also mention how many more times the losing team batted than the winning team.
In some circumstances, a complete game may not be possible in its originally envisioned timeframe because of weather or other reasons. In baseball-like games, which generally have many innings, it is possible to call the result of a game after both teams have batted only a few of their scheduled turns, or otherwise to finish/replay the game at a later date. In cricket, however, which is generally played to only one or two batting turns per team, a match may not be callable for the simple reason that only one of the teams has had the chance to score so far. However, cricket matches that are interrupted by rain can still be considered completable so long as there is enough time left in the match to allow the second-batting team to face a sufficiently long batting turn; in these circumstances, a rain rule is applied such that any runs scored by the first-batting team are devalued.
Here are some terms or concepts common to many bat-and-ball games:
In the field, there may be:
Bat-and-ball games can be played with modified rules in unorthodox places, such as in the street or the backyard. Oftentimes, players are forbidden or penalized for hitting the ball out of the field into an area where it would be hard to reach, and play may be modified so as to ensure all players have an opportunity to participate, such as in Kwik cricket.
At the international level, the World Baseball Classic is the premier baseball tournament. For cricket, the ODI World Cup, ICC T20 World Cup, and ICC World Test Championship are the premier tournaments. The Pesäpallo World Cup is played every 3 years.
At the domestic level, baseball tends to be played in leagues with 2 major divisions, with the playoffs being contested in a best-of-seven format. T20 leagues in cricket tend to have 8 teams and follow the Page playoff system (two semi-finals, with an additional match played to determine which team enters the second semi-final, followed by a final).
Notable bat-and-ball games include:
Similar to baseball
Similar to cricket
Similar to Schlagball
Striking the ball with a "bat" or any type of stick is not crucial. These games use the foot or hand, and often either involve significant restrictions on the way the defensive team delivers the ball to the batter (to make it easier to hit), or give the batter possession of the ball at the start of each play. Otherwise their rules may be similar or even identical to baseball or cricket. The first two use a large (35 cm) soft ball.
Using the legs:
Using the hands:
Baseball statistics play an important role in evaluating the progress of a player or team.
In baseball statistics, a hit, also called a base hit, is credited to a batter when the batter safely reaches or passes first base after hitting the ball into fair territory, without the benefit of an error or a fielder's choice.
In baseball, a stolen base occurs when a runner advances to a base to which he is not entitled and the official scorer rules that the advance should be credited to the action of the runner. The umpires determine whether the runner is safe or out at the next base, but the official scorer rules on the question of credit or blame for the advance under Rule 10 of the MLB's Official Rules.
Baseball is a bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on the fielding team, called the pitcher, throws a ball which a player on the batting team tries to hit with a bat. The objective of the offensive team is to hit the ball into the field of play, allowing its players to run the bases, having them advance counter-clockwise around four bases to score what are called "runs". The objective of the defensive team is to prevent batters from becoming runners, and to prevent runners' advance around the bases. A run is scored when a runner legally advances around the bases in order and touches home plate. The team that scores the most runs by the end of the game is the winner.
Rounders is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams. Rounders is a striking and fielding team game that involves hitting a small, hard, leather-cased ball with a rounded end wooden, plastic, or metal bat. The players score by running around the four bases on the field.
Softball is a game similar to baseball played with a larger ball on a field that has base lengths of 60 feet, a pitcher's mound that ranges from 35 to 43 feet away from home plate, and a home run fence that is 220–300 feet away from home plate, depending on the type of softball being played. It was invented in 1887 in Chicago, Illinois, United States as an indoor game. The game moves at a faster pace than traditional baseball due to the field being smaller and the bases and the fielders being closer to home plate. There is less time for the base runner to get to first while the opponent fields the ball; yet, the fielder has less time to field the ball while the opponent is running down to first base.
In baseball statistics, an error is an act, in the judgment of the official scorer, of a fielder misplaying a ball in a manner that allows a batter or baserunner to advance one or more bases or allows a plate appearance to continue after the batter should have been put out. The term error is sometimes used to refer to the play during which an error was committed.
In the game of baseball, the official scorer is a person appointed by the league to record the events on the field, and to send the official scoring record of the game back to the league offices. In addition to recording the events on the field such as the outcome of each plate appearance and the circumstances of any baserunner's advance around the bases, the official scorer is also charged with making judgment calls that do not affect the progress or outcome of the game. Judgment calls are primarily made about errors, unearned runs, fielder's choice, the value of hits in certain situations, and wild pitches, all of which are included in the record compiled. This record is used to compile statistics for each player and team. A box score is a summary of the official scorer's game record.
Dead ball is a term in many ball sports in which the ball is deemed temporarily not playable, and no movement may be made with it or the players from their respective positions of significance. Depending on the sport, this event may be quite routine, and often occurs between individual plays of the game.
In baseball, an out occurs when the umpire rules a batter or baserunner out. When a batter or runner is out, they return to the dugout until their next turn at bat. When three outs are recorded in a half inning, the batting team's turn expires.
The rules of baseball differ slightly from league to league, but in general share the same basic game play.
Cricket and Baseball are the best-known members of a family of related bat-and-ball games. Both have fields that are 400 feet (120 m) or more in diameter, offensive players who can hit a thrown ball out of the field and run between safe areas to score runs (points), and have a major game format lasting about 3 hours.
In baseball, interference occurs in situations in which a person illegally changes the course of play from what is expected. Interference might be committed by players on the offense, players not currently in the game, catchers, umpires, or spectators. Each type of interference is covered differently by the rules.
Pesäpallo is a fast-moving bat-and-ball sport that is often referred to as the national sport of Finland and has some presence in other countries including Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Australia, and Canada's northern Ontario. The game is similar to brännboll, rounders, and lapta, as well as baseball.
Brännboll ; Brennball in Germany, rundbold in Denmark, brennball or slåball in Norway) is a bat-and-ball game played on amateur level throughout Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark and Germany, mostly on fields, sports grounds, and in public parks, but it is also part of the PE curriculum in some areas. The name is derived from the act of catching a player between two bases at the end of a batting round, referred to as "burning" them (bränna), roughly equivalent to being run out in cricket or out in baseball. The world championship, called Brännbollscupen, is an annual event in the Swedish city of Umeå.
Danish Longball is a bat-and-ball game founded by Graham Evans. It is popular in some British secondary schools, and is also played recreationally by scouts, the Air Training Corps, Wetheringsett Camp Suffolk and by the Royal Navy and Australian Navy. It is also a popular sport at U.S. summer camps.
This is an alphabetical list of selected unofficial and specialized terms, phrases, and other jargon used in baseball, along with their definitions, including illustrative examples for many entries.