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Portal:Baseball

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Baseball is a bat-and-ball sport played between two teams of nine players each. The goal is to score runs by hitting a thrown ball with a bat and touching a series of four bases arranged at the corners of a ninety-foot square, or diamond. Players on one team (the batting team) take turns hitting against the pitcher of the other team (the fielding team), which tries to stop them from scoring runs by getting hitters out in any of several ways. A player on the batting team can stop at any of the bases and later advance via a teammate's hit or other means. The teams switch between batting and fielding whenever the fielding team records three outs. One turn at bat - 3 outs - for each team constitutes an inning; nine innings make up a professional game. The team with the most runs at the end of the game wins.

Evolving from older bat-and-ball games, an early form of baseball was being played in England by the mid-eighteenth century. This game and the related rounders were brought by British and Irish immigrants to North America, where the modern version of baseball developed. By the late nineteenth century, baseball was widely recognized as the national sport of the United States. Baseball on the professional, amateur, and youth levels is now popular in North America, parts of Central and South America and the Caribbean, and parts of East Asia. The game is sometimes referred to as hardball, in contrast to the derivative game of softball.

In North America, professional Major League Baseball (MLB) teams are divided into the National League (NL) and American League (AL). Each league has three divisions: East, West, and Central. Every year, the champion of Major League Baseball is determined by playoffs that culminate in the World Series. Five teams make the playoffs from each league: the three regular season division winners, plus two wild card teams. Baseball is the leading team sport in both Japan and Cuba, and the top level of play is similarly split between two leagues: Japan's Central League and Pacific League; Cuba's West League and East League. In the National and Central leagues, the pitcher is required to bat, per the traditional rules. In the American, Pacific, and both Cuban leagues, there is a tenth player, a designated hitter, who bats for the pitcher. Each top-level team has a farm system of one or more minor league teams. These teams allow younger players to develop as they gain on-field experience against opponents with similar levels of skill. (more...)

Selected article

The Nashville Sounds mascot, Booster
The Nashville Sounds are a minor league baseball team of the Pacific Coast League (PCL), and the Triple-A affiliate of the Oakland Athletics. They are located in Nashville, Tennessee, and are named for the city's association with the music industry. The team plays its home games at First Tennessee Park which opened in 2015 and is partially located on the former site of the historic Sulphur Dell ballpark. The Sounds previously played at Herschel Greer Stadium from its opening in 1978 until the end of the 2014 season. Established as a Double-A team in 1978, the Sounds moved up to the Triple-A level in 1985. The team has served as a farm club for seven major league franchises. A total of 26 managers have helmed the club and its over 1,100 players. As of the completion of the 2016 season, the team has played in 5,587 regular season games and compiled a win–loss record of 2,877–2,710 (.515). The Sounds won the PCL Championship in 2005 as the Triple-A affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers. Previous league titles won by the team are the Southern League Championship in 1979 as the Double-A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds, and again in 1982 as the Double-A affiliate of the New York Yankees. The team fielded in 1980 was recognized as one of the 100 greatest minor league teams of all time. The 2006 team tied the record for the longest game in PCL history. Of the three nine-inning perfect games in the history of the PCL, two have been pitched by members of the Sounds.

Selected picture

Chien-Ming Wang pitching
Credit: Keith Allison

Chien-Ming Wang (Chinese: 王建民; pinyin: Wáng Jiànmín; Wade–Giles: Wang Chien-min; born March 31, 1980) is a Taiwanese starting pitcher for the Washington Nationals in Major League Baseball. He was initially signed as an amateur free agent by the New York Yankees prior to the 2000 season. He came to be known as the Yankees ace pitcher over the 2006 and 2007 seasons.

Selected biography

Clark Griffith Baseball.jpg
Clark Calvin Griffith (November 20, 1869 - October 27, 1955), nicknamed "the Old Fox", was a Major League Baseball pitcher (1891 - 1914), manager (1901 - 1920) and team owner (1920 - 1955).

Griffith entered the American Association in 1891, pitching 226 ⅓ innings and winning 14 games for the St. Louis Browns and Boston Reds. He began the following season with the Chicago Colts, and in 1894 began a string of six consecutive seasons with 20 or more victories, compiling a 21-14 record and 4.92 ERA. Griffith lowered his ERA over the following years to a low of 1.88 in 1898, the lowest mark in the league.

Griffith won 20 games for his 7th and final time in 1901 as a member of the Chicago White Stockings in the nascent American League; it was also the first year he assumed managerial duties. His success extended beyond his own play as the White Stockings won the AL title with an 83-53 record.

Quotes

"When we win, I'm so happy I eat a lot. When we lose, I'm so depressed, I eat a lot. When we're rained out, I'm so disappointed I eat a lot."


Selected list

Trevor Hoffman, two time winner
The Rolaids Relief Man Award is an annual Major League Baseball (MLB) award given since the 1976 MLB season to the top relief pitchers of the regular season, one in the American League (AL) and one in the National League (NL). Relief pitchers are the pitchers who enter the game after the starting pitcher is removed. The award is sponsored by Rolaids, whose slogan is "R-O-L-A-I-D-S spells relief." Because the first closers were nicknamed "firemen," a reference to "putting out the fire" of another team's rally, the trophy is a gold-plated firefighter's helmet. Unlike other awards, such as the Cy Young Award or the MLB Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award, the Relief Man of the Year is based on statistical performance, rather than votes. Each save is worth three points; each win is worth two points; and each loss is worth negative two points. Beginning with the 1987 MLB season, negative two points have been given for blown saves. In the 2000 MLB season, the term "tough save", which is worth an additional point, was introduced by Rolaids. A "tough save" happens when a relief pitcher enters the game already having a tying run on base, and gets the save. The player with the highest point total wins the award. The inaugural award winners were Bill Campbell (AL) and Rawly Eastwick (NL); Campbell also won in the following season. Dan Quisenberry has won the award five times, while Rollie Fingers, Bruce Sutter and Mariano Rivera have won the award four times. Lee Smith has won the award on three occasions; Campbell, Dennis Eckersley, Dave Righetti, John Franco, Éric Gagné, Randy Myers, Trevor Hoffman, and Francisco Rodriguez have won the award twice. Fingers (AL 1981) and Eckersley (AL 1992) have won the Relief Man of the Year, the Cy Young Award, and the MLB MVP Award in the same season. Sutter (NL 1979), Steve Bedrosian (NL 1987), Mark Davis (NL 1989), and Éric Gagné (NL 2003) have won the Relief Man of the Year and the Cy Young Award in the same season. Todd Worrell won both the Relief Man of the Year and the MLB Rookie of the Year Award in the 1986 MLB season. Goose Gossage, Fingers, Eckersley, and Sutter have been elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame. The most recent award winners are Rodriguez (AL) and Brad Lidge (NL).

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