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Portal:Baseball

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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 objectives of the offensive team (batting team) are to hit the ball into the field of play, and to run the bases—having its runners advance counter-clockwise around four bases to score what are called "runs". The objective of the defensive team (fielding 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 place where the player started as a batter). The team that scores the most runs by the end of the game is the winner.

The first objective of the batting team is to have a player reach first base safely. A player on the batting team who reaches first base without being called "out" can attempt to advance to subsequent bases as a runner, either immediately or during teammates' turns batting. The fielding team tries to prevent runs by getting batters or runners "out", which forces them out of the field of play. Both the pitcher and fielders have methods of getting the batting team's players out. The opposing teams switch back and forth between batting and fielding; the batting team's turn to bat is over once the fielding team records three outs. One turn batting for each team constitutes an inning. A game is usually composed of nine innings, and the team with the greater number of runs at the end of the game wins. If scores are tied at the end of nine innings, extra innings are usually played. Baseball has no game clock, although most games end in the ninth inning.

Baseball evolved from older bat-and-ball games already being played in England by the mid-18th century. This game was brought by immigrants to North America, where the modern version developed. By the late 19th century, baseball was widely recognized as the national sport of the United States. Baseball is popular in North America and parts of Central and South America, the Caribbean, and East Asia, particularly in Japan and South Korea.

In the United States and Canada, professional Major League Baseball (MLB) teams are divided into the National League (NL) and American League (AL), each with three divisions: East, West, and Central. The MLB champion is determined by playoffs that culminate in the World Series. The top level of play is similarly split in Japan between the Central and Pacific Leagues and in Cuba between the West League and East League. The World Baseball Classic, organized by the World Baseball Softball Confederation, is the major international competition of the sport and attracts the top national teams from around the world.

Selected article

The T206 Honus Wagner baseball card
The T206 Honus Wagner baseball card depicts Pittsburgh Pirates' Honus Wagner, a dead-ball era baseball player who is widely considered to be one of the best players of all time. The card was designed and issued by the American Tobacco Company (ATC) from 1909 to 1911 as part of its T206 series. Wagner refused to allow production of his baseball card to continue, either because he did not want children to buy cigarette packs to get his card, or because he wanted more compensation from the ATC. The ATC ended production of the Wagner card and a total of only 50 to 200 cards were ever distributed to the public. In 1933, the card was first listed at a price value of US$50 in Jefferson Burdick's The American Card Catalog, making it the most expensive baseball card in the world at the time. The most famous T206 Honus Wagner is the "Gretzky T206 Honus Wagner" card. The card has a controversial past, as some speculate that it was once altered, based on the card's odd texture and shape. The Gretzky T206 Wagner was first sold by Alan Ray to a baseball memorabilia collector named Bill Mastro, who sold the card two years later to Jim Copeland for nearly four times the price he had originally paid. Copeland's sizable transaction revitalized interest in the sports memorabilia collection market. In 1991, Copeland sold the card to ice hockey figures Wayne Gretzky and Bruce McNall for $451,000. Gretzky resold the card four years later to Wal-Mart and Treat Entertainment for $500,000, for use as the top prize in a promotional contest. The next year, a Florida postal worker won the card and auctioned it at Christie's for $640,000 to collector Michael Gidwitz. In 2000, the card was sold in an auction on eBay to Brian Seigel for $1.27 million. In February 2007, Seigel sold the card to an anonymous collector for $2.35 million. Less than six months later, the card was sold to a California collector for $2.8 million. These transactions have made the Wagner card the most valuable baseball card in history. A number of other T206 Wagners, both legitimate and fake, have surfaced in recent years. Some of the real cards have fetched hundreds of thousands of dollars in auctions. One particular T206 Honus Wagner owned by John Cobb and Ray Edwards has attracted media controversy over its authenticity, despite many leading hobby experts regarding it to be a fake.

Selected picture

MLB Blackout Areas.png
Credit: User:Braindrain0000

Major League Baseball has several blackout rules. Games are blacked out based on two criteria:

Selected biography

Bob-meusel cleaned.jpg
Robert William Meusel (July 19, 1896 – November 28, 1977) was an American left and right fielder in Major League Baseball who played 11 seasons from 1920 to 1930, all but the last for the New York Yankees. He was best known as a member of the Yankees championship teams of the 1920s, nicknamed the "Murderers' Row", during which time the team won its first six American League pennants and first three World Series titles. Meusel, noted for his strong throwing arm in the outfield, batted fifth behind Baseball Hall of Famers Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. In 1925 he joined Ruth in becoming the second Yankee to lead the AL in either home runs (33), runs batted in (138) or extra base hits (79). Nicknamed "Long Bob" because of his 6-foot (1.8 m), 3 inch (1.91 m) stature, Meusel batted .313 or better in seven of his first eight seasons, finishing with a .309 career average; his 1,005 RBI during the 1920s were the fourth most by any major leaguer, and trailed only Harry Heilmann's total of 1,131 among AL right-handed hitters. Meusel ended his career in 1930 with the Cincinnati Reds. He hit for the cycle three times, a feat accomplished by only one other player previously and one since. His older brother, Emil "Irish" Meusel, was a star outfielder in the National League during the same period, primarily for the New York Giants, who shared a stadium with the Yankees during part of their careers. He had a comparable career batting average (.310) but, unlike Bob, had a weak throwing arm which prevented him from being a great outfielder.

Quotes

Good fielding and pitching, without hitting, or vice versa, is like Ben Franklin's half a pair of scissors - ineffectual.
Moe Berg
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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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