In baseball, America's pastime, there are nine positions. The infield, commonly known as the baseball diamond, consists of six players. The outfield, consists of three more, for a total of nine.
Pitcher. This player tosses the baseball over the plate for batters to attempt to hit. He should throw it in a way that is difficult for the batter to hit. The more variety of pitches he can throw, the more chances he has to confuse the batter. This is largely regarded as the core position, as a good pitcher could mean minimum hits and low scores.
Catcher. This player is responsible for catching the pitcher's pitches. He will be wearing an oversized leather mitt to help soften the impact of the pitch. This player is the only player who faces his team, so he is responsible for keeping up with the number of outs to show his teammates. The catcher also should have a good throwing arm, because he needs the ability to throw the baseball with superior velocity and accuracy to pick-off the person attempting a steal.
First base. This is the perfect position for a tall, left-handed person with a good glove. This player should be able to catch balls that are thrown off-target – over his head or low and in the dirt. When a batter hits the ball, the batter must first run to first base. Therefore, a first basemen should have a sharp attention span because he is involved in most plays.
Second base. This is a good position for someone who is fast, agile and a good fielder. The second basemen should be alert to the number of players on base to try to prevent a runner from stealing second base.
Third base. Largely regarded as the hot corner, this position requires a player who has good reaction time and quick-thinking skills. In baseball, this is considered a tough position to play because the game is dominated by right-handed players who tend to pull the ball towards third base. Additionally, the third basemen must have a good throwing arm because of the long throw to first base.
Shortstop. The shortstop, one of the most important positions on the field, is similar to second base in that it requires swiftness and good fielding. This position is normally reserved for the player with the best defensive skills – he must have a good glove, a good arm, and quick-thinking skills. The shortstop, along with the second baseman, are responsible for being alert for players attempting to steal second base. .
The three players in the outfield cover the largest area on the ball park. To be effective at these positions requires swiftness, good instincts, a strong arm and the ability to judge exactly where a ball will travel once it is hit. These three players must also be able to throw accurate from long distances.
Left fielder. This position generally goes to the outfielder with the weakest arm, as he doesn't generally have to throw the ball the furthest to stop the runner from advancing base. Since this position is directly behind third base, this player generally receives a fair amount of balls hit into his direction.
Center fielder. This position generally goes to the player who has the best combination of speed and skill, as the player covers the most area of the outfield.
Right fielder. This position should be occupied for a player with a strong arm, who is able to make the long throw across the diamond to third base, or to home plate in order to prevent a runner from scoring. However, this position usually goes to players who are better offensive threats, because baseball is largely dominated by right-handed players who tend to hit more towards left field.
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