Sports are one of America’s favorite pastimes and forms of entertainment nowadays, and they’re certainly in no short supply. A lot of sports are worldwide, but two that can truly call America their home are basketball and baseball. If you aren’t quite sure what the difference is between baseball and basketball, don’t worry, because you have come to the right place.
The biggest difference between baseball and basketball is that one is played indoors on a court (basketball) and one is played outside on a field (baseball). The object of baseball is to run and touch all four bases. In basketball, the object is to score points by throwing the ball through the hoop.
Those are just a couple of differences among a plethora. Basketball and baseball, while similar in a couple of ways, have very different game structures, rules, and even team sizes. If you’re still confused about the rules and the ideas of the games, read below to find some info on both!
Basketball: The Rundown
Both baseball and basketball are sports played with balls, but much of the similarity stops there. Basketball is, as said earlier, played inside an arena on a basketball court. While teams can be as large as 14 players or more, there are only five team members allowed on the court at once.
The object for the players is to get the ball and defend it from the opposing team. Points are scored by throwing the ball and making hoops or baskets. There is a hoop on each end of the court, but the team must only throw into their hoop. Points per shot can be values of either 2 or 3 depending on where the shot was made from on the court.
The game is split into four quarters of time, each consisting of 12 minutes. This gives the game a time of about 48 minutes, though most games go longer due to halftime, time-outs, fouls, and other game interruptions. The players have until the end of those quarters to score more than their opposing team. The team with the most points at the end of the clock wins.
There are pretty strict rules when it comes to the basketball itself. It can be thrown back and forth between teammates and dribbled (bounced) on the floor while a player runs up and down the court. If a player carries the ball for more than two steps without dribbling or passing it, that is what’s called traveling. The offending player will then have to give up the ball to the other team.
Players also have to be careful about fouling. Each team is usually allowed to have five fowls per quarter before the officials start awarding the opposing team free throws. Fouls largely come in the form of making “illegal contact” with opposing players. Illegal contact unfairly inhibits that player’s gameplay. Blocking is allowed, but it must be done extremely carefully.
If you ever plan to play for the NBA, you’re going to need to be on the taller end of the scale. The basketball hoops are customarily 10 feet high, which is why most players out there are giants. Basketball is one of America’s favorite sports, so you won’t be sorry for taking the time to learn about it!
Baseball: The Rundown
Another of America’s favorite sports, baseball, has made its own impact on history. Like basketball, the object of the game is to score more points than the other team. Unlike basketball, baseball is not timed and there are 9 innings rather than 4 quarters of the game. This usually means that baseball games tend to last longer than basketball games.
Baseball is played outside on a field and what is called a baseball diamond. The diamond comes to a point at one end and is rounded at the top. The point is where the home base is located as well as where the batter stands. Directly across the field right in the center of the diamond is the pitcher’s mound. This is where the baseball is thrown to the batter from.
The rounded end of the diamond contains three bases that are equally spread apart. When the batter hits the ball, he has to run from home base to first base, from first to second, and from second to third. The ultimate goal is to get back to home base which will result in points for that batter’s team. All the bases must be touched for it to qualify as a run.
When the batter hits the ball, they have to make it to a base before the opposing team gets possession of the ball. While the batter is running, the opposing team can throw the ball to whichever base the batter is heading for. If the baseman catches the ball, the batter is out and doesn’t get points for the run.
If the ball is struck and flies outside the designated field area, this is what is referred to as a foul ball. This usually occurs when the ball lands somewhere between the bases. When the ball is hit hard enough to leave the playing area completely (usually landing in the crowd somewhere) that is called a home run.
The game consists of 9 innings. An inning begins when one team goes up to bat and ends when that team has experienced 3-6 outs. When a batter misses the ball with the bat, it’s called a strike. Each batter is allowed three strikes before they strike out and have to move off the field.
However, there is a designated area surrounding the batter called the strike zone. If the pitcher is unable to get the ball to enter the strike zone, the batter does not have to swing the bat, and this is called a “ball.” If this happens a total of four times, the batter won’t be dealt a strike, but rather they’ll be allowed to walk to first base.
Once 9 innings have been played, the team with the highest score is declared the winning team. However, if the teams are tied up by the end of the ninth inning, more innings are often played until one team can outscore the other (the longest baseball game on record lasted 8 hours!). And that’s American baseball for you.