Baseball Basics - Throws
Throws are a very important part of a baseball player's arsenal. Without them, some hitters simply cannot bat. They allow the hitter to field the ball in order to execute his hitting skills and reach base safely. While they may seem relatively unimportant, they actually play a crucial role in baseball.
What do throws do? Essentially, when a player gets on base, he advances the Baseball Fence by running to one side of the diamond and throwing toward the next base. Throws are a crucial part of this action. Without them, a baseball player simply could not run to the next base and attempt to hit a home run.
How do they work? Basically, a throw machine (or "throwing") allows a batter to throw a ball from any distance that he chooses. The thrower attempts to hit a ball with the least amount of force possible. This is achieved by carefully planning the throwing motion and then practicing it until it becomes a habitual action. In fact, many professional baseball teams have extensive batting cage drills in order to throw the ball as accurately as possible, without compromising the safety of the players.
So, how does a pitcher practice hitting a "ball"? For one thing, the pitcher can throw to his own throwing machine, provided that he has enough room. Then, he can also practice hitting a "hitting machine" outside of the baseball cage. Either way, a pitcher must be prepared to throw extremely hard (but safely) when attempting to hit a "fishing" ball which is thrown from a distance of 100 feet or more. Failure to do so can result in injury to the arm, shoulder, or back.
If a hitter wishes to throw a "fishing" ball, he must stand in the dugout to face a throwing machine. Then, he throws a "fishing" ball to the machine. The outcome of the throw depends on the thrower's skill and agility. Also, the thrower must remain in the hitting zone (or throwing zone) until he strikes out.
If a "fishing" ball is thrown to an "outside" hitter, the batter should have enough time to make an adjustment and throw the ball to a more favorable location. A throw to a "fishing" ball that goes beyond the pitcher's glove box or beyond the hitting zone (or into the gap) can result in an error, a foul, or even an intentional grounding of the ball. On the other hand, a throw to a "fishing" ball that is thrown out at home plate results in a hit. In fact, a "fishing" ball that is hit for a "strike" will result in a hit and a foul. A throw to a "fishing" ball that goes beyond the pitching lane may also result in an error, a base hit, or an intentional grounding of the ball.
Finally, it is important to note that a throw to "out" is different than a throw to "in" a runner. An "out" throw is when the thrower has enough time to make an adjustment and throw the ball to an area in front of the hitter. For example, if the ball has been hit by a pitch, the thrower must have time to make an adjustment, place the bat on the ground, and throw the ball to another appropriate spot. This throw is called an "out". If, however, the ball hasn't been hit and the throw is considered safe, the throw is termed a "hit" and the batter advances to second base.
Throws in the game of baseball are critical because of the high speed nature of the game and the placement of the pitching diamond (or fields). As such, different throws are made based on these factors. Additionally, runners are not allowed to play "dirty" baseball; therefore, there is always a risk involved in throws to "out". However, this doesn't mean that every throw a good throw. As a matter of fact, with a better understanding of the mechanics of the game, you can develop your own style of throwing the baseball.