Baseball is an incredibly popular sport, especially in America. Many sports lovers adore watching this thrilling sport. Another benefit of this sport is that it is super simple to play, as you will only need a bat, ball, and batting gloves to give it a try.
If you are an avid baseball fan, you might assume that you already know everything about this sport. But the truth is that there are plenty of surprising facts that can expand your love for this sport.
Here are ten fascinating facts about baseball that you might not know:
The First Black Major League Player Was Jackie Robinson
Jackie Robinson is an iconic baseball player who became the first African American player in Major League Baseball (MLB). Breaking the color line, Robinson joined the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947. In doing so, he made history, as Robinson’s introduction to the team signaled the dissolution of racial segregation in baseball.
During his MLB career, he was awarded Rookie of the Year in 1947 and won the Most Valuable Player Award in 1949. He was also an All-Star for six consecutive seasons of the MLB. In 1955, the Dodger’s won the championship which he had greatly contributed.
Robinson is renowned for his promotion of non-violence and his contributions to the civil rights movement. Thanks to his prevalent role in baseball history, Robinson was added to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962.
The National Association of Base Ball Players Dates Back To 1857
Known as the NABBP, the National Association of Base Ball Players was established in 1857. During the time, baseball was separated into two words, hence the name of this organization follows this tradition.
This became the first institution to manage the playing of baseball. The purpose of this organization was to standardize the rules of baseball as well as its scoring system.
Baseball’s History Is Unknown
Baseball is often considered an all-American sport. Yet, the historical origins of baseball are not fully known. Many historians believe that baseball originates from Europe, specifically Great Britain, Germany, France, and Ireland.
The game of baseball was supposedly derived from other bat-based games that were popular in Europe, including rounders and cricket. These games had similar rules and equipment, resulting in baseball originating from them.
According to historical research, baseball is believed to have been devised during the 18th century. During its origins, baseball was known by several names, including “goal ball”. For more baseball information, FanDuel.com is the place to be.
Every MLB Ball Has 108 Stitches
In professional baseball games, the equipment needs to be standardized. The purpose of this is to ensure that the game is fair for all players. Yet, you might be surprised at the extent to which this equipment is standardized.
The main example of this is that every MLB ball has 108 double stitches, meaning that there are 216 stitches in total. The number of stitches on the ball can affect the trajectory and drag, meaning that this standardization is essential. Plus, it can impact the player’s grip.
Baseball Was A Sport At The Olympics
Did you know that baseball has been played at the Olympic Games? The sport was first included in the Summer Olympics in 1904, set in St. Louis. It did not become an official game until the 1992 Summer Olympics, which were held in Barcelona.
However, baseball has not been a consistent fixture at the Olympics. The reason for this is that it is considered to be an event-based game. Among the most successful teams in baseball at the Olympics are Cuba, the United States, and Japan.
The Debut Major League World Series Occurred in 1903
The annual World Series for baseball started in 1903. In this game, the Pittsburgh Pirates competed against the Boston Americans. The Boston Americans were the victors of this game.
During the dates of October 1 to 13, the games commenced on the Huntington Avenue Grounds in Boston and Exposition Park in Pittsburgh.
A Baseball Bat Has A Sweet Spot
You might be shocked to discover that there is a sweet spot on a baseball bat. By hitting the ball with this part of the bat, you are more likely to achieve a home run. This is because it ensures that you make the most of the energy of the swing. This spot is found between 5 and 7 inches from the barrel.
The Bases Are 90 Feet Apart
Om a traditional baseball field, the diamonds will be 90 feet apart. Ensuring that this distance is consistent is important, as it ensures that the game is fair for all of the players. It ensures that the player will have to run the same distance to get to each base.
The First Female MLB Head Coach Is Alyssa Nakken
The first female full-time head coach at the MLB was Alyssa Nakken. This occurred in 2020 when Nakken was employed as head coach of the San Francisco Giants.
In 2015, she earned master’s degree in sports at the University of San Francisco. On July 20, 2020, she coached first base for the Giant’s against Oakland Athletics exhibition play in which the Giant’s won 6-2. She continued to coach exhibition games until 2021.
The Cincinnati Red Stockings Were The First Professional Team
Lastly, another key moment in baseball history was the formation of the Cincinnati Red Stockings. Formed in 1869, this became the first professional baseball team. Some of the players in this debut team include Fred Waterman and Asa Brainard.
The team was also known as the Cincinnati Base Ball Club created by Harry Wright. The team won 36 matches.
Baseball is perhaps America’s favorite sport. The majority of baseball fans will likely believe that they know all that they need to know about this sport. However, the truth is that there are plenty of surprising facts about baseball. These top ten facts are sure to surprise even some ardent baseball fans.