Softball is played on almoust every surface, although grass is the most common. It is played on the field which has a shape of a fan or a diamond and is divided in two parts: infield and outfield. Infield is determined by home plate and three bases. Distance between bases is 18.46 m.
Team consists of 9 players. The game lasts for 7 innings. In every inning both team get one time to hit (attack) and one time to play defense. A team that in those 7 innings gets most runs (points) is a winner.
Players hit in order which has been made before the game. Batter (hitter) stands in batter’s box and the pitcher pitches (throws) the ball towards her/him. There are two different pitches: strike (a good one) and ball (a bad one). Strike is a ball thrown into a strike zone, which has not been hit at or a batter has missed it or she/he hit it in the foul territory. Ball is when the ball is thrown outside strike zone or batter has not swung at it. When batter hits the ball she/he must run towards first base. If batter does not hit ball until third strike she/he is out. If, before third strike, pitcher throws four balls first base is awarded to the batter.
After ball has been hit batter trys to advance from base to base. He can run when ball is hit inside two foul lines. A run is made every time batter runs all four bases. When a batter runs all four bases as a result of his own hit that went over the fence this is populary called home run.
A team in defense goes into offense after they put three batters out. Ths can be made in three ways: when a ball was caught in the air before it hit the ground, when the ball is thrown to the base before batter reaches it, or after third strike as we have already mentined.
Differences between softball and baseball
Softball is based on baseball, but there are several differences. A ball in softball is bigger, but not softer as one could conclude from the name itself. Baseball bat is thicker than the softball one and is often made of wood, while in softball it is made of metal. In baseball pitcher pitches over the shoulder and in softball under the shoulder. Softball field is smaller and only 7 innings are played compared to 9 that are played in baseball.
Softball is a sport similar to baseball which was invented in the USA. It the most developed in USA, Australia, Canada, China and Japan; while in Europe the strogest teams come from Italy, Holland, Czech Republic and Russia. This is one of the less known sports in Croatia, which brings the fact that it is also less developed. One of the reasons for that is its short history in Croatia.
Softball is played by women and men in more than 70 countries in the world. There are two versions of softball: FAST PITCH and SLOW PITCH. Fast pitch is more common and that vesrion is the only one played in here.