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Los Angeles Angels center fielder Mike Trout hits a home run on a pitch from New York Mets pitcher Tommy Milone on May 21, 2017.

Baseball is a bat-and-ball sport played between two teams of nine players each, taking turns batting and fielding. The game occurs over the course of several plays, with each play generally beginning when a player on the fielding team, called the pitcher, throws a ball that a player on the batting team, called the batter, tries to hit with a bat. The objective of the offensive team (batting team) is to hit the ball into the field of play, away from the other team's players, allowing its players to run the bases, having them advance counter-clockwise around four bases to score what are called "runs". The objective of the defensive team (referred to as the fielding team) is to prevent batters from becoming runners, and to prevent runners' advance around the bases. A run is scored when a runner legally advances around the bases in order and touches home plate (the place where the player started as a batter).

The opposing teams switch back and forth between batting and fielding; the batting team's turn to bat is over once the fielding team records three outs. One turn batting for each team constitutes an inning. A game is usually composed of nine innings, and the team with the greater number of runs at the end of the game wins. Most games end after the ninth inning, but if scores are tied at that point, extra innings are usually played. Baseball has no game clock, though some competitions feature pace-of-play regulations such as the pitch clock to shorten game time.

Baseball evolved from older bat-and-ball games already being played in England by the mid-18th century. This game was brought by immigrants to North America, where the modern version developed. Baseball's American origins, as well as its reputation as a source of escapism during troubled points in American history such as the American Civil War and the Great Depression, have led the sport to receive the moniker of "America's Pastime"; since the late 19th century, it has been unofficially recognized as the national sport of the United States, though in modern times is considered less popular than other sports, such as American football. In addition to North America, baseball is considered the most popular sport in parts of Central and South America, the Caribbean, and East Asia, particularly in Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. (Full article...)

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Ty Cobb sliding into third
Ty Cobb sliding into third
Credit: National Photo Company

Tyrus Raymond "Ty" Cobb (December 18, 1886 – July 17, 1961), nicknamed "The Georgia Peach," was a baseball player and is regarded by some historians and journalists as the best player of the dead-ball era and is generally seen as one of the greatest players of all time. Cobb also received the most votes of any player on the 1936 inaugural Hall of Fame Ballot, receiving 222 out of a possible 226 votes. Cobb is widely credited with setting ninety Major League Baseball records during his career.

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