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#2197 - 05/16/00 02:27 PM Re: Cricket v Baseball
GZini Offline
stranger

Registered: 05/05/00
Posts: 19
Loc: Washington, DC, USA
Oh, I don't know that I would agree that cricket is tactically superior to baseball. For one thing, your premise that the fielders' positions in baseball are fixed is incorrect. The only fixed positions are the battery (pitcher and catcher -- had to throw some vocabulary in there). The other seven fielders may play anywhere on the field, in fair or foul territory. And in fact, they move around quite a bit, depending on the pitcher, the batter, the presence of runners on base, the wind, etc. There are also considerations of substituting players, stealing bases, bunting (squaring the bat over the plate and gently pushing the incoming ball to the turf), sacrificing (hitting the ball to an easy fielding position for the purposes of advancing a runner when there are fewer than two outs), and many others; to my knowledge, none of these are important tactics in cricket.

I have watched a few cricket matches, and the game is somewhat interesting. Here's a question, though: why don't the fielders ever run? I see them jog over to a batted ball, but no one seems to be in a hurry to field it. Meanwhile, the batting team is scoring run after run.

A great resource for learning baseball strategy and tactics is Leonard Koppet's The New Thinking Fan's Guide to Baseball. It's well written by a journeyman sportswriter, and it explains the decisionmaking inherent to all facets of the game. Is there a similar book for cricket? I'd love to pick up a copy, if there is.


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#2198 - 05/16/00 02:42 PM on topic
tsuwm Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 10524
Loc: this too shall pass
I wonder if metagrobologists in the UK need to know as much cricket lore as we in the US need to know about baseball?

(just trying to connect all the dots here... :)

http://members.aol.com/tsuwm/

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#2199 - 05/16/00 03:21 PM Re: on topic
GZini Offline
stranger

Registered: 05/05/00
Posts: 19
Loc: Washington, DC, USA
Here's one that's a little closer to the topic: What, in your opinions, are the most frequent appearances of baseball-related answers in crossword grids? I see RBI and ERA quite a bit, also EVERS (the second leg of the Tinker-Evers-Chance World Series triple play). I wonder if anyone has clude "RHE" as the initials at the end of the linescore?


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#2200 - 05/16/00 03:23 PM Re: on topic
GZini Offline
stranger

Registered: 05/05/00
Posts: 19
Loc: Washington, DC, USA
Oh, of course that's "clued" and not "clude." And I hda consdired usnig teh spellchekcer, to.


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#2201 - 05/16/00 04:10 PM Re: on topic
tsuwm Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 10524
Loc: this too shall pass
OTT and ALOU because they're short names.

http://members.aol.com/tsuwm/

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#2202 - 05/16/00 06:25 PM Re: Cricket v Baseball
Philip Davis Offline
journeyman

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 81
I did know that the fielders in baseball move about within some confines, in cricket there are few confines and the field settings are much move varied. Quite simply there are a few more fielders and the field is twice the size. I'm not suggesting baseball is without interest, it has many points of interest and some similarities with cricket (mostly the commentators comments about what snack there currently eating). However, I still hold that cricket has a greater tactical element. Take, for an example, the ball. All the current discussions in baseball as to the changes in the hardness of the ball equally apply in cricket, plus in cricket there is a question about the colour of the ball (red or white), all the ball tampering aspects are much the same, but in cricket only one ball is used at a time and it is played with until fairly worn, so the age of the ball becomes another factor in considering fielding positions, a new ball is faster, but an old ball my give better and less predictable spin.
Finally one of the most fascinating aspects of cricket is the variation between the varied nations that play from all around the world.


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#2203 - 05/17/00 03:31 AM Re: Cricket v Baseball
shanks Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/16/00
Posts: 1004
Loc: London, UK
Whilst still refusing to throw in my lot with the 'cricket is tactically superior' crowd, I would like to point out that one element - the state or condition of the pitch, is vital in cricket, whilst much less important in baseball since the point there is never to bounce the ball towards the batter.

The 'equivalent' of the bunt might be considered to be the concept of 'keeping the strike' at the end of an over, where the better batsman in a partnership is concerened with changing ends on the 5th or 6th balls, so as to reduce the chance of his less able partner having to face a full over.

That fielders appear to jod instead of run is, IMO, attributable to two reasons:

1. Most games are not played in the spirit of high athleticism. When played at the club level, cricket should only be a little more energetic than gold. The key element is the sandwiches in the high tea that divides the innings!

2. Most experienced players have a very good idea of how many runs, in principle, a certain shot might produce. If two is the safe limit, then there is little point in the fielder pouncing on the ball to try to 'prevent' it. Chances are the two is safe, while any attempt at three would be suicidal. To that extent, the fielder and the batsmen, are playing the percentages.

Neither of these considerations should, or do, apply in international cricket at the highest level, where athleticism and sharpening of the percentages, is taken for granted. In one day cricket today, you will see singles taken that would never have been contemplated by professional cricketers 30 years ago. Similarly, you will see fielding agility, form an entire team of fielders, that was once the preserve of perhaps one man in an entire generation (a Colin Bland, say).

Finally, to end this long post, and to address an earlier one in this thread (from tsuwm?), cricket has been blessed with a long and vigorous tradition of fine writing. Perhaps the most famous of all cricket writers is the late Neville Cardus, but more recent wwriters have also performed well with the pen - John Arlott and others.

In fiction, I have yet to find descriptions of cricket matches (or golf, for that matter) to amtch those of Wodehouse. The great Pelham Grenville's school stories, based on the fictional Wrykyn, are unsurpassed in that aspect.

cheer

the sunshine warrior


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#2204 - 05/17/00 09:44 AM Re: Cricket v Baseball
jmh Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1981
>Finally one of the most fascinating aspects of cricket is the variation between the varied nations that play from all around the world.

I'm not really joining in here as I haven't got a clue what you are all talking about. I did, however notice this comment on the internet and I thought it would link to other threads:
The three differences between Americans and the British according to comedian/actor John Cleese :
- The British speak English.
- When the British have a "World Championship" in sports, they invite teams from other countries.
- When you meet the head of state, you only get down on one knee.
(Caldernet Mailing Lists)


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#2205 - 05/17/00 06:46 PM Re: Cricket v Baseball
Philip Davis Offline
journeyman

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 81
I agree with Shanks that the skill of players has generally improved over the years but, I do believe, that the skill of baseball players is much higher. You may see an outstanding catch in cricket but you almost certainly will see some amazing infield play in professional baseball. So whilst I contend that cricket is a more tactical game baseball is general a more skillful game (mind you for the money the players get I'd expect it.)

A few more cricketing terms for those trying British crosswords.
Slip - a fielder placed roughly behind the batsman to catch a ball that glances off the bat. (There no such thing as a foul ball in cricket)
Duck - a score of no runs "He's out for a duck" out without scoring
Over - a series of six (or eight) balls bowled by the same bowler. At the end of the over a different bowler then bowls from the other end.
Maiden - An over from which no runs were scored as in the phrase "he bowled a maiden over" which can also mean to impress a young women as in "He bowled the maiden over when he bowled a maiden over."
Test - An international match.

There have been few films about cricket but a few years ago an excellent television series called 'Bodyline' was produced about a English Test tour of Australia in the 1930's which was both very entertaining as a story and highly informative about the tactics of cricket. It had similar qualities to the rather good "In a League of Their Own"


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#2206 - 05/17/00 10:22 PM Re: Cricket v Baseball
tsuwm Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 10524
Loc: this too shall pass
There's a new and generally entertaining series on US tv regarding the daily goings-on in the White House, called "West Wing". In tonight's episode the president (nicely portrayed by Martin Sheen) was telling a member of his staff that he was planning, at the end of yet another long day, to have a beer and watch a women's softball game on cable; upon being teased about this, he responded that it was "either that or a cricket match" between (x) and (y) -- I think this nicely sums up our attitude regarding cricket as a spectator sport. <g>

http://members.aol.com/tsuwm/

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