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(for parents and teachers)


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Silly Stuff

Hobby Ideas

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Know things that your friends, parents, and teachers don't know!
Share fun facts with your friends!

In baseball's early days, umpires were unpaid volunteers. They were often a spectator and, sometimes, a player, chosen by the home team with the consent of the rival team's captain. In 1878, the National League of Professional Base Ball Clubs, organized two years earlier, mandated that home baseball teams pay umpires $5 per game.

Major league baseballs have a small cork wound with 316 yards of wool yarn. That is covered with two pieces of cowhide held together with 216 raised red cotton stitches.

The velocity of a pitched baseball is about 8 miles per hour faster as it leaves the pitcher's hand than when it reaches home plate.

Babe Ruth is given credit for the invention of the modern baseball bat. He was the first player to order a bat with a knob at the end of the handle. Louisville Slugger produced the bat with which he hit 29 home runs in 1919.

Major-league baseball clubs didn't start putting numbers on uniforms until the 1930s. As a result, Ty Cobb, who broke many batting and base-stealing records while playing with the Detroit Tigers (1905-1926), didn't have his uniform number retired. He was never issued a number.

Major league baseball bats are made of ash. Almost all are shorter than 36 inches and weigh 31 to 36 ounces. The barrel of many bats today is 2.5 inches in diameter. The barrel can be 2.75 inches in diameter.




Why do we call a left-handed person a "southpaw"?

All* major league baseball diamonds are laid out so that the batter will face east. This puts the afternoon sun behind his back and makes it easier for him to see the ball. Therefore, when the pitcher faces the batter he's facing west and his left arm is to the south. So, if he pitches left-handed, he's pitching with his "south paw."

From Why Do We Say It?

* The playing field at the new Arizona Bank One Ballpark is the only field of Major League Baseball that faces directly north. On all of other fields, the third-base line points north.




Silly Stuff

A baseball scout found a remarkable prospect--a horse who was a pretty good fielder and who hit the ball every time he was up at bat. The scout got him a try-out with a big league team. Up at bat, the horse slammed the ball into far left field and stood at the plate, watching it go. "Run!" the manager screamed, "Run!" "Are you kidding?" answered the horse. "If I could run, I'd be in the Kentucky Derby."

"Did you hear the joke about the fast pitch?"

Never mind, you just missed it."

"Did you hear the joke about the pop fly?"

"Never mind. It's way over your head."

"Did you hear the joke about your pitching style?"

"Never mind. It's foul."

Jokes from the Little Giant Book of Jokes by Joseph Rosenbloom.

Find more baseball jokes here!


Hobby Ideas

Play baseball!

Collect baseball cards or other baseball things!

Choose a favorite professional baseball team. Collect newspaper and magazine articles and make a scrapbook!

Choose a favorite professional baseball player. Collect newspaper and magazine articles about him and make a scrapbook! Graph his stats!

Write baseball stories!

Read biographies of great baseball players!





Super Sites about Baseball

Learn Cool Stuff!

Little League

Little League History

Sports Illustrated for Kids

The Big Picture: Baseball News (from Yahooligans)

Science of Baseball (Exploratorium)

Baseball Almanac

How Stuff Works:

In baseball, how does a pitcher throw a curveball?

How does a perfect game work in baseball?

How do they create patterns in a baseball field?

How Minor League Baseball Teams Work

Major League Baseball Teams

Baseball: The Game and Beyond

Hall of Famer Biographies

Hall of Sports: Willie Mays (American Academy of Achievement)

Baseball and Math

Baseball Players

All-American Girls Professional Baseball League (1943-1954)

Baseball Cards 1887-1914 (Library of Congress)

The Baseball Scorecard (Learn how to score a baseball game!)

BlackBaseball's Negro Baseball Leagues

History of the World Series

Read Great Baseball Poetry!

Sing a Fun Song!

Online Games




Best Books about Baseball
from Amazon.com

Jokes, Riddles, Puzzles, and Trivia

Baseball Jokes and Riddles by Matt Christopher

Ultimate Baseball Puzzles: Crosswords, Puzzles, and Games

Grand Slam Trivia: Secrets, Statistics, and Little Know Facts about Pro Baseball by Bruce Adelson

The Ultimate Yankee Baseball Quiz Book by Dom Forker


Baseball ABCs by Florence Cassen Mayers

Teammates by Peter Golenbock, illustrated by Paul Bacon

My Baseball Book by Gail Gibbons

Baseball Saved Us by Ken Mochizuki, illustrated by Dom Lee

This is Baseball by Margaret Blackstone, illustrated by John O'Brien

Great Moments in Baseball History by Matt Christopher

Take Me Out to the Bat and Ball Factory by Peggy Thomson, illustrated by Gloria Kamen

Black Diamond: The Story of the Negro Baseball Leagues by Patricia McKissack and Frederick McKissack

The Baseball Clinic by John Stewart

The Glory of Their Times: The Story of Baseball Told by the Men Who Played It by Lawrence Ritter


Say Hey! A Song of Willie Mays by Peter Mandel

At the Plate with Mark McGwire

At the Plate with Sammy Sosa

At the Plate with Ken Griffy, Jr.

On the Mound with Randy Johnson

On the Mound with Greg Mattux

The Oldest Rookie: Big League Dreams from a Small-Town Guy by Jim Morris and Joel Engel

The Duke of Havana, Baseball, Cuba, and the Search for the American Dream by Steve Fainaru and Ray Sanchez


All Star Fever: A Peach Street Mudders Story by Matt Christopher

The Lucky Baseball Bat by Matt Christopher

On the Field with Derek Jeter by Matt Christopher

Return of the Home Run Kid by Matt Christopher

Baseball Pals by Matt Christopher

The Dog that Pitched a No-Hitter by Matt Christopher

The Spy on Third Base by Matt Christopher

Catcher With a Glass Arm by Matt Christopher

Baseball Flyhawk by Matt Christopher

Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella audio cassette

Bat 6 by Virginia Euwer Wolff




Terrific Teaching Tools
(for parents and teachers)

Children's Books

Activity Books

Toys, Models, and Kits

Online Units, Lessons, and Teaching Resources

Activity Books

Baseball Math: Grandslam Activities and Projects by Christopher Jennison

Batter Up! Baseball Activities for Kids of All Ages by Ouisie Shapiro

Toys, Models, and Kits
from Amazon.com

Power Pitch 'n' Hit Baseball Pitching Machine


Online Units, Lessons, and Activities


abcTeach Baseball Unit (activities, resources, and much more)

Casey at the Bat (reader's theatre selection)

Measuring Up (grades 6-8) MathLine--PBS TeacherSource

Time to Hit the Pitch (grades 6-8) MathLine--PBS TeacherSource

Batting Averages and More (grades 7-10) MathLine--PBS TeacherSource

It's Going, Going (grades 10-12) MathLine--PBS TeacherSource

Better Baseball Science of Sports--PBS TeacherSource



eTeamz Tips and Drills

Baseball: Strategies and Techniques

Use this word list for topical word list activities. Click here for topical word list activities.

base hit
first base
fly ball
foul ball

pop fly
second base
third base
World Series

Baseball Jargon (a nice list for instructional activities, but there's some language that you might consider to be inappropriate for children) There's also a link to baseball abbreviations on this page!



Joke #1:



Like an udder failure.

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Joke #2:


The bat boy!

Back to SillyStuff