Der Spotlight-Sprachtipp: Land & Leute – USA
It’s a hugely popular sport in the USA, but hardly known in Germany. Spotlight’s deputy editor, Claudine Weber-Hof, tells us all about baseball.
Why I like... baseball
Why I like it
Americans are very nostalgic about baseball. Football may be the country’s most popular sport, but we still call baseball the “national pastime.” Anyone who has seen the 1989 movie Field of Dreams with Kevin Costner will know what I mean; baseball takes us back to the sunny afternoons when we were kids. Standing out on the baseball field in spring, we felt “the thrill of the grass.” It’s a great feeling to put on your baseball glove, already smooth with wear, and wait for the game to begin.
How the game is played
You need two teams, each with nine players. The pitcher from one team throws the ball to his catcher, while the other team’s batter tries to hit the ball into play. If the batter hits the ball into the field of play, he runs to first base. Depending on where the ball falls or rolls, he may get to second or third base. Then he waits for another batter from his team to hit the ball. With any luck, he will get back to home plate and score a run (a point) for his team. He can also score a run by hitting the ball out of the park for a “home run.”
There are many expressions in English that have to do with ball games, like keep your eye on the ball. In baseball, this is a tip for the batter, who must keep his attention on the ball. If the batter takes his eye off the ball, say to look at an infielder who is making funny faces, then he won’t be able to hit it. In a general sense, the expression means to focus on what’s important and not get distracted.
I hope you found today’s tip useful.
Deputy Editor, Spotlight