At the 8-1/2 "mark, measure the distance from the front square corner of home plate to the front of the pitcher's rubber. Repeat this measurement from the opposite corner of home plate to the front of the pitcher's rubber on the other side. The difference between these two measurements is the height of the pitching rubber.
If the rubber is less than 2 feet 6 inches high, it's called a "short stop". Otherwise, it's a "full stop".
The ball was made from leather and covered in cloth tape. When thrown by a skilled pitcher, it could travel up to 50 miles per hour. It was hit with a stick that had a knob on one end for striking out base runners. There were originally only three bases: home, first, and third. In 1869, after many complaints that balls were being used by pitchers who couldn't reach the full height of the batter's box, the baseball commission decided to extend the basepaths. They laid out a special section of the field just for batters. This area is now called the "danger zone" because it's so dangerous for runners to be there.
Baseball has always been a contact sport. Even though players are required by law to wear helmets when they play, many don't. In 1939, President Roosevelt banned baseball without a helmet law nationwide.
Calculate and note the distance between the pitching plate (rubber) and the home plate. The pitching plate (rubber) is measured from the front border and center of the plate to the home plate's APEX. Home plate's front border is 17 inches in front of the peak. The center of the plate is 7 inches from the front border.
There are two methods used to measure the distance: visual estimation and electronic measurement. With visual estimation, you can estimate the distance by using people as references. For example, you can ask one of your teammates to be the reference person. The second method is electronic measurement. Here, you use a measuring tool to get an accurate result.
Here are some examples of softball pitches:
Fast ball: This pitch has speed higher than 80 miles per hour. It is usually thrown by high-school and college pitchers. This is the most common type of pitch.
Slider: This is a slow pitch that goes around the corner. This pitch gets good break when it reaches the plate so it is difficult for the batter to hit.
Curveball: This is a deceptive pitch that looks like a fast ball but moves like a slider. It is usually thrown by professional pitchers.
On a 90-foot field, the middle of the mound is 18 inches in front of the rubber.
The height of the pitching rubber is critical to ensure that the ball reaches the ground at a reasonable speed. If the rubber is too high, the ball will travel too far; if it's too low, the ball will bounce too high. A good compromise is when the rubber is just under head height for contact.
Heading the rubber back also helps prevent the batter from hitting the ball with his/her face. The batter's box is 6 feet away from home plate in the middle of the space between the two foul lines.
There are several types of balls used in baseball. Leather, synthetic, and cork are the most common. Leather balls are formed from the skins of single cows or entire animals. They are soft and heavy for their size. Synthetic balls are made from polyurethane and are lighter than leather balls but still offer some resistance to breakage. Cork balls are made from strips of vulcanized fiber bonded together with an adhesive resin. They are much less expensive than leather or synthetic balls but don't last as long because they're more susceptible to moisture damage.