Lima 2019 is getting ready to welcome the best softball players from Latin America and the Americas during the XVIII edition of the Pan American Games.
Softball is a team sport where the athlete hits a ball with a bat. Its rules and format are very similar to baseball. It was considered an Olympic sport from Atlanta 1996 to Beijing 2008 and will return in the XXXII edition at Tokyo 2020. Softball has been part of the Pan Am Games program since 1979 and, at Lima 2019, it will serve as a qualifier to the Olympic Games, to be held one year later.
Canada placed 1st in the softball medal standing at the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games in the men's and women's events, taking home the gold medal in both.
So far, the Peruvian team has only qualified to the 1987 Indianapolis Pan Am Games and Lima 2019 Pan Am Games. That is why this will be their second opportunity to reach a coveted spot on the podium. The ball used in softball is bigger than in baseball but it can rise, fall, go in a curve and change speed during the throw.
The first softball game was a result of a Harvard versus Yale football match in 1887. When Yale was announced as the winner, a Yale alumnus watching the game playfully threw a boxing glove at a Harvard supporter who swung at the balled-up glove with a stick. Softball has been in the Pan Am Games program since 1979.
Bases loaded: When there is a runner on 1st, 2nd and 3rd base.
Diamond: The field of play.
Double play: When two players are tagged out within the same continuous play.
Out: When a pitcher throws three strikes to one batter, resulting in the batter’s return to the bench.
Walk: When a pitcher throws four balls to one batter, resulting in the batter walking to first base.