Learn to analyze the baseball game situation within 10 seconds of walking into room.
In televised coverage of a baseball game, a game-tracker (also called a stat-tracker or other names) is usually provided to help you keep track of the action in a game. You should be able to see the game-tracker, and within 10-15 seconds have a pretty good sense of what is going on in the game.
Below is an example of a game-tracker. It will usually be in the top-left corner of the screen so that it doesn't interfere with the game.
Oakland is playing the Angels at the Angels. Oakland leads 5 to 3 in the top of the fifth inning. Oakland is at bat, with an out and a runner on second. The count is 2 balls and 1 strike. For details of how to read this, see below.
On the top will be an arrow telling you inning information. The "5 th " tells you that it is the fifth inning. Since the arrow/triangle next to the inning is pointing up, it is the top of the inning, so the visiting team is at bat. The visiting team always bats in the top of the inning and the home team always bats in the bottom of the inning.
Team name and score:
In this case, OAK, or Oakland , is the visiting team (the visiting team is always listed first). Some stat trackers will light up the team name that is at bat. In this case, OAK is highlighted in yellow to show that they are at bat. The score is listed next to the team name.
The image to the right of the score shows the base-running situation. It is supposed to look similar to the order of the bases, with 1 st base at 3-o-clock, 2 nd base at noon, and third base at 9-o-clock. Home base is not always pictured, but would be in the 6-o-clock position. If a runner is on a base, that base will be highlighted. In this case, there is a runner on second base.
Count and outs:
The pitching count will also be listed. The balls are listed first, followed by the strikes. In this case, the count is 2 balls and 1 strike. The number of outs are also listed. In this case, there is one out.
Below is another popular version of the stat tracker. In this case, the tracker will be a single line across the top of the TV screen. The information is all the same as the first game-tracker, but is presented in a slightly different manner.
Oakland is playing the Angels at the Angels. Oakland leads 4 to 2. It is the bottom of the 2 nd inning, so the Angels are at bat. They Angels have a man on 3 rd , with 2 outs, and the count is 0 balls and 2 strikes.