Sports photography is made up of more than just action shots. We all try to capture the peak action shots for sure, but there are also other significant photos which help to tell the game story. The above photo, for example, shows the relaxed and maybe even fun-loving nature of a batter on deck.
This shot was captured between the games of a doubleheader as the player is finding ways to patiently wait for the second game to begin.
The back of a player waiting on deck with just a slight profile of his face probably will not be published, but it still helps to tell the story of the game.
Coaches talking to players before an inning is another potentially captivating image. You can see the intense listening from some of the players and the urgency in the coach’s face. The old quote is: “A picture is worth 1,000 words.” Don’t just aim for the action shots, capture a wider perspective of each game story!
This is football season and I’ve been shooting a lot of high school football lately. But on Saturday when I was picking up my son, James, from the Naval Academy, we attended the Coppin v. Navy baseball game. I always enjoy trying to capture the action at a game and I had my camera, so why not?
The first game was very close–just a one run game. Navy held on to record the win.
I enjoy shooting at Bishop Stadium in Annapolis, MD. I can go to the top of the stands and get nice, clear backgrounds, like the one above. Backgrounds are critical to a good, quality photograph. A background can make or break a photo. Chain link fences, parked cars, trashcans, and empty stands are all troublesome backgrounds. Yuck!
Shooting a baseball game in the midst of football season was a a good change-up for me. Sorry for the pun, but it was fun! I hope you enjoy these photos from Saturday’s baseball game. More will probably be coming sometime soon. The second game wasn’t as close but it was still a lot of fun to see the athletes in action!
Today I picked up our son, James Shank, from the Naval Academy as he was attending Candidate’s Weekend. Pickup time was 10:45am. We then ate an early lunch at Dry Dock and decided to attend the fall baseball game between Coppin and Navy.
Fall baseball for me was a new concept back when I was coaching Little League baseball. I always thought baseball was a game played in the spring and summer, not the fall. I’m glad I was wrong!
James moved from Little League to the Lehigh Valley Baseball Academy. We met another player named Jay Maletz who now plays at Coppin! So, we attended today’s game to catch the game and watch Maletz in action.
We were not disappointed! In the second game, Maletz had the sole RBI for his team and played a strong first base! This is Maletz’s hit in the second game of the doubleheader.
Here is is making an incredible scoop to record the out.
I love fall baseball!
James Shank, a high school sophomore, hit a bomb into right-center field today at the Navy Baseball Showcase Camp. He was facing an extremely good pitcher, who is showing excellent promise himself. This pitcher is a freshman at West Virginia University now and is hoping to transfer to Navy. From the looks of it, he will be a very nice addition to the team here. James worked a 2-2 count and got a fastball. He ripped it in the gap and the ball bounced to the fence. He easily rounded the bases with a standup triple.
I thought it would be fun to show the photos from his hit today and break it down so you can see the anatomy of a triple. The hardest part is hitting the baseball, of course, especially against a quality pitcher. The matchup between a pitcher and the hitter is always fun to watch. It’s a cat and mouse game. The pitcher trying to paint the corners of the plate and get ahead in the count; the hitter trying to work the count in his favor and earn a hitter’s pitch. 2-2 is about the same as 0-0, or is it? At the beginning of the at-bat, both the pitcher and hitter are even. They both have room to make a mistake and still live in this matchup. When the count goes to 2–2 the next pitch could be the end of the line for the hitter. Yes, they call this an even count, indicating neither the pitcher or the hitter has the edge, but it seems to me that the pressure is more solidly on the hitter because the next pitch could have him walking back to the bench. All the while, the hitter is working the count and trying to figure out what the pitcher might be throwing. Stay back, look for the fastball, and react to the curve. When the pitcher has a sidearm delivery, it ups the ante even more! Release point is different in this scenario and the hitter has to adjust. 2 balls, 2 strikes. What will the pitcher throw next? It’s a fastball and it’s a triple! The hitter was 1 for 2, batting .500 for the day, and the pitcher strikes out the next batter faced.
These photos do not show all the drama of a triple, but they do show some of the energy and excitement of a player hitting the ball and rounding the bases, who then cruises into third and shakes the hand of the third-base coach.
And that’s the anatomy of a triple.
Spending several days at the United States Naval Academy is a treat any time of the year. There is so much history, architecture, and more! I prefer the hot summer days mainly because this coincides with Plebe Summer–the six weeks new midshipmen endure their initial training at the Academy.
I was privileged to see a lineup before lunch on Monday and the Brigade marching on Monday evening. The photographs here that I captured during the marching maneuvers show some of the facial expressions, which show some of the wear and tear of Plebe Summer. There are a few light-hearted expressions, too, which goes to show that at least some fun is sometimes had even in the midst of a grueling hot summer evening for the Plebes.
These young men and women are going facing tough times this summer and over the next four years. All of it, however, is designed to prepare them for their commission upon graduation. I am so proud of these men and women. Their willingness to endure tough times, better themselves, and work as a team in protecting the freedoms our country stands for are just some of the reasons I respect them. It truly takes a special breed of person to be so willing to endure so much. We all could learn a lot from their dedication, commitment, and courage!
Look through these photographs. Study the facial expressions. Imagine the tough conditions these young men and women are enduring. Think about their commitment, dedication, and courage. What do you see in these photographs?
We had the opportunity to tour topside on the USS Wisconsin this past Saturday and my son and I had a ball!
Of course, I had my camera out the whole time taking photos. We no sooner parked the truck when we saw a great angle of the ship from our vantage point in the parking deck. Then as we walked closer I was absolutely amazed at the view of the ship from straight on. We learned that this battleship is 108 feet wide because the Panama Canal is 110 feet wide so this ship will just fit. But I have to say, looking at the ship from straight on sure makes for an interesting and somewhat strange sight!
This battleship was originally designed to carry about 1,800 crewmen, but that was increased to just over 2,900 crewmen. This resulted in some extremely tight quarters and sleeping arrangements. Most of us do not realize the many sacrifices made by the men and women who serve our country in the armed forces. We are one very fortunate country and owe a huge debt of gratitude to those who are willing to sacrifice so much to protect our freedom.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart to all who serve this great country. I for one appreciate it immensely!