Simple explanation of the game for Americans. (Cricket fans – i’m leaving a lot out to keep it simple!)
Basic premise: An innings consists everyone on a team batting until they are out. Then switching over and the other team bats.
The batsmen defends the wooden stumps which the bowler tries to take out. If they are, then the batsmen is immediately out and cannot return. (See video above)
Runs are scored by running between the two sets of stumps which counts as one run. You can do this as many times as you want but you run the risk of being ‘run out'(See below).
If the ball is hit over or touches the boundary line which runs 360° around the edge of the field you get automatic runs. If the ball bounces infield first, you get 4 runs. But if it doesn’t (like a home run) then you get 6 runs.
An ‘Over’ – Bowler gets six attempts at the batsmen. After this six, the fielding team switches ends (not the batsmen) and another bowler gets six attempts. Bowlers specialise in different styles of bowling.
4 ways to be out –
The bowler hits the stumps from his bowl (See video above).
The ball is hit and somebody on the fielding team catches it (same as baseball).
Run out – Similar to baseball. If the batsmen are not in their crease (on their base), which is the white lines in the above video around the wooden stumps, then the fielders can get them out by hitting the wooden stumps before the batsmen get to them.
LBW. It means ‘leg before wicket’. Basically you can only stop the ball from hitting the stumps with your bat. If you do it with your legs then it’s LBW. Umpire has to decide on whether it would or not.