Just got back from a week in Cooperstown, NY where the Baseball Hall of Fame is located. Great time learning about the history of the sport as well as enjoying the little town. There's no franchises allowed in town which is decorated like something out of a Saturday Evening Post cover. All the stores and resturants are locally owned.
Doubleday Field, the alleged first place baseball was played in the US, is located in Cooperstown as well. We visited on a day when a bunch of local boys came back to town for their annual reunion and baseball game.
It was the perfect opportunity for me to get some practice shooting sports and trying to figure out the timing on my crap digital camera. A regular SLR has an instant shutter release whereas a digital camera has a delayed shutter release. It's incredibly frustrating if you're skilled at releasing the shutter at exactly the right time on an SLR.
After many shots of the back of the batter who's finished his swing, or the catcher with the ball already in his glove, I was able to calculate that I had to release the shutter button a whole second before the ball reached the batter. This is one of about 3 "successful" shots where the ball is still in the frame and the batter hasn't made contact with it yet. Never could get the shot of the exact second the ball and bat collided.
It was great practice in a small, nearly empty stadium where I was free to roam around and shoot from any location I chose. My time there was well spent even if the out come wasn't as good as I'd wanted. For me, sometimes it's the process and not the outcome that matters any way. I did decide one thing after seeing all those frames of the batter's backs...I'm using an SLR the next time I shoot a baseball game. That way, I can react as I see the shot in the viewfinder instead of trying to guess at the appropriate time to hit the shutter button.