Bob Tholkes Condenses Key 19CBB Postings in December 2012

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by Bob Tholkes, January 2013

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[] Baseball in the Sandwich Islands || Free-range baserunning.

             Richard Hershberger posted an 1866 item from the Philadelphia Sunday Mercury about a base ball game in Hawaii where a base runner fled on horseback rather than be tagged out. Richard could not vouch for the item's veracity, but it led to a discussion about the origins of the game in Paradise. Richard later posted an item in the Philadelphia City Item also telling the story. Richard Puff and Monica Nucciarone provided information about Hawaiian sources that might provide corroboration.

[] "Pitching" does not mean "Underhand".

             Bob Tholkes posted an 1864 item indicating the early rule requiring that balls "sent in" to batters be "pitched" rather than "thrown" did not equate to requiring an underhand delivery.
[] Is THIS where bunting started?            
             Bob Tholkes posted an 1864 item recounting a muffin match in Brooklyn where a batter deliberately tried to "hit the ball slightly so as to have it drop near the home base", possibly the earliest contemporary reference to a bunt attempt.

[] Corked Bats in 1859-- in Cricket!

             Bob Tholkes posted a quote from an 1859 article describing how the Boston Eleven used newly-invented corked bats in a cricket match. Richard Hershberger noted that cricket historically has permitted experimentation with materials for bats. 

[] Early Lingo – “Steal” vs. “Theft" Richard Hershberger, noting use of "steal to" in referring to the act of base stealing in an 1867 account, posited that its use to refer to advancing from one base to another was intended to have the meaning of moving stealthily from one to another, rather than a "theft" of a base. Bob Tholkes and John Thorn commented. Marcus Dickson provided examples, also in 1867, of references to steals favoring the "theft" interpretation. Richard concluded that the word was variously interpreted at the time.

[] John Brown’s Body – Accounted For Bob Tholkes posted an 1864 note that a Powhatan Club player from Brooklyn, John Brown, was reported missing in action with his Civil War regiment and asked if the fate of a player with such a common last name could be traced. John Zinn posted a link to a source listing the individual as later discharged due to disability.