Clippings:1884

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1884Clippings in 1884

Clippings in 1884 (494 entries)

Contents

a UA alliance Western League

Date Wednesday, October 29, 1884
Text

A meeting of those interested in the formation of a Western Base Ball League was held at the St. James Hotel, Kansas City, Oct 20. There were represented in person or by letter Kansas City, Leavenworth, Hannibal, St. Joseph, Atchison, Topeka and Lawrence, and the delegates were very enthusiastic and sanguine of the success of the new organization. ... It was decided to name the organization “The Western Base Ball League.” It will work as an alliance of the Union Association, adopting the playing rules of that association and arranging its schedule so as not to conflict with the Union dates in Kansas City.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a balk 2

Date Sunday, June 22, 1884
Text

[Chicago vs. St. Louis (Unions) 6/21/1884] After two men were out Brennan was given his base on balls and reached second on a passed ball. A balk by Daly who left his box gave Brennan third and Hodnett first. . (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a ball in the catcher's mask

Date Wednesday, June 4, 1884
Text

[Detroit vs. Boston 5/16/1884] ...a foul ball lodged between the wires of Hines' mask. The umpire gave it “out.” Boston Herald May17, 1884

Secretary Young is said to have decided that in the case of a foul tip becoming embedded in the mask the batter should be given out.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a ball lodged in the catcher's mask

Date Thursday, June 19, 1884
Text

Although extensively reported otherwise Secretary “Nick” Young has notified the League umpires to decide a batsman not out when the ball lodges in the catcher’s mask after a foul tip. In all cases the ball must be fairly caught with the hands to make a put-out. That is correct. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a benefit game for abandoned Washington players

Date Wednesday, August 13, 1884
Text

The players that were left financially embarrassed by the failure of Mr. Moxley’s club were helped out of the hole very generously by Mr. Scanlon, who gave them a benefit game at Capital Park on Wednesday, and the money so taken in was given to the players, netting them about $35 or $40 each.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a blackboard scoreboard

Date Monday, May 12, 1884
Text

[Baltimore Union vs. Cincinnati Union 5/11/1884] The figures on the blackboard ran tie for several innings...

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a charged abuse of the reserve system

Date Monday, January 28, 1884
Text

The player who preferred charges against the Fort Wayne Club to the Northwestern League Convention unqualifiedly declare they were unjustly dealt with, and that the Convention was manipulated in the interest of the League and American Association at a sacrifice of their rights. They assert that the Fort Wayne Club was in arrears to the Quincy Club over $200 for guarantees, and also owed dues to the Association, for both of which it should have been expelled, whereas it was reinstated as a member in good standing upon settling those accounts. Then the ten players presented their claims, each one thinking that his case was sure to hold. But they counted without their host. Fort Wayne had reserved them, and, as it was not the policy of the League and the American Association to permit so many reserved men to go out on the market untrammeled, the men who were doing their bidding had no alternative but to sustain the club, and thereby hold the players. St. Louis Post-Dispatch January 28, 1884, quoting an unidentified exchange

the rules of baseball on ice

In base ball games on the ice the rules are of necessity greatly modified from those of the regular field game. In the first place the base running is different, inasmuch as the runners are allowed to over-run every base and to return to them without being put out, provided they turn to the right after passing over each base line. If they turn to the left, however, they cease to be exempt from being put out in returning. The rules governing the battery work, too, are different, the batsmen being obliged to strike at every ball within fair reach, whether high or low, or not exactly over the base, while balls are only called on the pitcher when he sends in balls either by any kind of a throw, or to the left of the batsman or out of his fair reach, and then six balls give a base. The rule for catchers, too, includes bound catches of fair balls as well as of foul. With these exceptions the game is played as ordinarily. The Sporting Life January 30, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a claim of a doctored bat

Date Wednesday, August 13, 1884
Text

Sullivan’s “kick” yesterday was in regard to O’Neill’s using an alleged “shaved” bat. He failed to convince Devinney, however, that such was the fact. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a claim that the UA is paying Wilmington Club expenses

Date Wednesday, August 27, 1884
Text

The terms upon which the Wilmington Club was induced to joint the Unions are known to be as follows: The Union Association guarantees to pay the club’s traveling expenses and the salaries of players on the trip, and to give the Wilmington Club 50 per cent of the gross receipts of certain games.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a claimed peace feeler from the NL

Date Wednesday, September 24, 1884
Text

[reporting on the UA special meeting of 9/20] It was also stated that overtures had been received from the National League, looking to a reconciliation with and recognition of the Union Association. In this case it was the sense of the meeting that the Union would meet the League half way on any terms the latter might see fit to propose, looking to the interests of the National game. On this point all present expressed themselves very freely in favor of harmonious action by a committee representing the three leading bas ball associations. The Sporting Life September 24, 1884 [N.B. A claim was also made at the same meeting that the Athletics and Metropolitans had applied for membership.]

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a composite bat

Date Monday, July 7, 1884
Text

Anson of the Chicago Club is using a bat made of several separate pieces of ash, jointed and glued together lengthwise, while in the center is inserted a rattan rod about one inch square and composed of twelve strips of rattan firmly glued together, running from end to end of the bat. The handle is wound with linen cord. He thinks the additional spring obtained will send the ball father. This wrapping of the handle, however, is technically a violation of the rule, which requires the bat to be made “wholly of wood,” but it is a rule which nobody will object to changing if the wound handle proves to be an improvement. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a composite bat 2

Date Wednesday, July 9, 1884
Text

Captain Anson in the game of the 23d made a trial of a new style bat just made as an experiment. The bat is made of several separate pieces of ash, jointed and glued together lengthwise, while in the center is inserted a rattan rod about one inch square, and composed of twelve strips of rattan firmly glued together, running from end to end of the bat. The handle is wound with linen cord. This wrapping of the handle, however, is technically a violation of the rule, which requires the bat to be made “wholly or wood,” but it is a rule which nobody will object to changing if the wound handle proves to be an improvement. The object of the glue joints and the rattan rod in the center is to make the bat less liable to break and at the same time to give it more spring. That both of these objects are accomplished there can be no doubt. The first ball hit by Anson with the new bat was a terrific liner to left field for two bases, and he used it throughout the game with great success. Captain Morrill having agreed to waive any objection to the wrapping of the handle. Heretofore bats have been made of a single stick, and the improvement adds materially to the expense of manufacture. Players who have tried it say that the ball can be driven 25 per cen. Further by the exercise of equal force than with the common bat. Anson certainly made a remarkable record in the two games in which he used it. June 23d, Buffington pitcher, in three times at bat he made a single and a double; June 24 th, Whitney pitcher, four times at bat, two singles, one double and a home run. The cost of the new style bat will be about $5 each. The idea is not altogether new, as in 1875 quite a scare was created among the League clubs by the report that the Athletic Club of Philadelphia, had secured a bat containing springs for increased propulsion. Of course the report was unfounded, but it shows that there was an indistinct idea of such an improvement. The Sporting Life July 9, 1884

A new bat is the latest wrinkle in the professional base-ball arena. It is after the style of the string-handle bats used in cricket, being of separate pieces of wood glued together, with cane as the central material. Like that of the cricket bat, the handle is covered with fine thread wound around it to give the hands a good hold. ... One effect of the introduction of these wound bats in base-ball will be to decrease the number of broken bats. What will manufacturers say to that? About five dollars is to be the price of one of these new-fangled base-ball clubs: but this will not compensate for the decrease in bats by breakage. There is a point to be considered that may be worthy the attention of the fielders in particular. It is terribly trying now to the higde and cartilage of fielders to stop hard-hit grounders in the infield. With a bat that will send a ball to the in-field more swiflty than ever before, skirmishing for the sphere in that quarter will become as dangerous work as catching balls from a pacer like Whitney., give the fielders a chance, and never mind filling hospitals! Keep the bats as they are, and “let ‘em break!” St. Louis Post-Dispatch July 12, 1884, quoting the New York Clipper

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a condemnation of the UA for reserve and contract-breaking

Date Wednesday, July 30, 1884
Text

Base ball today is the one great sport that is free from the corruption of the pool box and the gambler’s methods, and herein lies the secret of its great popularity, causing all other popular sports to dwindle into insignificance in comparison, and if this great sport is today threatened in its very life, it is because of the tactics adopted by the Union Association. It will not do for that body to claim that it is but a measure of self-protection. True, the older bodies did not view the newcomer with a friendly eye, and did some things in the crushing-out process which could not and did not meet with the approval of right-thinking people, but the Union Association invited these things from its birth and had to expect just such treatment as it got. It came into the field aggressively, attacking one of the laws most cherished by the older bodies, namely, the reserve rule, which it refused to recognize, thereby letting down the bars at the very start and inviting the very methods employed to crush them out as possible disorganizers. The Union Association ha placed itself in the attitude of a bully who invites a fight and then whines because he gets a deserved whipping. True, the older bodies did take some players from the Union Association, and did some other things of which, at the time, The Sporting Life did not hesitate to express its disapproval, but all this does not justify reprisal which threatens the existence of the noble game. The older bodies have done much for base ball in the past, and so the public is disposed to overlook some irregularities. But the Union Association is a new-comer, which ha not yet demonstrated that it is of any benefit to the game in general, itself in particular, or even that it has a right to live.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a condemnation of trickery and deception; hidden ball trick

Date Tuesday, August 19, 1884
Text

The most marked feature of true manliness of character is a love of fair play. It is a jewel in the crown of manhood of the first water, and without it all sports degenerate into low and dishonest struggles to win by trickery, rather than by honorable efforts to excel. A love of fair play, in fact, is inherent in the breast of every man worthy of the name, and all such men detest to see unfair play exhibited on any field whatever, but especially in games where athletic skill is the chief attraction, for in such games it is that fair play shines out at its brightest. Without referring to any other line sports, sufficient examples can be found in the arena of the National game of base ball to illustrate the nature of fair play and its opposite. When two contesting nines enter upon a match game of base ball they do so with the implied understanding that the struggle between them is to be one in which their respective skill in handling the ball and bat and running the bases is alone to be brought into play, unaided by such low trickery as is comprised in the acts of slyly cutting the ball to have it changed, tripping up base runners, wilfully colliding with fielder to make them commit errors, hiding the ball, and other specially mean tricks of the kind characteristic of corner lot loafers in their ball games. All these so-called “points” in base ball are beyond the pale of fair and manly play, and rank only as among the abuses of the game. St., quoting Henry Chadwick, Brooklyn Eagle

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a country catcher and the chest protector

Date Saturday, August 23, 1884
Text

Oxley is about the newest man that ever played ball in New York city. He went in to catch just as he had arrived from the Green Mountains, and after catching an inning he saw the catcher of the other club strapping on a chest protector, so he asked him what he was doing that for. And the catcher replied: “To keep the ball from striking me in the chest; there is one on your own side; put it on the next time you go behind the bat.” Acting upon the advice, Oxley strapped on the protector and caught for two innings without a mask and the big rubber shield flapping like the wings of an eagle, and he probably would have finished the game in the same way if some fellow hadn't come along and said: “That thing won't do you any good unless you fill it full of wind.” Oxely took the tip, sneaked off to one side and blew it up, but he continued to catch without a mask until some other kind fellow came along and told him what a mask was used for, that they were not muzzles, but simply to keep a man from being struck in the face with a sharp foul tip. Once more he took a drop and has been catching with a mask ever since. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a critique of swift overhand pitching

Date Wednesday, October 1, 1884
Text

More speed in delivery, without thorough command of the ball, is worse than useless. The wear and tear of catcher, the tedious character of play it introduces in a match, and the cost in called and passed balls, not to mention injuries to batsmen who get hit with the ball, are all costly drawbacks which doubly offset what slight advantages the speedy delivery presents in outs on strikes.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a critique of the AA's expansion

Date 1884
Text

Alonzo Knight, the genial manager of the Athletic Club...does not like the admission of the four new clubs. “Too many,” he said; “it is going to weaken us, and will hurt us.

Source ~
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a critique of the foul bound

Date Wednesday, November 5, 1884
Text

Managers may still cling to the idea of retaining the “foul bound,” but spectators are fast becoming disgusted with this old relic of school-boy town ball of years ago. It does not require more than the skill of the average amateur to make a short or long run and capture a ball rebounding from mother ear. Spectators pay to witness a game of base ball by professionals rather than amateurs, because the game is more scientifically played by the former, and the more it can be elevated to the grade of a science the greater will be its drawing qualities. It really costs the managers money to retain this feature, and why they should persist in doing it in the face of the experience of the League is a conundrum a little beyond the average comprehension. Another reason for it abolishment is that it would increase the efficiency of the batsman as against the now overwhelming skill of the pitcher. It would give him more chances to get in his hit.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a critique of the scoring rules

Date Wednesday, November 5, 1884
Text

[A lengthy critique of the scoring rules as vague and inconsistently applied. The Sporting Life November 5, 1884 p. 3.]

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a dead ball trick

Date Wednesday, June 25, 1884
Text

Brouthers, in one of the games with Chicago last week, worked a very old trick on Sunday. The latter had made a good base hit and was safe on first. The guileless Daniel had thrown the ball to Serad (in his mind), when Sunday slipped off the bag. Dan jerked the ball from under his arm and touched him out before the Chicago right fielder knew what had happened. Any player stupid enough to be caught in that manner deserves a fine.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a defense of the expanded reserve

Date Wednesday, March 12, 1884
Text

[reporting on the NL meeting] The reserve rule was discussed, especially on the point of whether the eleven men reservation was in reality harsher than the five men reserve rule. President Mills brought out a strong point in favor of the eleven men rule. He held that after the five men had been held under the old rule it brought the remaining players not reserved on the market for bidders while tying up the superior player and would be likely to give the inferior player more salary than the stronger reserved player.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a denunciation of curve pitching

Date Saturday, January 5, 1884
Text

During the holidays a meeting of representatives from the faculties of the chief colleges met in New York to discuss athletics. This convention arose from Dr. Sargent's visit to the various colleges and was called by the Athletic Committee of Harvard. There were present Prof. Norton and Dr. Sargent, from Harvard; President McCosh of Princeton; Professor Richards of Yale; Mr. Goodwin of Columbia and many other presidents and professors. After a long discussion on athletics, in which every one seemed to be agreed that professionals and professionalism should be rigorously excluded from college athletics, it was decided to appoint a large committee and who should draw up a series of rules regulations by which all college athletics should be controlled. Professor Richards of Yale was made chairman of this committee, and Dr. Sargent is Harvard's representative on it. Harvard Crimson January 5, 1884

During the recent convention of representatives from Harvard, Yale and other colleges to consider the subject of athletics, one of the speakers unbosomed himself thus:

Athletics have come to the pass where they are no longer fair and open trials of strength and skill, but on the contrary, as at present conducted, they train the young men to look upon victory as the rewards of treachery and deceit. That this is the case, anyone who has seen the game of baseball as it is played by the so-called best college nines will at once admit. For the pitcher, instead of delivering the ball to the batter in an honest, straightforward way, that the latter may exert his strength to the best advantage in knocking it, now uses every effort to deceive him by curving–I think that is the word–the ball. And this is looked upon as the last triumph of athletic science and skill. I tell you it is time to call halt! when the boasted progress in athletics is in the direction of fraud and deceit. New York Clipper January 19, 1884

Source Harvard Crimson
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a description of a crank

Date Sunday, April 20, 1884
Text

“There is a man in the Government Hospital for the Insane,” said an ex-Governor of Maryland to a Washington letter-writer, “who is perfectly sane on every subject except base-ball. He knows more about base-ball than any other man in America. The authorities have humored him so that he has been able to cover the walls of his large room with intricate schedules of games played since base-ball began its career. He has the record of every important club and the individual record of every important player. He takes an astrological view of the game. He explains every defeat and every success on astrological principles. It is because a man was born in this month or under this star or that. He has figured it all out. His sense has gone with it. He is the typical base-ball crank.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a description of baseball cranks

Date Saturday, March 22, 1884
Text

“Cranks in base ball? Well, I should say so,” said Charles Mason of the Athletics. “Do you know, every season brings new ones to the surface. Our mail every day contains applications from players in country towns who are impressed with the idea that they possess some unusual ability, principally as pitchers; and to listen to some of the remarkable descriptions of 'curves' and 'shoots' that they claim as original, would make your head swim. Here is an application from a young man up the country who says that he has discovered a new curve that is impossible to hit, and that with it he can strike out the heaviest batsmen as fast as they come up to the plate. He would be a valuable man to secure if there was anything in his claim, but try him and he would be hit out of the 'box' in one inning.”

“Do you ever give these applicants a trial?”
 “Occasionally, when their application is indorsed by some practical player. This trial of new players costs first-class clubs considerable money during a season. Last season, for instance, we heard of a catcher in Massachusetts, and being in need of such a player we sent for hi, giving him two hundred dollars advance. He caught two innings in an exhibition game and proved a monumental failure the same evening he left for home and that was the last we ever heard of him. Good managers, however, do not mind this, as occasionally a fine player is stumbled across.”

“What is the percentage of successes?”

“Very, very small. In no business or profession does the failures exceed the successes in such a degree as in base ball. I am an old professional, and practical in my views, and when we give a new player a trial I always insist on giving him every chance to show what there is in him. I can generally tell, however, if there is anything in ap layer by the manner in which he goes about his work.”

“Have you any experiments on this season's team?”

“Only one, a young pitcher, from the West, named Atkinson. I have never seen him play, but he comes to us very well spoken of by professionals, who have seen him. For his sake, as well as our own, I hope he will not be a disappointment. There is one great danger, however, in young players that score a success, and that is what we call having a 'big head,' that is, become too much swelled up over their importance. The best of them will get it, but a manager will in the end pretty effectively cure them of the malady.:

“Isn't there often a great deal of fun afforded the old professionals when they test an applicant?”

“Not on our grounds. We view it in the light of business. I am aware that some managers allow it, but we never do. Sometimes the funny fellows get the worst of it. This young man Atkinson is an illustration of this. He went down to Indianapolis last Summer and asked Dan O'Leary, who was running the Indianapolis club, to give him a trial as pitcher. Dan laughed at him, but Atkinson persisted. 'All right,' said Dan, 'If you insist I will make a fool of you this afternoon.' Dan took him out to the ground, and having no regular game, got up a scrub nine and made Atkinson pitcher, and put his own team against them. The result was a terrible beating for Dan's team, his men being unable to hit Atkinson, eighteen of them striking out. Dan wanted to sign Atkinson at once, but he refused to play under O'Leary at any salary, and finally signed with us. So you see it don't always do to be too funny.

Source The Philadelphia Evening Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

A description of catcher's equipment

Date Saturday, June 21, 1884
Text

With his frontal liver-pad, his hands cased in thick gloves and the familiar wire helmet on his head, the average baseball-catcher looks for all the world like an animated combination of a modern bed-bolster and a mediaeval knight., quoting the New Haven News

Source National Police Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a description of the Washington AA grounds

Date Wednesday, March 12, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Von der Ahe] It is a splendid, perfectly level inclosure, some 450 x 450 feet; about the same size as the Grand Avenue grounds. The fence is a new and fine one, and at about twenty feet apart are posts, to which will be attached flag-staffs bearing the colors of the different nations. The carriage-way is a very handsome gate, surmounted with crossed bats, with balls, caps and other emblems of the national game, with a handsome United States blaze waving over it. The grand stand is a model, having two tiers of seats, and is strongly constructed without pillars to interfere with the sight of the spectators; the beams and stanchions being strongly bolted and nutted. The skeleton seats extend on eighter side, and the entire seating capacity is about 10,000 persons. At the upper end of the ground is a fine music stand which will accommodate forty-five musicians, and is modeled after the famous stand at Coney Island. About the field is a splendid cinder track for bicycle and foot racing, twenty feet wide, and with several layers of brick and stone, pebbles, gravel and land cement and cinder. It is eighteen inches deep, and cost of itself some $2,100. Col Moxley estimate that he has put $20,000 in his grounds... St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a disguised balk move

Date Wednesday, June 18, 1884
Text

What is it? McKeon, the clever pitcher of the Indianapolis Club, seems to have a specialty in catching a great many players between first and second base, and, as a natural sequence they are run out. This happens so frequently and is repeated so often with the same players that it invites investigation. The base-runner at first, after being cautioned by his captain, thinks he sees a motion to deliver the ball to the bat, and starts for second, only to be brought up half-way down the patch by observing that the pitcher has turned around in the box and is ready to cut him off. The captain calls the umpire's attention to the play and claims a balk, but the umpire, having been unable to discover a motion to deliver to the bat, disallows it. The inference is plain that the deceptive motion must be made in such a manner that it is observable by the base-runner near first, but not at the umpire's position near home. McKeon's usual preliminary motions are to place himself with his left side toward the umpire and batsman, and place both hands and the ball near his right hip out of sight of them. Whatever deceptive motion is made that misleads the base-runner is done in that position, and umpires should be on the alert to unearth it, and if it is a balk award the penalty. The investigation of it is respectfully referred to Mr. John Kelly, for if it is a balk the opposing club should have the benefit, and if it is not no harm would be done. Players do not usually object to a square put-out on the merits of the play by good fielding, but after making a good hit to be time after time ignominiously run out by a trick which merely baffles the umpire is like being allured to a shameful death by falling into a bear-trap.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a drunk ballplayer in court

Date Wednesday, June 4, 1884
Text

Henry Luff, of the Keystone Club, while the club was in Cincinnati a week ago, fell from grace. He had carried himself straight ever since the season opened, but the temptations of the “Paris of America” were too much for him. While intoxicated he boarded a horse car, raised a rumpus, drew a knife and landed in the lock-up. On Saturday his case was called in the Police Court. He was charged with disorderly conduct, having boarded a street car while in a drunken state on the day previous. When the conductor asked for the fare Luff showed him a knife instead of the nickel, and became disorderly. When the case was first called Luff did not appear, and his bond was declared forfeited. He subsequently shoed up. Judge Fitzgerald told him that, had he ever been arrested before, he would send him to the workhouse. As it was, he fined the ballplayer $25 and sentenced him to thirty days in the works, but suspended the days.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a failed attempt to put a UA club in Pittsburgh

Date Tuesday, March 18, 1884
Text

The effort to establish a Union club at Pittsburg was a very determined one, and only failed on account of the impossibility of obtaining grounds. A rental of $4,000 was offered for the Exposition grounds and declined. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a fake offer to inflate a salary offer

Date Wednesday, November 19, 1884
Text

The silly story going the rounds to the effect that Williamson had been offered $10,000 to sign a three years’ contract with Mr. Lucas is said to owe its birth to a little trick played by the big third baseman. He and Gore were the last men to sign with Chicago, and Williamson, in order to get the salary and advance money he wanted, had one of his friends in St. Louis posted to send him a telegram at the right moment making him a fabulous offer to go to St. Louis. Williamson opened the ‘wild cat’ telegram in the presence of several of the Chicago team, and in a moment they hurried off to hunt Spalding and tell him the news. The president lost no time in finding Williamson, the latter stated his terms, and Spalding signed him without further ado. It was not the salary as much as the amount of advance money that was bothering Williamson, and wanted $1,000 in advance to square up and live through the winter on., quoting an unidentified Cincinnati paper

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a foul strike

Date Monday, September 1, 1884
Text

[St. Louis vs. Toledo 8/30/1884] Quinn, the umpire, had acted most outrageously in the mroning and in the afternoon began his dirty work again, evidence in every way, shape and manner, that he intended to visit upon the St. Louis club the dislike he has all along evidenced toward Charlie Comiskey (whom he had fined in the morning) and other members of the team. How far he carried out this project can be determined upon his decision declaring Bill Gleason out after he had made a fine two-base hit, giving as a pretext that he had made a “foul strike.” It was a deliberate outrage and, although many may blame Captain Comiskey for refusing to continue the game, the provocation was very deep and Mr. Quinn showed his hand so plainly that he should be disqualified for all time to come from acting as an umpire of the American Association. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a game on ice

Date Wednesday, January 9, 1884
Text

At Shenandoah, Pa., was played Dec. 29th, in presence of about 1,500 people. … the ice a was in excellent condition and the base lines were painted with dark red paint, which gave it a beautiful ball field.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a home run into the East River

Date Tuesday, May 27, 1884
Text

At the game at the Metropolitan Park last Thursday, Orr knocked the ball over the fence into the river, scoring a home run. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a home run on a ball that bounces into the seats

Date Monday, July 14, 1884
Text

[Brooklyn vs. St. Louis 7/13/1884] In the fifth inning O’Neill opened up with a pretty line hit to left field. The ball bounded over into the seats along the west fence and O’Neill scored a home run. . (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a lawsuit by the old Athletic Club over the name

Date Wednesday, June 4, 1884
Text

A bill in equity was filed in Common Pleas, No. 1, Philadelphia, May 28, on behalf of what claims to be the original Athletic Base Ball Club to restrain Wm. Sharsig, president, Charles E. Mason, vice president; Lewis Simmons, secretary and treasurer, and the players of the present Athletic Club from using the name. The complainants declare that they were incorporated January 5, 1876, and that the corporation is still in existence. The defendants, it is averred, by joining the American Base Ball Association have prevented the complainants from gaining admission thereto and have otherwise injured the complainants. The present club, it is averred, has never been incorporated. The president of the old club is said to be Ex-Receiver of Taxes Thomas J. Smith. It has not had a team in the field for years.

The case came up in court Saturday, May 31 st, but argument thereon was postponed till Thursday. The probability is that the case will never amount to anything. The matter was agitated by the same parties last fall, but was frowned down by public opinion. It was supposed that this was a settler, and the filing of the above-mentioned bill last week was a surprise. The averment that the present holders of the title prevented the old club from joining the American Association is ridiculous, as the old club was not in existence when the American Association organized three years ago, and had not been for some years, having gone out of existence under a cloud of suspicion and distrust and with many debts, which are still unpaid. A club under the management of those people would not be admitted to any reputable organization under any circumstances. The whole affair seems to be the work of envious speculators, who would like to reap where others sow. The Sporting Life June 4, 1884

The suit of the alleged stockholders of the old Athletic Club for a preliminary injunction restraining William Sharsig, president, and the other officers and members of the Athletic Base Ball Club from using the name Athletic, came up for argument before Judges Allison, Pierce and Biddle in Court of Common Please No. 1 last Thursday and, as was predicted in these columns, in our last issue, was summarily disposed of. For obvious reasons the Court considered that too great a hardship on the ground that the complainants had waited too long before making the application and should have given notice to the defendants before allowing them to spend a large amount of money in grounds, contracts, etc. This does not, however, decide the question as to whether the use of the name “Athletic” by the present club is a usurpation or not, as Judge Allison said that the legal question as to the latter club’s right to the use of the name might be a matter for future consideration. The case will now go to a Master, who will settle the rights of the parties to the disputed name. Meantime the Athletic managers are not losing any sleep over the matter. The Sporting Life June 4, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a list of blacklisted players

Date Tuesday, January 1, 1884
Text

The following is a list of players thus far recorded as being disqualified from future service in any American Association clubs: Frank Larkin, John Sweeney, Harry T. Pyle, Frank Cunliff, James Egan, Henry S. Moore, John Grady, B. McLaughlin, William E. Wise and William Welsh.

Those disqualified by the League are Geo. Bechtel, G. W. Hall, A. H. Nichols, W. H. Craver, Richard Higham and Herman Doscher.

Those disqualified by the Northwestern League are W. F. Yott, Harry Arundell, George Baker, H. E. Overbeck and E. Lockwood. The following have been reinstated and made eligible to contract: Frank Gardner and John Milligan; also John J. Smith and Harry T. Luff, suspended for the season of 1883. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a minor league club finances, attendance

Date Wednesday, November 26, 1884
Text

At a meeting of the stockholders of the Domestic Base Ball Club, at Newark, N.J., last Tuesday, arrangements for next season were discussed. The report of the financial secretary showed that the number of general tickets sold this season was 35, 076; boys’ tickets, 4.632; grand stand tickets, 11,249; receipts for the season, $11,165.15; incidentals, $2,105.34; total, $13,270.40. The name of the association was changes to the Newark Base Ball Club, and will be incorporated with a capital stock of $5,000. The stock this season was $2,500.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a minor league club selling reserve rights

Date Wednesday, February 6, 1884
Text

The Fort Wayne Club has adopted an objectionable scheme for realizing money by selling their reserved players to the highest biders: Phillips and Scott having been thus disposed of to the Indianapolis and Detroit Clubs, the consideration paid the Fort Wayne management being respectively $500 and $250. In failing to keep its contracts with its players last season, the Fort Wayne Club clearly forfeited its rights to hold the men. St., quoting the Philadelphia Dispatch

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a minor league reserve team

Date Wednesday, April 23, 1884
Text

The Peoria (Ill.) club has organized a reserve team.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a mob beats the umpire

Date Friday, June 13, 1884
Text

[Louisville vs. Baltimore 6/12/1884] The game between the Baltimore and Louisville Clubs was called after thirteen innings had been played; score 4 to 4. … In the ninth inning Umpire Brennan made a perfectly fair decision, which was disputed by the spectators. The grand and open stands were vacated, and the crowd closed in upon the umpire. The police protected him, and the game proceeded after an interruption of fifteen minutes. When the game was called, owing to darkness, an exciting scene ensued. The mob closed in and began tearing the rails from the fence. Brennan saw he was to be assaulted and fled. He was caught, however, and severely beaten about the face and head. The Baltimore Club boys promptly went to his rescue and saved him from a terrible and to all appearances a probably fatal thrashing. The assault was a cowardly one and the managers of the Baltimore club are severely criticised for not having police protection on the ground. It is said they refused to continue to pay the police force which was formerly on the ground and the officers were withdrawn.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a peace overture between the AA and Union League, splitting them off from the UA

Date Friday, January 4, 1884
Text

Mr. McKnight said to your correspondent that the action of the American Association in passing the resolution refusing to play the Union League clubs had been very hasty, and would probably be rescinded at the next meeting. He had no doubt but that the National League would recognize the Union League. Cincinnati Enquirer January 4, 1884

The Union League met in Philadelphia on Thursday... President McKnight, of the American Association, was also there and worked hard with the delegates to have them incline towards the American rules, which were adopted, and thus foreshadowed a policy which will make the clubs lean towards the League, American and Northwestern Associations, and they will, therefore, drop all operations with the Union Association. St. Louis Post-Dispatch January 5, 1884

That the older associations are pretty badly frightened by the strength recently developed by the Union Association there can be little doubt. Not over a month ago they refused to concede one point to the Union League, and Bob Ferguson, who came to the meeting of the American Association here at that time, as its representative, was treated with very little consideration, and did not get a chance to say what he came here for. The League and American Association, especially the latter, are now indulging in “a large and elegant-sized dish of crow.” That paragon of politeness, President McKnight, and representatives of the league seeing that there was a chance for the so-called Union League to obtain revenge, and at the same time benefit itself by forming an alliance with the Union Association, hasten to Philadelphia and promise all sort of concessions and favorable legislation if the Union League would but sign the National agreement. Cincinnati Enquirer January 6, 1884

[reporting on the Union League meeting of 1/3 – 1/4/1884] There was business of much imortance transacted, but that which caused the most surprise was the change of the name of the organization to the Eastern League. The members of the convention explained that this change was made in order to avoid conflicting with the Union Association, which is pursuing an entirely different course from that contemplated by the Eastern League. The Philadelphia Sunday Item January 6, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a peculiar delivery

Date Wednesday, October 8, 1884
Text

The peculiar delivery of Gorman, Allegheny’s new pitcher, has earned for him the nickname “Stooping Jack.” When about to deliver the ball he gets down almost on his knees, then suddenly rises and sends the ball in with terrific force.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a player jumps from the UA

Date Wednesday, July 2, 1884
Text

Another man, it is reported, has left Mr. Lucas without the usual proceedings involving a release from contract. Billy Taylor is the individual in question, and it is said that he will join fortunes with the Athletics, who are badly in need of a pitcher, and have offered him big inducements to leave the Union Club. Billie did not come under the reserve rule last year, having been released by the Alleghenys, and consequently, so far as the American Association is concerned, he is eligible to play with the Athletics. He was a friend of ex-manager Sullivan in the recent trouble, and has been anxious to get his release from the Unions for some time. The news is not verified as yet, but is probably authentic. [N.B. It was.] St. Louis Post-Dispatch July 2, 1884

Big Bill Taylor, it is said, jumped the St. Louis Unions at Washington, and will play the remainder of the season with the Athletic Club. Levi Simmons is already unpopular enough in the base-ball world without making himself more so by going into the contract-breaking business. It is to be hoped, for Mr. Simmons' sake, that the rumor is not true. Cincinnati Enquirer July 2, 1884

William H. Taylor, recently of the St. Louis Unions, who has signed with the Athletics, arrived here [Columbus] this afternoon [7/9] and joined the club. Cincinnati Enquirer July 10, 1884

:”Billee” Taylor has finally jumped the St. Louis Unions. On his first jump he received $300 from Lew Simmons, of the Athletics, but instead of joining the latter organization, spent the money and went back to the Unions. He then asked Mr. Lucas to send Simmons $500, which he claimed to have received. His request was not complied with, Mr. Lucas having satisfied himself that Taylor received but $300 and was trying to work him out of $200, declined to send a cent to Simmons. Taylor urged that the $500 be remitted until he found that the scheme would not succeed, and then went to Simmons and squared matters by signing with the Athletics. Cincinnati Enquirer July 11, 1884, quoting the St. Louis Globe-Democrat

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a player tips his cap

Date Monday, May 19, 1884
Text

[Baltimore vs. St. Louis (UA) 5/18/1884] The best playing was done by Zerry. Ten thousand people cheered him until he tipped his hat, when in the seventh inning, with the bases full, he made a magnificent running catch of Baker’s liner and thrn threw it in time to score a double play.

Source Cleveland Leader
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a player wins a lawsuit for salary

Date Tuesday, March 4, 1884
Text

Judge Barcley's Court was crowded this morning with base-ball players ans patrons of the game, to hear the Judge's verdict in the Oberbeck suit against the St. Louis Club, of the National Association, for $431, the balance of wages claimed to be due on a six month's contract last season. The verdict was in favor of Oberbeck for the full amount. Oberbeck was dropped last season after a month's trial, and Mr. Von der Ahe refused to pay him his salary for the rest of the season. The question in dispute was whether Oberbeck had signed only the old style contract or both that and the new, binding the player to consent to his discharge at any time.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a portrait of the baseball crowd; peanut vendors

Date Monday, June 16, 1884
Text

On Fridays and Saturdays there are more persons than on other days. But a match between two of the more prominent nines of the League will call out 7,000 or 8,000 persons, no matter what the day may be. The wonder to a man who works for his living is how so many people can spare the time for the sport. They are obliged to leave their offices down town at 2 or 3 o’clock in order to get to the polo grounds in time, and very many of them are constant attendants on the field. The next thing that impresses the visitor is the absolute and perfect knowledge of base-ball which every visitor at the grounds possesses. Nearly every boy and man keeps his own score, registering base hits, runs and errors as the game goes along, and the slightest hint of unfairness on the part of the umpire will bring a yell from thousands of throats instantaneously. The third notable characteristic of the gathering at the polo grounds is the good nature, affability, and friendliness of the crowd. The slim schoolboy ten years of age, and the fat lager-beer saloon proprietor of fifty talk gracefully about the game as it progresses as though they had known each other for years. Men exchange opinions freely about the game with persons they never saw before, and everybody seems good-natured and happy. The majority of the men are intensely interested in the game. Most of them come well provided with their own cigars, and sedulously evade the eye of the man who peddles “sody-water, sarss-a-parilla, lemonade, pea-nuts and seegars.” There is little drinking of any sort and much smoking. Boys peddling cushions “for 5 cents during the hull game” and score cards push their way into the crowd. When the afternoon papers come up scores of ragged little urchins invade the grand stand, shriek their wares at the top of their lungs and push in among the seats. The spectators take all these interruptions good-naturedly and languidly make room for the boys, while still keeping up their interest in the game. At times when the umpire renders a decision that does not meet with popular approval, there will be a terrific outbreak, and for the next ten minutes the offending one is guyed unmercifully. Every decision he renders is received with jeers, and sarcastic comments are made upon the play. The good sense of the crowd gets the better of this boyishness, however, and unless the umpire is decidedly biased, which rarely occurs, the crowd soon settles back into its accustomed condition of contentment. [From a much longer article.] St., quoting the New York Sun

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a professional club should have the city name

Date Wednesday, February 27, 1884
Text

The Reading Times suggests that the Active Club change its name to “Reading Club.” It is of the opinion that the name was good enough for an amateur, but a professional club shoud bear the name of the city on which it sheds glory. Wilmington papers also urge the Quicksteps to change their name. The Sporting Life February 27, 1884

The name Quickstep, which has been attached to Wilmington's crack base ball nine for so many years, has been at last dropped and the home club named Wilmington. The Sporting Life April 9, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposal for a truce in the UA war from an AA paper

Date Tuesday, July 15, 1884
Text

The Philadelphia Item, the mouthpiece of the Athletic Club and a paper that has fought the Unio Association from its inception, has the following to say in its last issue:

The outlook for the prosperity of the game next seasson is by no means assuring, and at no time since it sprung into popularity and became the national game has its existence been so alarmingly threatened. Recent uterances and movements on the part of rival organizations indicate that unless a cessation of hostilities is brought about, and that soon, a cut-throat policy is to prevail which will send to the wall a number of the clubs that are now in existence. In our judgment, the time has arrived for common sense and reason to prevail. Whatever course the Item has pursued, it has always had but one object in view, and that the very best interest of the game. In defending our policy we have given many, and in return received many blows, but when in the right have never swerved an inch from the course set out. We think, therefore, that we have a right at this time, when in our judgment we deem the game to be in peril, to call out for a truce to hostilities and ask that the opposing factions reason together, and allow common sense and good judgment to have its inning.

To all the organizations we would advise the adoption of the following articles of peace to which they can subscribe without sacrificing any of their so-called dignity.

1. The recognition of the Union Association as an organization with rights and privileges.

2. Reinstatement of all players black-listed for offenses against the reserve rule, and of all players black-listed by the Union for failing to keep their contracts with the clubs of that organization.

3. The appointment of a National Board of Arbitration to which each organization shall be entitled to two representatives. All questions of disputes over contracts and all grievances of players to be referred to this board, whose action shall be final.

4. A remodification of the reserve rule with its objectionable features eliminated. Our idea of this would be to reduce the number of men reserved to five, and all such men reserved to be signed within one month of the reservation, or to be free to sign elsewhere. During the reservation, to make it an offense punishable with expulsion for any club to offer terms to the players so reserved.

There are a few of the suggestions that we should advocate on the general principle that they will prove to the interest of the game. In this city a series of game in April between the Athletic, Keystone and Philadelphia clubs would prove a big paying investment for all the clubs, and the same would be true in Cincinnati, St. Louis and Baltimore.

The remodification of the reserve rule would allow our clubs to be materially strengthened and made more attractive.

The only issue that has divided the American and League on the one side and the Union on the other has been the reserve rule, and it might as well be understood now as later on that the reserve rule is a failure, and will be fought by those who were the most eloquent a year ago in advocating its claims. Base-ball has become more than ever a a business, and must be managed on business principles, if it expect to continue prosperous.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposal for the AA to split the gate

Date Wednesday, December 17, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA annual meeting 12/10-12/11] Efforts were made to amend Section 2, of Article 6, so as to give the visiting club twenty-five per cent. of the gate receipts instead of the $65 guarantee, but it was defeated by a vote of five to three, six to two (or a two-thirds vote) being required to amend the constitution.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposal for two umpires

Date Wednesday, October 1, 1884
Text

[from a letter from “W. C. McC.” to Von der Ahe on how to improve umpiring] The answer is, “To simply the umpire’s work.” Yes: but how? ... 2. It is absolutely essential for an umpire, in rendering a close decision, that he should be in a position to see whether a man is out or not, and not to guess at it, as they generally do. (I refer to close decisions at first and second bases.) The rule says that the ball shall arrive at first base before the runner. Now, in nine times out of ten when the ball and runner arrive at the same time, the runner is erroneously declared out; many times he is given out when he has arrived clearly in advance of the ball, all for the simple reason that the umpire could not see. The same is true concerning the “stealing to second base.” A player is put out there time and time again because the second baseman makes a motion as though he were touching the runner, when in reality he does not come within a foot of him. Then as regards to third base, we occasionally have men coming “home” almost direct from second base, without going anywhere near third base, and the umpire does not see it. How can he see it when his attention is directed to another play going on at the same time? The same is true of men coming home from third base after a “fly” has been caught. How often do they leave the base before the ball is caught? But the umpire can not see it; nor can he see whether the runner touches every “bag” while he is making a circuit of the bases. What then is the remedy for this? Why simply do as they do in cricket–“have two umpires,” one stationed at the “home plate” to decided on all questions of balls, strikes, fair and foul flys, etc., and the other’s duty shall be to decide on all matters concerning the three bases; and to this end, this umpire should station himself near first base, so that he could plainly see whether the player arrives before the ball or not. Then he should run with the base runner down to second base and see whether he arrived there safely or not; he should then return to his first position, for then all would be plain sailing.

St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposal to abolish the high and low strike zones 2

Date Wednesday, October 1, 1884
Text

[from a letter from “W. C. McC.” to Von der Ahe on how to improve umpiring] The answer is, “To simply the umpire’s work.” Yes: but how? 1. By allowing the batsman to call for either a high or low ball, but let any ball pitched between the head and the knee, over the plate, be considered a fair ball; and then, to counterbalance this, let the batsman take his base on five or six balls not properly pitched, for it is in this discrimination of high and low balls that our umpires have been most puzzled and have failed to give satisfaction. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposal to allow overrunning second and third bases on steals

Date Wednesday, February 27, 1884
Text

In view of the importance of [base running] it is strange that so little has been done for it. Harry Wright has long had an idea in regard to it which strikes us as quite feasible, and that is to let base runners overrun second and third, this privilege to be granted base runners when stealing bases only, and not to include running the bases on hit balls. That this would be a wise change careful consideration will show. We maintain that the fact that the runner is required to hold his base after stealing is a positive bar to good base running. Every year many good players are disabled for long periods, and to the great disadvantage of their clubs, from no other cause than injuries received while stealing second or third base. How many ankles are sprained in the course of a season through this alone? And every man stealing a base runs this risk of injury, sometimes temporarily, but often of such a character that the effect is felt in after years. The strain on a player of going headlong speed for a base and then suddenly checking himself in order to retain the base ought also to be considered. Then when a runner slides it not infrequently happens that his hip is badly bruised and the skin is abraded, which makes a painful wound. We have often seen the skin scraped off for many inches as clean as if cut with a razor. Now let a player so wounded go to his accustomed position in the field. The day is warm and the blood and perspiration combined will cause the flannel pants to adhere to the wound or else cause them to become rough at the spot and terribly irritate it. Is that player in condition to run nimbly after a fly or stoop to scoop in a grounder or to throw with accuracy? And will he not for days or weeks be disabled from sliding again? Nay, perhaps his experience will make him timid and in his future attempts he will fall an easy victim to the catcher's throw. In this manner a club very often loses much of the good service a player could give his club. We affirm that there are many, very many, player who are good batsmen and runner who never will attempt to steal a base, but when they get to first just wait to be driven around, through their selfish wish to save themselves from risk of injury and from fear of being disabled. As this rule now stands it is also provocative of much bad feeling. It imposes upon the umpire the duty of making decisions which are, nine times in ten, so close that it is hard to tell whether he is right or wrong. It subjects him to appeals from players and, if the game be close, to the displeasure of partizan audiences. Now the umpire's lot is not a happy one at best, and anything which takes from this burden, as would a rule letting base runners overrun, would simplify matters and be one step toward the solution of the vexed umpire question. How well works the rule allowing runners to overrun first base? How few disputes there are as to decisions t that point! Much bad blood under the present system is also engendered among players through collisions and questioned decisions, and intentional collisions at the bases are not at all infrequent. It is only a question of time when such a rule must be adopted... The Sporting Life February 27, 1884

Mullane's release from the St. Louis Club

[from a letter from Jimmy Williams] Mullane's motives for going to Toledo I don't know, except I understand he claims he was afraid the Union team in St. Louis would not last. He asked for his release and we gave it to him and he has since signed with Toledo. The total cost to the St. Louis club in the transaction being the price of the telegram granting the release. The Sporting Life February 27, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposal to replace the reserve system with a salary scale

Date Wednesday, January 23, 1884
Text

The reserve rule has been hammered very heavily since the closing of the season of 1882. There is some reason why it should be. It is not the best rule in the world, but it is the best that could be devised to meet a difficulty that threatened to wreck base ball. It works a wrong upon the player, because it says to one, ‘You shall play here for $1,500,’ and the player can look to a club in another State, where a man is playing the same position as he, and in an inferior way, for $300 more salary. Player are loud in their growls about other wrongs which the reserve rule inflects. In reality they amount to nothing. But in the way stated above a wrong may be done. The reserve rule gives a club opportunity to be unjust. Can that opportunity be taken away? We think it can. It is necessary for the good of the League that all the clubs should be as nearly matched as possible. The clubs should be but healthy branches of the whole, but independent ones and intent on winning the championship. That brings out the late Mr. Hurlbut’s idea fully. No truer friend or worker for base ball ever lived, nor any more sensible or fair-minded man. His idea has been followed. The eleven men reserve is but an enlargement on one of his ideas and is for the purpose of keeping up individual club strength and preventing the best players going to the largest cities. That would form two or three strong clubs and drive the smaller places out, because the latter would be unable to compete with the former. So the reserve rule stands, a representative act of the policy of the greatest good to the greatest number. It is in the one particular stated a harsh rule. At the last meting of the League one of the representatives of the Cleveland Club proposed a plan that will do away with all the injustice of the reserve rule, protect the player better than he can protect himself and generally work to his advantage. The League thought well of the plan, but it was too late to affect the present season, contracts having been made, and was laid aside to take up at the March meeting. The plan is, in short, a system of graded salaries based on immediate work done. It purposes dividing the players of each position into groups, and grading each group into three classes–first, second and third. The League is to fix a maximum salary of each position group for the player of the first class, and two amounts, each a step below the other, shall be fixed as the pay for the second and third class. The men all start even, and are to be paid a liberal sum monthly–say $150–the balance being held by the club, and at the end of the season this extra sum is to be paid to the player upon the merit of his work of the season that has passed. The classing is to be decided by the official averages as interpreted by Secretary N. E. Young. An extra sum is to be given to each player on the score of general good conduct off the field. To make the scorer’s work more simple, rules are to be so changed that a failure on the part of a player to field a ball is to be called an error, even though the player failed to touch the ball, and no error is to be charged to a man for an attempt to stop a ball that it was impossible to handle cleanly. Nothing like ‘playing for a record’ could then exist. The club officers could check the official scorer’s figures and also agree to deposit money in a bank, with Secretary Young, or in the hands of a trustee appointed by the League, so as to guarantee the balance of the salaries at the end of a season’s work. The two latter points are the only weak ones in the plan and are slight and may be guarded against, while the advantages are many. Calls for advance money would be scarce, because each player would have a snug little sum saved at the end of each season; the player would have an extra incentive to work so as to stand in a high class; it would stop what is known as ‘sulky playing,’ because ‘sulks’ would cost money, and in many ways aid the playing and the player. The class remuneration will be made liberal, and all the clubs bound not to pay above the fixed prices, to be the same in every club which will give a first-class pitcher or catcher more salary than an outfielder or first baseman. The plan is given in advance because it is likely, with some amendments, to become a law. It shows that the League has no with to do an injustice to a player if such injustice can be removed without suicidal effect, and it shows clearly that the policy of one for all is still in the blood of the League., quoting the Cleveland Herald

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposed player trade 2

Date Wednesday, February 20, 1884
Text

The management of the Clevelands telegraphed the Baltimore people to give them a player equal to York in exchange for him, or a bonus of 4500, and they would release him, and expressed a preference for the first proposition. Mr. Barnie promptly started for Cleveland to offer the services of Gardner in exchange or to pay the money down. Mr. Barnie prefers the latter proposition.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposed rule allowing overrunning second and third bases

Date Sunday, March 2, 1884
Text

At the league meeting on Tuesday next, which, in addition to being one at which to adopt a schedule, is also an adjourned annual meeting, it is possible that an effort will be made to enact a rule allowing a player to overrun second and third bases where a player attempts to steal to one or the other. This ought to be done. It is poor encouragement for a player, in his earnestness to win for his club, to steal to second or third base, and be obliged to slide several feet to avoid being put out, and at the same time to run a great risk of receiving serious, if not permanent, injury.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposed trade

Date Friday, August 29, 1884
Text

The Indianapolis management offered to exchange Weihe for Peoples, with a view to adding another catcher to the team, but President Stern declined with the remark that, while he looked upon Weihe as a great base player, yet he thought too much of Jimmy Peoples to make the exchange. Cincinnati Enquirer August 29, 1884, quoting the Indianapolis Times.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proto-trade 2

Date Saturday, March 1, 1884
Text

An exchange of players has been made by the Baltimore and Cleveland Clubs, Broughton and York being each released from the reserve list. York will play left field for the Baltimores, and Broughton will be one of the catchers of the Cleveland Club. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a reserve team in Pittsburgh

Date Sunday, March 2, 1884
Text

The Alleghenys of Pittsburg, Pa., have secured a reserve team, and while the regulars are away from home they will endeavor to have games with league clubs passing to and from. The Boston club has already been corresponded with on the subject.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a reserve team pennant

Date Thursday, March 13, 1884
Text

[reporting on a directors meeting of the St. Louis club] Manager Williams read an interesting communication from Manager Spalding, in which he proposed that a conference be held very shortly for the purpose of arranging a series of games between the reserve teams for an emblem, such as a pennant, the same to be regularly scheduled and dates. The Cincinnati Club will of course go into such a schedule, and Manager Williams was instructed last night to write to Cleveland and induce them to join hands in the matter. St. Louis Post-Dispatch March 13, 1884

The conference at Chicago yesterday between the representatives of the Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Pittsburg, Milwaukee and St. Louis clubs was an entire success, and a schedule was adopted... A tax of $10 each will be levied upon each club for the purpose of buying a pennant, which will be the trophy to be contested for. ... The arrangements for gate admissions will be uniform, 25 cents being the general charge for admission. Of this sum, or at least for each admission, the visiting club will receive 12½ cents... St. Louis Post-Dispatch March 18, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a rumor that Cleveland will disband; efforts to sign its players

Date Wednesday, August 6, 1884
Text

There is now string surface indications that the Cleveland League team will disband in a short time, owing to its poor showing in the race, and the lack of patronage in consequence. The team has been at Chicago all of this week, and all kinds of rumors have been afloat regarding its future movements. Enough is known to warrant the statement that in all probability the Windy City will be the last place that the team will play as a Cleveland organization. Denny McKnight, President of the American Association, was in Chicago last Saturday and Sunday as an agent of the Allegheny Club of Pittsburg. He was instructed to sign all the players if possible at fancy prices, and it is understood that in the event of his being successful the most of the members of the present Allegheny team were to have been released, and the Cleveland papers [sic] transferred to represent the Smoky City in the American Association. The story, as told by one of the players of the Cleveland Club, is that McKnight made arrangements with the management of the Cleveland club to such an effect by paying a big bonus to the Board of Directors. He had a paper in Chicago trying to induce the Cleveland men to pledge themselves to go to Pittsburg. It is understood that McCormick, Brady and Glasscock refused to sign it, and, as these men were the most valuable of the lot, the Pittsburg agent gave up the job and returned homed. Other managers have been negotiating with the Cleveland players, but up to a late hour last night no desertions were reported. It is just possible that the team may yet receive a prop in the way of private subscriptions from citizens and play out its schedule of championship games.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a shareholder suit to force the disclosure of Boston Club finances

Date Friday, April 4, 1884
Text

A certain suit is in progress in this city, on the outcome of which will depend largely as to whether any legal steps will be taken to compel the directors of the Boston club to disclose to the stockholders the amount of money made last season. The action of the directors in refusing so to do was in accordance with the advice of some of the best legal authorities in the city.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a slow curve; figuring out the pitcher the third time through the lineup

Date Friday, May 9, 1884
Text

[Nationals vs. St. Louis 5/8/1884] Lockwood, the pitcher for the Nationals, has a tremendous curve, and for a time proved puzzling to some of the heavy hitters of the Unions, who had been all along against swifter pitchers. Dunlap struck out the first two times he was at the bat. After the fourth inning they batted Lockwood so hard that he had to be taken out of the box in the middle of the seventh inning, and Wise taken in from right field to pitch. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a steal of home during an argument

Date Tuesday, May 27, 1884
Text

[Cincinnati vs. Baltimore 5/26/1884] during an excited argument between Snyder and Mountjoy at the home-plate over an error of Snyder's, Sommer stole home under their very noses, amid great applause.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a substitute is refused, play with eight men

Date Sunday, June 22, 1884
Text

[Boston vs. Chicago 6/21/1884] Manning sprained his ankle in running between first and second bases, and the Bostons asked leave to put in Buffington in center-field after Manning had played one and a half innings. This was refused, and, after nearly the expiration of the full limit, the game proceeded, the Bostons playing to the close with only eight men.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a suggestion that Indianapolis buy out Cleveland

Date Sunday, December 14, 1884
Text

Mr. Schwabacher says he has arrived at no conclusion yet relative to the future of the Indianapolis Club. A proposition had been made by Cleveland people that he make up a playing nine from their material and his own and take Cleveland's place in the National League, and if he should receive assurances that Indianapolis would be admitted to the League this proposition would be favorably considered. From the two clubs a winning nine could be put in the field.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a switch pitcher 3

Date Sunday, February 3, 1884
Text

Announcement is made that Harry Wright has secured William M. Vinton of the Comets of Woonsocket and of the Phillips Andover Academy nine of last season as pitcher of the Philadelphias for next season. … He made a fine record as a pitcher last season, proving very effective. He is ambidextrous, being able to use either hand in delivering the ball.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a tale about a crank

Date Tuesday, July 8, 1884
Text

The St. Louis Critic tells the following story of Mr. Clegg, Chief Clerk in the United States Engineering office, whom it calls “a base-ball crank all the way from Crankville.” He was going to a funeral one Sunday—was a pall-bearer on the occasion—and as the cortege was passing the base ball park he heard a shout set up in recognition of some good play made by one of the clubs then engaged in a contest in the park. If Clegg hadn't heard the shout he might have got by the park without making any demonstration, but just as soon as it struck his ears it sank clear down into his boots, and with the remark: “Boys, I'm awful sorry, but, by gosh, I can't stand it,” he tapped on the front glass, stopped the carriage, got out, went in to see the game and let the funeral go on.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

AA Baltimore gave permission for the EL Baltimore

Date Wednesday, February 27, 1884
Text

[from a letter from O.P. Caylor] [The National Agreement] will not recognize more than one member from any one city (except New York and Philadelphia, where two existed when the document was formed), unless the one member in a city ask for the admission of a second club in that city, as was the case with the Baltimore Club and the Massamore Club in Baltimore.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

AA constitution amended to give more power to the president

Date Thursday, December 11, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA convention] The constitution in its revision suffered several changes, the chief one being the increase in the powers and duties of the President of the Association, who will be given almost unlimited right to dispose of drunken players and roughs and to appoint and dismiss umpires. He will no longer have any connection with any club. St. Louis Post-Dispatch December 11, 1884 [N.B. McKnight was reelected, no longer was connected to Alleghenys.]

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

AA disallows a no-reserve contract clause

Date Wednesday, December 17, 1884
Text

[reporting on the meeting of the AA Directors 12/10] The Board also decided another important question. Deasley had made it a condition of his contract for ‘84 with the St. Louis Club that he should not be reserved for the season of ‘85, and was pressing that feature of his contract with a view of engaging himself to the New York Club, but the Board decided that the clause was an attempt to evade the requirements of the reserve rule and was therefore not legal.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

AA gives the home club the choice of innings

Date Wednesday, December 17, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA annual meeting 12/10-12/11] Rule 42 was amended so as to give the captain of the home club the choice of innings.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

AA keeps the guarantee system

Date Thursday, December 11, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA convention] The $65 guarantee will hold next year as last regarding division of gate receipts. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

AA president and secretary's salary

Date Wednesday, December 17, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA annual meeting 12/10-12/11] Amendments were made to Article 5, which makes the office of president an executive one, with a salary of $1,800 in addition to an allowance of not to exceed $500 for traveling expenses...

...

...secretary, Wheeler C. Wyckoff (and his salary was increased from $800 to $1,000)...

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

AA scoring bases on balls, hit by pitch

Date Thursday, March 6, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA meeting 3/5/1884] A change was made in the regulations governing the pitcher heretofore in addition to that already existing upon the subject. The pitcher will hereafter be charged up in scoring with the number of men given bases on balls; also, the number of men given bases from being hit by pitcher.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

AA secretary a baseball reporter

Date Tuesday, February 5, 1884
Text

Wheeler A. Wikoff, secretary of the American Association, is base-ball editor of the Columbus Sunday News. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

activating the Day resolution

Date Wednesday, April 16, 1884
Text

The Rubicon is crossed. Shaffer, Dunlap, Gleason, Weaver and Bradley have played in gmaes on the Union Association clubs they are engaged to and have thus placed themselves finally under the ban of the old organizations. The Sporting Life April 16, 1884

[reporting on the meeting of the Arbitration Committee] The following important resolution was adopted:

Whereas the associations parties to the National Agreement have enacted legislation prohibiting any club member from employing or entering into contract with any of its reserved players who hsall, while reserved to such club, play with any other club, therefore it is hereby ordered

1 That the secretary of each association shall report to the secretary of the arbitration committee the name of any player of such association who shall have become ineligible in the manner indicated, together with the name of the reserving club; also the name of the contesting clubs and the date and place of playing of anyone game of ball, the participation in which thus renders the said player ineligible, and the secretary of the arbitration committee shall keep a record of the same.

2 That the secretary of the Arbitration Committee shall, after verifying the said report of the Association secretary, certify to each association connected with the National Agreement the name of the National Agreement club and the reserved player thus made ineligible.

3 While, under the third section of the National Agreement, the reservation of the said ineligible player to the reserving club continues, yet in view of the said prohibition against the employment of said players by said club, said player shall not, from and after the date of said certificate of the secretary of the Arbitration Committee, be counted as one of the eleven players which said club is annually authorized to reserve and employ as provided in said third section of the National Agreement.

4 Should any National Agreement club at any time after issue by the secretary of the Arbitration Committee of his certification of ineligibility of a player, as herein provided, employ or present such player in its nine, or play a game of ball with any other club presenting such player in its nine, or with any club that shall have played any club presenting such player, the said secretary shall at once notify all associations connected with the National Agreement that the said National Agreement club shall, after the issue of such notice, under penalty of summary forfeiture of all its rights and privileges under the National Agreement, play any game of ball with the said disqualified club so designated in the said notice of the secretary of the Arbitration Committee. The Philadelphia Evening Item April 21, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Adolphus Busch buys into the Maroons

Date Friday, April 11, 1884
Text

Mr. Adolphus Bush of the Anheuser-Busch Brewing company has bought all the interests at the Union grounds which were originally held by Mr. Ellis Wainwright, who is no longer connected in any way with the Union association club of this city. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

advertising on the fences

Date Sunday, February 24, 1884
Text

Several enterprising firms have made the offer to the Boston management to build the lower fence to the grounds, and a portion of the side fences, on condition that they may be allowed to use the space for advertising purposes.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Akron and the Cleveland reserve team

Date Sunday, March 23, 1884
Text

W. H. Voltz, of Cleveland, this afternoon [3/21] concluded arrangement here for the location of a base-ball team in this city for the coming season. By the contract Voltz is to furnish the players and pay them, and the local base-ballists must furnish the grounds and uniform the club. The grounds are already in good condition, and consist of six acres of land. The Akron team will undoubtedly be admitted to the Oil and Iron League.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Al Wright editing the Clipper baseball columns

Date Tuesday, March 4, 1884
Text

Mr. Al. Wright, the veteran sporting editor of the Clipper, is publishing a carefully compiled and very interesting base-ball column in that sporting journal. He has charge of this and other departments, and is doing a great work for the interests of the national game. He is one of the oldest and best writers on the subject, and is a leading authority in Gotham. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Allegheny Club finances 3

Date Wednesday, March 12, 1884
Text

It is learned from [McKnight] that that Alleghenys came out of the season of '82 $1,200 behind, and followed it in '82 with $4,00 on the wrong side of the balance sheet. He expects '84 to give them a lift.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Allegheny Club ownership, finances

Date Wednesday, October 29, 1884
Text

The dissension in the directory of the Allegheny Base-ball Club culminated Friday in the withdrawal of Mr. Jones, one of the four gentlemen who took charge of the club last fall and put up money to pay the debts of the old company, as well as to fix up new grounds and reorganize the playing team. Mr. Jones said to-day that about $30,000 had been received at home games. This amount and that gained from games played in other cities, together with the starting investment, a total of $57,000, had been sunk, and the club is still in debt., quoting the Philadelphia Item

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Alonzo Knight's saloon

Date Wednesday, January 2, 1884
Text

Lon Knight, of the Athletics, who runs a saloon in Boston, under Wright & Ditson's store, is said to be doing a rushing business this winter. He is said to be looking well.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Altoona admitted to the UA

Date Sunday, March 2, 1884
Text

The Altoona Club, of Altoona, Penn., has been elected to membership in the Union Association by the following vote: Baltimore, Philadelphia, Washington and Chicago, yes; St. Louis and Cincinnati, non-committal. Its accession to the ranks, however, is contingent, and may be rescinded at the schedule meeting in this city March 17th. If the membership of the association is not increased to eight clubs, Altoona will, of course be dropped, as it is next to impossible to arrange a schedule with an interchange of games between seven clubs. It is more than likely, however, that one more club will be admitted, and just now the new club in Boson has the call. There is some opposition to the eight club plan and several of the delegates are in favor of entering the inaugural season with six clubs, the same number the American Association embraced in its initial year. Altoona is a city of about 30,000 inhabitants, and has splendid railroad facilities. While not near as large as the other cities in the association in point of population, it is said to be a great ball town, and can muster enough patronage to support a first-class team. It is also an intermediate point, and will break the long railroad jumps between the Eastern and Western cities. If Boston is also added the association will be divided into two division, just as the American Association was last year. Cincinnati Enquirer March 2, 1884

Mr. Lucas is delighted with the prospects of the Altoona Club. It is backed by the Pennsylvania Railroad officials, and will have very nearly the same nine that beat the Philadelphia league team. The President is the foreman of the Pennsylvania Company's shops, which employ 9,000 men, whose only recreation is base-ball. The city has a population of 30,000, and the game is very popular with all classes. Sunday games will be played, and are expected to have very large attendances, numerous flourishing towns being certain to avail themselves of the unsurpassed facilities for local travel which the Pennsylvania Road affords, and will send large delegations. Cincinnati Enquirer March 12, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Altoona disbands; Lucas sets up Kansas City to take its place

Date Sunday, June 1, 1884
Text

The Altoona Unions disbanded here [Altoona] to-night [5/31]. President Lucas, of the Union Association, who has been here for several days, says that he has completed arrangements for another club to take the place of the defunct organization, and play out its schedule of games. Cincinnati Enquirer June 1, 1884

The transfer of the Altoona Club to Kansas City was a move which was necessitated by the formation of the schedule, which would have otherwise been badly broken up. It was a very happy piece of strategy, but it remains to be seen how the increased distance will be accepted by the Eastern clubs. It is a long jump from Boston to Kansas City, the longest ever made in a schedule. St. Louis Post-Dispatch June 2, 1884

Mr. V. Lucas, the president of the Union association, arrived home from Altoona last evening. Some time ago experience told him and others that Altoona was not the place for the fourth Western club of the Union association, and he resolved to find another point. Kansas City, in his estimation, was the very spot and on a visit there last week he found several gentlemen ready to put a team in the Union association whenever a vacancy was made. He promised to make the moment $15,000 was subscribed. The money was immediately forthcoming, and the result was the trip of Mr. Lucas to Altoona. Arriving there, he closed up the affairs of that club instanter and secured for Kansas City the services of Murphy, Shafer, Moore, Berry, Smith and Harris. He telegraphed Warren White, the secretary of the Union association, to wire Kansas City that they had been admitted to the Union in the place of the Altoona, to get ready to take up the schedule where the Altoonas had left off, that they would not have to carry the defeats of the Altoonas, but that they would be allowed to enter the race on the per centage system of games won and lost. White did as ordered, and as a result the Kansas City club is to-day a regular member of the Union association. In doing all this Mr. Lucas had the personal indorsement of President Thorner of the Cincinnati club, President Pratt of the Keystones and President Henderson of the Chicagos, while other officers of the association advised him to go ahead by telegram. Mr. Lucas said last night: “The Kansas City club will enter the association under the most favorable auspices.” (St. Louis) Missouri Republican June 3, 1884

Mr. Lucas meets the Kansas City managers at the Laclede hotel this afternoon when the organization will be completed, and the playing nine agreed upon. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican June 4, 1884

Mr. Lucas went to Kansas City last night. He was accompanied by Berry, Shafer, Connors, late of the Cincinnati Union team; Fisher and Chatterton, late of the Lynns, and three or four other players, who are to join the Kansas City club. Mr. Lucas will witness their opening game with the Chicagos to-morrow. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican June 7, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an account of the founding of the AA; reporter for the Enquirer

Date Wednesday, June 25, 1884
Text

Several persons lay claim to being the originators of the American Association, and the claim has not been settled, notwithstanding the long controversy which has been had on the subject. A St. Louis exchange gives a detailed account of the inception of the scheme which in the main is correct. For a fact the credit belongs to no one man. In the fall of 1880 Horace B. Phillips, now manager of the Grand Rapids team, wrote to Mr. Spink now base ball editor of the St. Louis Critic, and suggested that an association be formed, in which the clubs of St. Louis, Cincinnati and Louisville and Pittsburg, Baltimore and Philadelphia in the East should form part and parcel. At that time the co-operative Browns were playing in St. Louis. Cincinnati had a ball ground and the material for a tip-top team. Louisville had the semi-professional Eclipse, and in Philadelphia the Athletic club was playing like the St. Louis Browns, on the co-operative plan, and in these four cities the twenty-five-cent admission fee was the rule and had proven popular. In Baltimore and Pittsburg there were no regular organization. The juice of Mr. Phillips’ letter was boiled down into a four-line paragraph, which traveled the rounds of the press and called attention to the fact that there was room enough for another National association. Mr. Phillips, without prospect and money and caring very little for the outcome, invested in a dime’s worth of postal-cards, which he sent out to the base ball leaders in the cities mentioned, telling them to meet at Pittsburg on a certain date, when the National organization he had in prospect would be perfected. About the time Mr. Phillips issued his manifesto the members of his team came to believe that he was making too much money off them, and a secret meeting of the players was called at Joe Battin’s house. There a resolution was passed deposing Mr. Phillips and making Battin the head and front of the organization. Disgusted at the treatment accorded him, Mr. Phillips dropped base ball for the time being, bought him a huge Alaska diamond and set himself up as a hotel clerk. As for the meeting he had called at Pittsburg he forgot all about it. But the date on which he had ordered hands to be on deck in the smoky city got around and among the many who had been invited to answer Mr. Phillips’ call, none appeared but Frank Wright, the base ball writer of the Enquirer, O. P. Caylor, now of the Cincinnati Commercial-Gazette, and Justus Thorner, the organizer of the Cincinnati Union Club of to-day. The date on which these gentlemen arrived in Pittsburg slips the memory of the writer, but they got there in the morning, registered at the hotel mentioned in Mr. Phillips postal-card, breakfasted and then set about hunting for Mr. Phillips and the other delegates whom they supposed were already at the seat of operations. Their suppositions, however, proved poorly founded, and after something of a wild goose chase they pronounced the “jib up” and started out to enjoy themselves. As they walked along they grew thirsty, and Mr. Thorner, espying a friendly saloon, invited his companions in. As they stood at the bar sipping their wine Mr. Thorner said to the barkeeper: “Do you know anyone in Pittsburg who takes an interest in base ball?” “Yes,” replied the bartender, “I do. His name is Al. Pratt, and you’ll find him down here at the machine shops.” The trio finished their drinking and then found Pratt. “They tell me” said Mr. Thorner, “that you are interested in base ball.” “I’m slightly inclined that way,” said Pratt, in reply, “but if you want a real crank you’ll have to hunt up Denny McKnight.” “Will you help us hunt him?” Mr. Thorner asked. “I will,” said Pratt, and straightway they went on a still chase for McKnight and found him. A few minutes later Mr. Thorner had the company around him–Pratt, McKngiht, Wright and Caylor. “Here, said Mr. Thorner, “let us drink to the success of the American Association.” They drank, and as they sat their glasses down Mr. Thorner rapped on the table with his knuckles and said: “Gentlemen, come to order, please. I nominate Mr. McKnight as temporary president of the American Association and Mr. Caylor as temporary secretary. Is there any objection? None? Then, gentlemen, take your places. Five minutes later pen, ink and paper were produced, and seated at the table where the meeting was called to order, Mr. Thorner wrote telegrams addressed to Mr. Sharsig of the Athletic Club, “Mr. Von der Heide” of the St. Louis Club and Mr. Pank of the Louisvilles notifying each one in turn that the meeting was a grand success; that the American Association was formed with the six cities named, and that every one of them was represented but the one to which this particular telegram was sent. In a few moments answers were received from each one of the gentlemen named, stating that their respective clubs would enter the new association and abide by the decisions of the gentlemen attending the convention. Another telegram was sent this time to Mr. J. A. Williams at Columbus, asking him if he would accept the secretaryship of the new association. He replied in the affirmative, and Mr. McKnigt was elected president of the body and Mr. Williams secretary. Not long after this Mr. McKnight organized the Allegheny Club, and Henry Myers, the ball player, got together the Baltimore team, which with the Allenghenys joined the new association and made its membership complete. Since then the history of the organization is pretty well known. The organization was perfected at a meeting at the Continental Hotel, Philadelphia. The six clubs of that season all made money, there was no difficulty in increasing its membership the following year by the admission of the Metropolitan Club of New York and the Columbus team, which Mr. Phillips had spent some time in organizing. This is the full history of the birth of the American Association, and it will be seen that Mr. Phillips was the originator of it, and yet but for the go-ahead spirit and enterprise of Justus Thorner no organization would have been formed, while if Messrs. McKnight, Pratt, Caylor and Wright had not been there to form a quorum even Mr. Thorner’s enterprise would have counted for naught. So all of the gentlemen named are entitled to some credit, and may justly lay claim to the title which belongs to the promoters of any such enterprise.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an argument for expanding the pitcher's box, lowering the delivery

Date Wednesday, November 5, 1884
Text

At present the pitcher’s position is defined in a space 6x4 feet, fifty feet distant from the home plate, and there are few of the best pitchers who do not overstep the bound, accidentally or intentionally, Buffington and Galvin being striking examples. The enlargement of the box would naturally give the pitcher more freedom of movement and naturally greater speed to the ball and possibly more accuracy. What the patrons of the game seem to protest the most strongly against is the absence of free batting and lively run-getting and the confinement of play to the battery. While the rules touching the scoring of batting are to be construed as favoring the batsman, yet the enthusiasm and interest awakened by a game in which hard hitting and active base-running predominate are contagious, and the players as well as the spectators enter into the spirit of the contest with energy and zeal. This can be effect somewhat by an amendment of the rule prohibiting the pitcher from throwing the ball above the shoulder, and if necessary a return to the old form of delivery below the waist. Expert batsmen have come to gauge curves, shorts and drops with comparative ease, and the most successful pitcher is he who has worked the weaknesses of batsmen, and has a watchful and united band of associates to support him. Any legislation that will promote lively batting and frequent running of the bases will receive the unanimous endorsement of the public.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an assessment of Horace Phillips

Date Saturday, August 2, 1884
Text

The first time on record wherein Horace Phillips has failed to get his release from managing a club occurred a short time since, when the Grand Rapids declined to listen to his earnest solicitation for their consent to his pulling up stakes and driving them in Milwaukee soil. Heretofore Horace has always got his release from every club he ever managed long before he ever thought of asking for it, and the only way we can account for their refusal is that Horace must have got into the hearts of the people so deep that they feel they can't part with him.

Source National Police Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an attack on and a defense of the reserve rule

Date Tuesday, January 22, 1884
Text

[from an interview of W. Warren White] “You see their eleven-men reserve rule was very unsatisfactory and unfair to the men. At the close of a season they could engage such men as they were sure they wanted for the next year, and reserve the rest by guaranteeing them $1,000 salary. When they found they could secure better material they could release their reserve men, after, perhaps, all chances were gone for securing good positions elsewhere.” [followed by an interview of L. Moxley] “There is no valid objection [to the reserve rule]” replied Mr. Moxley. “It simply serves to protect managers to a certain extent, without inflicting any hardships upon the players. At the close of a season a manager can hold on to his men for a certain length of time–a couple of months. If he succeeds he releases his men, and they can secure places elsewhere: if he fails, he at least is sure of the men he had before.

Source Washington Evening Star
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an attempt to use a flat bat

Date Wednesday, August 20, 1884
Text

McDonald, the big first baseman of the Domestic, in Trenton Wednesday attempted to use a bat flat on one side. It was kept safely concealed in its bag until his turn came to the bat, when he slyly drew it forth and walked to the plate. The eye of Fox was too keen, however, and judgement on the bat was asked. Umpire Curry condemned it and compelled the b.f.b. to procure another.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an early batting cage

Date Tuesday, March 4, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Walter Camp describing Yale’s winter training techniques] The pitcher and catcher, and, in fact, all those in training for the nine practice every day in a long “cage” or alley, with board floor, and, this being set aside especially for their use, they jump in and play as though playing in a regular game. The exercise is very beneficial, and its results are best seen in the playing together, even, systematic work on the field. They men thus become thoroughly acquainted with each other and work hard for the team’s success, much ahrder and more systematically than they would with the meagre practice of the month or two prior to the opening of the season. At a regular hour each day after the throwing, pitching and catching exercise in the alley, I put them through sparring lessons.... St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an early suggestion that Lucas is aiming for League membership

Date Wednesday, August 13, 1884
Text

A very shrewd base ball observer is of the opinion that Mr. Lucas is working his cards for admission to the National League next season. Else why this continual strengthening of a team already too powerful for any and all of the Union Association clubs. The Sporting Life August 13, 1884

It is the opinion of those who watch the schemes of the Union wreckers and figure on them, that the leaders among that choice assortment of base ball clubs are building for the future. All the life there is in the Association is confined to St. Louis and Cincinnati. Boston has a fairly strong club, but picked its players up easily and has met with little or no opposition. Cincinnati has had the hardest row to hoe, and in the face of steady loss has made a good fight. St. Louis has led the battle and its closest ally has been Cincinnati. The two have evidently worked together for some purpose and the purpose is no less a one than admission to the National League. They work on the idea that strong clubs in such strong cities as Cincinnati and St. Louis will be eagerly accepted in place of Detroit, Buffalo or Cleveland, and seek to fortify themselves so as to go to the National League fall meeting in such shape that there will be little chance of their offer being rejected. At the rate things are drifting at present the League has lost much of the honest virility which once permeated it, and it is doubtful whether the Union’s offer would be rejected. Admittance to the League would gratify Lucas’ ambition and “get even” for the slight, real or imaginary, given him by the Cincinnati American Association Club. Of course the minor clubs in the Union Association would be duped if such a deal was made, but it is evident that Lucas and Thorner would willingly wreck their present partners in wrecking for the sake of their pet scheme. It would also be a direct reversal of the principles and acts by the League, but in these days of “chase-the-sixpence” base ball nothing is impossible. The honorable game in the past, without profit in many cases, has gone and in its place has sprung up the base ball of the speculator. The Sporting Life August 20, 1884, quoting the Cleveland Herald

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an explanation for Larkin's behavior

Date Monday, March 31, 1884
Text

It was in 1879 or 1880 that Larkin pitched for the Chicago Club, and he was at that time a model player, and very popular among his comrades. While pitching that season Anson hit a ball that went with full force at Larkin's head. No player in the country can hit a ball harder than Anson, and this time he fell upon it with full force. Larkin had not time to put up his hands and receive the liner. As a result, the ball hit him on the left side of the head, near the temple, knocking him down. His comrades thought he was killed sure, but he was up again in a moment and playing away as though nothing had happened. Those who know Terry, however, say that the ball left a dent in the side of his head as though it had crushed the skill, and that he was never the quiet, gentlemanly fellow afterward. Instead, he became cross-grained, and more and more of a crank daily, until at last he set out murdering people. It seems strange that at Larkin's trial his attorneys failed to put in the plea of temporary insanity and refer to the Chicago incident, in which he came within an inch of losing his life. Cincinnati Enquirer March 31, 1884, quoting the St. Louis Critic

The statement has been made that Larkin, who is now in jail for his murderous proclivities, was once a quiet, gentlemanly fellow and that his acts are the result of mental aberration brought about indirectly by being hit on the head by a ball from Anson’s bat, a couple of years ago. This is denied by Messrs. Anson and Spalding, who say that the ball alluded to struck him on the cheek, and that it was merely a temporary injury. Larkin’s downfall was entirely due to his excessive indulgence in liquor and kindred vices. The Sporting Life April 23, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an ineffective switch pitcher

Date Saturday, April 12, 1884
Text

Waring, Harry Wright’s ambidextrous pitcher, used his left arm five innings and his right four in a game last week, but the regulars batted him easily either way. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican April 12, 1884

Waring, the ambidextrous pitcher of the Philadelphia club, has been released. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican April 13, 1884

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an outside salary versus NWL salary

Date Sunday, February 10, 1884
Text

Jones, one of the Grand Rapids players, says he can't throw up a good position in a railroad office which he now has for a few months' work on the diamond. The management of the club will probably give him a guarantee of a good position next winter.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Anson unpopular with his players

Date Wednesday, January 2, 1884
Text

A C. Anson is the manager of the Chicago Club. He is a rigid disciplinarian and this brought his club to the top for three years. Last year, however, the club dropped in the race, brought about, it is said, by the dissatisfaction of the players, with whom Anson is, personally, quite unpopular.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

approval of the six ball rule

Date Tuesday, May 20, 1884
Text

The “six-ball” rule works excellently. It makes both pitcher and batsman attend to business. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

arguing for the AA to split the gate receipts

Date Wednesday, February 20, 1884
Text

The Indianapolis club is still striving to have the American association adopt the league system of percentage division of receipts.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Athletic salaries

Date Wednesday, April 9, 1884
Text

The salaries of the Athletic were $8,000 in 1882, $23,000 in 1883, and this season they will amount to $27,000.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

attempt to merge the Metropolitans and Brooklyns

Date Tuesday, December 9, 1884
Text

This city [New York] will probably have only one base-ball club next season. Representatives of the Metropolitan and Brooklyn clubs are trying to make arrangements to consolidate the clubs under the name of the of Metropolitan Club of Brooklyn, with grounds at Washington Park, in that city. During the past season neither club made money. The New Yorkers preferred to see the League games, and the Brooklyn Club made so bad a showing that the games were hardly worth seeing. Past experience has shown that a good club in Brooklyn pays well, and it is believed if the Metropolitan team is transferred to Brooklyn it will be one of the best paying clubs in the American Association. Mr. John B. Day said to-day that nothing had yet been settled, and he was waiting to see what the Brooklyn Club would do. “If the management of the Brooklyns offer what we think the club is worth we will probably accept it.”

If the offer from the Brooklyns is not accepted the management of the Metropolitan Club will then offer to buy out the Brooklyns. In case the Metropolitans are transferred to Brooklyn the whole nine, with the exception of one of the pitchers, will go to that city. Tim Keefe will be the only player of the Metropolitan team who will play in this city next year, and he will pitch for the New York Club. James Mutrie, who has so successfully managed the Metropolitan team since it was first organized, will be the manager of the New York Club. The Brooklyn Club, although they have reserved their whole nine for next season, have not as yet made contracts with any of the players, and it is not probable that they will not do so. The only man of the team who is likely to be re-engaged is Terry, who, if the proposed consolidation occurs, will alternate with Lynch as pitcher. But before any thing can be done the consent of the different American Association clubs must be secured. For this purpose the matter will be brought up at the meeting of the Association on Wednesday. The Brooklyn Club has been holding back, with the idea that they would secure a League club in case one dropped out, but as it is they must take the Metropolitans or none. Cincinnati Enquirer December 9, 1884

The attempt to consolidate the Brooklyn and Metropolitan Clubs seems to have fallen through, as no understanding could be arrived at. The price was agreed upon, but the managers of the Exhibition Company wanted to keep too many of the players, which the Brooklyns would not agree to, so that there was nothing said about it at the meeting. Cincinnati Enquirer December 11, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

attendance at Washington UA vs. AA

Date Tuesday, May 6, 1884
Text

In the games played here [Washington DC] recently, thoe on the Union Association grounds have drawn more than their half of the public patronage. The first test took place on Saturday, when the Washingtons, the American association team, had as opponents the Clevelands, always a strong favorite in this city, against the counter attraction of the Boston-National Union game. The former game was witness by less than 300, while the grounds of the Union team were crowded by an audience of nearly 2000 people.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

attendance in Boston

Date Wednesday, October 29, 1884
Text

By turnstile count exactly 146,777 people have paid their money to witness the games in the Boston League grounds this year. This is an increase of 8,777 over 1883 when the total attendance was 138,000 in round number.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

balk moves

Date Wednesday, November 12, 1884
Text

[quoting Caylor] A few of the presumable additions and changes [to the AA rules] are as follows:... defining the balk motion of the pitcher more decidedly and clearly. During the past season this evil has grown until nearly every pitcher in the association made dead balls in throwing to first. The consequence was the inability of a base-runner to ‘take ground,’ and almost total destruction of base-running. It is becoming pretty well understood among base ball managers that the pitcher must be restrained in more ways than one, or base ball excitement will be wiped out. The fielder, batter and base-runner must be encouraged, so that the pitcher will not be the only man of note in a team.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Baltimore Club finances, ownership

Date Sunday, November 2, 1884
Text

The season of 1883 was extremely profitable, but a well-informed party recently told your correspondent that the total profits for the season just closed was very little over $3,000. Mr. Houck has not been popular with either the players or the public, and Barnie has at last succeeded in getting entire control of the club, which he will manage alone next year. He has purchased Mr. Houck's interest and paid for it, and will have no trouble in getting any financial backing he may need, as he has made many friends during his residence in this city [Baltimore]. Cincinnati Enquirer November 2, 1884

The management of the Baltimore (American) Club has undergone a change by the withdrawal of A. T. Houck, which leaves Wm. Barnie sole proprietor. The dissolution was brought about by the latter, who discovered after two seasons what many other persons have discovered inless time, viz.: That Mr. Houck will heavily handicap any enterprise he may be connected with. His utter ignorance of the workings of base-ball, and his great unpopularity with players as well as patrons of the game, not to speak of his recognized unreliability, finally drove Mr. Barnie—who has made himself popular here—tol the wall, and for self-protection he was compelled to buy or force him out. He chose the more honorable course and purchased his interest, for which he paid him $4,500. This may look like a small amount, but in view of the fact that Mr. Barnie owns individually the right of membership in the American Association, and could in consequence have simply dropped him without any pecuniary consideration, it is a liberal settlement. Mr. Barnie has been congratulated on all sides at his happy riddance, and now that he has no one with whom he must share either money, censure or praise, he declares that affairs at Oriole Park will be conducted more liberally than heretofore.. Cincinnati Enquirer November 30, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Baltimore Union Club finances

Date Sunday, November 2, 1884
Text

The club representing the Union Association was not very successful. The management is not discouraged, however, and claim that a good fight for recognition will be made next year. They propose to organize a stock company, with $20,000 capital, of which one-fourth has already been subscribed. … The losses for the past season are estimated at $15,000. Manager Henderson says he is hopeful, and proposes to fight it out.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Baltimore Unions recruited from Peoria

Date Friday, April 25, 1884
Text

The [Peoria Club] directors were very much surprised a few days ago on receiving a communication from A. H Henderson, president of the Baltimore Unions, asking to have refunded to them the money advanced to some of our players, and he agreed to release them if they will do so. Before the close of last season, Henderson sent his hired man Hengle down here, with his pocket full of money, to secure the cream of our team, and by making false statements and misrepresentations, and the free use of his money (leaving over $2000), he succeeded in signing seven of our team. This was done after we had made contracts with all the men. Two of the seven were freely released, and two smore have reported in Baltimore because they were scared into doing so. The remainder have remained in Peoria, and have promised to refund the money advanced to them by Henderson's representative.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

base ball agencies; reporter for the Item

Date Wednesday, February 13, 1884
Text

Mr. S. G. Morton, the efficient Secretary of the Northwestern League, has organized a base ball employment bureau. The idea is a good one and the wonder is that it has never been tried before. … The bureau will offer a reliable means of communication between club managers and base ball players, to effect negotiations between them and to assist young players in obtaining a start in the profession. Changes are constantly going on throughout the base ball season and much valuable time often lost because managers do no know at the moment where or to whom to apply. Players are also often at a loss where to make application for the position that would suit them best. Mr. S. G. Morton, through his position as secretary of the Northwestern League, and his long connection with Messrs. a. G. Spalding Y Bro.'s in their base ball department, has a very extensive acquaintance with players in all parts of the country, and will give his personal attention to the management of the business, which is sufficient guaranty that it will be promptly and equitably attended to.

The terms, $10.00 to clubs and $5.00 to players, which amount must accompany applications in all cases, are reasonable and will be found in the majority of cases much less than the cost of personal negotiation between the parties themselves, as the ordinary means of communication are too slow for such emergencies as often arise and the business will have to be done largely by means of telegraph. Messrs. Morton & Co. solicity correspondence from both managers and players and offer the assurance to those who intrust their negotiations to them that they shall be attended to with promptness, and to the best of their ability. This enterprise deserves success and will no doubt attain it. The Sporting Life February 13, 1884

J. P. Campbell, Base Ball Editor of The Item, has opened a Base Ball Employment Agency, in which clubs will be put in communication with good players, and amateur players secured employment on professional teams. The great demand for players this season opens a field for such an enterprise that cannot fail in being a great convenience to clubs and players. The agency books are now open. Clubs will be charged $10 and players $5 for registering, the money to accompany every application. Players wishing to secure positions should send in their applications at once, as already a number of clubs have written for players. In their applications players should state age, weight, name of club connected with, positions in which they excel and salary wanted. The Philadelphia Sunday Item February 17, 1884

Mr. Mills, the lawyer-president of the National League, is making a kick against the base ball employment agency of Morton & Co. His main objection is that Mr. Morton may furnish the Union Association with a few players. This objection strikes us as trivial. The Sporting Life March 5, 1884

Secretary Morton, of the Northwestern League has been compelled to give up his base ball employment agency business, as it conflicted with his official duties and gave dissatisfaction. The Sporting Life March 12, 1884

In order to give all amateurs a chance to secure positions on professional clubs and to aid them in the profession, J. P. Campbell & Co., of the Base Ball Employment Agency, have decided to reduce the booking fee to one dollar, instead of five as at present. Applicants must invariably accompany their application with the fee. In making application the player should state the position in which he is most proficient. There are a number of applications for good players, especially pitchers and basemen, and those who are registered first will be the first looked after. Address all communications to J. P. Campbell & Co, 28 South Seventh street. The Philadelphia Sunday Item March 16, 1884

President Mills has succeeded in placing an estoppel upon Morton & Co.'s Employment Bureau on the ground that it might furnish players to the Union Association. Mr. Mills might, with equal justice, insist that Spalding or :Reach, who are members of the League, refuse to sell base ball goods to the Union Association. Consistency, thou art a jewel. The Sporting Life March 19, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

baseball in Cuba

Date Sunday, April 6, 1884
Text

[an interview of William Holbert, who spent the winter with the Havana BBC: an extensive description of .] Boston Herald April 6, 1884

players marched onto the field

[Buffalo vs. Baltimore 4/7/1884] When the members of the home team made their appearance from the club-house, they were in rank, and, facing towards the diamond, marched abreast to the first base, where they broke into a run and sought their positions. The military maneuvers were received with applause. Baltimore American April 8, 1884

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

beer and Sunday games in the Northwestern League

Date Wednesday, January 16, 1884
Text

[reporting on the NW League meeting of 1/9/1884] The six old clubs which sent delegates found that the six new clubs were in favor of Sunday playing, and also in favor of local option in the matter of beer selling on the grounds of the several associations. The Milwaukee delegate opened the ball on the beer question by declaring that the sale of beer was vital to the success of the Cream City Club. St. Paul, Minneapolis, Stillwater and Terre Haute fell into line, and the older members, seeing that the tide was against the, voted with the majority. Every club in the League is now authorized to sell beer or spiritous liquors in its grand stand. Until this season the League has strictly insisted on the observance of Sunday, the penalty for Sunday playing being expulsion. Milwaukee proposed that clubs to allowed to play Sundays. The town of Quincy, Ill., made a feeble protest, but the delegates voted 8 to 2 to authorize Sunday playing. The Sporting Life January 16, 1884

The League did well in rescinding the restrictions against Sunday playing and the sale of beer. The experience of the American Association shows that in that section of the country these two features may be made most profitable sources of revenue to the club, thus helping many a weakling along without injury to the morals of any one, puritanic talk to the contrary notwithstanding. The Sporting Life January 23, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

benches for both teams

Date Sunday, March 23, 1884
Text

It has been mutually agreed upon by the League officials that, during the coming season, there shall be two seats provided for the opposing nines, that on the right of the home plate to be occupied by the visiting team. This will prevent the mixing of bats, and more or less confusion among the players.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Bill Park an umpire

Date Wednesday, December 24, 1884
Text

Wm. R. Park has applied for an Eastern League umpireship. He resides in Easton, Pa. He would fill the position with credit to himself and give general satisfaction. He has had large experience and has made a reputation for excellent judgment and strict impartiality. In 1874 he was a member of the famous Easton nine, and in ‘75 played with the Washington, D.C. Club. In 1876 he was with the Boston Club, and umpired all the prominent games inthe East in which his club was not engaged. He has been connected with all the prominent clubs in his native town and has had numerous engagements as umpire for local nines. Last year he was appointed umpire for the College League, and umpired for the Lafayette, Stevens, Rutgers and University nines. In all his wide experience with all sorts and conditions of players, William Park has fairly earned a reputation as a good, careful, safe, reliable and courteous umpire. The Sporting Life December 24, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Billy Barnie on Caylor

Date Sunday, December 28, 1884
Text

[from a letter from William Barnie to Justus Thorner dated 12/24/1884] Whenever I hear of an assertion of his [Caylor's] I govern myself accordingly, i.e., if any thing is depending on it my action is taken with a view to the advantages of truth which are generally to be found in exactly the opposite direction.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

blacks come out to see Fleet Walker

Date Wednesday, May 7, 1884
Text

[Toledo vs. St. Louis 5/6/1884] Yesterday was cool and gloomy and not over 700 people assembled at Sportsman’s park to witness the second championship game between the Browns and the Toledos. Of this number a large proportion were negroes who were out to see Walker, the colored catcher of the Toledo club. Though the catching of Walker probably fell a little short of the expectations, he nevertheless appeared to please them immensely, and they cheered and applauded him on the slightest provocation. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

block ball expanded to pitched balls

Date Saturday, March 22, 1884
Text

[Under the same [new NL] rules a ball delivered by the pitcher can become a “blocked” ball, as the delivery of the ball is now that of a “thrown ball.

Source The Philadelphia Evening Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Bob Ferguson on the invention of the curve ball; early pitching; reference to chest protector

Date Thursday, July 10, 1884
Text

Robert Ferguson, the veteran player and manager; Charles Daniels, the oldest umpire in America, and a party of friends were sitting in front of the Laclede last night recalling old times. During the conversation Daniels asked Bob Ferguson who it was that first demonstrated the curve in pitching, desiring to draw Ferguson out.

“I know it has often been asserted that Bobby Matthews was the inventor so to speak, of the curve in pitching,” said Ferguson, “but let me tell you it is wrong–dead wrong. The man who showed the world the first attempt to send in the ball by the rules of the higher mathematics was none other than Arthur Cummings, during the years of ‘60, ‘61, and ‘62, when he pitched for the original ‘Eckfords.’” [N.B. This is incorrect.]

“In those days,” Ferguson continued, “a pitcher had the prerogative of sending as many balls as he wanted to across the plate until the batsman made up his mind to strike at one. In an ordinary game, forty, fifty and sixty balls were considered nothing for a pitcher, before a batsman got suited. [N.B. This is vastly exaggerated.] in those days, masks, breast-plates, catchers gloves and other inventions of the progressive game of the day, were not known, much less used, and a catcher stood a long distance behind the bat.” St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

borrowing uniforms from the Unions

Date Wednesday, July 23, 1884
Text

On Monday when the New York team reached this city Philadelphia it was found that the uniform trunk had not been checked and the players were forced to go borrowing for suits. The Philadelphias’ change uniforms were unattainable, being in the wash, so a raid was made on the Cincinnati Union Club’s wardrobe and all but Richardson and Connor found tolerably good fits in their olive-colored suits. A white Philadelphia suit was found for Richardson and Connor came out in a mixed uniform.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Boston Club finances 10

Date Wednesday, January 9, 1884
Text

There is still some dissatisfaction expressed by certain of the stockholders of the Boston Club, because the report of the treasurer was not presented at the annual meeting, and because a proposition was defeated to have a special meeting for the purpose of hearing said report, and there is some talk about instituting legal proceedings to have the report read. These disgruntled people should bear in mind that no refusal to have the report presented was made. The treasurer was absent by reason of illness, and the meeting voted not to have an extra meeting, thus showing that it placed implicit confidence in that official and the board of directors; in fact, that confidence was repeatedly expressed by some of the stockholders after the adjournment. The dissatisfied stockholders have a remedy, in that they can climb the steps of the State House any time after May 1st and examine the annual report of the Boston Base Ball Association, which is an incorporated body and required by law to make a report once a year, which report is on file at the State House.....[elision in the original] The Boston Club is supposed to have made at least $30,000 profit last year. One reason why so much secrecy has been shown in the matter of publishing the correct figures is that the directors are not willing to let the people who are agitating for a new club know how much money there is in the business.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Boston Club finances 9

Date Saturday, January 5, 1884
Text

Boston’s profits are quoted officially at between $35,000 and $40,000. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Boston Club officers to be salaried

Date Thursday, December 18, 1884
Text

[reporting on the Boston Club meeting 12/17] A resolution was passed to the effect that the officers of the corporation shall receive such compensation for their services as the stockholders may determine. This is an important innovation. Until now officers of the association have their services gratuitously, but hereafter they will receive compensation.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Boston Club to buy real estate

Date Wednesday, November 26, 1884
Text

The Boston Base Ball Association has purchased of the Hammett heirs the South End grounds, occupied by the association for a number of years. The price paid was $100,000. The purchase was necessitated by the determination of the heirs to divide the property into lots to be sold at public auction. The Sporting Life November 26, 1884

[reporting on the Boston Club meeting] It was voted that the Directors be authorized to purchase the land in Boston now used by the corporation as a base-ball ground at a prince not exceeding $100,000, and to give the note of the corporation, secured by a mortgage on the purchased property, for such portion of the purchase money as they deem advisable, paying the residue in cash. Cincinnati Enquirer December 18, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Boston Courier reporter

Date Wednesday, March 5, 1884
Text

The Boston Courier will devote some attention to base ball this year. The column will be edited by J. G. Morse, and able writer, whose reputation has been made on the staff of some of the leading daily journals in Boston. The column will include the latest news, the freshest and most interesting gossip of the fraternity throughout the country.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Boston Union season tickets

Date Thursday, April 3, 1884
Text

The season tickets to the Boston Union grounds made their appearance yesterday for the first time. They are for sale at the Parker House, the price being $10 each for admission only, and $15 for admission to the grand stand.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Boston Unions

Date Monday, March 17, 1884
Text

The preliminary arrangements for the formation of a general athletic association in this city, which will have among its auxiliaries a professional base ball team, have been quietly progressing the past week, and considerable headway is reported to have been made. Within a few days a full statement of the object, policy and management of the movement is promised. Steps have been taken to obtain a special charter of incorporation from the Legislature, with a capital stock considerably over that first contemplated, namely, $10,000. Six gentlemen, all of whom are said to be enthusiastic admirers of the game of base ball, have associated themselves together and are conducting the business. Although several informal conferences have been held, yet matters have not as yet been brought to a definite head, except to mark out the plans in general. The new organization will be known as the Boston Union Athletic Exhibition Company. … It is to be regretted that at the very outset a step is contemplated which, in the minds of many who wish to see such a movement prosper and succeed, would be a serious, if not fatal, mistake. It is proposed to enter the base ball club of this athletic exhibition company as a member of the Union Base Ball Association. The gentlemen who are engineering this movement should study well the outlook before deciding to join fortunes with the association mentioned. Today the Union association is practically boycotted by the profession throughout the country. … The cause of this intense opposition to the Union association is that a feeling exists in every section of the country that it is not an honest organization; that its real object is not to foster and elevate the national game of base ball. It is openly charged in the West that the association is backed financially principally by the beer interests of St. Louis, Cincinnati and Chicago, and that it has been organized simply as a matter of speculation in which a few brewers can coin money. Sure it is that the sale of beer and the playing of games on the Sabbath will be distinguishing features of the policy to be pursued by the Union association this season. Can the Boston gentlemen connected with the proposed exhibition company afford to enter into partnership with any such element and expect to receive support at the hands of the Boston public?

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Boston Unions officers

Date Thursday, March 27, 1884
Text

The gentlemen interested in the Boston Union Athletic Exhibition Company had a meeting yesterday afternoon, and elected the following officers: President, Mr. Frank E. Winslow; secretary and treasurer, Mr. James F. Mullen; directors, the president, secretary, Messrs. Daniel Knowlton and George Wright. Mr. Winslow is the proprietor of the Boston roller skating rink on St. James avenue. He is a great lover of base ball, and is believed thoroughly competent to fill the position to which he has been chosen. Mr. James F. Mullen is a successful merchant in the tailors' trimmings trade on Summer street. He is a gentleman of broad views, great liberality and sound judgment, and his presence on the board will go far to assure the success of the new venture. Mr. George Wright is too well known as a citizen and player to need anything more than mere mention. The Union company may be considered fortunate to have secured such an admirable board of officers, who will leave nothing undone to make it a favorite with the public.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Boston Unions refuse to play on Sunday

Date Friday, May 23, 1884
Text

The refusal of the Boston Unions to participate in Sunday games has caused a loss of many shekels to the St. Louis and Cincinnati clubs.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Boston reserves

Date Saturday, October 25, 1884
Text

The Bostons were the only club who had the business ability to weather the season with their reserve team. It was up-hill business, however, and the burden was so heavy that it is hardly likely that they will ever attempt to carry another load of that nature.

Source National Police Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

broken catcher's masks

Date Wednesday, August 6, 1884
Text

[Toledo vs. Indianapolis 8/5/1884] In the third inning McGuire was struck by a foul tip, breaking the wires of his mask and inflicting serious injury on the temple. He was then sent to center, with Welch at second and Barkley behind the bat. Cincinnati Enquirer August 6, 1884

A catcher’s mask saved Jack Rowe, of the Buffalo, from a serious accident at Baltimore. A swift foul tip would have struck him square in the face had it not been for t he mask, but as it was the wire was bent and cut his eye quite severely. The Sporting Life April 30, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

businesses close early in the summer

Date Sunday, March 16, 1884
Text

It is not until June when the offices, stores and other places begin to close early, that the big crowds are attracted.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

buying a release; the reserve as a slave mart

Date Sunday, January 20, 1884
Text

Under the provisions of the reserve rule the Fort Wayne North-western League Club has opened a veritable slave mart, and is selling players to other clubs in about the same manner as heartless auctioneers knocked down human beings to the highest bidder in the old slave times. While the players are not dragged through the streets and put up for public inspection, they are virtually disposed of in about as cruel a manner. They have no voice in the matter, and if their masters, otherwise the managers of the club, decide to sell them to other base-ball organizations, the players are powerless to resist, and must either quietly submit or retire from the ball field entirely. The so-called reserve rule is a one-sided clause, in which the rights of the players are ignored entirely. The business of selling players has been carried by clubs in three older organizations more or less the past three years. From present appearances it looks as though the managers of the Fort Wayne Club had entered the field this season with no other object in view than that of speculating in human beings under the provisions of the obnoxious clause. They have signed thirteen players for next season, and have not paid out a dollar of advance money. Already they have sold three players at figures that will come pretty near paying all the preliminary expenses of the club for next season. Marr Phillips, their short stop, has been sold to the Indianapolis Club, the consideration paid the Fort Wayne Club for his release being $500. There was a lively competition for Scott, the first-baseman, and after some spirited bidding the hammer fell, and the Detroit Club was awarded his services for next season--$250 being the amount paid. Merrill, the third-baseman, is the last candidate to be brought to the block, and any number of clubs are after him. It is understood that the Chicago Club has the lead in the race with a bid of $500.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Candy Cummings in the Massachusetts Association

Date Wednesday, May 14, 1884
Text

Arthur Cummings, the famous old Hartford pitcher, is now pitching for the Waltham Club of the Massachusetts Association.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

catcher continues to play with a broken finger

Date Wednesday, October 1, 1884
Text

[St. Paul vs. Cincinnati Union 9/30/1884] Ganzel, the fine catcher of the visitors, had one of his fingers broken by a foul tip, and after catching one inning with the wounded member he gave way to Dealey.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

catcher not using a mask or a chest protector

Date Wednesday, July 30, 1884
Text

The usefulness of the Rubber Body Protector was fully illustrated in a recent game in Hartford. One of the “plucky” catchers, who needed neither mask or body protector, although advised to put on both, received a foul tip on his chin in the second inning that made him “see stars.” He still persisted, however, and in the fourth or fifth inning he received another hot one on his body that laid him out on the grass. When he resumed play he did not require urging to use the protector. It was saved him several hard hits since and he will not now catch without it. The usefulness of the Body Protectors have become an established fact, and the sooner all catchers adopt them the sooner we shall see more confidence displayed by them.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

catcher's liver pad

Date Wednesday, October 8, 1884
Text

A fiercely-bearded and double-banged William Goat, who had lazily and contendedly made a quiet meal on the filling of the first, second and third bases and was finishing upon a dessert off the stuffing of a ...

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

catchers using chest protectors

Date Saturday, July 5, 1884
Text

Householder and Corcoran both use the inflated chest protectors while catching.

Source Louisville Courier-Journal
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

catchers' gloves

Date Monday, March 31, 1884
Text

Reach is making a new catcher’s glove that is excellent. The left hand covering is a full one, the right or throwing hand being covered with a half glove to aid throwing. The palm and joint padding is of felt. Reading Times March 31, 1884

A Cincinnati firm is making a new catcher’s glove that is said to be excellent. The left hand covering is a full one, the right or throwing hand being covered with a half glove to aid throwing. The palm and joint padding is of felt. Cleveland Leader April 2, 1884

The catchers at the game yesterday [Cleveland regulars vs. reserves] worked without gloves and consequently could not stand close to the bat. It was, of course, easy to steal bases, which accounts in a measure for the large score [10-9]. Cleveland Leader April 4, 1884

A new style of left-hand glove for catchers has been brought out. The fingers are stiff cowhide, jointed at the bottom with buckskin. The finger-ends are stout enough to withstand the severest blow, thus preventing the breaking of joints, from which men behind the bat have so long suffered. Cleveland Leader April 4, 1884

Source Reading Times
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

catching technique, gloves

Date Friday, May 2, 1884
Text

Shaw's left-handed out-shoots are responsible for Walker's sore hand. With a right-handed pitcher, the catcher can do most of the stopping with his left hand, protected by a thickly padded glove. Such a glove cannot be worn upon the right hand as it renders accurate throwing impossible. Walker has had a week's rest, however, and his hand is nearly well.

Source Detroit Free Press
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Catholics play ball on Sunday

Date Tuesday, April 1, 1884
Text

A very interesting game of ball was played Sunday morning between St. Alphonsus Council, No. 18, and Council No. 20, of the Knights of Father Mathew Base-Ball Association, resulting by a score of 8 to 7 in favor of St. Alphonsus Council. The 18's will play council No. 7 next Sunday morning on the Westerns’ grounds. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Caylor not an equity holder in the Cincinnati Club

Date Thursday, January 24, 1884
Text

[from a letter from Aaron Stern] ...all the moneyed interests of the cincinnati Club are vested in three parties...and Mr. Caylor is not one of them. He is employed regularly as secretary and for other duties at some much per month, and draws a regular salary for attending to such; outside of that he is in no wise interested in the receipts or finances of the Cincinnati Club. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Chadwick's doings 3

Date Sunday, April 13, 1884
Text

Chadwick, who came on from New York to specially report the Athletic-Philadelphia game on Monday for the Herald and other papers, pays this compliment to the umpiring... The Philadelphia Sunday Item April 13, 1884

Mr. Chadwick, of the New York Clipper, was in Philadelphia last week, the guest of Lew Simmons. The veteran honored The Sporting Life with a visit. The Sporting Life April 16, 1884

Source Philadelphia Sunday Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Charles Eliot dislikes baseball; and a response

Date Saturday, April 12, 1884
Text

Boston, April 11.--Before the Association of High School Teachers to-day President Eliot, in referring to remarks by another concerning base-ball, said: “I think it is wretched game; but as an object of ambition for youth to go to college for, really it is a little weak. There are only nine men who can play the game, and there are 950 men in college, and out of these nine there are only two desirable positions, I understand—pitcher and catcher—so there is but little chance for the youth to gratify his ambition. I call it one of the worst games, although I know it is called the American national game.” Cincinnati Enquirer April 12, 1884 [See also PCI 840412]

Speaking Without Knowledge. President Eliot, of the Harvard University, is a learned man but he knows little about base ball. He says that one of the worst features about the National game is that the pitcher and catcher do all the work, none of the other positions amounting to anything in his estimation. Anyhow, he regards the game with a dislike that doesn’t arise from knowledge on the subject. This is made evident from his remarks about the game in his address to the association of Boston high school teachers, Friday week. He is quoted as saying: “I think it is wretched game; but as an object of ambition for youth to go to college for, really it is a little weak. There are only nine men who can play the game, and there are 950 men in college, and out of these nine there are only two desirable positions, I understand—pitcher and catcher—so there is but little chance for the youth to gratify his ambition. I call it one of the worst games, although I know it is called the American national game.” Can it be possible that the worthy president has never seen the Harvard team play, and that his knowledge is derived from watching the boys play in the commons? For a man who speaks with authority about collegiate and intercollegiate athletic games, President Eliot certain has a remarkable notion of the way base ball is played. Meantime, with all due regard to the worthy president’s opinion, the million or so peopl who are deeply interested in the beautiful and scientific game will continue to devote just as much attention to it as formerly. Base ball has had many hard knocks, and much breath and paper has been wasted in opposition, and yet the game flourishes like a green bay tree. A many may be very learned and yet not know everything, and the sooner President Eliot realizes this the quicker will he refrain from utterances which place him in a ridiculous position. The Sporting Life April 23, 1884

President Eliot, of Harvard College, is receiving hot shot from every section of the country on account of his recent castigation of the game of base ball. His ignorance of his subject, as shown by his remarks, is the principal point attacked and the blows have begun to tell, for Mr. Eliot has been endeavoring to ascertain the author of some of the criticisms of his speech. The Sporting Life April 30, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Charles Fulmer a Philadelphia constable

Date Wednesday, January 2, 1884
Text

Charles Fulmer, the able short stop of the Cincinnati Club and constable in the First Philadelphai ward, authorizes us to say that he will positively not be able to play with the Cincinnati or any other ball club next season. Last year he had a deputy to attend to his constable duties while he played ball. This year, however, that thing won't work. Fulmer has been informed that the Law and Order Society is determined to enforce a better return of the liquor license by the constables and to that end they must make monthly returns in person and under oath. Of course, this disposes of the deputy business. Now it would not pay him to give up his official position, which is paying him well and which has yet four years to run, for the uncertainties of base ball.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

chest protector

Date Sunday, April 27, 1884
Text

[Philadelphia vs. Athletic 4/26/1884] Ringo [Phillies catcher] appeared in a huge padded shield, which completely protected his chest and abdomen from foul tips, and formed, with the catcher’s mask, a perfect coat of mail. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

chest protector 2

Date Tuesday, June 3, 1884
Text

Bennett says the inflated rubber is the greatest thing out. Detroit Free Press June 3, 1884

The catchers outside of the League have not yet taken to the body protector. McKenna, of the Washington Nationals, wore one in Cincinnati last week, which was the first time it had been seen in that city. The protector is an excellent invention, and will ultimately be used by all catchers. The Sporting Life June 4, 1884

The smart young man on a morning contemporary slightingly referred to the worn by Baker, of the Nationals, in their games here with the Cincinnati Unions week before last. His opinion is not general, as the following, clipped from the Brooklyn Eagle, shows: “The rubber breast protector now used by all catchers when facing swift pitching is as valuable an adjunct of a catcher's article as the wire mask, and the catcher who refused to wear such a protector from severe injuries simply because it “looks so queer,” or because a lot of fools in the crowd laugh at him, is no better than the idiots who quiz him.” Cincinnati Enquirer June 8, 1884

Source Detroit Free Press
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

chest protector 3

Date Thursday, October 16, 1884
Text

The first worn in St. Louis was that brought by Phil. Baker of the National club. It was invented by a Connecticut genius. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

chest protectors

Date Monday, July 7, 1884
Text

[Jack] Corcoran, who caught for Brooklyn yesterday, wore one of the elongated liver-pads. As a chest-protector they are a success, and despite what an old fogy said about them not many moons ago, when the Nationals were here, Corcoran and his liver-pad were lively enough to sneak a ball to second ahead of John Reilly, one of the Cincinnatis' best runners.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Chicago Unions move to Pittsburgh

Date Wednesday, August 27, 1884
Text

A surprising change of base... was the transfer of the Chicago Club to Pittsburg. The object of this move is not quite clear. It was hardly because the club was losing money in Chicago, as it is quite as likely to lose as much, or more, in Pittsburg. The proabiltiy is an intention to secure a footing in the Smoky City so as to have a desirable half-way club between the East and West, so as to break the tremendous jump to Cincinnati. There is probably a lurking hope that the American Association team in that city can be frozen out, but we regard this as extremely unlikely, as Pittsburg is too important a geographical point to the American Association to be lightly lost. The Sporting Life August 27, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Chicago Unions to move to Pittsburgh

Date Wednesday, August 20, 1884
Text

The Chicago Unions will transfer their team to Pittsburg. The experiment in the Garden City has not been an amazing success, and it is through that Pittsburg will afford a better field. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Chicago reserves disband

Date Wednesday, July 23, 1884
Text

The Chicago Reserves played their last game July 12 th, beating Rock Island 9 to 5 and then disbanded.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

children's admission; section

Date Wednesday, June 4, 1884
Text

Mr. Moxley’s attention having been called to the fact that every first class grounds in the country is providing a portion of their field with seats for boys and charging only an admission of ten cents, has set apart a section of park at Washington for the same purpose. To accommodate the small ones a ticket office and gate will be opened at the corner of Tenth and S. Streets.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cincinnati Club incorporates

Date Wednesday, November 5, 1884
Text

The Cincinnati American Club was incorporated Oct. 30, with a capital stock of $40,000. Geo. L. Herancourt, Robert Herancourt, Adam Bauer and Jas. C. Armstrong are the incorporators.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cincinnati Union and reserve

Date Saturday, April 26, 1884
Text

The Cincinnati Union Club will not retain the reserve team after May 1. Not all of the players in the pony team will be released, however. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cincinnati considers tarps

Date Wednesday, June 4, 1884
Text

The management of the Cincinnati American Club are seriously thinking of adopting the St. Louis idea of protecting their in-field from rain.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cleveland NL players jump to Cincinnati UA; talk of a lawsuit

Date Monday, August 11, 1884
Text

The loss of McCormick, Briody and Glasscock, who have signed with the Cincinnati Unions, is likely to result very seriously to the Cleveland Club. In an interview with President Howe this evening he said: ‘The club is in a very crippled condition, and it is a serious question whether we can play out the schedule of games for which we are obligated. I have received a number of dispatches from players in different parts of the country, but they are inferior in many respects, and it is useless to employ men who will not draw either at home or abroad. McCormick and Briody have not been acting well for some time. The management are now considering the question of an injunction and stopping the men from playing in the Cincinnati nine. It is possible that this will be done Monday. If there is any way in which we can prevent these men from playing and make them answer for breach of contract, it will be done. Something has got to be done in this matter, and if we do get out an injunction the whole League will back us up. It looks now, however, as if Cleveland would not have a base-ball club next year. St., quoting the Cincinnati Enquirer

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cleveland players jump to the UA

Date Saturday, August 9, 1884
Text

The Cincinnati Union Club yesterday closed contracts with three of the finest and best-known ball-players in the profession, and will hereafter present for the patronage of the Cincinnati public a team which in playing ability is second to none in the country, the great Lucas team of St. Louis not being excepted. The three important accessions to the Cincinnati Union ranks are McCormick, Briody and Glasscock, of the Cleveland League team. These three players, who are without superiors in their respective positions, were met in Grand Rapids, Mach., where their club was booked to play yesterday, by a representative of the Cincinnati Union Club, and after a short consultation affixed their signatures to contracts to finish out the season of 1884 here, and also to play with the same team in 1885. … There was a horde of hungry managers of other base-ball clubs on the track of these players, trying to secure their services, but to no purpose. Representatives of National agreements clubs seeing that they were likely to go to the Union Association, did their best to prevent them. … The three valuable men who have jumped the Cleveland League team and joined the Cincinnati Unions say that they will probably be black-listed. They also say, however, that this is no bugbear tot hem, and that they, like many other first-class players, now members of the League and American clubs, will not in future be handicapped by the obnoxious reserve rules. … It is also known that the management of the Cleveland Club offered to sell the release of these three players to other clubs for a good round sum of money. The players were averse to being sold like slaves in bondage, and reasoned that if there was any money in such a sale they were the ones that ought to get it. It was for this reason that they determined to come to Cincinnati.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

club and player splitting the cost of buying a release

Date Sunday, January 13, 1884
Text

[from a letter from “A Friend of Bradley”] When he [George W. Bradley] consented to play for them [the Athletics ]last season, a great howl was made by The Item and other papers of the great liberality shown by the Athletic managers, and the large sum of money they had spent to secure Bradley's release. The simple truth is, Bradley's release from the Cleveland club cost just three hundred and forty dollars, and the liberal managers made Bradley deduct one-half of this from his salary.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

club finances

Date Wednesday, October 22, 1884
Text

... In the National League all but two clubs, Detroit and Cleveland, have made money and the loss of the two mentioned is comparatively trifling, aggregating not quite $2,500. Boston has been the most successful, the profits approaching $48,000; Providence is credited with a gain of $10,000; New York, $12,000; Chicago, $20,000; Philadelphia, $8,000, and Buffalo quits about even. Of course these figures are but estimates, based upon the average reported attendance at the games, but they will probably come as near the actual figures as anything short of the official figures can.

In the American Association the majority of the clubs have also been fairly successful, although the average is far below last year. Besides the hard times, the increased number of clubs and the establishment of rival Union clubs in several cities has had its effect. The Metropolitan Club, which carried off the pennant, lost money in the early part of the season owing to conflicting dates with the New York League Club and the bad location of their new grounds, but in the second half of the season they gained rapidly and are probably $5,000 to the good. The poor showing of the champion Athletic Club in the race for the pennant has had its effect upon the treasury and the club, which last year cleared more money than ever before made by any base ball organization, must this year be content with a profit of about $20,000; Cincinnati, despite the opposition of the Union club, has had an exceptionally good season and is about $18,000 ahead. St. Louis was unfortunate as to weather in the spring, but has had a very profitable season, netting probably $35,000. The Baltimore Club has done well, and Barnie and Houck will easily clear $15,000 t0 $20,000. The Louisville Club has done better than ever before, having paid off old debts, improved their grounds vastly and has a balance of about $6,000 on hand. The Columbus Club is about $8,000 ahead, which amount would perhaps have been doubled but for the stoppage of Sunday games. The Brooklyn Club, too, has made some money, their profits being estimated up to $10,000. The other clubs have not done so well. Washington sunk $10,000 ere it disbanded, but the Virginia Club, which took its place, will close the season about even. Toledo, Allegheny and Indianapolis have lost money. Toledo’s loss is estimated at about $8,000, Indianapolis $5,000 and Allegheny about $10,000. This showing leaves the Association away ahead of the season and proves it the most profitable of all base ball associations.

The Union Association clubs have had a checkered career, and a great deal of money has been sunk in putting the organization on its feet. Only two of the original clubs have made any money, viz., St. Louis and Washington; Boston claims to be even. Of the later arrivals, Kansas City and Milwaukee have done well. All the other clubs are badly in the hole.

The Eastern League was a dire financial failure, the clubs even failing to pay several of the umpires their just dues. Only one club made any money, and that was the Newark Domestic Club. The rest either disbanded or went to the end of the season at a heavy loss.

The Northwestern League also proved an even worse failure than the Eastern League, every club, without exception, losing money in the season. The Grand Rapids Club only managed to clear itself by the transfer of its players to Detroit, and Milwaukee, through its admission to the Union Association, contrived to even profits and losses. The losses of the other clubs aggregate nearly $100,000. The Sporting Life October 22, 1884

the World Series

The first of the series of matches for the championship of the United Stated between the champion clubs of the League and American Association was played on the Polo Grounds... Cincinnati Enquirer October 24, 1994

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

colleges hiring professionals

Date Wednesday, May 28, 1884
Text

Much feeling has been aroused among the students of Cornell University by the employment of professional players by other colleges in the New York State Intercollegiate Base Ball Association. The agreement had previously been made that no college should play other than regular students in its nine. Manager Bering, of Cornell, has made an affidavit, and the University Registrar signed a certificate, that all the members of the Cornell nine are regular college students. Hamilton College and Union College both advertised for professionals in the New York papers, and the latter has engaged four professionals, and the former three. Hobart College also plays two professionals and Rochester University two outsiders.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

colored player not allowed in Richmond

Date Saturday, October 18, 1884
Text

Walker refused to allow the Toledo Club to whitewash him and change his name, and the Virginias declined to play with the Toledos as long as they had a nigger in their nine, so the result was that the chicken-hearted Toledos bowed before the hot-blooded Southerners, and gave Walker the grand bounce.

Source National Police Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Columbus Club finances 4

Date Tuesday, November 4, 1884
Text

The Treasurer's report showed the following expense for the past year:

Salaries, $14,374.44; old bills of former years, $7/15; association dues, $979.82; fines imposed by umpires, $110; guarantee, $195; legal services, $126; railroad fares, $1,377.57; sundries, $3,241.02; advertising, $101.41; ground rent, $125; tickets and printing, $63.65; uniforms, $257.77; Total, $20,957.83. The receipts were as follows: Stock, $580; from old Treasurer, $44.08; Straub's release, $350; bicycle club, $100; special tickets, $600; season tickets, $80; sale of old uniforms; $13; remission of fine, $10; privileges, $464; rent of grounds, $1,450.83; fence advertisement, $87; receipts from trips, $996.54; games at home, $19, 42.82. Total, $22,297.38. Balance, $1,339.55.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

complaint about the game being the pitcher and catcher

Date Sunday, March 16, 1884
Text

[quoting “an old player”] The public that pay their money want to get the worth of it, and nothing tickles them more than to see good batting. Why, I have seen them fairly go wild when Stovey would get in one of his tremendous hit, sending the ball flying over toward Ridge avenue. That's what they want, and the managers ought to give it to them. They get tired of seeing a game played by the pitcher and catcher. I believe a return to the old square pitch would be a good thing and then we would see some of the old-time big scores again.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

compulsory sliding

Date Monday, May 19, 1884
Text

One of the orders issued by Will White, the captain of the Cincinnati American team, makes it compulsory for every member of the team to slide in close plays when running the bases. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

contemplated legal action against Corcoran

Date Wednesday, January 23, 1884
Text

Manager Henderson, of the Chicago Union Club, now that he is satisfied that Corcoran intends to entrust his fortunes to his old club, proposes to push the war into the enemy’s camp and to this end he will invoke the law. In other words, he will ask for an injunction from the Chicago courts to prevent Corcoran playing with the Chicago League Club in that city at least. Henderson says his club is duly incorporated under the laws of Illinois, and that Corcoran shall not, under any circumstances, play with the League teams if process by law can stop him. He has refused to take back his advance money, and there is likely to be a hard fight, as the new association has as much money upon its side as the older organization. Chicago base ball circles are much excited over the matter, and there is considerable speculation over the outcome of the affair. It is thought that this suit will be a most important one, and that it will serve as a precedent and guide to future contemplated measures of the Union Association managers. The Sporting Life January 23, 1884

baseball not a business, players not laborers in bankruptcy

When the Anthracite base ball park at Pottsville, Pa., was sold by the sheriff a few weeks ago it was bought in for the creditors of the Anthracite Association. Among the creditors were the members of the club, who claimed, under the wages act of 1872, priority to the fund realized by the sale for their salaries. They took the matter into court, and on the 14 th inst. Judge Pershing, in a lengthy opinion, decided that the management of a base ball club is not a business in the sense intended by law, and that the word laborer does not apply to players or base ball, and that their salaries do not come under the same footing as the wages of cooks, porters, hostlers, miners, mechanics, printers, milliners and others who work for hire. So hereafter, in Pennsylvania at least, ball players may class themselves in the noble army of sports. Meantime the Anthracite players may console themselves in the reflection that “sporting life is often checkered, but never dull”–we’re here to-day and gone to-morrow. The Sporting Life January 23, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

contract jumping within National Agreement clubs

Date Thursday, June 19, 1884
Text

Manlove and Brown, of the disbanded Altoona Club, signed with the Indianapolis team, and afterward jumped their contract and joined the New York League team. In face of the fact that the President and manager of the latter club were notified by telegraph by manager Gifford that these two men had been expelled for breach of contract, they were played with the New York team in Providence. In speaking of the matter the Sporting Life says: The worst part of the transaction is the evident disregard of law and right shown by the New York Club on the premises. When they approached the men they must have been made aware that they were under engagement to Indianapolis. But to leave themselves no loophole for escape, they actually played Manlove after they had received notice that he was ineligible. It will be observed that Gifford served formal protest against Manlove to Mr. John. B. Day early June 12th, yet late that afternoon Manlove caught for the New Yorks. It would have been no more than prudent not to play either of the men until further light had been shed upon the case. A pretty squabble is brewing over this questions, and from all appearances Indianapolis has the law on its side.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

contracts versus agreements

Date Sunday, March 2, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Northwestern League Secretary Morton] “...is the agreement to sign as binding as thought it was a fully-signed contract?” was asked by the Enquirer correspondent. “Undoubtedly,” was the Secretary's reply. “I have been instructed by President Mills not to send out any more notices of agreements, but to announce them as contracts, for the reason, as Mr. Mills explained, that the Union clubs don't recognize agreements, and do recognize contracts; so that to give notice of agreements simply served to put the Union people on track of players whom they might want to engage. The same instructions have been given to the Secretaries of the National League and American Association, both of whom now announce agreements as 'notices of contract.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

counterfeit tickets

Date Tuesday, May 6, 1884
Text

Counterfeiting theater tickets is an old dodge, but counterfeiting base-ball tickets is not. A number of counterfeit base-ball tickets were presented at Union Park, Pittsburg, on the day of the first Athletic-Allegheny game, but the parties were refused admission. It was learned that some person had printed a lot of tickets and offered them for sale to boys at the rate of twenty cents each. The tickets are an exact facsimile of the regular tickets, except they are not numbered. Efforts are being made to discover the counterfeiters. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

cricket in decline

Date Monday, January 28, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Al Reach about the sporting goods business] Cricket fell off fully 50 per cent last year. Young men who had been in the habit of playing cricket by way of recreation have fallen in with the general rage, and now play base ball. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

crowd control on the holiday

Date Tuesday, June 3, 1884
Text

So much complaint and adverse criticism has been aimed at the management of the Boston club because of the apparent remissness of duty in handling the immense crowd at the afternoon game on :Decoration day that a statement should be made in justice to the directors. Anticipating an immense attendance at the game, an ample force of police officers to preserve order and assist in the seating of the spectators was applied for by the management and promised by the authorities, but so heavy a drain was made on the force by calls for officers in every direction, as is usual on all holidays, that the promise could not be fulfilled, and only a few officers were detailed and reached the grounds till the game was nearly over. When the sale of tickets had reached at the gate 9826, and there was apparently no end to the crowd pressing forward to see the game, President Soden and his associates on the board of directors ordered the sale to stop, and this was done. Two thousand and forty-nine tickets had been sold down town, and the holders were admitted as they presented themselves, making 11,875 people that paid for admission. When the outside spectators found no more tickets were to be sold, they scaled the fence by the hundred, and, in spite of all efforts to prevent them, thousands of people got inside and witnessed the game without paying a cent. The crowd proved to be a most stubborn one, and refused to obey the appeals to stand back so that the game could proceed. There was a spot of at least a hundred feet deep, between the rear of the spectators and the centre field fence, which was almost wholly unoccupied, and the spectators should have had wisdom enough to have filled this space, but this they did not do, and would not do so when requested. Had the force of officers asked for been supplied at the outset, the subsequent confusion would have been avoided. As it was, the directors claim that they did all they could do under the circumstances to make everything pass off without any disorder, and with a view of the convenience and comfort of their patrons. The police force on hand could have handled the crowd that were inside when the sale of tickets stopped, but it was those who swarmed over the fence that created the confusion.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

cushioned seats

Date Wednesday, February 13, 1884
Text

[describing the new Cincinnati Club grounds] The grand stand will have seats 29 inches from back to back, with a seating capacity of 1,000. All the seats are to be cushioned.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

cutting the corner at third base

Date Wednesday, July 9, 1884
Text

Strange to say the renowned Willie Taylor has not lost any of his bashfulness, even if he is with the St. Louis Unions, which is the most modest club in the base-ball arena. Willie made a two-base hit while the St. Louis were playing the Keystones at Philadelphia. Baker, the next batsman, followed him by hitting a ball to pitcher. Willie was very anxious to score, and being too diffident to run to third base, just made a little circle around the pitcher and ran to the home plate, and scored what afterward proved the winning run while the umpire was watching the play at first base. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

David Reid is 'Ixion'

Date Sunday, January 6, 1884
Text

Dave Reid, of St. Louis, over his nom de plume of Ixion makes the following just statement...

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

David Reid offers his resignation as St. Louis Club secretary; resignation refused

Date Tuesday, August 12, 1884
Text

David L. Reid, who during the latter part of last season and the whole of this, was the secretary of the St. Louis Browns, resigned the position he has filled so well and faithfully on Sunday last. Hard work had pulled him down and necessitated his taking a much needed rest and hence his resignation. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican August 12, 1884

Mr. Von der Ahe has refused to accept the resignation of his secretary, David L. Reid, and that gentleman will continue his duties and will receive more assistance in future. He is suffering from a bad attack of malarial fever. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican August 13, 1884

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Deacon White's salary negotiating technique

Date Sunday, December 28, 1884
Text

Deacon Jim White is working his annual racket of coquetting with the management of the Buffalo Club. He says it is not likely that he will play ball the coming season, as his farm, near Corning, N.Y., needs his undivided attention. Jim has made this same little speech every winter for the past thirteen years, and about the time the salary is raised to a figure that meets his views he concludes that the cows, watermelons, turnips and such can take care of themselves another year any how and signs a contract.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

dead ball tricks

Date Saturday, March 22, 1884
Text

A newly-worded rule in the League code is that which prevents a ball from being in play after a foul stroke; a foul ball hit not caught; a runner put out from being hit by a batted ball; and a called dead, until the ball has been plainly held by the pitcher while standing in his position, and he cannot pitch the ball legally until after he has so held the ball. This puts a stop to the trick, tried last year, of pitching the ball while the pitcher is standing outside his position, after a foul hit has been made.

Source Philadelphia Evening Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

despicable Ansonian tactics

Date Wednesday, September 10, 1884
Text

The Chicago-Boston game of August 30, 1884, will long be remembered by the 2,555 witnesses as being characterized by the greatest and most ignominious display of Ansonian tactics ever seen in Boston. The burly and unpopular Chicago captain was ably seconded by his valiant coadjutors, Kelly and Gore, and a well-meaning but weak and easily bulldozed umpires, one Malone. This is the story in part:

In the sixth inning Gore hit to left field and took second on Kelly’s out. Anson hit to Burdock, who fumbled the ball, but threw to Morrill. In the meantime Gore cut across the field, not coming within fifteen feet of third, and thence home, scoring a run. Morrill claimed an out, but the umpire did not allow it while the crowd was yelling and hissing in a perfect bedlam. Malone claimed that he did not see the play. Again in the ninth Burns tried the same racket successfully, too. He hit for two bases, but didn’t go within three feet of first, yet Morrill’s protest availed nothing, though the umpire’s eyes were turned in the direction of the runner. In the third instance again, in the ninth inning, Morrill hit safely and scored, being aided by a wild pitch and a passed ball. Crowley hit for a single. Wise hit to Pfeffer, but he threw wild and both were safe. Hackett struck out, apparently, but Williamson said he dropped the ball, so Hackett started for first, this forcing Crowly and Wise. Williamson threw to ball to Kelly at third, who neither touched the base or the runner, but threw to Anson to put out Hackett. Malone decided both Crowley and Hackett out, while words were thick and talk loud among the player, umpire and audience. The culminating stroke occurred in the tenth inning–Kelly on first, two out, Anson at the bat; as Kelly started for second Hackett started to throw to Burdock, but Anson deliberately got in Hackett’s way, stepping a foot or more over the home plate, thereby preventing his throwing the ball. Morrill protested that Anson was out for stepping out of position, but the accommodating umpire refused to allow it.

Other instances of Anson’s despicable conduct during the game might be given, but the above will serve to show how the Chicagos got a discreditable victory.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Detroit Club finances 5

Date Tuesday, April 1, 1884
Text

The annual meeting of the Detroit Base Ball Association was held at the Russel House Saturday evening. The report of the treasurer showed the total receipts for 1883 to have been $53,944.46; expenditures, $47,750.14. The aggregate receipts stated above include the balance one year ago. President Thompson explained that the close of the season found the association about even. Nine hundred and ninety-six dollars and twenty-three cents had been paid out for improvements at the grounds. If this sum was included in the general expenses, the club lost just $34.57. If the improvements were considered as part of the club property, the profit for the season was $981.68. The salaries this year will aggregate $19,937, abut $200 less than last year.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Detroit players released early

Date Wednesday, October 22, 1884
Text

The twenty days’ notice of the players was up yesterday [10/15] and the [Detroit] team were paid off and disbanded. Most of the players have left for their homes and they all feel sore over being cut off the last half of October.

The outlook is not very bright for a strong team here next season. The present one has some very good players in it, but from personal knowledge I can say that most of them are anxious to get away from here, and have been for some time. The men reserved are Bennett.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

disagreement in the NL over the high delivery; proposed expanded pitcher's box

Date Thursday, November 20, 1884
Text

[reporting the NL meeting 11/19/1884] At the evening session the overhand pitching was discussed at great length. All the delegates with the exception of Mr. Mills and those from Boston and Providence were in favor of keeping the pitcher’s arm below the shoulder so as to make the game more interesting and allow for finer play in the field than at present. It was also proposed that the pitcher’s box be made seven feet instead of the present size... (St. Louis) Missouri Republican November 20, 1884

[reporting on the NL annual meeting] There was an animated discussion of the pitcher’s arm. The sentiment of the meeting was that the rules as applied this year should be tried for another season at least. In fact Mr. Howe, of Cleveland, seemed to be the only one who favored the low-arm delivery. The Sporting Life November 26, 1884

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

discussion of the AA splitting gate receipts

Date Wednesday, March 12, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA meeting] There was considerable excitement caused Tuesday night at the Carrollton by the discussion by delegates and others of the question of a division of receipts of games instead of the guarantee. The affirmative seemed to have considerable weight in numbers, but to the astonishment of the opposition, no motion or resolution relative to it was offered in convention. Some believe, that had it come to vote, it would have stood five for, to seven against.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

dissension in Altoona

Date Sunday, March 16, 1884
Text

There is considerable dissatisfaction in Altoona over the action of the managers of the Altoona club in joining the Union Association. “It means,” said one of the members of last season's Altoona club, to The Item last week, “the killing off of base ball in Altoona the city is a small one, and, at the utmost, cannot stand over three games a week, and then it must win two out of these games to draw anybody. Last season the club was very successful against the clubs of the neighboring towns and cities, and had not traveling expenses, yet despite this it made only about $500. the base ball patrons do not like the idea of being deprived of seeing games with the American and League clubs and they are kicking against the new move. You can put it down as a certainty that the Altoona club will last less than two months.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Dolan claims he was expelled, jumps to the UA; the sanctity of a contract

Date Monday, August 25, 1884
Text

...there was great astonishment as Tom Dolan was seen to walk into the field with Sweeny, and it became known that he was to catch in the game for St. Louis. Tom received a perfect ovation and it was evident that he was a favorite of the crowd. President Lucas who was seated near a Post-Dispatch reporter, gave the following explanation of the surprise as they both watched the game: “Dolan came to me this morning and said he was likely to have trouble with the management of the Browns and wanted to know if he could play ball with me. I asked him if he had been expelled or released, and he said he had not. I then told him that I would have nothing to do with a player who is under contract with another club. He went away, and came back again this afternoon . He said he had been expelled from the Browns and wanted to play ball. I told him in case he had been expelled, I had a place for him, and he came in here to catch. I would not have touched him, if he had not told me that he had been expelled or released.” After the game Tom Dolan made a statement in which he differs, as will be seen, from that which he made to President Lucas. Tom talked as follows: “I have been catching for the St. Louis Browns just as faithfully and as well as Tom Deasley, I think, although he received double the salary I did. Yet he was shown all the favors. If he did not feel like catching, I was ordered in. Often, when I had been ordered to catch, Tom Deasly would make his mind again, that he wanted to do the work, and I would be set aside in his favor. On the last trip, I think that the record will show that I did as good, if not better work, than he did. To keep in proper practice, a man should catch at least every other game, and I had long demanded this privilege and had been laughed at by the management for so doing. On my return from this trip, I saw my friends, told them what was the matter, and they advised me to leave the club if the matter was not remedied. This morning, I asked Von der Ahe whom he would catch in the game to-day. He said, Deasley. I told him it was my turn and that he must let me catch every other game. I told him, I would no longer remain with his club.”

Tom said that at 3 o’clock in the afternoon he again went out to Sportsman’s Park and asked Von der Ahe if he would allow him to catch. The latter said no. “Then,” said Tom, “I’ll go down and catch for the Unions.” “If you do,” said Von der Ahe, “I’ll put you through for it.” Dolan told Von der Ahe to go to ----, and came down to Union Park, as related. Mr. Lucas stated that he had not signed Dolan. He left for Pittsburg with his club Saturday night. Dolan remained here and Lucas told him he would sign him on Thursday next, if he still desired to make a contract.

At Sportsman’s Park quite a different story was told. Mr. Von der Ahe said that, lately, Dolan has been much off his work, that his throwing to bases had been execrable and that, as a consequence, Deasley had been forced to do most of the work. Saturday, he wanted to catch, but it was thought wise to take no risks, and Deasley was put in.

Tom Dolan demanded that he be allowed to catch, and Mr. Von der Ahe paid no attention to such a foolish break. Then Tom declared that he was done with the club, and that he was going to catch for the Unions. He undeniably did so, and in his hurry ran across lots, not waiting for a car to get down, and President Von der Ahe says he has neither been released nor expelled, and that, in fact, the only action taken was by Dolan himself, when he declared unexpectedly that he would catch no more, and started on the run for the Union grounds after using some very ungentlemanly language. Mr. Von der Ahe said he could well get along without Dolan, that he did not need him and that he was as much surprised as anybody at the action Dolan had taken. No action of any kind has been yet taken in Dolan’s case.

It will be seen that Dolan’s statement as given to Mr. Lucas, and Dolan’s statement as given for publication, differ very materially. In the one he stated, according to Mr. Lucas, that he had been expelled. In his other story, he shows that he had not been. In the latter, he corroborates Mr. Von der Ahe.

As Mr. Lucas stated that he would not touch Dolan, unless he were expelled or released from the other club, it is probable that he will not sign him on Thursday when he learns the real facts. At least that is the logical conclusion to be drawn from his remarks given above. Dolan, however, is reported as saying that he had been signed, and that he gets $400 a month. St. Louis Post-Dispatch August 25, 1884

Mr. Von der Ahe positively asserts that he has neither expelled, released, nor suspended Tom Dolan, and has as much as said that he does not intend doing so, and said repeatedly that Tom should never play again on his grounds. Dolan says that when playing with the club he was subjected to all manner of humiliations, and things that, as Mr. Von der Ahe will not play him, that gentleman should either release him or expel him so that he can join some other club which will play him and appreciate his services. The action of Mr. Von der Ahe in holding back his release and refusing to expel him, in order to prevent his joining another club, Dolan characterizes as a piece of despotism. Dolan has not yet been signed by any other club. The absence of Dolan from the Browns is apt to crowd Deasley for a while, but another catcher will soon be secured to fill the void. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican August 28, 1884

While not an expelled or released member of the St. Louis club Tom Dolan has been secured by the St. Louis Unions, notwithstanding the protestations of the latter club, and he played with them in Boston yesterday. It is a very bad piece of business and will only serve to widen the breach between the local clubs. St. Louis Post-Dispatch September 2, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

double using season tickets

Date Wednesday, March 19, 1884
Text

A meeting of the stockholders of the Altoonas was held Friday evening, 7th inst., when it was decided to issue an unlimited number of commutation tickets, twenty-five games for $5, for season of 1884. This plan was considered feasible for the purpose of checking the practice of pushing the ordinary season ticket through some crevice to a friend to come in on. The present ticket to be used will be punched at the entrance every time it is offered for admission by the gate-tender.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Dunlap and the New Yorks

Date Tuesday, March 18, 1884
Text

[from an interview of W. P. Appleton] “Is it true that you have endeavored to secure Dunlap for the New Yorks?”

`` This is the whole truth of the story: After Dunlap had signed to play with the St. Louis Union club, and had repeatedly told the Clevelands that he would not go back to them, that club continued to write him letters at the rate of three a week. Dunlap soon tired of the correspondence, and remained silent until a registered letter was sent to him. He felt bound to answer this, and informed the club that he would not play for $2100, but that he would consent to sign for not less than $2800, as he considered that he was fully worth that figure. Then Dunlap signed with the St. Louis Unions for two years. He will receive $3500 for first and $4000 the second year. He will receive his pay, after he has once entered upon his contract, in 24 equal payments, and, should he die after its inception, the money will be paid to his heirs or representatives. While in Philadelphia a short time ago I met Dunlap, and remarked to him: 'I see that you have signed to play in St. Louis; hadn't you better wait a year and see how the new association will prosper. Haven't you made a mistake?' 'No,' said Dunlap, 'I am going to play there. I was not treated well in Cleveland. I have been there five or six years, and am tired of it. I am going to St. Louis.' 'I think you are making a mistake,' I said. 'Perhaps so,' he replied. 'I would play in New York, though, if I got the chance, but, as far as going back to Cleveland is concerned, I wold not break my St. Louis contract to go there under any circumstances.' I saw at one that he could not be secured by Cleveland, and also that there was a good chance of saving him for the league, provided I could secure his release from Cleveland. I at once communicated with Mr. Howe, the vice-president of that club, and saw him personally. I went so far as to offer him $1000 for Dunlap's release. He would not listen to any proposition, but said that he would rather let me have the whole of his nine than let me have Dunlap. The Clevelands undoubtedly thought and still think that Dunlap will weaken. He will not, and the Clevelands might as well let us have him. Dunlap will play in St. Louis if he lives.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early chest protectors

Date 1884
Text

Abdomen Protector. Made of wire and padded, similar to the Face Mask, and as much of a needed protector as the mask. It can be worn without interfering with the movements of the player; and all catcher who have used it, speak in its praise. Each. . . . $2.50

Catcher's Chest Protector. This Protector is so made as to hang from the neck, on the inside of the shirt, and can be worn with comfort. It is well padded,a nd so arranged as to cover the breast, and will save the catcher from being hurt from sharp tips, when playing under the bat. Price, $2.00.

Source Wright & Ditsons Base Ball Guide
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early indoor baseball

Date Sunday, March 23, 1884
Text

During the winter months the base ball players connected with the South Boston Athletic Association have been enjoying themselves in many ways. Among the most popular methods employed in the playing of burlesque games of base ball. The bases are marked in the gymnasium as the regular diamond, 35 feet apart. The game is played with either six or eight men on a side. The ball used is a hurling ball, made of soft leather and of very light weight. In his delivery, the pitcher is confined strictly to tossing the ball, which, when batted, can be caught in any manner. Every ball over the home plate between the shoulder and knee must be struck at. The bat used is a light Indian club, and, in striking, the batter is not allowed to block the ball, but must hit it fairly and squarely. Nine innings constitute a game.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early use and mocking of 'world' champion

Date Wednesday, October 15, 1884
Text

“Champions of the World.” Fall River News: Mutrie sais that he shall claim the championship of the world for the Metropolitans if Bancroft doesn’t accept his challenge. Indeed, Manager Bancroft ought to accept Smiling James’ challenge. If he does not, then let the Bostons knock that chip off the Mets’ shoulders, as they certainly are able to do it. “Championship of the world” is good; but the championship of the United States is a proud enough record for the majority of base ball mortals. Manager Mutrie will yet be challenging the “Man in the Moon” for a series of midnight contests.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early use of 'pitchers' duel'

Date Wednesday, April 16, 1884
Text

[Minneapolis vs. St. Louis 4/15/1884] The game at Sportsman’s Park yesterday... proved to be a pitchers’ duel, and a very interesting one, not a hit being made by the Minneapolis giants off Davis, while St. Louis made but two during the game... St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early word of Lucas joining the League; his denial

Date Saturday, December 13, 1884
Text

The question of the future existence of the Union association seems to have been finally settled to-day [12/11], and there is good authority for saying that all the base ball clubs in the United States will be parties to the national agreement next season. The determined opposition to the Union, the ill success of their first season, and the fact that it would have no Eastern clubs in 1885, led Mr. Lucas to make a proposition to the National league, which has been accepted. Mr. Lucas agrees to withdraw opposition to the reserve rule. He says that he made his fight against it for the protection of the players, but since he has had experience with them he has found them to be an ungrateful lot and he has come to the conclusion that the reserve rule is a necessity. Mr. Lucas would like to locate a National league club in St. Louis. He agrees to sell no beer, play no Sunday games and to set his blacklisted players adrift. The negotiations with the League are said to have been furthered by ex-President A. G. Mills and Secretary N. E. Young, and it is already arranged that St. Louis is to take the place of the Cleveland club, which is to resign. In order to make a league club a certainty it was necessary to obtain the consent of the St. Louis American club, and this was accomplished to-day. Mr. Crane, a former partner of Mr. Lucas, met Christ Von der at the Fifth Avenue hotel, and after a lengthy conference Mr. Von der Ahe is to hold a large bock of stock in the new club. No one seems to know anything about the case here. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican December 13, 1884, quoting the Philadelphia Times

Mr. Lucas to-night [12/12] authorized a denial of the report that he contemplated joining the league, as it was his purpose to remain with the Unions. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican December 13, 1884

... A reporter called upon Mr. Charles E. Mason to-day [12/13] for an expression of opinion on the proposal. It was his opinion that the story was correct. “You see,” he continued, “there has been no contradiction of it, and although it only leaked out on Thursday, yet I knew for some time that negotiations had been going on. I expect there was a breach of confidence somewhere or it would have got into the paper just yet..”

... Mr. A. J. Reach, whose base ball emporium is headquarters for league news, in reply to an inquiry for information, said the negotiations were pretty nearly complete for the admission of the St. Louis club. Mr. Reach understood that the League managers were willing and anxious to admit St. Louis, but there was an obstacle in the way. This was the consent of the American association and its club at St. Louis. “Now, if you want to know what the prospects are of St. Louis being admitted, you go out and see Mr. McKnight and Mr. Von der Ahe.” (St. Louis) Missouri Republican December 14, 1884

[from an interview of Von der Ahe] “What was the feeling regarding the admission of the Lucas Union Club to the League?”

“Well, it is a matter I do not care to speak about, but it was not given much consideration by the League people I talked with. There would be so much demanded in carrying out the black-listing of Dunlap, Shaffer, Sweeny, Dolan, etc., that probably Mr. Lucas would not accede to that, it s scarcely possible that the application would be considered.” St. Louis Post-Dispatch December 17, 1884

[from an interview of Lucas] “Then you are not going into the League?”

“Not on the terms which the Cincinnati Commercial-Gazette said I was. You can say for me that Caylor–but no, I guess you’d not say it.” St. Louis Post-Dispatch December 18, 1884

The question whether Mr. Henry V. Lucas and his team will go into the League or not is still a leading topic in base-ball circles. Mr. Lucas, who ought to be best posted on the matter, has nothing to say, but conjectures are numerous. St. Louis Post-Dispatch January 7, 1885

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

eastern clubs dropped from the UA

Date Friday, December 19, 1884
Text

[reporting on the UA meeting 12/18] The resignation of the Baltimore club was read and accepted, and a vote of thanks extended to President Henderson for his endeavors to advance the interests of the association. As the Boston and Washington Clubs were not represented either by person or letter they were dropped from membership.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

ejecting the rowdy element

Date Monday, July 21, 1884
Text

[Louisville vs. St. Louis 7/20/1884] Next to the largest crowd ever gathered at a base-ball game in St. Louis was that which packed the seats and surged over into the field at Sportsman’s Park yesterday. It was a remarkably quiet, well-behaved and orderly crowd, and although the ground arrangements were defective in allowing the spectators too close to the diamond; yet there was nothing of any seriously unpleasant nature occurring to disturb the interest attaching to a brilliant and remarkable contest. Perhaps this condition of affairs was owing greatly to the promptness the officers displayed in ejecting those who were disposed to be ugly and quarrelsome, some of the grumblers being taken at their word, escorted to the office and refunded their money. St. Louis Post-Dispatch July 21, 1884 [The same issue separately stated the turnstile count as 15,692.]

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

enclosed ballparks in Brooklyn; Sunday ball

Date Wednesday, July 23, 1884
Text

Brooklyn is in a fair way to once more become a flourishing base ball town, as there are five inclosed base ball grounds within the city limits, in addition to the 40-acre lot at Prospect Park the city authorities keep in fine condition for the juniors and amateurs to play upon. Four of Brooklyn’s inclosed grounds are over back of Greenpoint, and they do a heavy Sunday trade. Often as high as $500 is taken in at the gate on ten cent admissions in the Sunday games.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

enforcing the restriction on high deliveries

Date Saturday, May 10, 1884
Text

[Columbus vs. St. Louis 5/9/1884] ...the effective pitching of Morris bothered the St. Louis very materially, and for a long time the umpire gave him full latitude, and he was not slow in crowding the limit, leaving his box repeatedly, and constantly getting his arm far above his head and at the same time nipping the base-runners by obvious and palpable baulks. He finally overstepped the bounds, and in the last inning–the tenth–Quest was sent to his base on a baulk, was advanced a base by McGinnis on a sacrifice, and was driven home by Gleason on a superb right-field slash, securing the winning run and the game. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

expanding the Mullane injunction to Cincinnati

Date Saturday, May 10, 1884
Text

Mr. H. V. Lucas, President of the St. Louis Union Club, will push the injunction he began against Tony Mullane, the contract-breaker, the other day in St. Louis to the bitter end. He will endeavor to make the injunction perpetual, and restrain Mullane from touching a base-ball in St. Louis or elsewhere this season as a member of any club except the St. Louis Unions. Legal talent has been engaged in this city to look after the deserter during the stay of the club here, and if Mullane attempts to pitch he will be promptly served with a notice of an injunction. Mr. Lucas last night telegraphed that his lawyer, Mr. Pattison, of St. Louis, would be here this morning. He, in conjunction with Messrs. Paxton & Warrington, of this city, will have charge of the case. Mr. Lucas is in earnest, and will endeavor to make Mullane feel that it does not pay to act dishonorably, no matter if he is aided and abetted in his dishonorable course by the officials of a reputable base-ball organization. If Mr. Lucas is successful in his undertaking, as there is every reason to believe he will be, the Mullane case will serve as a wholesome example to the disreputable ball-players with which the profession is now cursed, and will stop the tendency developed recently by a few players and fostered by the older associations of playing fast and loose with their written contracts. In this connection the St. Louis Globe-Democrat says: “A lawyer, in speaking of the case, said that he had reason to believe that Mr. Lucas would institute a suit for damages against the Toledo Club for inducing Mullane to break his contract with the Union Club. This could be done under the law of master and servant, and Lucas could go into Court with a good claim for actual as well as exemplary or plenary damages. If Judge Horner permanently enjoins Mullane from playing with any other club than the Unions, and the Toledo Club still continues to harbor him, almost any lawyer would be glad to take a case against them on a contingent fee, providing, of course, that the members of the club are responsible in a financial sense.” Cincinnati Enquirer May 10, 1884

Yesterday morning Mr. Crane, an attorney from St. Louis, came here under the direction of Mr. Lucas, President of the St. Louis Unions, and in conjunction with Messrs. Paxton and Warrington, petitioned an injunction in the Common Pleas Court. Judge Conner granted a temporary restraining order, under which Mullane is enjoined from playing with, or performing any services whatever for, any club other than the St. Louis Unions, and especially with the Toledo Base-ball Club. Bond was given in the sum of $5,000. If Mullane attempts to pitch for the Toledos before this injunction suit is heard he can be arrested for contempt of Court and severely punished. It is very likely that Mr. Lucas will pursue the same course in all the cities that the Toledo Club will visit this season, and in this manner practically make the contract-breaker of no use to the club with which he is now traveling. The petition in Court recites that Tony, induced by the offer of a liberal salary and a large sum of advance money, agreed to and did enter the service of the plaintiffs for the season of 1884, for which service the petition alleges he was to receive $285.71 per month. It is also claimed in the petition that the sum of $500 was paid to Mullane, in consideration of which he signed the contract in St. Louis on the 5 th of November, 1883; also, that, in violation of the contract, Mullane has played in the Toledo Club, of the American Association. Cincinnati Enquirer May 11, 1884

A motion was made before Judge Robertson yesterday for a removal of the case of the St. Louis Athletic Association against Tony Mullane to the United States Circuit Court. The motion was granted. This was done so that it would not be necessary to get out an injunction at every place he should want to play in this State or other States included in the Judicial Circuit. Cincinnati Enquirer May 13, 1884

The motion to dissolve the injunction against Tony J. Mullane, the base-ball player, obtained by the St. Louis Athletic Association, was granted by Judge Baxter in the United States Court yesterday. Mullane signed with the St. Louis Union Base-Ball Club, but went back on his contract and signed with the American Association Club of Toledo. T he St. Louis people have since enjoined him from playing in the several cities where the club has appeared. Judge Baxter, after hearing the evidence, said that he would dissolve the injunction, give Mullane leave to withdraw his contract with the St. Louis Club, and make it a record of the Court, and would also give him leave to answer. The Judge supplemented his decision by saying that base-ball was simply a sport, not a business, was no benefit to the public, and was beneath the dignity of the Courts. Cincinnati Enquirer May 14, 1884

After the decision of Judge Baxter in the Mullane case, dissolving the temporary injunction secured by Mr. Lucas against Tony Mullane, of the Toledo Club, Mr. Lucas and his lawyers got their heads together and determined upon a different course of procedure. On the 18th Mr. Pattison, a St. Louis attorney, counsel for Mr. Lucas, appeared in Cincinnati and on the 19th, with Mr. Warrington appealed to Judge Baxter for a rehearing of the case. The application was granted and the case was again hear at considerable length, Mr. Lucas’ attorneys along attempting to convince Judge Baxter of the error of his former ruling. The matter was gone into upon the merits, and after hearing them for nearly half a day Judge Baxter against decided the case against them and refused in any way to modify the order previously made. They then sought to have the case dismissed without prejudice to their rights, or, in other words, they desire to avoid the effects of Judge Baxter’s adverse decision and are now attempting to get out of court, for the purpose of bringing suits elsewhere, thus continuing their prosecutions of Mullane. The counsel for Mullane will of course resist such a procedure, and it is believed that Judge Baxter’s decision will in effect terminate the matter. Judge Baxter’s decision in the case covers Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky, which are included in the circuit, and will serve as a precedent in other courts. The Sporting Life May 28, 1884

As the case was thrown out of court in Ohio, Messrs. Pattison & Crane, attorneys for the St. Louis Athletic association, yesterday filed a petition and bond in circuit court No. 4 for the removal of the case to the United States circuit court. If an injunction is granted by the latter court it will prohibit Mullane from playing anywhere in the United States. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican June 3, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

falling UA attendance

Date Saturday, May 31, 1884
Text

[Keystone vs. St. Louis 5/30/1884] [Decoration Day] The St. Louis Unions met the Keystones of Philadelphia yesterday in the presence of about 2,000 people... (St. Louis) Missouri Republican May 31, 1884

the short fence in Chicago

The Chicagos have been up to their old tricks again. In order to raise their batting averages and to obtain all the advantage possible over visiting teams, hits over the right field fence now count as home runs. The distance to this fence is even less than that to the left field fence on the Union grounds. In the games of May 29 and 30, the Chicagos made 10 of these “home runs” to the Detroits 6. Boston Herald June 1, 1884

The new rule adopted on the Chicago grounds, allowing a batter a home-run, instead of a two-base hit, for knocking a ball over the short field fence, is creating considerable dissatisfaction among the other League teams. Each of the visiting teams only have the advantage of eight games on the grounds, while the Chicagos play fifty-six. Besides the Chicago men practice to hit in the direction of the nearest fence. St. Louis Post-Dispatch June 19, 1884

The Chicagos have a great racket on their own grounds with their home-run scheme. They have the right-field fence down as fine as silk, and the way they pound out the home runs paralyzes the visiting clubs. St. Louis Post-Dispatch July 18, 1884

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

fencing in the pitcher

Date Friday, October 17, 1884
Text

The Cincinnati Americans only succeeded in winning from the Louisvilles when Hecker was in the box by fencing him in. the management of the Unions propose to give the festive Guy full swing, and think that even under those circumstances the boys can down the lads from the Fall city. Cincinnati Enquirer October 17, 1884

The Unions did not fence Hacker in the box yesterday, a la American style, but allowed him full swing, notwithstanding which they made a better showing against him than the Cincinnati Americans ever did. Cincinnati Enquirer October 19, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Fergy Malone managing the UA Keystones

Date Wednesday, April 30, 1884
Text

Fergy Malone is now the business manager of the Keystone Club. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

few left-handed pitchers

Date Wednesday, February 20, 1884
Text

Morris, of the Columbus Club, will be the only left-handed pitcher in the American Association. Since Richmond's retirement the League has none, but Harry Wright will this year trot out a colt from Connecticut, named Warring, who, it is claimed, can pitch equally well with either hand and change at pleasure.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

fewer balls for a walk; too much pitcher and catcher

Date Wednesday, February 27, 1884
Text

[discussing proposed rules changes] Another way to help the batsman...would be to reduce the number of called balls to six. The reduction of called balls from nine to seven some years ago was found notwithstanding many predictions to the contrary, to be advantageous, and this would be the case if the number were reduced one more. Of course this would be apt to bother pitchers somewhat at first, more particularly the young and inexperienced ones, and bases on called balls would for a time be more frequent, but this is no worse that to see man after man striking out; rather better, as it would put men on the bases who otherwise would not get there at all, and everybody knows that the real interest in an inning begins when there are runners on the bases, because this at once puts both audience and players on the alert. Indeed, far better a base on balls than a struck out. Narrowing the pitchers' limit thus will tend to make them more careful and really save them some strain and labor, as the number of balls delivered in the course of a game would be materially reduced. Pitchers were no more effective when they could deliver nine balls without penalty than they are now with seven, and the reduction to six will have naught but a beneficial effect. It will operate slightly to the advantage of the batsman, and this is most desirable, as for years the batter has had too little consideration. All the efforts have been directed, season after season, to the improvement of the fielding department at the expense of the batting until it has skeletonized the game, as it were. In fact it has come down to this, that two men, the pitcher and catcher, virtually do the best part of the work.... The Sporting Life February 27, 1884

[reporting on the NL meeting] The playing rules were considered, and the only change made was limiting the pitcher to six balls instead of seven. The idea, a delegate said, is to make him do more artistic work, and improve the batting. The Philadelphia Sunday Item March 9, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

fielder positioning himself for the hitter

Date Sunday, May 11, 1884
Text

[Chicago vs. Providence 5/11/1884] Gore gauged Sweeney's delivery for a two base hit. Farrell [third baseman] then played more towards first base to block Kelly, who was the next batsman. Kelly hit a ball which Farrell would surely have got had he been in his regular place on the line, and on that hit Gore scored an earned run...

Source Providence Morning Star
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

fireworks at the ballpark

Date Wednesday, May 7, 1884
Text

The Board of Directors of the Detroit Club has under consideration the feasibility of giving a display of fireworks at Recreation Park on the evening of the glorious Fourth, and making it a gala day. New York will play both morning and afternoon, and it is thought that an open-air concern and fireworks will be a fitting close of the day’s pleasures. That was the programme last Fourth, but rain knocked it in the head.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

flooding the field for a rain-out

Date Sunday, August 24, 1884
Text

Frank [Bancroft] makes the boast that he was never connected with a club that had a real bad, losing season. To show what he will resort to it is only necessary to relate a little instance that occurred last year while he was manager of the Cleveland League Club. One day he was scheduled to play the Providence League team on his home grounds, but owing to the sickness of McCormick and Dunlap, both of whom sent word they could not play, he was in a quandary as to what course to pursue. The elements favored him, however, and, while he was thinking, a very slight rain began to fall. In this Bancroft saw his chance,. Jumping into a hack he was driven rapidly to the Base-ball Park. In an instant he had issued an order to the ground-keeper to attach the hose (regular fire-engine size) to the hydrant and play the stream on the grounds. He then took a position in the grand stand, where he could command a view of streets leading to the gate. The hose continued to pour bucketful after bucketful of water all over the diamond. This was continued until the whole place was deluged, and then the employee was ordered to desist. About noon Harry Wright, Manager of the Providence Club, came out to see the grounds.

“I am afraid we will have to call this game,” said Bancroft.

“Why?” inquired Harry.

“Oh, these are the queerest grounds you ever saw. They are flooded over every time it rains.”

While they were talking they walked out on the field. Wright had not gone far before he sunk into the soft soil above his shoe tops.

“I guess you are right,” said Harry.

So the game was postponed on account of a rain that did not lay the dust in the streets.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

forestalling attempts around the ten day rule

Date Friday, December 12, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA meeting] An addition to section 7 of the same article [5] reads: That if any player, manager or officer of a club shall induce a player to sign or even promise to sign a contract with a club, or in any way attempt to get over the ten-day rule, he shall be fined in a sum to be fixed by the Directors.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Fred Goldsmith released

Date Friday, August 8, 1884
Text

Goldsmith, the pitcher for the Chicago team, was released to-day, and will go to Baltimore to pitch for the American Association team of that city.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Frederick Douglass goes to games

Date Wednesday, May 7, 1884
Text

Fred Douglass and wife are frequent attendants at the ball games in Washington. Douglass always did know a good thing when he saw it.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

free admission for retrieving a foul ball; peanuts

Date Wednesday, May 7, 1884
Text

“In order to appreciate and understand base ball,” said a kind old gentleman who was initiating a 16-year-old damsel into the mysteries of the national game, “there are certain rules with which you must be conversant. The first is that foul balls were invented in the interest of the small boy, and one is admitted every time the ball goes over the fence. Another is that you must fill yourself up with peanuts and throw the shells upon the seats; but the most inflexible requirement of all is to cheer every time the catcher pretends his fingers are hut. A failure to applaud at such a critical time robs the game of half its pleasures.

Source The Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

game throwing

Date Wednesday, October 22, 1884
Text

[from an interview in the Detroit Free Press of Thompson] I do not believe there is a League team in the country that has not among its members two or three who will not throw a game at any time in the interest of the pool box. The rest are honest, but are powerless to win games if the two or three, or even one of them play to lose. [an editorial response:] His charges in the main are exaggerated, and wholly untrue on some points. The Sporting Life October 22, 1884 [see also TSL 841029 for a response that the problem was Thompson’s mismanagement.]

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

George Bradley gets religion

Date Sunday, December 21, 1884
Text

George Bradley is a recent convert to religion, and a few weeks ago joined the Grace Methodist Church at Newport, Ky. Nobody who has seen George Bradley play ball in a championship game, and note the zeal and earnestness he displays at all times to have his side win, can doubt for a moment his sincerity. George has always been considered an earnest ball-player, and we believe he will prove an earnest Christian. He has this week been attending the meetings of Moody, the evangelist, at Music Hall.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

George Wright and the Boston Unions

Date Sunday, February 3, 1884
Text

There has been some talk about a second club in Boston, but I think the idea has fallen through.” --Letter by George Wright to the Cincinnati Commercial Gazette.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

George Wright and the Boston Unions 2

Date Sunday, March 16, 1884
Text

George Wright left Boston Saturday afternoon to attend the schedule meeting of the Union association at Cincinnati on Monday. He goes on business relative to the association book, and also to represent the Boston Union Athletic Exhibition Company.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

George Wright and the Boston Unions 3

Date Sunday, March 23, 1884
Text

[from an interview of George Wright] “I will be one of the directors. My friends have been urging me for several seasons to organize a 25-cent professional team in this city, but I have been so busy with my affairs that I have been unable to give the matter the attention I desired. There are a great many gentlemen who, like myself, have been connected with base ball ever since the organization of a professional team in this city, that think there is room for a new nine. I am of the opinion that it will add, instead of injure, the Bostons, and that the game has so increased in popular favor that two clubs can easily find support.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

George Wright on the UA and player salaries

Date Sunday, March 23, 1884
Text

[from an interview of George Wright] “It is a good thing for the players that the American association was formed, or the salaries would range today $700 to $1500, instead of from $1200 to $3000. But it would result in as much harm to the players in a few years, inasmuch as the league and the American association, working together, would draw up an agreement to pay players an average lower scale of prices, so that the club would be benefited to the detriment of the players. I believe in paying players as good salaries as the treasury will allow. When the Bostons were short of funds, and I had a three years' contract, I voluntarily reduced my salary $600 for three years. When the game prospered, my salary was raised, and when again it waned in interest my salary was reduced. This is where the Union association will come in to save the player, and will do for him what, in its turn, the American association did. I believe in having strict contracts with players, compelling them to take the best case of themselves. If they get intoxicated, expel them at once. A man trying to play ball who drinks soon demoralizes his companions and impairs the fortunes of the team.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

George Wright on the reserve system

Date Sunday, March 23, 1884
Text

[from an interview of George Wright] I think the reserve rule is very good, but object to the privileges a club has of compelling a player to remain with it until he is released. I think two years is long enough to keep a player in reserve. It is hard to compel a player to remain with a club, or in a city, that may be disagreeable to him in more ways than one. A league manager would say that the effect would be to raise salaries. I am of the idea that I could engage many leading players of the country at much less salaries than they are now receiving, because they are dissatisfied. It is not the money altogether that they care for. The $1000 rule is abominable. For instance, a $2500 player an be reserved by a club for $1000, and if he is dissatisfied he has no redress whatever, and if he wishes to play at all, it must be with the club reserving him. He should have some right of appeal and vindication.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

giving workers Saturday afternoons off

Date Tuesday, June 24, 1884
Text

An Exchange informs us that a manufacturer at Columbus, Ohio, called together his 900 employees and announced to them that the factories would shut down at 3 p.m. every Saturday, without reduction of wages, if each workman would refuse to attend base-ball games on Sunday. The men gladly accepted the proposition, and Sunday base-ball playing at Columbus is not so popular as it was. This will not hurt the Columbus Club in the least, as these workmen will now have an opportunity of going to the games on Saturday instead of Sunday. The object of Sunday games mainly is to give the hard-working classes, who cannot see the game, which everybody loves, during the week a chance to appreciate its beauties on the only day when they are at leisure. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Grand Rapids Club disbands

Date Tuesday, August 12, 1884
Text

The honor of leading the Northwestern League clubs was rather too expensive an amusement and luxury for at least two clubs. The Bay Citys, who were in the lead some weeks ago, went under when Foutz and Porter were transferred, and now the Grand Rapids follow by the same route. The Detroits have absorbed the best of the Grand Rapids talent, including their “wizard” pitcher, Getzein, Kearns, Cox, Jones and Gotfield, and no doubt they will prove of material and substantial aid to the Detroits’ force. Manager Phillips will soon go on the road with a well known variety company, and no doubt in a few days the other men will all be placed as the team was well organized and a very powerful one. St. Louis Post-Dispatch August 12, 1884

The club had already sunk over $2,000, and was indebted about $1,200 more to the players. There was no prospect of bringing the club out even the balance of the season; in fact, there was every probability of further loss. It was suggested that the managers who wanted the players assume the obligations of the club, take the players... The was agreed to, and the club then and there wound up its affairs. The Sporting Life August 20, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

gross receipts and season tickets

Date Tuesday, November 4, 1884
Text

I have just had a row, quiet one, with them [Providence] in regard to division of receipts in their last game here. Bancroft wanted $200 guarantee to play off their postponed Championship here. I offered him one half of the gross receipts, and he finally accepted our terms. The weather proved bad and the crowd was small, and in settling up Bancroft insisted that he should be paid half for all the season and complimentary–press–tickets, some 68 in all, @ 50¢ admission. I said no, that we would give him half of the gross receipts, and no more. That gross receipts meant the revenue received from cash admissions to grounds and grand stand for that game. He refused to settle and went off. I sent check to Providence for the amount due them. The Sec., W. C. Chase, claimed a balance as per return of tickets taken as furnished him by Bancroft. I have written him that my agreement was that Prov. would receive ½ gross. That season tickets were not gross unless there was an understanding to that effect. I have not heard from him since, but they may bring the matter up before the Board at the Annual Meeting. [from a letter from Harry Wright, writing in Philadelphia, to Frederick Long dated November 4, 1884]

Source From a letter from Harry Wright, writing in Philadelphia, to Frederick Long
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Harry Wright and Charles Mason on cranks

Date Wednesday, April 23, 1884
Text

“Cranks on base-ball?” ejaculated the veteran player and manager, Harry Wright, yesterday, in answer to the reporter’s query. “Well, I should say there are cranks in base-ball, and hundreds of them. They are becoming worse each year, and increasing in numbers. It is really remarkable howmen lose their heads over the game. And many of them are really dangerous we had an example of this down in Providence last year, when a crank snapped a revolver in Carroll’s face. For a couple of months that man bothered us. He hung around the ground and had but one desire to be gratified, and that was to be permitted to pitch for us. He thought he could knock out any batsman ever seen. The fellow waited upon every visiting club and beseeched the manager to give him a chance. The boys tolerated him, and had a great deal of sport at his expense. One day they got him to pitching, and then turned the hose on him. The crank did not like this, but said nothign. That afternoon we lost our game, and this so enraged the man, along with what was done in themorning, that he waited at the gate with a big pistol. When Carroll came out he stepped up to him and pulled the trigger, but fortunately the weapon was not discharged. The boys broke and ran, and Mr. Crank opened fire on them. Mulvey thought he was hit, and he was scared badly. The fellow was arrested and sent to prison. There was another man down there, whom we christened Base-Ball Tommy. We had an old uniform that we dressed him up in, and then we would set him on the fence to watch the small boys. That man would do anything that was wanted about the grounds. He was dead gone on the subject of base-ball.

“The most remarkable thing in connection with these cranks is the idea which each of them has that he is the coming pitcher, the great phenomenal What Is It. That position is the most difficult in the field, yet the queer fellows all select it, and a person would think from reading the letters I receive that the bad players have all been engaged, and only the good ones have been left out.

“One man wrote me from Cincinnati. He desired an engagement. The fellow claimed to be the leading amateur player of the West. He spoke of the prominent pitcher he had faced, and said: ‘I knocked the far square out of every one of them.’ He offered testimonials of his powers as a slugger, and said that in the thirty-seven games he had played he had attained an average of .871 for fielding, and .422 for batting. I thought I’d better not try him. His playing was too good entirely.

“But the greatest player I ever heard of was a fellow who wrote me from Boston. He said he was the swiftest thrower in the world, and that Sweeney and others whom he mentioned were no comparison to him. The man said that he could throw so hard that no one on the nine could catch the ball. He wrote: ‘The batsmen cannot hit the ball, so it will not be necessary, if you engage me, to have any men in the field. You can put the other eight men back of the bat, as it will take them all to stop the ball.’ Well, as we were not hiring cannons we concluded to permit this opportunity to slip. We dropped a man from our rolls last week who we thought was a great player until he was tried. The people who recommended him claimed that he had been practicing all winter with a six ounce iron ball, and had been suing as a back stop a pile of railroad ties. The enthusiastic person wrote: ‘This man has a puzzling crop curve and can pitch with equal facility with either the right or left hand.’ Well, after that we thought that the coming pitcher had been discovered at last. He played in two games, and was then quietly laid on the shelf. The boys always give the cranks a show, and make it warm for them. They toss the ball easy at first, and after the unsuspecting individual gets warmed up and thinks he is doing great work some one sends the ball to him as if it came out of a gun. Two or three hot ones soon settle the ambitious fellows. Very few indeed of the cranks want to be catchers. They are afraid to face the music, and the few who attempt it generally come out of the battle rather the worse for their rashness.”

“Sometimes the managers get taken in,” said Charles Mason of the Athletics. “Last season Atkinson went down to Indianapolis and asked Daniel O’Leary to give him a trial as pitcher. The manager laughed at him; but finally said, ‘All right: I’ll make a fool of you.’ So he arranged a picked nine and put the Indianapolis team against them. Atkinson pitched for the picked team, and the regular nine could not hit him. The game ended with a victory for Atkinson’s side. Then O’Leary wanted to engage him, but he refused to sign with him at any price. So it did not pay to be too funny. Last season we needed a catcher, and heard of one in Massachusetts. He came here and obtained $200 advance money. We thought we had a stone wall, sure. He caught for two innings, and we were glad to get rid of him. That same evening the fellow started back home, and we never heard of him again. We keep the cranks off our grounds when the men are practicing. They are regarded as dangerous in the extreme, and a man never knows when his life is safe. Base-ball being the sensation of the day, all the queer fellows have turned their attention to it. But the crops of cranks is a big one this year.” St., quoting the Philadelphia Record

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Harvard Crimson uniform

Date Wednesday, December 3, 1884
Text

The Harvard College uniform next season will be changed in some respects. In place of the gray shirt and hat worn in former years, a crimson and black striped shirt and cap have been substituted. The cap is tight-fitting and has a small visor, which will remedy the disadvantages of the old hats.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Harvard and professionalism

Date Wednesday, May 7, 1884
Text

Wonders in which the athletic committee of the Harvard faculty are concerned will never cease. For five years Coolidge played second base for the college nine, but this season, although still in the law school, decided not to play with the Harvard nine, as it required too much time. The Beacons were glad to get him for second, which he covered in their game with the Bostons a few weeks ago. As the Harvard nine is temporarily crippled by the absence of two men on account of sickness, he agreed to play in the Harvard-Brown game May 1. What was his surprise when he was informed that his association with the Bostons during one game had rendered him unfit for the Harvard nine, and his connection with the team was forever ended. We fail to see the consistency. The Harvard boys were allowed to play, and even on Jarvis’ field, that sacred spot, with the Waltham, who are just as much professionals as any team in the country; and, by the way, Quinn, a professional umpire, continues to umpire the Harvard games.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Harvard forbids games with non-collegiate clubs

Date Wednesday, March 5, 1884
Text

The action of the faculty of Harvard College in forbidding its ball team from engaging in contests with clubs outside of the college arena is provoking a great deal of adverse comment. Outside of League games no contests in this vicinity have attracted so much attention as the Beacon-Harvard series, which have been played for several seasons. Both players and the public entered heartily into the games between these two clubs and a vast amount of indignation is expressed that they are not to be continued. The action of Harvard's faculty is regarded as narrow and bigoted and as a death-blow to the National game in that institution. The Sporting Life March 5, 1884

The Harvard faculty has modified its rules so that the Harvards and Beacons can arrange games with each other, but they must be played on the college grounds.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

heavy duty catcher's masks

Date Saturday, July 26, 1884
Text

Hackett and Ewing wear the heaviest masks in the League, and probably in the profession. They were made to order for these two catchers, and the wire is much larger than that ordinarily used.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Hecker's running pitch delivery; stepping outside the box

Date Wednesday, August 6, 1884
Text

Hecker’s great strength this season has been in a sort of running delivery of the ball, in which, it is claimed, he not only starts beyond the box, but invariably steps out of it in front. In this way he has secured an effective speed by wholly illegal practice, which somehow the umpires have failed to detect. Now the rules require that the pitcher shall stand wholly within the lines of his box–six feet by four feet–during the time he is in the act of delivering the ball. In order to compel Hecker to observe this rule, Will White ordered two smooth, flat stones to be set into the ground, one before and one behind the box, and wholly outside of the lines. The effort is to keep the pitcher’s feet wholly within the box, as the rules require. If he step over the line the spikes in his shoes strike the smooth stone, and he slips as well as leaves a tell-tale mark on the stone that cannot be rubbed out. To say that Hecker was struck when he saw those stones is to draw it mile. Of course he “kicked” and called upon the umpire to have them removed. The umpire, however, said that the stones were wholly outside of the box, and if he pitched according to the requirements of the rules, he would not touch them. Furthermore, Mr. Ross said that he was surprised that the same precaution against illegal pitching had not bee taken by other clubs, and said that every diamond should have those stones set. Hecker pitched standing on the box, as the rules require, and was batted hard. Once he stepped out on the stones and his foot slipped, nearly splitting him to the shoulder.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Henry Lucas plays baseball

Date Wednesday, May 7, 1884
Text

Mr. Henry V. Lucas, of the St. Louis Union Club, is a great lover of the National game, and is probably the only base ball president in the country who ever plays himself. All last season he kept up a club known as the Lucas amateurs, at his own expense, and played third base on the nine himself, and play it well, too. At his beautiful suburban home in Normandy he had a fine ball ground laid out on his estate and had comfortable seats erected for the accommodation of a couple of thousand people. On days when games were played he invited a number of friends from the city and at the conclusion of the game they were treated to an elegant spread prepared under the supervision of his charming wife.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

high overhand pitching delivery; helping the offense

Date Sunday, March 30, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Tim Keefe] “What do you think of the new six-ball rule adopted by the league?”

“It will undeniably help the batter, and at the same time tell upon the pitcher. The higher the ball is thrown, the harder it is upon the arm. No pitcher can stand the strain, and the result will be that the arm must be kept down. Whitney, Radbourn and Galvin kept their arms up as high as they cared to last season, which is the best reason in the world for the fact that they won't throw any higher this season. They would not be able to stand the strain if they ever tried it. Then a high thrown ball is not so deceptive nor so hard to hit as a ball delivered from below the shoulder. The pitcher delivering the ball high above his shoulder will probably deliver it straight, as the curve entails too much of a strain upon the arm. In the main, therefore, this rule will gratify the public, for it will help batting and make the game more popular. The people have been crying for some time for legislation to aid the batter, and this rule is the result. It will undoubtedly make the pitcher's position harder than ever to fill, and old, cool and experienced hands will be found more effective and desirable than was the case last season.”

“Have you gave any thought to the suggestion of placing the pitcher's position two yards farther back?”

“Such a rule, if adopted, would destroy all the science there is in pitching. It will destroy the curve, and at once enable any one to fill the position, for the essential requirement would then be surely to be able to deliver a swift, straight ball. Even at the present distance between the pitcher's box and the plate, the strain upon the pitcher is much greater than any one would imagine. No curve pitcher could stand such an innovation. Besides, it is a sufficiently difficult task today for a catcher to throw a runner out at second, without adding a greater handicap to his work.”

“Do you consider the rule of the league removing all restrictions from the delivery of the pitcher advisable?”

“Indeed, I do, as the game is played today. It will make no difference in any of the league pitchers, and, as far as our association is concerned, the rule is already a dead letter. Why, last season McGinnis, Mullane and Mountain, the pitchers of the St. Louis and Columbus clubs, elevated their arms far above the lawful heights, and no umpire ever thought of enforcing the rule, and refused so to do when appealed to. … I would prefer to see the rule keeping the arm down strictly enforced, for it would give the batter a better chance.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

hit by pitch rule

Date Monday, July 28, 1884
Text

After all, the rule sending a batsman hit with the ball by the pitcher to his base seems to be working a great deal of good. It was a frequent occurrence during games before, and now it is very seldom a man is hit. St. Louis Post-Dispatch July 28, 1884

[reporting on the AA special meeting] ...the word “solidly” has been stricken out of the clause [of the rules] relating to batsmen being hit by pitchers, and hereafter to be struck at all will give a batsman his base. This is a wise change and will relieve the umpires greatly. St. Louis Post-Dispatch July 29, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Holbert goes into business

Date Thursday, February 14, 1884
Text

Holbert, catcher of the Metropolitans, has opened a laundry at One-Hundred-and-Eighteenth street and Third avenue. This is his regular business. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

holding the runner; a balk move?

Date Wednesday, September 24, 1884
Text

Murphy, the Philadelphia Club’s new pitcher, has a novel way of keeping base-runners on their bases. He is a right-handed pitcher, but when he gets a man on first base, he takes a position of a left-handed man, and by false motions forces the base-runner to hub the base; then, quick as thought, he turns completely around (to the left) using his right foot as a pivot, and delivers the ball. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Horace Phillips a theatrical advance man

Date Tuesday, July 8, 1884
Text

Horace B. Phillips, manager of the Grand Rapids Club, has signed a contract to go ahead of Harry Miner’s Comedy Four next season, commencing October 1. As manager of a base-ball nine he has no superior, and his wide acquaintance and genial manners will win for him certain success in his venture for the winter season with the “Comedy Four.” St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Horace Phillips goes to Pittsburgh

Date Friday, August 15, 1884
Text

The Directors of the Allegheny Club have secured “Hustling Horace” Phillips to take charge of the team for the balance of the season as manager. He will arrive on Monday and will probably bring three or four of the best men of the late Grand Rapids Club with him.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

how baseballs are manufactured

Date Saturday, June 14, 1884
Text

On the upper floor of the establishment sat several men with baskets of dampened chamois and buckskin clippings at their sides. Before each workman stood a stout piece of joist, in the end of which was inserted a mold, hemispherical in shape, in which the balls are formed. Taking a handful of cuttings from the basket, the workman pressed them together in his hands and then worked about the mass a few yards of strong woollen yarn. Placing the embryo ball in the mold, he pounded it into shape with a heavy flat mallet, and then wound on more yarn and gave the ball another pounding. After testing its weight on a pair of scales and its diameter with a tape measure he threw the ball into a basket and began another. When the newly-made balls are thoroughly dried they are carried to the sewing-room on the floor below, where they are to receive their covers. Forty young women sat at tables sewing on the covers of horse-hide. Grasping a ball firmly in her left hand, with her right hand one of the young women thrust a three-cornered needle through the thick pieces of the cover and drew them firmly together. A smart girl can cover two or three dozen of the best and eight dozen of the cheaper grades of balls in a day. The wages earned weekly range from $7 to $9. The balls are afterward taken to the packing-room, where the seams are smoothed down and the proper stamps are put on. The best balls are made entirely of yarn and India-rubber.

“My brother was one of the pioneers in this business,” said the manufacturer. “He was the inventor of the two-piece cover now in general use throughout the country. If my brother had only patented his invention the members of our family would not be wearing diamonds instead of bits of white glass in our shirt fronts. Ball-covers are made, almost without exception, of horse-hide, which costs $3 a side. We used to obtain our supply from John Cart, a leather dealer in the Swamp for nearly thirty-five years. We are obliged to go to Philadelphia now, there being no merchant here who keeps horse-hide leather. The capacity of our factory when we get our new molding machines in working order will be about 15,000 daily, each machine being expected to turn out 1,200 balls daily. St., quoting the New York Tribune

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

how to hire a ringer

Date Wednesday, November 12, 1884
Text

Billy Reccius, the well-known dealer in sporting goods of [Louisville] is in the habit of receiving from country clubs applications for a pitcher. Two of these clubs get up a rivalry over their respective merits, and a challenge follows. One club, in order to steal a march on the other, sends there for a pitcher. Reccius has been in the habit of sending them a young man named Henry Smith, who is quite an effective twirler, and generally succeeds in puzzling the rural sluggers.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

how to play ball

Date Wednesday, April 2, 1884
Text

“I'm no speech maker,” said Nichols [sic: probably Hugh Nicol] the little right fielder, addressing a number of little boys who had named a club after him, “but if you like I'll give you a pointer or two, and you can take 'em or leave 'em, just as you like. First, when you go to bat don't sneak up there, but pick up your club determined like, and look at the pitcher as you'd look at a mosquito which you had the dead wood on. Then when he curls the ball away up around your left ear just duck your head, look mad, and whisper, 'Oh, you sucker, you know better than to give me a good ball.' That's what you call workin' the pitcher—makin' him mad as a bull—so mad that he'll put the ball just where you say he can't put it, but where you know he's going to put it and when he puts it there smash her right in the eye. Then when you've smashed her don't stop to admire the smash, but make for first as though the devil was trying to catch hold of your coat tails. When you reach first don't stop unless you hear the captain yell: 'Hole yer first; hole it!' If he yells: “Hole it,' obey orders. Don't think you know more than him, because if you get to thinkin' that way your head will begin to swell, and all the ice in St Louis won't take down the swellin'. If you only reach first, place your arms akimbo and look at the pitcher as if though you had got there by a fluke, and was goin' to hold to her if it was the last act. If you're a runner, and not one of those tired cusses that crawl when they think they're flyin', make for your second the moment he pitches the ball, and when you get near the bag, grab hold of it and come up smilin at the umpire, as though you meant to say, 'Oh, I beat the ball about a foot, and he never touched he anyhow!' If your [sic] work it right, the umpire will sing out, 'Hole yer second!' But, fellers, if you can't run when you reach first, stay there, and thank God you have got that far. Don't try to make second, for if you do the catcher will make a blooming gillie out of you. But make out that you're a dandy on the run, and bob up and down like a bear dancing on a red hot stove. That kind of business works up the pitcher, and he'll try to catch you nappin', but instead he'll fire the ball away over the first baseman's head. Then if you can run a little bit you can get all the way round. But take care he don't catch you nappin'. If he does that the captain will call you a bum base runner, and you'll feel like clubbin' the life out of yourself.” The Philadelphia Evening Item April 2, 1884, quoting the St.

Source The Philadelphia Evening Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

illegal high deliveries

Date Wednesday, January 2, 1884
Text

[from an article by Jimmy Williams] The writer does not remembers seeing but three pitchers in the American Association last season, and he saw all of them, who did not deliver some balls in an illegal manner with the hand passing above the shoulder. The three exceptions were White and McCormick of Cincinnati and Bradley of the Athletics. Mullane, Emslie, Hecker, Mountain, Hagie and Keefe were especially high handed at times. St. Louis Post-Dispatch January 2, 1884

arguments about pitchers’ deliveries

[from an article by Jimmy Williams] Every person who has been an attendant at games of base-ball for a number of years knows that there is no one point in the game so sure to create a wrangle as for the umpire to attempt to interfere with the pitcher’s delivery. The writer never knew it to fail. It was this perhaps as much as anything else that encouraged and allowed the pitchers to transgress the rules with impunity. The reasons for it are obvious. If a pitcher is to be handicapped by a decision of the umpire, it thus may interfere seriously with the result of the game. The pitcher himself and his team will assert in the most positive manner that the umpire is wrong and is attempting to rob them of the game. If the decision is given against the home club, the audience will become excited and hoot and hiss the umpire, and the local papers will blast the umpire and the visiting club in unmeasured terms. The consequence will be a falling off in the attendance and a decrease in the interest felt in the games. If there is any one thing that is disgusting to an audience it is continual wrangling between the umpire and players over technical points. The audience come to see a game of ball played on its merits, and in almost every instance want to see the best club win. They don’t want the umpire to give the game to any body. They don’t care how the pitcher delivers the ball so long as the batsmen hit it occasionally. St. Louis Post-Dispatch January 2, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

increased supply of players and the reserve

Date Saturday, September 13, 1884
Text

Lessons can be learned constantly, and I am glad to see the problem of how to lower high salaries is being successfully solved. I do not wish to do myself too proud, but it is exactly as I said a year ago: the way to keep a market moderate, is to keep pace with the demand and furnish the supply. The reserve rule answers some excellent purposes, but it is not the legitimate manner of doing away with a difficulty. The advent of such men as Foutz, Carruthers, Mountjoy, Vinton, Emslie, Orr, Clarkson, Henry Moffet, Morris, McKean and the immense list of new talent is doing more towards protecting clubs and managers from extortion than any “close corporation” restrictions could ever do. There are but few clubs in the country who are not well provided with batteries and players, a nd their deficiencies will be easily supplied. There are, perhaps, a half dozen especial players who will obtain fancy prices, but the general run of salaries will not be an advance over the present year–probably the average will not be too high. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Indianapolis and Virginias cut out of the AA

Date Thursday, December 11, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA convention] After this came the discussion in regard to the limitation of membership to eight clubs. It was proposed that these clubs should be the Metropolitan, Brooklyn, Athletic and Baltimore in the East, and Pittsburg, Cincinnati, Louisville and St. Louis in the West. This caused a long fight, as the Virginia and Indianapolis delegates claimed that they would be at a great loss on account of the advance money which they had already laid out for players. But there was no help for them; they had to go. The convention passed a resolution which they will present to the League, asking that the players who have signed contracts with these two clubs be considered not to be engaged for the present at least. Cincinnati Enquirer December 11, 1884

The secretary of the American Base-ball Association has addressed a letter to President Young of the National League, asking the protection of the League in the matter of existing contracts by the American Association, with the Virginia and Indianapolis Clubs, which have been barred out of the Association. President Root of the Providence Association notified President Young that, inasmuch as the clubs named are not members of the American Association, which is a party to the League agreement, the Association cannot expect to receive any protection from the League. St. Louis Post-Dispatch December 15, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Indianapolis in the UA

Date Sunday, December 21, 1884
Text

The Indianapolis Club has joined the Unions, and President Lucas represented the Hoosier Capital in the meeting at St. Louis last Friday.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

indoor baseball

Date Wednesday, December 3, 1884
Text

The managers of the Institute Building, Boston, are quite enthusiastic over the prospect of indoor base ball games. The inclosure is about 100 yards long by 30 wide, amply large enough for an indoor foot ball field. The ball will be manufactured expressly for this occasion, and will be smaller than the regulation size, and the base lines will be shorted.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

indoor baseball 2

Date Tuesday, December 23, 1884
Text

Indoor base ball was tried in Boston last evening for the first time, on the asphalt surface of the Institute rink, and may be considered a success. The experiment was sufficiently satisfactory to warrant similar exhibitions in the future. Strong netting had been hung on two sides of the “field,” which prevented the ball from going among the spectators, and the playing area was 105x225. ... The ball used was a soft one, and difficulty was experienced in seeing it at first. As the game continued the light was made better, and the result was a very good exhibition. But four innings were played, owing to the lateness of the hour. Keefe’s side winning by a score of 10 to 4. Clarence Dow of Charlestown was referee. Boston Globe December 23, 1884

Tim Murnan, of the Boston Unions, representing a number of the best professional base ball players of New England, has arranged with the Boston Institute managers for a practice game of base ball on the asphalt surface in the fair building. Last week the hanging band stand, which now depends from the centre, was transferred from its forms iron supporters to the blocks and tackle of a large windlass operated from the east balcony and by means of which the entire structure can be raised to the apex of the canvas canopy.

Nettings from post to post will be stretching along the whole length of the sides, and thus protected, if the scheme works, the spectators can enjoy the novelty of a genuine ball game. The diamond will be laid lengthwise, the catcher’s position being in front of the fountain and new grand stand, which affords seating capacity for 1,000 spectators. The total seating capacity of the building is now about 6,000. The bases will be of flat sandbags, with chalked squares outlines beneath, in case of slipping. The Sporting Life December 24, 1884

Source Boston Globe
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

ineligible players

Date Wednesday, June 11, 1884
Text

The Arbitration Committee has, by its secretary, John J. Rust of Chicago, served notice upon all National agreement clubs–seventy in all–that the following players have made themselves forever ineligible to play in or against any national agreement club, or club which desires recognition from national agreement clubs, viz:

George W. Bradley, reserved by the Athletics.

Fred Dunlap and Hugh Daly, reserved by the Clevelands.

George Shaffer, reserved by the Buffalos.

John Gleanson and “Buck” Weaver, reserved by the Louisvilles.

Emil Gross, reserved by the Philadelphias.

These players are as dead to the national agreement clubs now as if they did not exist. They can never be reinstated. They have no hope except in the Union Association. The notice is official and goes on record. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

interference to break up a double play

Date Tuesday, August 12, 1884
Text

[Buffalo vs. Chicago 8/11/1884] ...Gore hit safe and then Kelly hit to Richardson at second, Gore was put out, but held Richardson and interfered with his fielding the ball to first. Both runners were decided out and then Capt. Anson refused to continue the game. After considerable bickering the teams left the field, the crowd howling, hooting and hissing at them. Finally an agreement was entered into, by which the game was continued, and it was a tie at the end of the ninth inning, the score standing 6 to 6. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

intimidating the umpire; time of game

Date Sunday, July 13, 1884
Text

[Brooklyn vs. St. Louis 7/12/1884] [Patrick McGee, a substitute umpire] Nearly every time he rendered a decision the players of both nines would run up to him, gesticulate wildly before his face and kick most vigorously. In fact there was more kicking than ball playing done, which accounts for the fact that it required only two hours and thirty minutes to complete the game. Green, the short stop of the Brooklyn club, carried off the kicking honors, having kicked louder and longer than any other man on the field. The players “worked” the unfortunate umpire unmercifully, frequently getting him to call strikes on balls which did not come within two feet of the plate, or to call balls that were properly strikes bad balls. After the game the crowd jumped over into the field, and the private watchmen of the park thinking they were going to mob McGee surrounded him. The precaution was unnecessary, as the crowd were merely gratifying their morbid curiosity, and after scrutinizing the umpire closely from head to foot as they would a dime museum wonder departed in peace. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Iron and Oil League disbands

Date Saturday, August 9, 1884
Text

Secretary Johnston officially announces to-night [8/8] that the Iron and Oil League of base-ball clubs has collapsed. Most of the clubs will disband.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Jacob Morse's reporter positions

Date Wednesday, September 10, 1884
Text

J. C. Morse, the new business manager of the Boston Unions, is a young lawyer and journalist of marked ability. He is the base ball editor of the Sunday Courier, bicycle editor of the Boston Herald, Boston correspondent of the Clipper and was the compiler of Wright & Ditson’s Base Ball Guide.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Jimmy Williams advocates for ERA

Date Saturday, February 23, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Jimmy Williams] I have held for years that the only true criterion of a pitcher’s ability was the percentage of earned runs made off his delivery to the number of times at the bat of his opponents. The percentage of base hits would not do, as very frequently hits are made after chances for putting the side out are offered and refused. Such hits certainly should not be charged against the pitcher’s delivery, while they must be given, because they enter into the record of the batter, who is entitled to credit for every hit he makes, no matter at what stage of the game or play. The percentage then of runs actually earned by safe hits off a pitcher shows as near as figures can his effectiveness. Last year I prepared a pitchers’ table based upon this principle, and this year I have done the same. This work was done in my capacity as secretary of the American Association, and was made p from the official scores of the championship games, and will be published in the official book with other statistic of the season. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Jimmy Williams resigns as St. Louis manager

Date Friday, September 5, 1884
Text

Manager Williams has been restive and uneasy for a long time past, owing to the condition of affairs, and yesterday his resignation was handed to Mr. Von der Ahe, and it was promptly accepted. Mr. Williams leaves the club on the best of terms with his associates and they appreciate his many excellent qualities; at the same time an iron hand is needed at the helm just now, and Mr. Williams’ good nature and leniency were not exactly the qualities to bring order out of chaos and to put the Browns on a winning basis. This, no doubt, he appreciated, hence his resignation. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Jimmy Williams working for the Republicans

Date Saturday, September 20, 1884
Text

Ex-Manager Jas. A. Williams of St. Louis is temporarily clerking in the Republican campaign headquarters in Columbus. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Kansas City Unions plans

Date Sunday, November 2, 1884
Text

Mr. Ted J. Sullivan, manager of the Kansas City Union team, was in the city yesterday. He remained here all day and left in the evening for the East. Ted's mission in this part of the country is in the interest of his club, and he is working hard to get together a team that will give Kansas City a good place in the race for the championship of the association next season. Yesterday while en route to this city he met Larry McKeown, of the Indianapolis Club, at the depot, and after half an hour's conversation induced the mainstay of the Hoosier Capital team to affix his signature to play with him next season. He has been negotiating with several strong Eastern players, and he is now going East to clinch contracts already partially made. Besides McKeown hie has signed Kid Baldwin, Decker, Sweeney and two others. At St. Louis he offered Von der Ahe $500 to release McGinnis, but “Hurricane Chris” would not have it that way, as he said he had no use for the Union Association.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Kansas City finances

Date Wednesday, November 12, 1884
Text

[The Kansas City Union Club] cleared, after paying all salaries and other obligations incurred, over $6,000, and the indications are that next season, with a stronger team, the club will do still better.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

keep inside the pitcher's box

Date Friday, November 21, 1884
Text

[reporting on the NL meeting] The most important change made in the rules was that governing the pitcher's position. The new rule defining the delivery of a fair ball is: “A fair ball is a ball delivered by the pitcher while standing wholly within the lines of his position and with both feet touching the ground while making any one of the series of motions he is accustomed to make in delivering the ball to the bat.” This will do away with all of the forward steps usually made by swift pitchers, by which they step in front of the line of their position. It will not affect the strategic pitchers at all, but it is a serious detriment to the swift overhand throwers, like Whitney and others.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Keystone Club disbands

Date Friday, August 8, 1884
Text

The Keystone Club of this city Philadelphia, a member of the Union Association, disbanded to-night [8/7] after its game with the Bostons because of a lack of financial support. The club has been a losing investment from the start. The gate receipts in this city, except during Fourth of July week, barely paid the %86 guarantee to visiting clubs. Thomas J. Pratt, backer of the club, has lost heavily. Clements and Hoover have signed with the Philadelphia League Club, Blakely goes with Providence. Kenzil will probably join the Virginia nine. Two weeks' back pay or about $700 is due the players. The stockholders will hold a meeting in a few days. Cincinnati Enquirer August 8, 1884

The event was not unexpected, as the club lost money from the start, the gate receipts in this city, except during Fourth of July week, barely paying the $75 guarantee paid the visiting clubs. In other cities the club got only the guarantee, which barely pays the traveling expenses, which, with the wide circuit being covered, were very heavy. When the club returned from its long Western trip, the backers hoped that the absence of the other clubs from the city would redound to the advantage of their club, and that they would be able to recoup at least a portion of the losses, which are placed at over $10,000. But their expectations were not realized, and sooner than take another trip abroad as called for by the schedule, the management concluded to stop right there and then. The Sporting Life August 13, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Larry Corcoran under contract all along

Date Monday, January 7, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Spalding] “Corcoran has signed a regular contract, and will play with the Chicago League Club next season; that is final and determined. You see, we have a special rule in the League constitution which compels a player to sign a regular League contract within thirty days of having accepted an offer from a club by mail or telegraph. Corcoran’s time was up yesterday, and if he had not signed he would have certainly been expelled. You see his case was not under the reserve rule at all, but under an accepted offer, which was valid, and under which he could have been held by common law.” St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

leagues accepted into the National Agreement

Date Sunday, February 24, 1884
Text

The Eastern League has been admitted to membership with the National League, Northwestern League and American Association. The Ohio State League, the Western League and the Ohio Valley Base Ball Association have applied for membership, and Secretary Caylor says they will get it. The Philadelphia Sunday Item February 24, 1884

The Keystone Base Ball Association of Pennsylvania has been admitted to the national agreement. This will debar the Chester Club from playing with the Union Association, which that team has arranged to do. The Philadelphia Sunday Item March 9, 1884

Source Philadelphia Sunday Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

left-handed catcher at a disadvantage; 'catcher's box'

Date Sunday, July 13, 1884
Text

[Baltimore vs. Cincinnati 7/12/1884] Trot, his catcher, was not up to his usual standard either, and played a very slovenly game. The catcher's box is a poor place for a left-handed thrower, as was shown in yesterday's game. For a Cincinnati player to reach first was nearly equivalent to going to third.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

loaning players

Date Saturday, July 5, 1884
Text

This thing of one club lending players to another is a new wrinkle, and it strikes us that it is in violation of the national agreement, else what is to prevent the New Yorks from borrowing Keefe and Holbert from the Metropolitans? The Buffalos, however, are letting Hagan play with the Minneapolis Club on condition that he shall be on hand when the Buffalos want him. If this is regular it will be of invaluable benefit to the Metropolitan Exhibition Company.

Source National Police Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

local semi-pros on the Cincinnati Reserve team

Date Sunday, February 17, 1884
Text

The Cincinnati American reserve team is, with one or two exceptions, a combination of last year's Shamrock and Kenton Clubs. The list includes several good men.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Louisville club finances

Date Sunday, March 9, 1884
Text

The Eclipse club of Louisville, Ky., held a lively meeting last week. The treasurer’s report showed a net less of $1,044.95 for the past season. The expenses of the club this season will be about $7,500 more than last year. The capital stock of the club was increased to $5,000 and a new board of directors were elected. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Lucas denies paying Von der Ahe

Date Saturday, March 29, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Henry Lucas, responding to an interview of George Mills, secretary of the St. Louis AA Club] “How about the circumstances under which Mr. Von der Ahe gave his consent to your admission to the league?”

“He has removed the pledge of secrecy I gave him on this score to save his pride, by having his secretary attempt to state the terms of our agreement. Mr. Von der Ahe refused all entreaties to give his consent until he was warned by his associates in the American association, that there would be war if he did not yield. He then tried to dicker with me, and wanted me to pay him $4,000 for the privilege to run my club here. I flatly refused. He then came down in his terms, but I refused to make any trade with him. He then unconditionally surrendered, although he tried to have the impression go out that I had acceded to his terms.” (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Lucas denies rumor he will join the NL

Date Sunday, December 21, 1884
Text

To the writer, who was in St. Louis the other day, Mr. Lucas denied emphatically that the St. Louis Union Club would join the League. He is very enthusiastic over the present outlook for the Union Association next season, and predicts a great year.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Lucas threatens to go after players under contract

Date Monday, June 23, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Henry Lucas] “Yes, sir,” said Mr. Henry Lucas to a Post-Dispatch reporter who called to see him regarding the report that Quinn, the first-baseman of the S. Louis Unions, had been tempted to forswear his allegiance to the Union organization and join the Washington Associaiton Club, “Quinn was approached by a person representing Mr. Hollingshead, the manager of the Washington Association Club, who offered him $150 a month to join that club. Quinn promptly told the person that he would not break his contract under any circumstances and that $500 would not prove a temptation. This was not the first time Quinn has been approached since the resignation of Mr. Sullivan. Shortly after that occurred he received a letter from Stillwater, Minn., offering him a position at $125 a month in the Northwestern League Club there, and telling him that now that Sullivan had given up his position he (Quinn) would have such a hard time of it that it would be politic of him to get out. Quinn wrote back that he had been treated better since Sullivan left the club than before and that he would not break his contract under any circumstances.”

...

“Why don’t you retaliate?”

“The Union Association holds a special meeting at Baltimore July 1, to arrange the schedule, and I intend to bring before it a proposition to go into the business of breaking contracts. This is not intended as a bluff, but in real earnest. Let me tell you that I can, any day I like, secure the best battery of the American Association. I won’t mention names, but there are just what I describe them, and if I care to have them I can get them to-morrow. Besides them I know of at least eight first-class players of the other association whom I can get immediately for the asking. Antoher thing, let me tell you that the Union Association next year will have among its players fully thirty of the very best men at present engaged in the other associations.”

...

“Do you think that the Union Association will agree to your proposition to go into the contract-breaking business?”

“I am the Union Association. Whatever I do is all right. Recently when I let the Altoona Club go, and took in the Kansas City Club, the Association telegraphed to me “Well done good and faithful servant.” Yes, sir, the Association will be with me in what I consider to be not only a justifiable, but under the circumstances, an unfavorable measure of retaliation against the attaches of the other associations.” St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Lucas woos Indianapolis

Date Thursday, November 27, 1884
Text

President Lucas, of the Union Base-ball League, spent several days in this city [Indianapolis[, returning to St. Louis this evening [11/26]. While here he advised base-ball people that it was to their advantage to abandon the American Association and join the Union, and do so at once. He claimed to have information that Indianapolis would be dropped from the list of American teams, and that the membership would be limited to eight clubs, and he asserted that St. Louis, Cincinnati and the older Eastern organizations had declared themselves opposed to the retention of Indianapolis and Virginia, realizing it would be impossible to form a schedule with ten clubs. He offered to bet $150 to $50 that Indianapolis would be excluded.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Lucas's expectations of signing the Cleveland players

Date Saturday, March 29, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Henry Lucas] The agreement was drawn up by Mr. Howe of that club [Cleveland], and does contain the expression: ‘It is not intended hereby to sell any buildings belonging to said Cleveland Base Ball association, or transfer any players.’ But before it was drawn it was agreed between us that I was to have the first chance at the players, and Mr. Howe promised to furnish me a list of their addresses and all the needful information. He knew I was not paying the sum named in the contract for the empty consideration of the Cleveland resignation, for that was worth nothing to me, as Mr. Howe told me Cleveland would resign whether I signed the agreement or not. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

making an example of UA players

Date Wednesday, January 2, 1884
Text

[from an interview of A. G. Mills] As for the players coaxed away from the League [by the UA], he thought their loss would be positively beneficial, as they could be made an example of for the benefit of the great mass of players. He also thinks that should be Union Association live a year it will reduce the salaries of the players below the League standard, as the players being barred from League and American Association circles could get no employment elsewhere and would be even more completely at the mercy of their employers than players under the reserve rule.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

marching in formation onto the field

Date Monday, July 14, 1884
Text

The military maneuvers of the Baltimore team yesterday [in Cincinnati] were very fine. The members of the team, after getting out of the carriages over by the gate in the far left center field corner, formed in a platoon and marched across the field to the inspiring strains of a lively march by the Cincinnati Orchestra. Each player carried an individual bat-bag and marched with soldierly bearing. The spectators cheered loudly.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

marketing games

Date Sunday, May 18, 1884
Text

One of the ways of advertising the St. Louis American games is a boy attired in a player's suit on horseback carrying a banner through the streets of the city.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Metropolitan Club finances 2

Date Wednesday, September 17, 1884
Text

The utter failure of Mutrie’s dumping ground has been a serious loss to the Metropolitan Exhibition Company. In fact they have not made the money they expected to make since their bonanza year of 1882, when they had a cheap team and made over $40,000. The company undertook too much when it attempted to run two clubs for two different association championships., quoting an unidentified Brooklyn paper

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Mills a Republican delegate

Date Wednesday, June 18, 1884
Text

President A. G. Mills, of the League, and Chairman of the Arbitration Committee, was a delegate to the Republican Convention at Chicago.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Mills on the Mullane case

Date Wednesday, December 10, 1884
Text

[from a letter from A. G. Mills dated 11/21] I have always held that in nine cases out of ten where a player has signed two contract, or has committed some irregularity in connection with making an engagement for his services, the fault is directly traceable to the club managers or officials upon whose representations the player is persuaded to make an engagement for services. Now, in this case, it appears he made a promise to the St. Louis Club, induced thereto by certain representations made by that club, and he also made a promise to the Cincinnati Club, induced thereto by certain representations made thereto by that club. If the representations made on behalf of the St. Louis Club were justified by the state of the laws governing players’ engagements which are binding upon that club, then his contract with the St. Louis Club is binding, and that with the Cincinnati is illegal; and, of course, the converse of this proposition is true–i.e., if the representations made by the Cincinnati Club, upon which he was induced to contract with that club, were within the letter of the law governing players’ engagements, which are binding upon that club, then his contract with the Cincinnati Club is binding and legal, and any other engagements or promises made upon the representations not justified by the laws, are absolutely null and void.

Now, if it be true that his engagement with St. Louis was made at a time when he was ineligible to make such an engagement under the rules, such engagement is absolutely null and void, and the fault, if any there be, is manifestly chargeable to the club which persuaded the player to make an unlawful engagement; and, of course, if the Cincinnati Club signed him after he became eligible, and before he had signed with any other club after thus becoming eligible, it is clear that such is alone valid and binding, and must be respected by all clubs and associations identified with the National Agreement.

Now, I do not see any room for discussion over so plain a proposition as this, and yet it is physically possible for an association, where a club has persuaded a player to make an illegal engagement, to punish the player instead of the club that has committed the offense. Yet I am not willing to believe that the American Association would stultify itself in any such way, or that I could write to any gentlemen identified with that association urging him to vindicate the laws as they stand, without seeming to impugn either his intelligence or good faith to such laws.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

minimum outfield fence distance

Date Wednesday, November 26, 1884
Text

[reporting on the NL annual meeting] No home run can be made on a ball hit over a fence less than 210 feet from the home base, and if the fence is not the required distance the base-runner is entitled to only two bases. This rule was so amended as to legislate the Chicago right-field fence iniquity out of existence. With a fence only 196 feet from the plate that team was enabled to make about 127 home runs this season to the manifest advantage of the club and individual averages.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

minor league salaries

Date Wednesday, May 7, 1884
Text

The highest salary paid to any one player by the Peoria team is $1000. The others range from $700 to $900.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Mullane a free agent; salary

Date Friday, February 8, 1884
Text

Information of a private nature received from the officers of the Toledo Club states that Mullane's salary will be $2,600, and this is what he has agreed to sign for, as his contract can not be legally made until ten days after the date of his release. Mullane is virtually a free man, and it is possible that Manager Sullivan, who has gone to look after him, may convince him that it will be better for him to stick to his Lucas contract. In this case Mullane stands a man released from reserve, and the original intention of the St. Louis Club to use no compulsion whatever in retaining its men will be carried out. So far as the home club is concerned, Mullane is free to sign in Philadelphia, Cincinnati, or to carry out his contract with the Lucas club. Cincinnati Enquirer February 8, 1884, quoting the St.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Mullane backs out of St. Louis deal, is suspended

Date Wednesday, December 10, 1884
Text

[reporting on the meeting of the AA Directors 12/10] Tony Mullane was by a unanimous vote of the Board suspended for the season of 1885, and ordered to pay back $1,000 of the money he had received from the Cincinnati Club. It will be remembered that Mullane was one of several players whose release was secured from the Toledo Club by President Von der Ahe of St. Louis at the close of the present season. Mullane bound himself by oath to play with St. Louis; but, on the morning of the eleventh day after his release was granted, and within an hour after he was eligible to sign, he contracted with O. P. Caylor of the Cincinnati Americans at a salary of $5,000, $2,000 of which was paid as advance money. He is ordered by the directors to return half of this money. As soon as Mullane’s expulsion was announced, Caylor announced that his club would withdraw from the American Association, and would apply for admission to the League. St. Louis Post-Dispatch December 10, 1884

[reporting on the meeting of the AA Directors 12/10] The nature of the charge made against Mullane and the penalty inflicted admit by inference from their construction that he had not violated any base ball law, but that he had been guilty of “conduct prejudicial to the interests of the base ball profession.” The Sporting Life December 17, 1884

Manager Von der Ahe of St. Louis, in the directors’ meeting had a difference with Caylor of Cincinnati, and called the latter a liar, which was quietly acquiesced in by Mr. Carylor. Congressman O’Neill, counsel for the Browns, denounced both Mullane and Caylor, and said that Caylor, as a lawyer, was a disgrace both the bar and to base-ball. Mullane takes his suspension very quietly and says he will work around the Cincinnati grounds at the same salary he would receive as a player. Caylor apologized for his threatened resignation, and the Cincinnati Club will remain in the association. St. Louis Post-Dispatch December 11, 1884

[from an interview of Von der Ahe] Mr. Von der Ahe gives a very humorous account of John J. O’Neill’s controversy with Caylor on the Mullane case, and describes graphically how the Congressman did the Cincinnati lawyer up. John said, “If they allow such men as you to practice in Ohio, I am sorry for Ohio.” After the affair was over Caylor approached O’Neill and said: “Of course we lawyers understand the use of strong language in controversy, and there is no bad feeling.” “None whatever,” was the reply. “I expressed my opinion of you, and it stands.” St. Louis Post-Dispatch December 17, 1884

Each and every one of the base-ball men said to-day that it was the best thing the association had ever done. Mullane himself said that he did not consider it fair that he should have been suspended while others as bad as he went free, but then he did not care, as he could have a summer off. When told that he would get a bad name by such work, he said he was not working for a name, it was money he wanted.

The Cincinnati Club has arranged to have Mullane work around the grounds for them at the salary agreed upon, but the $1,000 must be paid back. Mullane does not seem to understand the position in which he has been placed. Cincinnati Enquirer December 11, 1884

[reporting on the meeting of the AA Directors 12/10] Although it was not incorporated in the resolution it was made a condition by the general consent of the Board that Mr. Mullane should be eligible to play in ‘86 only with the Cincinnati Club. No formal charges in connection with this matter were made against the St. Louis or Cincinnati clubs on account of their losses in the transaction, which acted in itself in the nature of a fine... The Sporting Life December 17, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Mullane jumps

Date Wednesday, November 5, 1884
Text

...When it had been decided by the directors that the Toledo Club would disband, the reserved players, Mullane, Barkley, Morton, Welch and Poorman were asked where they preferred to go, and they with unanimous voice said to St. Louis, the indicated their preference over either Cincinnati and Louisville. St. Louis asked the players to name their price, which they did, and which proved satisfactory, Mullane receiving $3,500 for the season. As a consequence the Toldo directors masde arrangements to release the reserves in the place of their choice, and each player, including Mullane, went before an officer and made oath that he would sign with St. Louis. The ten days which must intervene before players can sign with one club after they are released by another expired last night at twelve o'clock. Arrangements had been made for the Toledo boys to complete their contract, which Barkley, Morton and Welch did by signing this morning about one o'clock [sic]. Poorman, it seems, was finally refused by St. Louis, and was not expected to be on hand; but were was Mullane? He was absent, and may be accounted for as follows: There arrived in Toledo some time yesterday President Stern, of the Cincinnati Club. During the evening he was in conference with Mullane, and what for can be naturally imagined.

Late in the evening Mullane, who was with the rest of the boys, complained of being tired, and said he wanted to go and take a rest. This he seems to have done, as he didn't show up again, and after midnight signed a contract to joint the Cincinnatis, it is understood, for $5,000, for which place he left with Stern this morning. President Colburn, of the Toledo Club, was asked what effect Mullane jumping his contract would have on their contract with St. Louis. He replied, “Nothing whatever. They were to receive so much for each player, and were paid one-half the contract price down.” He said all the Toledo directors would lose would be half of what they were to receive for the release of Mullane. He seemed greatly taken down that Mullane should make such a break; and showed evidence of disgust. He said that Mullane had been up to see him a short time, and talked about what a strong club St. Louis would have, and bade him good-by. Fifteen hundred dollars was, however, evidently too strong a temptation for Tony, and he could not resist. Cincinnati Enquirer November 5, 1884 [See also Missouri Republican 11/9/84, 11/12/84, 11/23/84.]

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Mullane to Toledo; Von der Ahe refuses to enforce the reserve?

Date Friday, February 1, 1884
Text

It is a matter tolerably well known that Tony Mullane had weakened somewhat on his contract with the Lucas Club some time since, and several of his friends, either authoritatively or in his interests, went to President Von der Ahe, and to others officers of the St. Louis Club, and made a statement that Mullane was half anxious to secure his reinstatement in the St. Louis Club. Mr. Von der Ahe’s reply was consistent: that he had given all his players their own free will regarding their engagements for1884, and Mullane had see fit to sign with Mr. Lucas. It was a perfectly straight transaction, and, although Mullane was on the reserve list, that, so far as the St. Louis Club was concerned, would not interfere with him in any way, shape or manner; he used his own free will in doing as he did, and, the reserve rule to the contrary, probably had a perfect right to do as he did.

For a long time the Toledo Club has been casting about regarding a new pitcher, and as Erie, where Mullane is at home and winters, is comparatively accessible and convenient, accordingly Morton, manager of the Toledo Club, having heard that Tony was dissatisfied with his Lucas contract, ran over to see him. It was a long time getting to the point, but finally Tony was talked into a promise to pitch for Toledo next year, in case he could get released from reserve in St. Louis. As the St. Louis Club had no desire to put any restriction upon his movements in any way, shape or manner, as was consistent with its stand regarding the reserve rule, the release was sent at once... St. Louis Post-Dispatch February 1, 1884

Mr. Von der Ahe states that he always told Mullane and all his players that he would never enforce the reserve rule against them, and that they were free to go where they pleased. This does not tally very well with the statements of the players. They claim that Mr. Von der Ahe did use threats to hold them. He attempted to hold Mullane by threatening to expel him if he signed with Lucas, and the latter would also have signed both Deasly and Billy Gleason had it not been that Mr. Von der Ahe frightened them with threats. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican February 2, 1884

[a statement from Mullane, from the Cleveland Herald] Yes, I have signed with Toledo, and will play ball there next season. I have written to Mr. Lucas, telling him why I did so. I do not believe that the Union Association can live out the season, and I was fearful of being blacklisted. I did not go to Mr. Lucas and offer to sign. I was approached, and after persuasion, signed with the Unions. But it is all over now, and I shall play good ball for Toledo. St. Louis Post-Dispatch February 6, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Mullane's offenses

Date Sunday, November 30, 1884
Text

Great stress has been laid on the fact that Mullane has violated no base-ball law, as regulated by the American Association rules, and in consequence he can not be regularly blacklisted. Now, the Eastern as well as Western clubs, and in fact any person endowed with even ordinary intelligence, will admit both of these facts. They know just as well as does the more or less scrupulous Secretary of the Cincinnati Club, the wide difference between a lie and a prevarication, and a theft and a breach of trust. They recognize equally as clearly as the Secretary of the Cincinnati Club how some crimes come within the pale of the law, and how others that in their course wreck far greater evil fail to fall under the hand of justice. Mullane has broken none of the stereotypes rules of the American Association, but he has done far worse. He has broken his work, even his oath, not once, but repeatedly.

He has proved himself treacherous, unscrupulous and untrustworthy o more than one occasion, and finally he has done more to cast suspicion on base-ball as a game, and his association in particular, than any player ever in its lists—not excepting drunkards, game throwers and gamblers. The association very properly feel that he has worked sufficient harm to warrant his removal, but he won't be black-listed. Up to this point the more or less significant secretary of the Cincinnati Club is perfectly correct. What they w ill do will be to circulate a petition, setting forth the details of the crooked transaction and declaring Mullane as ineligible to play with or against any club in that association, and binding each other never to hire the said Mullane. This can be done, and from present outlook sufficient signatures will be obtained to force the Cincinnati Club to give up its ill-gotten gains—all protestations of its more or less immaculate secretary notwithstanding.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

multi-year contract

Date Sunday, January 13, 1884
Text

Welch has signed a two-year contract with the New York club.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

NL President's salary

Date Wednesday, November 26, 1884
Text

[reporting on the NL annual meeting] Secretary N. E. Young was then unanimously elected to succeed Mr. Mills, the offices of president and secretary being consolidated. Mr. Young will discharge the duties of both positions. He was also made custodian of the League funds, the office of treasurer being abolished. Mr. Mills’ salary was $4,000; Mr. Young’s was not fixed.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

NL denies making a peace overture to the UA

Date Wednesday, October 1, 1884
Text

[from a letter from A. G. Mills] In view of recently published statements, I desire to say to all concerned...that the National League has never made “overtures looking to a reconciliation with and recognition of the Union Association,” and never will; that the Neation League does not contemplate admitting the St. Louis and Cincinnati Union Clubs, or either of them, to its membership; and that “Mr. A. Spalding” is not, and never has been in favor of so monstrous a scheme...

Source The Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

NW League pilfers from the UA

Date Monday, May 26, 1884
Text

Manager Hengle of the Chicago Unions is justly indignant over the attempt of the Northwestern League clubs to seduce his players. Last week the St. Paul Club, thorough their manager, John Hunter, induced Billy Foley, the third baseman of the Chicago Unions, to jump his contract and joint them. He left, and played with the St. Paul team ...in Terre Haute. He was promised $300 a month more. The Unions have also have five other men approached by the St. Paul Club, it is said, among them being Kreig, the catcher. It will hardly pay any respectable player to jump his contract, as the club that gets him never has a good opinion of him as a man afterward. Manager Hengle says he wants to deny the story that he is to desert the club. St., quoting the Chicago Times

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

NWL Fort Wayne disbands

Date Tuesday, August 5, 1884
Text

The directors of the Fort Wayne Ball Club met to-day and disbanded the club, on account of being unable to pay up back salaries, which the players claim amount to $900, while the management insists that it is materially less than that amount. However, the boys are at liberty now, and the following players are open for engagements...

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Nick Young's day job

Date Wednesday, November 19, 1884
Text

If Nick Young is elected president of the National League he will resign his position in the Auditing Department at Washington and devote his whole time to the combined duties of president and secretary.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

no designated reserve team in Philadelphia

Date Tuesday, March 25, 1884
Text

Manager Wright of the Philadelphia is confident that his plan will bring out all the skill there is in his men. In speaking of the two colors of shirts to be worn he says: I want it understood that there is to be no “reserve” team in the Philadelphia Club. There will be two nines, which, according to the color of shirt worn, will be styles ‘Whites’ and ‘Reds.’ My idea is that one of these teams will be about as good as the other and there will be no regular place on the team for any man of either ‘Whites’ or “Reds.’ In playing games with outside clubs, for example, when the club is playing League games out of town, the nine that will play will be as strong a playing team as that which on the same day contests with the League club. The best men I can pick out of the twenty-three will, of course, be oftenest on the winning nine. But I shall have no ‘reserve’ nine.” St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

no reserve team in Pittsburgh

Date Monday, March 31, 1884
Text

There is to be no second nine in the Allegheny Base-ball Club. Every man we have hired belongs to the Allegheny Club, and they will all have an equal chance to be put forward, and the most capable man will be given the position. I intend to divide men up as evenly as can, making two nines, and playing one against the other through April. At the end of that time it will be pretty clear who are going to do the playing this season. The best men, of course, will be taken to contest for the American Association championship when it begins in May. I have great confidence in some of our new players. They are developing well, and if trainer Smith tells me aright, there will be more activity in the field and in base running among our players this season, a thing we have been very deficient in heretofore. We hope to make a good showing, but our ability to play ball can be tested better by the 1 st of May., quoting Denny McKnight

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Nolan keeping sober

Date Sunday, September 28, 1884
Text

The only Nolan, who has steadily lived up to his resolution not to touch intoxicants this season, and in consequence has been pitching the same great game of ball that made him famous when with the Buckeyes, of Columbus, Ohio, is still without an engagement. The rumor that he had signed with Harry Wright's team after the Wilmingtons disbanded is without foundation. The “Only” has behaved himself like a gentleman this year, and deserves encouragement.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Nolan running a saloon

Date Wednesday, February 27, 1884
Text

The “only” Nolan is running a saloon in Paterson, N.J., which is a congenial business for the “only.” He wants to play ball again this season. It is said he as signed the pledge.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

one of the Louisville four playing under an assumed name

Date Friday, September 5, 1884
Text

Al. Nichols, who was expelled from the Louisville Club for proved “crookedness” in 1877, has been playing in the Franklin Club of Brooklyn under an assumed name. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

opinions on overhand pitching

Date Wednesday, January 2, 1884
Text

George Wright, the veteran, has been interviewed for his views on the action of the League and Association in regard to the pitchers. George's opinion, summed up, is that it will work the mischief not only with the batting but with the catchers. “Why,” said he, 'it will break them all up. No catcher can stand it. The batting should have been favored, but, instead of this, the League has actually restricted it, and the game will be more scientific than ever, which has come to mean little short of no chance to hit the ball and a large number of strike-outs.”

[from an interview of Alonzo Knight] In regard to the rule concerning League pitchers, he said that he did not think it would make much difference in the batting. If the catchers can stand it the batsmen can. Pitchers won't be able to use the tremendous pace that is being talked of, for the catchers will give out and they will have to let up. But at the end of the season, said he, the American Association clubs will not stand the gost of a show with the League rules, for the pitching of the former will come very easy to the League players after facing the unrestricted fire of their own pitchers.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

outlawing the two-step delivery

Date Wednesday, November 26, 1884
Text

[reporting on the NL annual meeting] Rule 27 requires the pitcher to have both feet touching the ground while making any of the series of motions made by him in pitching. This stops the running throw, and in a measure will check the speed of pitching, while the height of the arm in delivery is left unsaid.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

outside clubs playing exhibitions with the UA

Date Wednesday, August 20, 1884
Text

The back of the tripartite agreement is broken. Both the Union Pacific and Evansville Clubs will hereafter play exhibition games with Union Association clubs. Other clubs will follow their example.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

overhand deliveries in the AA

Date Sunday, August 17, 1884
Text

The law which prohibits overthrowing in the delivery of the ball to the bat is virtually a dead letter in the American Association. There are any number of pitchers who deliver the ball illegally in games every day, and it is seldom indeed that umpires interfere.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

overrunning the bases

Date Wednesday, November 5, 1884
Text

There seems to be a well-founded objection to permitting base-runners to return to base which they have over-run, although it may be urged that it will reduce the number of accidents arising from sliding and spiking base guardians. By permitting runners to return to the bag the game is relieved of one of its most interesting features in the prevention of base-stealing by back-stops in concert with the basemen, who very frequently display their cleverness and agility in retiring fleet runners, who have miscalculated the location of the bag, and match their dexterity and ingenuity against that of the base-protector in seeking to return to the goal. The runner is now permitted to overrun the first bag, which is a wise provision, but in the circuit of the second and third bases he should be compelled, as at present, to follow the base line and run his chances of retirement through sharp fielding or his inattention.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

ownership of the Cincinnati Club

Date Wednesday, February 13, 1884
Text

The Cincinnati Club is not a corporation, but a partnership controlled by three well-known young citizens of Cincinnati, namely: A. S. Stern, of the wholesale clothing house of Rindskoff, Stern, Lauer & Co.; Louis Kramer, of the law firm of Long, Kramer & Kramer, one of the most influential in the city; and last though not least, City Treasurer George L. Herancourt, as popular a young man as the city contains. Each of these gentlemen is wealthy enough in his own right to run the club and pay all expenses.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

ownership of the Cincinnati Club 2

Date Sunday, October 26, 1884
Text

The announcement was made several weeks ago in the Enquirer that a change would be made in the directory of the Cincinnati American Club at an early date. It took place last week. President Stern and Vice-President Kramer have sold out their stock to George Herancourt, the brewer, who thus controls the club and its affairs. It is the purpose of the latter to make a joint stock company of the club with a capital stock of $40,000. Cincinnati Enquirer October 26, 1884

Mr. Kramer was compelled to do this on account of his law practice and the importance attaching to the new firm just organized. Mr. Stern was offered such a handsome inducement to dispose of his interest that he accepted. ... Mr. Stern will be one of the new stockholders, and he and Mr. Herancourt will continue to conduct the club affairs on the same highly successful plan that has marked the three years of the club’s past existence. The Sporting Life October 29, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Philadelphia Athletics attendance

Date Monday, January 14, 1884
Text

On looking over the official score book of the Athletic club to-day7, I found that the seven games played here Philadelphia by the Athletic and Cincinnati clubs attracted 62,000 paying admissions, and that the receipts of the games netted the Athletics about $20,000. Wonder if this record has ever been equaled before in baseball? St., quoting the Cincinnati Commercial-Gazette

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pitch framing

Date Wednesday, August 6, 1884
Text

[from an interview of William McLean] ...such catchers as Nava and Buck Ewing are in the habit of taking a ball from away out and quickly bringing it down in front of them as though it had come straight over the bag, and kicking when we call a ball on them. I tell you, ball players are up to all sorts of tricks, and nothing but the closest watch will keep us from being beaten by them. St., also The Sporting Life 8/6/1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pitcher covering home on a passed ball; Billy McLean loses it

Date Saturday, October 4, 1884
Text

Billy McLean got up on his high horse while the Chicagos were playing in Philadelphia, and showed his mettle in a spirited manner. Pfeffer ran in from second and scored on a passed ball. Vinton covered the plate, and when the ball was thrown to him he made a dab, but did not touch Pfeffer. McLean said “Not out,” and Vinton walked away with a shrug and a toss of his head which led the spectators to believe that McLean was not giving them a square deal. The crowd hissed and the ex-pugilist became wroth, and, rushing down to the pitcher's box he took Vinton by the nape of the neck and dragged him up to the home plate, where he made him acknowledge that he did not touch Pfeffer. McLean then faced the assemblage, and, snapping his fingers at them, said “Oh, you're no good.

Source National Police Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pitcher holding back for a poor catcher

Date Sunday, May 18, 1884
Text

[Baltimore vs. St. Louis (Union) 5/17/1884] Seery was painfully unequal to the task of holding Sweeney, and the latter could not let himself out. Two or three times he attempted to, but Seery could not hold him and he had to pitch slow. The result was very disastrous, for the home team got on to his easy balls and knocked them all over the field. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pitcher's box too small

Date Thursday, September 18, 1884
Text

It is probable that the pitcher of 1885 will have a foot more room. Nearly all of them find the box too small as it is. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pitchers stepping outside the box

Date Tuesday, October 14, 1884
Text

It hardly comes with good grace for Mr. Caylor to prate on “fixing” the pitcher’s box for such pitchers as Heck and Foutz, whom he singles out as special subjects for his ranting. There is no more flagrant box-jumper than Caylor’s little Billy Mountjoy, whose double-son-and-dance-act prior to the delivery of the ball brings him at least a foot out of the box. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pitching rotation 4

Date Saturday, May 31, 1884
Text

[National vs. Cincinnati Union 5/30/1884] According to the system of alternating the pitchers it was Dick Burns' day to go in the box. He complained the evening previous of a sore arm, but expressed a desire to take his turn. Manager O'Leary placed Bradley in center field to relieve him in case his arm should trouble him. Burns was not very effective, and his delivery was hit rather hard. He gave way in the opening of the sixth inning to Bradley, who pitched in much better form.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Pittsburgh Unions disband

Date Friday, September 12, 1884
Text

The Pittsburg Unions have now gone glimmering, and more players are on the market. This effectually settles the status of the new association in Chicago and Pittsburg. Daily, King, Wheeler and Gardner, will go to the Baltimore Unions. The Milwaukee club will be admitted to the Union Association, and the city is a stronger one in support of base-ball than several other union cities. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

plans for Cincinnati UA next season

Date Tuesday, October 28, 1884
Text

The Cincinnati Union Club is already making preparations to open the season of 1885 in a most elaborate manner, and will start in on their second season with every thing in ship-shape. The team will be strengthened in the only weak sports, and new buildings will be erected during the winter. President Thorner has since the close of the season received letters from a dozen or more first-class players, stating their terms and desire to link their fortunes with the Cincinnati Union team. … The members of the directory have held a consultation with a well-known architect in reference to the plans for the new buildings, and work will be begun on them some time this winter. Cincinnati Enquirer October 28, 1884

The Cincinnati Unions are now negotiating with a couple of strong League players to fill the positions of first and third bases, made vacant by the release of McQuerry and Cleveland. Both the men with whom they are corresponding rank away up in their profession, and if they are secured, as there are now strong indications they will be, the Cincinnati Union management will indeed have occasion to be proud of their team. Both of the men are now on the reserve lists of League teams, and unless something comes of the negotiations it would be a breach of confidence to publish their names. If they are engaged their names will be given to the public in due time. Cincinnati Enquirer November 1, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

players as ticket takers

Date Saturday, July 19, 1884
Text

The various baseball managers throughout the country are making good use of their extra men, by compelling them to catch tickets at the gate and the grand stand when the club is playing a match, and the regulars who are too lazy to play, and trumping up excuses to lay off, are rapidly being pressed into the same service.

Source National Police Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

players disciplined after going on a spree

Date Thursday, July 3, 1884
Text

It appears that more ball players than Fred Lewis of the Browns and Hardy Henderson of the Baltimores were in the disturbance yesterday morning at Maud Abbey’s house on Elm street. The trouble appears to have been started by “O’Neill, the great,” the pitcher of the Browns, and Emslie and Gardner of the Baltimores are said to have also been in it. Yesterday the cases of Henderson and Lewis came up, but were continued until to-day, owing to the absence of the prosecuting witness. Both players presented a very woebegone appearance. Both were allowed to rest in the calaboose till noon yesterday, when they were bailed out. A meeting of the directors of the St. Louis club was held last night in regard to the matter, and Lewis was suspected for the season. Manager Barnie has suspected Henderson, expelled Garner and imposed a fine on Emslie. Mr. Barnie says Gardner has been a constant source of trouble to him. Not only has he always been getting into trouble himself, but has led the other players off. With hi8m out of the club Manager Barnie thinks he can keep the other players straight. Gardner was the rightfielder of the Balitmores and Henderson and Emslie are the pitchers. Gardner is one of the best players on the Baltimore team, being a fine batsman and a splendid fielder, but Mr. Barnie argues rightly that no matter how good a player a man may be if he is unreliable and constantly getting himself and others into trouble, the club is better off without him. Lewis, as is well known, is a very fine player. He plays centre field almost to perfection, and is one of the best batsmen in the American association. Ever since he has been a member of the St. Louis club, however, he has been drinking and raising disturbances. The management found it impossible to control him and although they dislike to lose so valuable a player they have stood him as long as they can. . (St. Louis) Missouri Republican July 3, 1884

As was generally expected, the St. Louis club reinstated Lewis, and he played at his old position in centre field in yesterday’s game. Lewis claims that, although in the house, he took no hand in the disturbance, being too heavily at the time. Lewis is a fine centre fielder when attending to business and a hard and sure batsman. He promises to leave evil spirits alone for the rest of the season. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican July 6, 1884

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

players jumping contracts

Date Monday, August 4, 1884
Text

Lou Dickerson and Bill Taylor were the only players the National agreement clubs could induce to jump Union contracts. These two men were notorious for being among the most insubordinate and dissolute in the profession. To offset their desertion, the Union Association Clubs have had strong accessions from the ranks of the National agreement clubs. Sweeney, Shaw, Atkinson, Black and Baldwin rank among the best players in the profession. Cincinnati Enquirer August 4, 1884

Von der Ahe still opposes the reserve

The Post-Dispatch of Saturday contained a clipping in which it was stated that Mr. Von der Ahe and Mr. Williams had proclaimed themselves in favor of the reserve rule. The St. Louis club never has favored or indorsed that rule, and the statement was unwarranted. Neither of the gentlemen have made any reference to the matter, but it is to be presumed that their position will be consistent with what they have done in the past. St. Louis Post-Dispatch August 4, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

players who abandoned the UA

Date Tuesday, February 19, 1884
Text

The list of the players that have left the Unions is as follows: Corcoran, Mullane, Gunning, Hawes, McSorley, Sullivan, Colgan, Sweeney, Meinke, Behel, Scott, Pinkney, Brennan, Mansell, Baldwin. Total, 15. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

players who have left the UA

Date Wednesday, February 20, 1884
Text

The list of players that have left the Unions is as follows: Corcoran, Mullane, Gunning, Hawes, McSorely, Sullivan, Colgan, Sweeney, Meinke, Behel, Scott, Pinkney, Brennan, Mansell, Baldwin. Total, 15.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

practice sliding

Date Wednesday, May 7, 1884
Text

Manager Schmelz, of the Columbus nine, has been training his men in base running, and now they are said to have the sliding act to perfection.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

practice uniforms; warm-up jackets

Date Saturday, March 15, 1884
Text

The Washingtons will have two distinct uniforms, one for practicing and one for games. The former will be grayish blue flannel shirt and pants, blue stockings, belt, cap and necktie. The regular uniform will be white crooked flannel pants and shirt, red stockings, belt and necktie, and white cap with a red band. The players will also be furnished with red cardinal jackets, to be worn when not in the field. The shoes will be of the best undressed calfskin made to order here.

Source Washington Evening Star
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pregame warmups

Date Saturday, March 15, 1884
Text

President Moxley has ordered a large gong to be used in opening games. It will be sounded twenty minutes before play, when the visitors relinquish the grounds to the home club, who issue from the club house in line. When third base is reached, the players run to their positions and practice for fifteen minutes. The gong again sounds, the field is cleared, and the remaining five minutes are taken up with the final arrangements for the game.

Source Washington Evening Star
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

professionals recruiting a college player

Date Wednesday, May 21, 1884
Text

No sooner does a college player distinguish himself than he is besieged by professional offers, and particularly is this the case with pitchers. Nichols, who occupies the box for the Harvard nine, has the honor of being looked upon not only as a remarkable young pitcher, but as the finest in the college arena. His effective and skillful work has not gone unnoticed by the prfession, and there is a place for him in several nines if he sees fit to take up ball playing as a business. Manager Hackett, of the Clevelands, it seems had an eye to business of the Clevelands, it seems had an eye to business while in Boston, and had a long talk with young Nichols in relation to engaging him. The conference was not wholly in vain, as it is understood that should Nichols sign with a professional club he will give Cleveland his services. The Sporting Life May 21, 1884

hits over the fence undesirable

The [new Buffalo] grounds are a great improvement on the old lot in every way. Over-the-fence hits will be scarce. Cincinnati Enquirer May 22, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

proposal for a stronger balk rule

Date Monday, November 3, 1884
Text

[discussing proposed rules changes] ...defining the balk motion of the pitcher more decidedly and clearly. During the past season this evil has grown until nearly every pitcher in the association made dead balls in throwing to first. The consequence was the inability of a base-runner to “take ground,” and an almost total destruction of base-running. It is becoming pretty well understood among base-ball managers that the pitcher must be restrained in more ways than one, or base ball excitement will be wiped out. The fielder, batter, and base-runner must be encouraged, so that the pitcher will not be the only man of not in a team. St., quoting the Cincinnati Commercial-Gazette

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

proposal to eliminate the high-low strike zones

Date Friday, October 24, 1884
Text

“Would not an umpire's duties be lessened by making a rule that “a good ball should be one that is pitched over the plate, between the shoulders and the knee?” Do away with the high and low balls, and make batsmen learn to bat at balls between these two points. It would make freer batting, and would save much disputing that is now caused by “high and low balls,” and the umpiring would be more accurate.--Sporting Life. This might be all very well for the umpire, but what show would it give the batsman? The latter is badly cramped now as the rule is at presently, and the proposed amendment would lessen his chances for safe batting nearly 50 per cent.--Brooklyn Eagle. Cincinnati Enquirer October 24, 1884 [N.B. The Sporting Life’s suggestion was 10/15/84.]

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

proposal to move back the pitcher's box

Date Wednesday, September 17, 1884
Text

It is gratifying to see that Anson is in favor of increasing the distance between the pitcher’s box and home plate, because when this formidable batsman comes to the conclusion that the present system of pitching is altogether unfavorable to good batting, it is high time that some remedial change should be proposed and carried out.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

proposed rules changes: pitcher placement; substitutions; foul bound

Date Wednesday, September 3, 1884
Text

Cap. Anson is quoted as favoring various changes in the League playing rules at the next annual meeting. He would place the pitcher five feet further back, restore the foul bound catch, and allow players to be withdrawn from a team during a game at the pleasure of the captain. In desiring to place the pitcher further back his head is level. This change was advocated by The Sporting Life last fall. In regard to the other propositions he is away “off.” We do not believe he is correctly reported in regard to the last two changes.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

prospect for new UA members

Date Friday, December 19, 1884
Text

[reporting on the UA meeting 12/18] The Board of Directors recommended that in view of the fact that applications had been received from four clubs, who represent that they could not at the present time be present to participate in the meeting of the association, but, if a meeting could be arranged for some time in January, they would be present to take part in the same; and as the association now consists of an active membership of five clubs; and as only three more cities can be elected to membership—when the association adjourns it does so to meet again January 15, 1885, at the Plankinton House, Milwaukee, to permit the said cities to be represented in person to present their claims for membership in the association; and also that a committee be appointed to investigate the financial standing of the clubs under consideration.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Providence Club finances 6

Date Thursday, January 31, 1884
Text

The seventh annual meeting of the Providence Base Ball Association was held this evening [1/30], 13 stockholders being present. The following facts were presented: Balance on hand Jan 12, 1883, cash, $3098.19; received from games at home, $26,71.15 [sic]; from games abroad, $19, 166.72; from sale of season tickets, $1966.50; from rent of grounds, $136.96; from sale of uniforms, $149.93; total, $51, 598.45. The expenses were: Salaries, $21,700.65; expenses traveling, etc., $9938.61; paid visiting clubs, $9242.92; rent of grounds, $532.77; uniforms, $196.25; back salary due J. Farrell, $78; total, $41, 651.21, leaving a balance of $9747.24, which is in the shape of—capital stock purchased, $2960; cash on hand, $6847.24. The total attendance was 61,341, or an average of 1232 for each game. The average in games with different clubs was as follows: With Boston, 2160; Cleveland, 1826; Chicago, 1631; New York, 1065; Detroit, 784; Buffalo, 763; Philadelphia, 549. The receipts of admission, including grand stand, etc., were $28,174.70, or an average of 45 ½ cents to each spectator. The report was received and placed on file. On motion of Mr. Root, the treasurer was authorized to sell stock at not less than par to the amount of $10,000.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

public transit at baseball games

Date Tuesday, April 8, 1884
Text

Several days ago the managers of the Baltimore club visited the officials of the York road line of cars and inquired whether any provision was to be made for the increase of travel over that road during the base ball season. One of the officials said it had not been determined yet what to do. Last year, he said, the horses were almost worked to death owing to the heavy travel, and if extra cars were put on more horses would have to be purchased. On last Saturday after the game of ball there was but one car to accommodate over four thousand people. Yesterday afternoon it was the same way. Several thousand persons walked in the York road, and complained bitterly of the poor railway accommodations. Baltimore American April 8, 1884

scorecard printed at the park

An innovation in the score-sheet business has been introduced at Sportsman's Park. A printing press, especially procured for the purpose, will run the sheets off in an office fitted up for the occasion. The advantages of this plan is [sic] self-evident; the batting order will always be correct, the purchaser will be protected, the advertisements made all the more valuable, while the reliability of the sheet will of course increase the sale. It will also throttle the attempts to “ring in” unofficial schemes on the pubic by outsiders. Managers of visiting clubs, instead of being compelled to give their batting order to the score-sheet publisher by 10 A.M. Of the day of the game, a neglect to do which means a fine, will be accommodated here until 2 to 3 P.M Jack Drelling has charge of the score sheets at the Park. The Sporting Life April 9, 1884

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

purchasing a release; Bay City disbands

Date Wednesday, July 30, 1884
Text

After a long, muddled and illogical defense of contract breaking under its new phase, one of the morning papers copies with a light comment a sharp and unmerited attack upon Mr. Von der Ahe for the manner in which he procured Foutz from the Bay City Club. What next? Mr. Von der Ahe went honorably to the Bay City Club directors, made his business proposition to them openly and above board and it was accepted. He paid a large amount of money for the privilege of signing the player and there was not a party to the transaction who was not perfectly agreeable and well satisfied. In the article appears this dirty and covert sling: “The meanest part of the transaction is that the $2,000 does not go to the player whose services were considered to be worth $3,500 for the remainder of the season.” Now the fact is that the $2,000 business was only part of the transaction. The season is now half over, and for the balance of the campaign Foutz will receive $1,500. This is at the rate of $3,000 for the season and of course Foutz is better satisfied than with the $500 or $600 he was to have received from the Bay City club, and it constitutes him one of the highest paid professionals in the country. St. Louis Post-Dispatch July 30, 1884

The Bay City Club, which was second in the Northwestern League, has not been well supported and was compelled to disband at Peoria July 22. At the time the club had won 41 games and lost 13. Previous to the collapse Mr. Von der Ahe, of the St. Louis, paid the extraordinary sum of $2,000 for the release of Foutz, the crack pitcher of the club, who will also receive $1,600 for the rest of the season. This $2,000 enabled the club to pay off all its indebtedness, arrearages of salary, etc., and then seeing no prospect of even paying expenses, let alone making any money, the management resolved to let the team go while it was possible to do so with a clean bill. The rumor of the disbandment brought a lot of managers to Peoria. Barnie, of Baltimore; Williams, of St. Louis; Hacket, of Cleveland; Manager Gifford, of Indianapolis; Chapman, of Detroit. Indianapolis secured Watkins, Robinson, Collins and Morrison; Kansas City got Cudworth, Davis, Turbidy and Strauss; Milwaukee got the batter, Porter and Bignall, for $2,800. The other managers got nothing, probably because the terms were too high. The Sporting Life July 30, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pushback against Robert Ferguson; special contract excluding him from the reserve

Date Monday, May 19, 1884
Text

The high-priced players of the New York Club kicked so vigorously against the engagement of the veteran Robert Ferguson to play second base on their nine that the directors of the Metropolitan Exhibition Company released him. Connor, Ewing, Gillespie and Welch were iwth Ferguson on the Troy nine, and the strict discipline they were then subjected to did not agree with them. Since they have joined the New York Club they have done pretty much as they pleased, and for this reason they did not relish the engagement of Ferguson. St. Louis Post-Dispatch May 19, 1884

Bob Ferguson denies ever having signed with the New York League Club. He was asked his terms and gave them. These were higher than expected and the engagement hung fire. At last, when urgent demands for his services came from Washington and Pittsburg, he went to Mr. Day and asked him what conclusion he had reached. Ferguson positively declined to sign with the club unless under a special contract, which ignored all reservation of his services after the close of the season, and which also required his services only as a player, and not as a captain or manager, neither of which positions he would take in the New York Club. Finally, when he found that there was a minority in the team who were opposed to him, he declined to enter the club, and at once signed as manager of the Pittsburg team for 1884, the entire control of the team being placed in his hands. St. Louis Post-Dispatch May 26, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

questioning the need for a pitching rotation

Date Tuesday, September 23, 1884
Text

According to a Brooklyn writer, Radbourne of the Providence has exploded a well accepted theory which has gained ground of late years. Club after club this season has time and again been obliged to place their change pitchers in positions owing to the alleged lame arms and lame shoulders–ro some other lame excuse–presented by their leading pitchers to avoid work in the box which they ought to be made to attend to, considering the high wages they are paid. This little game was worked so successfully that pitcher after pitcher was allowed to lie off every other match. This racket was worked in the Providence club very successfully by Radbourne and Sweeney until the former found that Sweeney was rather getting the best of him in the game. Then it was that he began to kick, and that was the beginning of the trouble in the Providence camp, which ultimately led to the retirement of Sweeney, while Radbourne was left in command of the position. But with this command came a position of affairs not taken into the original calculation. Radbourne boasted that if Sweeney should leave the club he would pitch the club into the championship himself, if the boys would back him up in the field. His challenge was taken up by the directors, and admirably has he thus far fulfilled his promises, his work in the box being unprecedented in the history of League pitching since Sweeney left the Providence fold. Over twenty successive championship matches in which Radbourne has pitched have ended in noteworthy victories for the Providence Club. But, as before remarked, this wonderful success has been achieved at the cost of the complete overthrow of the claim of pitchers being unable to stand the “great fatigue” incident to continuous work in their positions. What Radbourne can stand, hardier pitchers than he can stand more readily, and he has proved pretty conclusively the absurdity of the claim that consecutive work in the box is too trying an ordeal for pitchers to stand without their breaking down under the pressure. What is the work of a first-class League pitcher during a season’s campaign? Why nothing more than nine innings of pitching once a day–occupying less than two hours of labor out of the twenty-four–during an average of four days a week. Why it is simply nonsense to assert that this is an arduous task for any man of the healthy class of athletics who compose the leading pitchers of the day. What Radbourne has done they can all do. He did it to fulfill a boast of his prowess as a pitcher. Let the others be made to earn their high wages just as much as Radbourne has his. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Quincy applies for the Keystone UA franchise

Date Wednesday, August 13, 1884
Text

This morning Director R. T. Sheckells, Secretary J. T. Smith and Manager G. W. Brackett of the Quincy Club met at the office of President Lucas, and made application to take the place of the Keystones in the Union Association. They claimed to havew a club able to hold its own with any in the Union, and said that they were willing to show their club’s strength by putting it against the Unions to-morrow afternoon. They claim to have two pitchers, both of whom are the equal of Foutz, and two catcher, both of whom are better men than Baldwin. Of fourteen games just played, the Quincy’s won twelve, and three of these were from the Bay Citys, they on one occasion batting Foutz out of the box. When they left the Northwestern League they were in the lead in the race for the pennant, so that they justly lay claim to the title of champions. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Radbourn promised his release

Date Sunday, December 7, 1884
Text

Radbourn has no occasion to find fault with the treatment he has received at the hand of the Providence management. During the summer he was promised that if he would carry the Grays to the championship he should have his release. When the season closed he called upon Director Allan, who handed him two documents, saying: “Well, 'Rad,' you remember we promised you your release, and I have just made it out. Now, we want you next year, and must have you. Here is your release, and a contract filled out for all the money we can pay you. You can take your choice.” “Rad” went out with the choice of his release or another year in Providence, and after thinking it over one day, came back and signed a contract for next season. Cincinnati Enquirer December 7, 1884, quoting St.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

rain checks and the guarantee

Date Friday, December 12, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA meeting] Section 2, Article 6, referring to the guarantees, was so changed that in case a club issues rain checks they will not be required to pay the visiting club the guarantee of $65.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

removing the minor league reduced reserve minimum

Date Wednesday, November 12, 1884
Text

[reporting on the meeting of the Arbitration Committee 11/8] [proposed amendment to the National Agreement] ...Strike out from the third section the following words: “Except an Eastern League club, whose minimum shall be eight hundred dollars, or a Northwestern League club, whose minimum shall be seven hundred and fifty dollars.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

replicating the proof of the curve ball

Date Friday, August 15, 1884
Text

If the prominent citizen with predilections in the direction of base-ball had found a taker the other day when offered to wager $1,000 that the feat of throwing a base-ball around the second of three poles arranged in a straight line could not be accomplished by any living pitcher, the other fellow would have been $1,000 better off. O’Donnell, the pitcher in the Youngstown club, accomplished the difficult feat yesterday in the presence of a score or more of persons. The exhibition occurred in a vacant lot on Market street his.. The upright poles were arranged in a line with each other. The second was about ten feet from the first and the third about eighteen feet from the second. O’Donnell stood at the pole further from the milled one in such a position that when he delivered the ball his hand was in line with the three poles his first dozen attempts were unsuccessful, but after that it was an easy matter to do the trick. Standing to the left of the imaginary line he threw the ball so that it passed the second pole to the right and came into the catcher’s hands to the left of the third pole. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reporter David Reid leaves the Post-Dispatch

Date Sunday, November 23, 1884
Text

Dave Reid, the veteran sporting and baseball authority, has severed his connection with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reporter Jacob Morse with the Boston Unions

Date Wednesday, September 3, 1884
Text

J. C. Morse, formerly of the Boston Globe,, has succeeded J. C. Furniss, as manager of the Union Athletic Exhibition Company, and has the best wishes of a host of friends for his success.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reporter for the Baltimore American; Baltimore Club scorer

Date Wednesday, March 12, 1884
Text

That graceful writer, Mr. Roche, the popular young reporter of the American, has been prevailed upon to act as scorer for the Baltimores during the coming season. It is believed that a better selection could not have been made.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reporter for the Boston Globe

Date Wednesday, December 3, 1884
Text

W. D. Sullivan, who has so ably edited the base ball column of the Boston Globe, has been deservedly promoted to the responsibilities of the sporting editorship. His sunny ways, genial manner and obliging disposition have made him a great favorite.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reporter for the Chicago Tribune, scorer for the Keystones

Date Wednesday, October 15, 1884
Text

Eugene Guenther, a well-known base ball scribe of Philadelphia, and for some time official scorer of the Keystone Club, has been tendered a position upon the Chicago Tribune as sporting editor. He left for his new field of labor on Thursday last.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reporter for the Critic

Date Wednesday, March 26, 1884
Text

The Critic, the sprightly St. Louis weekly, is making a name for itself in the base ball world. The management of this department is in charge of the experienced sporting writer, Al Spink. He is a hard worker.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reporter for the Item; official scorer for the Athletics

Date Wednesday, November 5, 1884
Text

John Campbell, editor-in-chief and base ball man of the Philadelphia Item, has resigned from that paper. He was overworked and wanted a rest. He has three excellent offers under consideration. He is the official scorer of the Athletic Club.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reporters for the NY Dispatch, Phila Times

Date Sunday, December 28, 1884
Text

James Jackson, of the New York Dispatch, and Harry Diddlebock, of the Philadelphia Times, put in their spare hours in abusing each other like horse thieves. They are interested respectively in the New York State League and the Eastern League, and several cities are undecided which one to join: hence the “wow and wumpus.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reserve nines

Date Wednesday, January 16, 1884
Text

President Howe, of the Cleveland Base Ball Club, outlines the policy of the clubs composing the League and American Association as follows: “Most of the League and Association teams will be strengthened by . Chicago has already signed 16 men, Philadelphia 20, Boston 15, Cincinnati 16, Allegheny 19, Louisville 15, and St. Louis 21. We shall pursue the same policy and engage a reserve nine of good men. These will be used with the regular field teams for practice games during the month of April. When the season opens, in the absence of the regular nine, the reserve teams will play on the grounds of their respective clubs with amateur and professional clubs not in the Association or League at a twenty-five-cent admission rate. I believe this will prove the correct thing, as the maintenance of will not only serve as a training-school in which to develop good players, but will secure to each club a contingent from which to draw at aty time to fill possible vacancies in the regular team. These can be made self-supporting, and will perhaps earn a surplus.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reserve teams 2

Date Sunday, October 26, 1884
Text

The costly reserve team experiment will not be repeated the coming season. Boston was the only one that held out the whole of last season.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reserve teams disbanding

Date Tuesday, May 20, 1884
Text

The reserve clubs are having a hard time of it. Their schedule is broken beyond patching by the disbanding of several organizations, and those that remain are likely to prove financial millstones about the necks of the regulars. Thirty-two dollars was the sum total taken in at the gates at the American park during the Evansville-Cincinnati Reserve game last Thursday. On Saturday last the Vincennes received $6 as their share of the game in the city with the St. Louis Reserves. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican May 20, 1884

The reserve team schedule will be played through. The only club that has disbanded in the series is the Milwaukee reserves, and several applications from outside teams have been made to take their place. Evansville will probably be accorded the place. St. Louis Post-Dispatch May 20, 1884

The Cleveland Reserves have decided not to come to St. Louis. Accordingly the games scheduled for this week are “off.” St. Louis Post-Dispatch May 29, 1884

The Cincinnati Reserves were to have started for St. Louis last night, but the management gave up the trip as a bad go, and decided to disband the team. Shallix, Muller and Weibe will be retained. Early last evening the manager of the Pittsburg Reserves received a telegram ordering him to bring the team home. They sold the tickets they had to Omaha, and will most likely disband also. Cincinnati Enquirer June 1, 1884 [?? Check the cite]

The Reserve team idea does not seem to be a taking one. Harry Wright has let his Reserve players go, and the Cleveland colts and Milwaukee Reserves are things of the past. The managers of several teams will hold a meeting in this city this week to patch up a schedule for the rest of the clubs to sink some of their spare money on. Cincinnati Enquirer May 20, 1884

One by one the reserve teams are disappearing. The Cleveland Reserves, or Akron team, are the last to go under. From the first they have been a shite elephant on the hands of the club, and were finally transferred to Akron in hopes of making them pay expenses. They have been no more profitable there, however, and the management have notified Mr. Von der Ahe that they will not play their return games with the St. Louis Reserves. Cincinnati Enquirer May 30, 1884, quoting the St. Louis Republican

The Cincinnati Reserves were to have started for St. Louis last night, but the management gave up the trip as a bad go, and decided to disband the team. Shallix, Muller and Weibe will be retained. Early last evening the manager of the Pittsburg Reserves received a telegram ordering him to bring the team home. They sold the tickets they had to Omaha, and will most likely disband also. Cincinnati Enquirer June 1, 1884

The announcement that the Cincinnati Reserves had disbanded was a little premature. They left for St. Louis Saturday night, and will play out their schedule of games there this week. It is likely, however, that they will then yield up the ghost. They may possibly, however, continue to the 15th of this month. Cincinnati Enquirer June 2, 1884

The St. Louis Reserves are no more. Their brief career terminated yesterday morning. Since the time of the inception of the enterprise the team has been a dead weight on Mr. Von der Ahe. Their trip was an almost unbroken series of defeats, and at home their games never drew more than a corporal’s guard. The nine had some good material, but the people, who had been used to much better ball were unwilling to pay to see the reserves play. In fact, people paid no attention whatever to their game and outside a few personal freinds of the players, nobody ever attended. The result was Mr. Von der Ahe wearied of paying out a lot of money, from which he could hope for no return, and yesterday he called the players into his office and gave them all their releases, retaining only Srrueve and Krehmeyer, the two catchers. They are retained, so that if Deasley and Dolan are injured at any time, Krehmeyer and Strueve can take their place. Harry Wheeler, who was a member of the regular nine until recently when he was placed on the reserves and Goldsby of the reserves given his place on the regular nine, was among the men released. The players appeared to understand the situation and did not rebel against Mr. Von der Ahe for releasing them. They were paid every dollar due them. Their failure will about wind up the reserve team enterprise. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican June 3, 1884

The Akron “Preserves” gave up the ghost at Hamilton yesterday, and the members are en route for their respective homes over the different turnpikes leading from the town. Cincinnati Enquirer June 12, 1884

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reserved players must sign or be black-listed

Date Sunday, October 19, 1884
Text

Al Spaulding has notified all the members of the Chicago League team to be on hand next Monday and sign contracts for next year or else be blacklisted.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reserved players returning from the UA

Date Sunday, March 16, 1884
Text

A Philadelphia exchange says: “All of the reserved players who signed with Union Clubs have gone back, with the exception of Weaver and Bradley, of the American, and Dunlap and Shafer, of the League.” What's the matter with Daily, of the Clevelands, and Jack Gleason, of the Lousivilles? There were only nine of this class of players to start with, and, in the face of the gratuitous distribution of blood-money by the tripartite clubs, only three of them were dishonorable. The trio of traitors were Mullane, Mansell and Corcoran. The latter had, however, a slight excuse for his action, for he had partially contracted with the Chicago Club. This list, however, does not include the North-western League deserters.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reserved players subject to expulsion for playing with an outside club

Date Wednesday, March 5, 1884
Text

[reporting on the NL meeting] The resolution offered by Mr. Day at the New York meeting was taken from the table and adopted. It is as follows:

Resolved, that no league club shall at any time employ or enter into contract with any of its reserved players who shall, while reserved to any such club, play with any other club.

This action makes players liable to expulsion for playing with non-league clubs when reserved by league teams. Although general in application, it will soon demonstrate whether Dunlap of the Clevelands and Shaffer of the Buffalos intend to play with those clubs or with the Union association, with which they are reported to have signed.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

right handed pitcher versus left handed batter; intentional base on balls

Date Wednesday, February 6, 1884
Text

White is the opposite of McGinnis. While the latter is never so effective as when pitching against a left-handed batsman, White [who pitched right-handed] fails when facing such an opponent. White understands his weakness in this particular, and we have often seen him give the left-handed batsman a base rather than let him hit the ball where a safe stroke would bring in a run. The Sporting Life February 6, 1884

Cincinnati UA/AA machinations

[from a not terribly factually accurate letter signed C.S.S.] ...they waited till the annual meeting [of the AA] in this city [Cincinnati] on the twelfth of last December. That day several members of the board of directors were invited to meet the combination [of Justus Thorner, John R. McLean, and George Gerke] secretly in a back room at Heisler's saloon, across from the Enquirer office, although they did not know the purport of the invitation. Here McLean and Thorner made their plea and asked to be put into possession of the Cincinnati Club. The former asserted that the Cincinnati Club had made application to the League for membership and that the application was then on file. This he said he knew to be true, though in reality he knew it was a lie; that he uttered this falsehood every member who was present at that meeting will testify; that it was false can be proven by Secretary Nick Young's certificate that no such application was ever received. All this is not an idle tale, but can be verified by members of the board of directors who were present at that meeting.

The upshot of it all was that they asked to be heard. President McKnight manfully told them that if they had any plea to make they must come to the Grand Hotel that evening and make it to the board while in session, and not try to influence members sitting in the board at such a secret meeting. That evening Thorner did apply to the board at the Grand Hotel, with those members sitting in the board who had not bee invited to the saloon meeting. The board admitted Thorner and at the same time sent for Mr. Kramer, of the Cincinnati Club. The consequence was that Thorner was soon routed. He admitted the plotting against the club, and all he could do was to threaten that if he and McLean were not reognized they would put a Union Association club into Cincinnati. The board unanimously and politely dismissed him and his plea. The next week he went to the Philadelphia Union Association meeting, taking with him, as his agent, Frank B. Wright, who was defeated as a candidate for the American Association secretaryship, and for whose election the Cincinnati Club worked hard, as letters to the Brooklyn, Washington, Athletic and other clubs on his behalf will show. That is the history of the Union Club, of Cincinnati, and of the Enquirer's venom against the old Cincinnati Club. Will any reader of The Sporting Life think that those “avengers” are wrongfully treated. The Sporting Life February 6, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

rising salaries

Date Tuesday, April 1, 1884
Text

The players of the Cincinnati club of 1882 were paid $8,000. Last year the disbursements amounted to over $18,000, and for the season of 1884 $15,000 will go to salaries. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

rising salaries 2

Date Wednesday, November 19, 1884
Text

[from a column by Diddlebock, writing as “Mark It Down] The impression was general that there was to be a decided decrease in players’ salaries next season, but on the contrary all the engagements so far made show a decided increase. Considerable surprise has been expressed that this should be the case, but base ball managers all agree that tis is not caused by a paucity of players, but is brought about by the scarcity of strictly first-class men. The Chicago, Boston, Providence and Buffalo clubs in the League, the “Mets,” Athletic, Cincinnati, St. Louis, Baltimore and Louisville in the American, and St. Louis and Cincinnati in the Union have teams that are invincible when compared to others in the same associations. Men like O’Rourke, Burdock, Radbourn, Gilligan, Brouthers, White, Richardson, Whitney, Anson and some others cannot be secured every season, and when any one of these men is eligible to sign a contract he is offered the highest terms. O’Rourke, for instance, may well be worth $6,000 to the New York Club.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

riverboat access to the Metropolitan grounds

Date Friday, February 15, 1884
Text

In conversation with Jim Mutrie on the subject, he said he had concluded arrangements with the Harlem Steamboat Company to land at One Hundred and Ninth street, a few yards from the entrance to one of the gates leading to the grounds. This company will run their speedy little side-wheel steamers, the Morrisania, Sylvan Dell, Sylvan Grove, and others of the same fast craft, from Wall street to the grounds in thirty minutes. A landing at Grand street will also be made. An annex from both Brooklyn and Jersey City will run in connection with the enterprise. They will make very frequent trips. The fare from any of these points will be but five cents. St. Louis Post-Dispatch February 15, 1884

purchase of a release from reserve

The Clevelands have offered to release York from the reserve list for $500, and the offer will probably be accepted by Manager Barnie of the Baltimore association club. Boston Herald February 17, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Rohrer president of the Metropolitans

Date Wednesday, December 31, 1884
Text

Mr. Frank Rohrer, President of the Metropolitan Base-ball Club, says that there is no truth in the rumor that the Metropolitans will withdraw from the American Association and give place to the Nationals, of Washington. The Metropolitans will remain as they are, with possibly a few changes in the players from those of last season., quoting the Sporting Life

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

roster sizes

Date Wednesday, January 9, 1884
Text

The [New York] League club has now 15 men under contract. … The Metropolitan Club has, up to date, signed but eleven men. … No more players will be engaged except a change pitcher... [The Brooklyn Club] … so far ten men have been engaged... Another fielder is to [be] engaged before the team is complete.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

rumor of Mills working to block the UA in the east

Date Wednesday, November 19, 1884
Text

[from a column by Diddlebock, writing as “Mark It Down] It has leaked out here that while Lucas seemed to have everything his own way, and was moving along in seeming security regarding his Eastern connections, that the National Agreement Clubs were quietly scheming to throw him overboard in the East, and confine his operations entirely to the west. This work seems to have been entrusted by A. G. Mills, of the Arbitration Committee, to Secretary Diddlebock, of the Eastern League. Nothing definite has transpired as yet, but I am reliably informed that Diddlebock, assisted by Barnie, of Baltimore, and Mutrie, of New York, has not been idle, and that the Boston Unions and the Nationals, of Washington, will quietly step out of the Union and join the Eastern League at the meeting in December.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

rumor of a UA club in Columbus

Date Monday, December 1, 1884
Text

The grounds of the Columbus Club will be sold at auction to-morrow morning, and Mr. Lucas and others have formed a pool by which the grounds and the appurtenances are to be bid in by a private party, from whom they are to be rented by the proposed new club at $200 per year. In a canvass of base-ball supporters and those who are not well pleased that the American club was sold out, Mr. Lucas thinks they will be able to raise a subscription fun of $3,000 at the auction sale in the morning, several gentlemen having expressed their willingness to subscribe $500 to the fund. If this is done a company will be formed of not more than twenty persons, and incorporated with a capital stock of $5,000, the control to remain in the hands of four or five men, who will have the nerve to make the fight on the Sunday question, and control the organization without any wrangling. The opinion is expressed, in view of the receipts of the club at this point last year, that with a fund of $5,000 to start with they can form and operate a very good club. There seems to be no doubt now that Columbus will have a Union Club next year. There is a desire to confine the Union Association exclusively to the West, and not have any east of the Allegheny mountains. Cincinnati Enquirer December 1, 1884

To-night [12/2] an informal meeting of base-ball men was held at the Neil House, with Mr. Lucas as Chairman. The gentleman stated very fairly the outlook for the coming year, and certainly the growth and popularity of the Union organization has never had an equal in base-ball circles. It is Mr. Lucas' intention to make the Union Association strictly a Western enterprise, thus saving about 35 per cent. in traveling expenses and avoiding the long jumps now so detrimental to the other two leading associations. St. Louis, Cincinnati, Kansas City, Columbus, Cleveland, Milwaukee, Detroit and Indianapolis are the cities he hopes to have in the Union. … It is safe to say that Columbus will be in the field of 1885 with a fine Union team. Mr. Gus Schmelz, the old manager of the Columbus club, will have charge of the new organization, and as soon as final arrangements are made will begin looking for players. Cincinnati Enquirer December 3, 1884

Mr. H. V. Lucas, president of the Union base ball association, has been in the city for several days endeavoring to organize a club and have Columbus represented in the Unions next year. His work has been so satisfactory that he will leave for St. Louis in the morning. The old grounds have been sold to parties interested in the new enterprise, and are to be retained by the Union team, provided sufficient stock is secured. There is not the least doubt at present but the new organization will be immediately perfected. It is believed by Mr. Lucas that $5,000 will be enough to secure a good nine, and over half this amount has already been subscribed. Mr. Gus Schmeltz, the former manager of the Columbus club, is to have charge of the new team, and will begin to look for players as soon as arrangements are perfected. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican December 3, 1884

The prospect for a Union Base-ball Club in this city [Columbus] for next year are not very encouraging to-night [12/4]. Mr. T. J. Dundon, who purchased the old grounds for a little over $500, now refuses to rent them to the new company for less than $1,500. It was expected when the grounds were sold that Mr. Dundon would be interested in the new enterprise, but it is evident from the exorbitant rent asked that he had another object in view. Cincinnati Enquirer December 5, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

rumor of a sale of the Metropolitans

Date Thursday, April 3, 1884
Text

It has been understood in New York for the past day or two that plans are being made by several gentlemen in that city to organize a stock company and take control of the Metropolitan base ball club, now under the management of the Metropolitan Exhibition Company. It is not known who the gentlemen are or what they intend to do further than to take the club off the hands of the Exhibition Company and to make money out of it. Should the change be made, Manager James Mutrie will continue to hold his stock in the club and continue to be its manager, and Mr. Appleton will retire. The club is in no urgent need of money, notwithstanding its poor success last season, it having still a considerable amount to its credit standing over from 1882.

Source Philadelphia Evening Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

rumor of the AA contracting

Date Sunday, October 26, 1884
Text

A special to the Cleveland Herald says that a secret meeting of the members of the American Association was held recently and it was decided to freeze out Columbus, Richmond, Indianapolis and Toledo next year.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

rumors of a second Boston club

Date Sunday, January 6, 1884
Text

It is strongly rumored that the movement to establish a second professional ball team in Boston has fallen through. Benjamin Douglass, jr., who first took hold of the matter, and who is well known as the organizer of several base ball clubs, has withdrawn his connection with the new scheme, and dark hints are being thrown out that the movement has met with such poor encouragement that it will be abandoned.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

rumors of the AA dropping Indianapolis

Date Sunday, November 16, 1884
Text

“Any and all attempts to drop Indianapolis from the list of American base-ball teams for next season will be vigorously resisted,” said Manager Watkins. “So long as a club pays its dues promptly, as well as its players, it can not legally be expelled. My idea is that the Eastern organizations have sprung this agitation for the purpose of forcing a division of the receipts of Sunday games in the West. I can imagine no other cause for the opposition to us. But one thing is certain, that Indianapolis will have a base-ball team for 1885. if it does not hold a place in the Association, it may join one of the other leagues, possibly the Unions... Cincinnati Enquirer November 16, 1884

the Boston Club buys real estate

The Boston Base Ball Association this week purchased of the Hammett heirs the grounds at the South End occupied by the Boston club. The price paid was $100,000. It had been proposed by the owners to sell the land by auction next month.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

sale of players

Date Wednesday, February 20, 1884
Text

A good deal has been said of late by some newspapers in a sort of uninformed way about the supposed evil of the sale of reserved players by clubs. As an instance, the Ft. Wayne Club is held up in its reception of $500 for the release of Scott. Now, if these men of the press would but take the pains to investigate the supposed evil (?) before condemning it, they would not appear so absurd in their arguments. As a matter of fact this supposed sale can never be accomplished without the consent of the player himself. The national agreement says that until after the lapse of ten days from the time the secretary of an association mails notices of a player's release to the clubs of his own association, and to the secretaries of all other associations, said released player shall be ineligible in contract. This is done to give every club in the national agreement compact an equal chance to bid for the released player's services, and any contract entered into previous to the lapsing of the necessary ten days would be void and worthless. Now, will some of these scribes sit down and try to figure out how a reserved player can be “sold” without ratifying the sale himself?, quoting the Cincinnati Commercial

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Sam Wright working for George

Date Sunday, February 24, 1884
Text

Sam Wright, who at one time played in a Cincinnati League team, is now in his brother George's store in Boston. Sam is a first-class cricket player, and has charge of this department.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Saturdays off to attend baseball

Date Sunday, July 13, 1884
Text

Since Sunday games have been stopped at Columbus several of the large manufacturing establishments shut down at three o'clock Saturday afternoons, thus giving their employees an opportunity to attend the games.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

scarcity of players; the price of a release

Date Sunday, February 10, 1884
Text

The managers are complaining of the scarcity of players. The richer clubs are offering the poorer clubs from $500 to $1,000 for releases, and the offers are frequently accepted.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

scheduling the reserve nines

Date Tuesday, March 18, 1884
Text

The managers of the reserve teams of the Chicago, Pittsburg, St. Louis, Milwaukee, Cincinnati and Cleveland clubs of the league and American association met at Chicago on Monday, and arranged a schedule to be played by June 20 during the absence of the regular teams. Messrs. Williams, Spalding, Hackett, McKnight, Caylor represented St. Louis, Chicago, Cleveland, Alleghany, Cincinnati.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

scorer for the Cleveland Club

Date Wednesday, December 3, 1884
Text

Mr. F. N. Brunell, the clever scorer of the Cleveland Club...

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

scoring bases on balls, wild pitches, and passed balls as errors

Date Saturday, June 14, 1884
Text

The National League’s rules of scoring differ from those of other associations in that bases on balls, wild pitches and passed balls are included in the error column. Thus we frequently find a pitcher and catcher aggregating ten and twelve errors themselves. It is extremely unfair, for both pitcher and catcher have just the same chances for errors on fly balls, grounders and thrown balls that other fielders have. Besides, under League rules this year they have an additional chance given for every ball pitched, which no other fielder has. In all other associations the pitcher is credited with wild pitches and bases on balls in the summary of the score, as is the catcher on passed balls. St., quoting the Cincinnati Commercial Gazette

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

season ticket books in Chicago

Date Sunday, March 9, 1884
Text

It is probable that the sale of season tickets by the Chicago Club will begin March 15 th, or two weeks earlier than last year. The price will be raised to $20. Secretary Brown has hit upon a scheme of colors for the season-ticket books—black leather covers for regular purchasers, green for stockholders, blue for reporters, and white for the Aldermen and city officials. The season tickets—excepting those issued to the press and to stockholders—will admit to league championship games only.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

season ticket price raised in Boston; compared with other cities

Date Sunday, February 24, 1884
Text

Several days now have elapsed since the announcement was made that the Boston management had voted $30 to be the price of season tickets for the season of 1884, and the state of the public pulse over this action has been pretty clearly developed as nothing in base ball circles has for years created such a general and varied discussion as this step on the part of the board of directors. The general base ball public which marches up to the gate and pays its 50 cents at every game, and which last year numbered about 136,000 people, seems to take but little interest in the controversy which has arisen over the sale of season tickets, because that same public will do as it has done heretofore. There is, however, a small but influential class of base ball patrons—numbering last year about 50 persons—who have been in the habit for several seasons of purchasing season tickets and paying $15 therefor, and this class met the announcement of he directors first with expressions of surprise, and then with indignation. The board of directors have not only been severely denounced for their action in doubling the price of the tickets, but their motives in so doing have been impugned in a manner not at all consistent with the well known reputation for business integrity enjoyed by the gentlemen composing the board among their associates in mercantile life. The directors, in discussing the season ticket matter, had no direct means of knowing what would be satisfactory to those who had patronized them in the past, and they were well aware that, whatever price was decided upon, there would be more or less dissatisfaction. It was finally determined to place the price at$30, the holder of the ticket to be entitled to admission to all league games and to a numbered reserved seat in the grand stand, the the tickets to be transferable. The argument used was that the ticket holder was getting for $30 what, if he paid full rates, would cost him $45, and that it was worth something for the holder to be enabled to enter the grounds at any stage of the game and be entitled to a certain seat in the grandstand. It was also argued that the expenses of the club for the next season would be about 50 per cent. More than last, and that, as the season ticket holder was getting for 50 cents what he would have to pay 75 cents for at full rates, it was thought that a majority of this class of patrons would be satisfied paying $30.

In setting the price mentioned the directors made a serious mistake. A great many people do not care to sit in the grand stand at all; in fact, they always prefer a seat behind the first or third base, and to oblige them to pay $30 for what they formerly received for $15 is entirely without reason, even taking into consideration that there were seven more league games played this season than last. It is altogether too long a jump from $15 to $30. A plan that would undoubtedly work satisfactorily, and one which is recommended to the directors for their adoption, is to establish two lasses of season tickets, charging for one $20, and admitting the holder to the grounds only, and for the second class $30, according to the plan recently adopted by the directors. This would enable the holder of the ticket in the first class to exercise his own option in locating his seats, with the proviso that if he desired a seat in the grand stand, he must pay an extra 25 cents. On the other hand, if any one considered the advantage of having a seat in the grand stand reserved for him at any and all times of sufficient inducement for him to pay $30, he could do so. It seems as though this matter might be amicably settled and everything move on serenely. Certain it is that all talk about the directors of the Boston club desiring to snub any portion of the patrons, or that they don't appreciate the liberal patronage of the past, is simply nonsense and unjust.

In order to ascertain the policy adopted by the several league clubs in regard to the sale of season tickets, the Herald addressed a communication to parties in a position to know in the various league cities, to which replies have been received as follows:

Secretary Hughes of the Buffalo club writes: Our people have not yet decided as to sale of season tickets. Last year they were $15 to stockholders and $20 to others. As there are seven more games this season, my idea would be to charge stockholders $17.50, and outsiders $22.50. Our directors hold a meeting next Monday, when I presume it will be settled. All our season tickets admit the holders to the grand stand, and are good for every game played by our club on home grounds.

The Herald special correspondent at Cleveland writes: Before 1883, when the Cleveland club played 34 games for a season's league work, season tickets, without grand stand privileges, cost $15, and with a stand coupon $25. Last season the common ticket's price was $18, with a stand coupon $25, and this year the prices will be $20, and either $25 or $30 for a book admitting to the grand stand.

Treasurer Watson of the Detroit club writes: “We sold season tickets last year for 420 (40 games), said tickets being good to grand stand or ladies' stand, and being transferable. There being seven more games this season the price may be raised.”

President Day of the New York club writes: “We have never issued any season tickets for our grounds, yet we are contemplating doing so for the coming season, giving the purchaser admission to grounds and a reserved seat in the grand stand. We expect to charge $30 for the ticket, which will be transferable.”

President Reach of the Philadelphia club writes: We issue season ticket to the number of100 (limited) if wanted. Those in the grand stand at $15 each, good for all exhibitions, with reserved seat, up to Nov. 1. we also have another season ticket for the private boxes, four seats in each, situated on top of grand stand, price $20 each. Tickets not transferable.

President Spalding of the Chicago club writes: “Last year we sold our season tickets at $17.50. This year they will no doubt be raised to $20 on account of the increased number of games. These tickets will be good only to our league championship games, and will not be good for our “reserve” games. The purchasers of these tickets are permitted to select any seat in the grand stand, which are numbered, and the same is reserved for them during the season. They are made transferable.

The fact has already been published that Providence proposes to charge $15 for her season tickets and $12 for a lady's season ticket. In considering the above replies it will be remembered that in Philadelphia only 25 cents is charged for admittance to the league games, and therefore her price for a season ticket is in the same ratio as that recently set upon by Boston. It will also be seen that in most of the cities a larger sum has been charged for season tickets in the past than in Boston,and in at least two places the price for the season of1884 will probably be $30. In no case, however, has the advance for 1884 been double that of 1883, and it is to be hoped that the Boston management will modify the terms it decided on at its recent meeting. Boston Herald February 24, 1884

A meeting of the board of directors of the Boston Base Ball Club was held yesterday afternoon, at which the principal topic for consideration was the petition of the stockholders and last year's season ticket purchasers for a decrease in the price of season tickets for 1884. It will be remembered that a few weeks ago the price of the tickets was placed at $30. At the meeting, yesterday, it was voted to charge $20 for season tickets admitting to the grounds only, and $30 for admission to the games with a numbered reserve seat in the grant stand. The tickets will be transferable, but good for league games only. It was decided to partition off a portion of the space now occupied by stockholders' seats for the exclusive accommodation of the directors and reporters. The reporters' seats will be arranged in three rows, one behind the other, with accommodations for three reporters to a row. The grand stand will be enlarged to the extent of seating about 500 more people than at present. Boston Herald March 12, 1884

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

season ticket prices 5

Date Wednesday, March 12, 1884
Text

Boston charges $30 for season tickets this year, Buffalo, $22,50; Cleveland, $22; Detroit, $22.50, New York, $30; Philadelphia, $15—25 cent admission—Chicago, $20; Providence, $18. All these are grand stand ticket prices.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

selling players before disbanding

Date Saturday, August 2, 1884
Text

...the directors [of the Toledo Club] decided to-day [8/1] to disband the club. It is understood on good authority that an effort will be made to sell the contracts with the players, by which the backers of the club hope to realize a bonus to help them out to some extent.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Senator Gorman interested in the Nationals

Date Monday, March 24, 1884
Text

United States Senator Gorman is reported to have interested himself in obtaining privileges for the National Union Club of Washington. Senator Gorman was in year gone by president of the old National Club of that city.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

senators at the ball park

Date Wednesday, May 7, 1884
Text

Senator Vest, of Missouri, is a frequent spectator at Capital Park, and they way he squeezes for the boys is awful. He usually takes a seat back of first base and watches the points of the game with the greatest interest. Senator Gorman is also a frequent visitor. In fact, many of the gentlemen from the north and south wings of the capitol are, to be sure, quite frequently within the inclosure of Capital Park. The Sporting Life May 7, 1884

Philadelphia reserves disbanded; duplicate batteries

The Philadelphia Reserve team is no more. Their playing season closed last Wednesday. A few men will be released, but Harry Wright has decided to make haste slowly in this matter. The reserve catchers, Allen, Donahue and Daniels, are to be retained. Knight will continue as change pitcher and Fogarty and Cahill as substitutes. The work in the League season this year will be more exacting than ever before and Mr. Wright does not think he can have too many duplicate batteries. The Sporting Life May 7, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

seventeen strike outs in one game

Date Wednesday, September 3, 1884
Text

Hecker holds a record. In the Louisville-Columbus game, August 26, he struck out seventeen men, which tops the record in the American Association. Sweeny has the League record with nineteen, and one-armed Daily the Union Association with the same number. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Shaw is fined, jumps to the UA

Date Monday, July 21, 1884
Text

The Detroit Club undoubtedly made a great mistake in inflicting the fine of $30 upon Shaw, their pitcher, who is now one of the Boston Unions, and their hasty conduct and the ill-treatment suffered by him at their hands, and from the press of that city, have been factors which induced him to leave Detroit. In one of the Philadelphia games, men were on third and second bases, and he unintentionally threw poorly to first, allowing both men to score. Nothing was said about this during the game, but afterward Shaw and Meinke were notified by Manager Chapman that they were fined $30 for poor play. Shaw then informed Chapman that he would not be fined again and that he was going home. Chapman then said that he had better not, as he knew the penalty. Chapman also said that he knew well that Shaw’s poor play was unintentional, but the directors had determined to fine him. Shaw then took the train for home, and, as is well known, was secured by the Union Club of this city. Shaw was seen yesterday and stated that he had been backed up in a very indifferent manner by the Detroit team; that he had worked hard for it, and received but a sorry return; that abuse, which had been wholly undeserved, had been heaped upon him by the press. He was accused in the papers of pitching carelessly and of laughing and playing while in the box. He denied these allegations, and said that he never played otherwise than earnestly, although at times he was unfit to pitch. In one of the Boston games he was wholly unable to deliver the ball properly on account of a lame arm. Messrs. Harry Wright and Joe Start characterized Shaw’s treatment as extremely harsh, and scarcely blamed him for leaving the club, thought they thought him foolish in joining the Unions. To show that the Detroits are sincerely sorry for their actions, they have telegraphed him several times to return and offered to remit the fine. Shaw, however, determined to profit by experience, and would not go back and give the club a chance to even matters by deducting anything from his salary, and he therefore telegraphed that for a remission of his fine and an advance of $300 he would go back. He indignantly denied the rumor that he owed any one a penny in Detroit or left a debt unpaid. All the players, he said, as well as he received advance money from time to time, as is the custom. St., quoting the Boston Herald

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

signatories to the National Agreement; isolating the UA

Date Tuesday, April 22, 1884
Text

The following nine organizations have thus far signed the National agreement: Massachusetts State Association, eight clubs; American Association, twelve; Northwestern League, twelve; National League, eight; Eastern League, eight; Ohio State Association, five; Iron and Oil League, six; Keystone Association, six; Connecticut State League, six. Total clubs, seventy-one. By the terms of this agreement none of these clubs can play with a Union Association Club, or with any club that has played with a Union Association Club. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

social intercourse between League and UA

Date Thursday, May 1, 1884
Text

After the game, yesterday, Manager Morrill of the Bostons waited on Capt. Hoover and invited the Keystone club to attend the Boston-Buffalo game of today. The officers and players of the Boston Unions have also been invited to witness the contest.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Spalding fire

Date Monday, October 27, 1884
Text

A. G. Spalding & Bro. Lost $60,000 worth of sporting goods by fire at Chicago yesterday.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

St. Louis Cardinals

Date Tuesday, June 10, 1884
Text

The defeated the Florissant Grays by a score of 13 to 11, at Florissant. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

St. Louis Club finances; a dividend

Date Wednesday, January 23, 1884
Text

[reporting on the stockholders’ meeting of 1/15/1884] The board then declared a dividend of one hundred per cent. on the original capital invested, after which it adjourned.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

St. Louis Club ownership, finances, directory

Date Tuesday, January 15, 1884
Text

Never in its history has the St. Louis Base-Ball Association had so pleasant and amicable a meeting as that which marked the stockholders’ annual gathering and election of a new directory last evening. For some time past Mr. Von der Ahe has been absorbing the stock until the membership is now reduced to some twenty gentlemen or so, and these are all well interested in the good and welfare of the national sport locally. ... The declaration of a dividend of 100 per cent on the original amount paid in was also well received, and Mr. Von der Ahe announced that stockholders could get their dividends on the 25th of the month.

...

The ballot for the new directory resulted in the re-election of Messrs. Von der Ahe, O’Neill and Noiker [?], and in the selection of Jas. A. Williams and David L. Reid in place of Capt Judy and Ed Rother, who are retiring. St. Louis Post-Dispatch January 15, 1884

This is the first dividend declared by the St. Louis club, the earnings of 1882 having been carried over as a reserve fund to provide for advance salaries, improvements and the contingency of bad weather at the beginning of the last season. The capital stock of the Sportsman’s Park and Club association (the official name of the St. Louis Base Ball club) is only $5,000. It is not probable that the directors will publish a statement of their financial affairs except for the use of the stockholders, to whom the books are open at all times. It is understood that the receipts from entrance fees and reserved seats were about $60,000, and about $11,000 from sale of refreshments. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican January 16, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

St. Louis buys out Toledo; getting around the ten day rule

Date Monday, October 27, 1884
Text

On Thursday evening last Mr. Von der Ahe, president of the St. Louis Base-Ball Club, recieved a telegram from the president of the Toledo Club asking him to meet Manager Morton at the Laclede Hotel on Friday morning; this was done and that evening Messrs. Von der Ahe and Morton took the Wabash train for Toledo, and there, in a very short and business-like manner, the directors of the Toledos made a proposition to Mr. Von der Ahe which, after some discussion and qualificaiton, was accepted, and thereupon Secretary Wickoff was immediately notified of the release of the players until recently under engagement to the Toledo Club, these, of course, including the reserved men. Mr. Von der Ahe immediately obtained the signatures of Tony Mullane, Barkley, the second baseman; Welsh, Poorman and Morton to an agreement, drawn up legally and witnessed before a notary, to sign contract with the St. Louis Club so soon as the specified ten days have expired. This virtually binds the players, and the accession of strength to the St. Louis club will make it one of the very strongest teams ever put on a ball field. ... Mr. Von der Ahe returned home yesterday morning, highly delighted with the success of his mission. “It has cost me more money than I ever expended in any similar venture,” said the Browns’ president, “but I was determined not to let money stand between me and the players I needed. I think I have got a winning nine, and I hope the public will appreciate my earnestness in trying to give them the best that money will procure. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

St. Louis salary list

Date Wednesday, July 2, 1884
Text

[from a longer analysis of St. Louis salaries] [Williams, manager $2,500; Dealsey, c $2,500; Comiskey, 1b $2,100; Quest, 2b $2,100; McGinnis, p $1,975; O’Neill, p $1,900; Gleason, ss $1,800; Lewis, cf $1,800; Latham, 3b $1,800; Nicol, rf $1,600; Dolan, c $1,600; Strief, lf $1,400; Davis, p $1,400; Goldsby, sub. $1,400] The above is believed to represent a considerable increase in salaries over last year.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

St. Paul admitted to the UA

Date Saturday, September 27, 1884
Text

The St. Pauls have been admitted to the Union Association to take the place of the disbanded Wilmingtons. The club stood second in the North-western League, having been led only by the Milwaukee team, which is also now a member of the Union Association. Cincinnati Enquirer September 27, 1884

St. Paul has been elected to membership instead of Omaha, as proposed at the Washington meeting on the 19th, and will fill the dates the Wilmington Club would have filled if it had not disbanded. The Sporting Life October 1, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

surviving minor leagues

Date Wednesday, November 12, 1884
Text

[reporting on the meeting of the Arbitration Committee 11/8] The committee first considered the standing of the different associations parties to the National Agreement. The Northwestern League was voted out of existence and then the Eastern League came up for consideration. The committee thoroughly canvassed the ground for the proposed circuit of next season and it was the unanimous opinion that it would prove a success. ... To show that the Eastern League is still a member of the National Agreement the committee passed the appended resolution [giving the EL until April to produce proof of its membership]

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Sweeney blows out his elbow

Date Wednesday, July 9, 1884
Text

Manager Bancroft says that Sweeney has met with a mishap exactly similar to that which struck McCormick last season. A cord in his arm above the elbow has given away, and he will pitch no more for some time. This injury to Sweeney will prove a serious misfortune to the Providence Club, particularly at this stage of the League contests, when the race is neck and neck with Boston. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

switching a live and a dead ball

Date Friday, August 15, 1884
Text

A Norfolk, Va., dispatch discloses a new wrinkle in base-ball tactics: During the game of base-ball between the Baltimore Unions and the Athletic Club of Portsmouth, it was discovered that the Baltimores were playing with two balls, the live one for themselves and the dead ball for their competitors. Intense excitement and confusion ensued. Four or five men and boys rushed to the diamond, and the Baltimores would have been roughly handled but for the police. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

switching a live and a dead ball; manipulating the score

Date Wednesday, August 20, 1884
Text

[Baltimore Unions vs. Portsmouth 8/13/1884] A row occurred at Portsmouth [Va.] to-day during the progress of a base ball game which, for a time, threatened serious results. While the visitors were in the field in the sixth inning the captain of the Portsmouth nine was told that the Baltimore pitcher, William Sweeney, was using two balls, one ‘dead’ and the other ‘live.’ Umpire Sullivan was informed of the trick, and calling the game, demanded the balls. The ‘live’ one was passed to him, while the ‘dead’ one was surreptitiously placed in the hands of Seery, the left field, on whom it was found later. The spectators, however, saw the dodge and leaping over the inclosure which separated them from the players attacked the visitors. The police interfered at this point and kept the crowd at bay. During the melee Manager Will Henderson was struck in the face by one of the attacking party. After quiet was restored the Portsmouth nine refused to continue the game. The feeling of indignation against the visitors ran high and it was thought advisable to call out the entire police department to escort them to the Bay Line steamer. During the journey to the steamer they were loudly hissed and jeered by the populace. The game stood 8 to 0 in favor of the Baltimoreans. The only conjecture offered to account for Sweeney’s trickery was the desire on the part of the Baltimore to make up for the signal defeat they sustained yesterday from the same nine. Charges against the visiting nine will be preferred at the next meeting of the Association. The Portsmouth team refuses to pay the expenses of the Baltimoreans for the trip.

...

[Henderson’s response:] I made arrangements with the manager of the Portsmouth Club to play two exhibition games on their grounds. The first game was won by us in the first inning, but in order to make the game interesting the Baltimores allowed their opponents to score several runs and the game was won by the Baltimores by a score of 10 to 9. The next day the same ball was sued, and as it had been sued before for practice it was unfit to play with, as it had become soft. Seery tried to slip in a good ball of the same kind. He was detected and the ball was immediately given up. The game was then called, with the score standing 12 to nothing in favor of the Baltimores. The report that the club was escorted to the boat by the police is not true. The club left the grounds without protection, and after changing their clothes at the hotel, to proceeded to the boat unmolested. The Sporting Life August 20, 1884

[from “T.T.T.” the Baltimore correspondent] From an interview with Mr. Henderson, Umpire Sullivan and several of the players, the following is gathered, and is given as their version of the story: Two games were played, on the 12th and 13th. Mr. Henderson states that in the game of the 12th, by special request, it was understood that the game must be a close one, with the object of drawing a large audience on the 13th. Umpire Sullivan asserts that the ball pitched by the Baltimore Union “had to be a dead centre” before he would call a strike, while, on the other hand, the Baltimore Union, when desiring to even up the score, would “strike wide.” By this means the game was prolonged to ten innings, when the Baltimores closed it by winning as they chose. Mr. Henderson states that in the game of the 13th there was no special reason why the Portsmouth should be allowed to make a run, and consequently they were, by steady play but no unusual exertion, shut out by 10 to 0. This was all well enough, but two of his men, Levis and Seery, became ambitious to bang the ball over the fence, and show how they did those things in the Monumental City. “The ball they were playing with,” said Umpire Sullivan, “was a regular ‘puddin’ affair, and although I took off the wrapper myself and saw it was a Union ball, it acted after a little service as though it was stuffed with rags.” Therefore Seery unknown to Manager Henderson or the umpire, concealed about his clothing the Union ball that had been used in the game of the day before and took his position in left field. The “puddin’” ball was thrown to Levis on first base, who threw it to Seery, who changed the balls when returning it to the infield. The substitution was detected immediately and the audience became talkative and noisy, but, Manager Henderson states, not threatening, and no one to his knowledge was disturbed or molested in the least. After waiting about a half an hour the manager asserts that he took his place in a carriage with his club, with a due bill in his pocket for his share of the gate receipts, and started for the steamer. We arrived home, said Mr. Henderson, “on the 14 th, where we were advertised to play the Pastime (amateur) Club, but who failed to put in an appearance and refused to play us on account of the associated press dispatch which gave them an erroneous impression of the affair at Portsmouth.” The Sporting Life August 20, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

talk of UA becoming a Western organization

Date Sunday, November 30, 1884
Text

There has been a great deal of newspaper speculation about the Union Association for next season. As yet, every thing is in a chaotic condition, and it will remain so until after the annual meeting in St. Louis on December 16th, when the matter will be definitely settled whether it will be a strictly Western organization or have representative clubs in the East and West.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

talk of a league of Union reserve teams

Date Sunday, February 10, 1884
Text

There is a scheme on foot just now that may result in the organization of another association that will be allied to the Unions. All three of the Western clubs in the last named organization will run reserve teams. There are several good cities in this vicinity not as yet represented in any of the associations under the win and governed by the “freeze-out” rules of the Tripartite Slave Monopoly. Clubs have been organized in several of these cities, and these with the three reserve teams will constitute enough clubs to form a separate association. A schedule of championship games will be arranged between them, and their contests will prove quite a counter-attraction to the games of the older association teams, the outside members of the new association will also be able to compete with the regular teams in the Union Association, a privilege that some of the teams so anxious to sign the national agreement will not enjoy, as the clubs in the older associations will have all they can do to play out their own championship schedule of games.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

talk of putting the Cleveland reserve team in Akron

Date Wednesday, February 6, 1884
Text

The chances look bright for the location of the Cleveland Reserve at Akron. The ground has been looked over, and the old spirit that made Akron so good a base ball town in the past still exists, and though the old grounds are gone others can easily be secured. By this arrangement with the Cleveland Club Akron can get a far better team than she could gather at this time. Akron is too well situated, close to the League city of Cleveland, to be without a team. St., quoting the Cleveland Herald

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

talk of the UA to be a western association

Date Tuesday, December 9, 1884
Text

As to there being no Union clubs in the East, Secretary White said that all he knew about the matter was derived from newspaper statements that there was to be no club here or there. It could be stated as a fact, however, that the Nationals, of Washington, would withdraw from the Union Association if they could get into the American. Boston was not very sanguine of maintaining a Union nine, and the indications pointed very strongly to the Union confining its operations to the West.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Ted Sullivan co-owner in Kansas City

Date Wednesday, July 30, 1884
Text

Ted Sullivan has purchased a half interest in the Kansas City Club and will devote himself to building up a good team. He is now in Kansas City.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

tempting offers from the UA

Date Wednesday, November 5, 1884
Text

Great activity and rivalry now exist among the managers of the several League and American Association clubs in the securing of engagements with players for the season of 1885, and those who have shown themselves possessed of professional skill and superiority in their respective positions during the past season have been the recipients of tempting pecuniary inducements to sign contracts for seven months’ service next season. ... Great difficulty is being experienced in prevailing upon the Providence players to sign, perhaps no greater than in previous seasons, excepting that as League champions they value their services at a higher figure than a year ago, and doubtless have been approached during the latter part of the season by managers of the Unions Associations. This is undoubtedly the experience of other associations, and it is generally admitted that higher salaries will prevail next season in both League and American clubs. The Sporting Life November 5, 1884

The only hitch occurring in the signing of the Chicago players was in the cases of Williamson and Gore, who held off several days on account of inducements to go elsewhere. Williamson had received an offer of $10,000 for three years, with $1,000 advance money, to play third base for the Lucas Union team in St. Louis, and Gore, too, was badly wanted by a Union club. The Sporting Life November 5, 1884, quoting American Sports

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Terry Larkin in trouble again

Date Monday, February 18, 1884
Text

Frank Larkin, the base ball pitcher, is again in trouble. A year ago, while intoxicated, he struck his wife in the face, fracturing her jaw. Officer Tim Phelan went to arrest him and Larkin fired at him. The ball made a slight gash on the officer’s face. Larkin then cut his own thrat without serious injury. Six months ago he was tried for shooting his wife and sent to the Penitentiary for six months. An indictment is hanging over him for shooting Officer Phelan. He was released from the Penitentiary last week and his father gave him a room in his house, at No. 93 North Fourth street, and an overcoat to protect him from the inclemency of the weather. Larkin pawned the overcoat last Saturday and purchased a revolver. He got drunk and was out until 4 o’clock in the morning. When he went into the house he flourished his revolver and threatened to shoot his parents and every person in the house. He was so violent in his actions that Sergeatt Burford, of the Fifth Precinct, was notified, and two policemen arrested him.. Old Mr. Larkin found the revolver and gave it to the police. The prisoner was held in $1,000 by Justice Nacher this morning. Brooklyn Eagle February 18, 1884

Terry Larkin, the “terror,” has served out his Penitentiary term and is at liberty once more. He was present at the ball grounds in New York and Brooklyn last week. He was very subdued, and has promised reformation. St. Louis Post-Dispatch May 6, 1884

Source Brooklyn Eagle
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the 'crank' as a dangerous lunatic

Date Monday, June 9, 1884
Text

Mutrie was unceremoniously aroused from his slumbers one morning by the announcement that there was a gentleman down in the parlor who wished to see him. Thinking it was one of the ball-tossers after “mon,” he told them to show the gentleman up stairs to his bedroom. In a moment or two, to his utter astonishment, a strange-looking genius came walking in. He introduced himself to Mutrie as a the greatest pitcher in the world, and claimed that he had a lot of new deliveries that had never been pitched before. Jhim had just been hustled out of a sound sleep and he was in no mood to be annoyed by a crank of this sort, so he put on an awfully tough look, and said: “Why, the boys will knock you out of the lot!” “Oh! no, they won’t,” replied the stranger, producing a fifteen inch file from his boot-leg, which was ground down as sharp as a razor on both sides, and a long keen point on it that would put a lance to the blush. His eyes sparkled like diamonds as they danced about through this head, as he smilingly repeated his remark: “Oh! no, they won’t! for this is what I always use.” Jim was alone with the lunatic. He felt the cold chills creeping up his back, but did not dare to show that he was agitated, even though the chair tickled the seat of his trousers so much that could hardly sit still. Jim’s level head on this occasion pulled him through, and as quick as a flash he said: “I think you are about the best pitcher in the country, and if I can get you to pitch for the Metropolitans they will surely win the championship. Come, let us get a ball and go out, and you pitch it to me.” The maniac consented, and Mutrie breathed more freely, but did not risk a long breath until he had safely lodged him in the hands of the police, when he made to a looking-glass to see the color of his hair. St., quoting an unnamed exchange

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the AA new balk rule

Date Wednesday, December 17, 1884
Text

[reporting on the AA annual meeting 12/10-12/11] A very important change for base-runners was made in the balk rule, which now reads, as amended, as follows:

Rule 25–A balk is

(1) A motion made by the pitcher to deliver the ball to the bat without delivering it, and shall be held to include any and ever accustomed motion with the hands, arms or feet, or position of the body assumed by the pitcher in his delivery of the ball, except the ball be accidentally dropped.

(2) The ball be held by the pitcher so long as to delay the game unnecessarily, or

(3) Any motion to deliver the ball, or the delivering of the ball to the bat by the pitcher when any part of his person is upon ground outside the lines of his position. This shall include all preliminary motions with the hands, arms or feet.

This amendment was drawn by ex-Secretary Williams after much study of the subject, and was adopted intact after prolonged debate and illustration.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Allegheny manager now a theatrical advance man

Date Monday, January 21, 1884
Text

Ormond Butler, who was manager of the Allegheny Base-Ball Club last year, is now here in advance of the New York Opera Company, which opens in “The Queen’s Lace Handkerchief,” at Pope’s, January 27. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Altoona Club briefly goes independent

Date Tuesday, June 3, 1884
Text

The Altoona Union Base Ball Club, which disbanded on Saturday last, reorganized last evening as an independent club. Boston Herald June 3, 1884

The Altoona B.B. club succumbed to the inevitable last Wednesday. Lack of dates for games and lack of patronage made it impossible to make the club pay, consequently it disbanded, paying and releasing all players. The Sporting Life June 25, 1884

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Athletic ground bar privilege

Date Thursday, January 17, 1884
Text

President Appleton, of the Metropolitans, who secured the bar privileges on the Athletic grounds, has sold out to another party. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Boston Union Club

Date Wednesday, January 9, 1884
Text

The Cincinnati Enquirer is authority for the statement that Boston is to be gathered into the Union fold. It says: “A Boston club has made application for membership in the Union Association. It is a first-class nine, such men as Tommy Bond and Tim Murnane being numbered among its players. George Wright, the veteran short stop and manager, is its leading spirit. The application is filed with Wm. Warren White, secretary of the Association, and has not yet been acted upon.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Boston reserve team

Date Sunday, March 16, 1884
Text

Out of nearly 100 applications for engagement on , representing every section of the country, President Soden and the directors of the Boston club have finally made a selection of seven players, and they have all been signed for this season. … The balance of the reserve team will, of course, be made up from extra men signed by the Bostons last fall. The selection will be made by Manager Morrill, and will be governed by the abilities displayed by the several players as the season progresses. The reserves will be kept at work as fast as games can be arranged for them, and any of them will be liable to be called upon at any time to take the place of a member of the regular team prevented from playing by sickness or accident.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Brooklyn Union Grounds closed

Date Saturday, November 1, 1884
Text

The laying of the corner-stone of the new armory of the Forty-seventh regiment of Brooklyn, on the site of the old Union base ball grounds, winds up the history of that once familiar resort of the base ball fraternity and closes the record of a period in the life of the national game replete with interesting and exciting events. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Cincinnati Unions were asked to join the AA

Date Sunday, December 28, 1884
Text

[from a letter from William Barnie to Justus Thorner dated 12/24/1884] At the Fifth Avenue Hotel in New York when the Board of Directors made their decision known in the Mullane case Mr. Caylor, openly, in a public room, surrounded by interested people, announced as a fact accomplished by competent authority, that the Cincinnati Club withdrew from the American Association, and that the proper formalities would be observed the next morning when the convention convened. Not only this, but he took occasion to make the statement more impressive and to give it a wider circulation by seeking out Mr. Francis C. Richter, the editor of the Sporting Life and requesting him to publish the fact as before stated. As this paper is a recognized authority in base-ball matters and has a general circulation through the profession there was no doubt left in the minds of the delegates to the convention that the move was the result of instructions previously given by the Cincinnati Club o its delegate to be acted upon in a certain emergency, which had now arisen. Taking this view of the case the delegates to the convention naturally reasoned among themselves thus: Here are the representatives of the clubs of the American Association assembled in annual convention. A valuable Western city suddenly withdraws in representation. It is greatly to the advantage of the Association to have a representative there.

Therefore, to fill the breach, and as the convention was not in session, to avoid delay the Louisville, Athletic, Brooklyn, St. Louis, Allegheny and Baltimore Clubs requested me to act as their agent, and to telegraph you a tender of the vacancy, which I did, and which you accepted, we were glad to find, and would have formally elected your club a member the next day had Mr. Caylor given us the opportunity, as we certainly expected; but again his assertion, publicly made, as usual, proved worthless, and the next morning he slunk into a half obscure corner of the convention and made himself as small as possible compatible with a legal representation (and you must know he can make himself very small, indeed), and gradually crawled back to the position he had abandoned.

As our tender of the vacancy and your acceptance had been a preliminary to what without doubt would have been officially ratified by the convention in assembly, the telegrams were turned over to President H. D. McKnight as a neutral party and as a proper person for the custody of such important papers, and from his well known, upright characteristics I can, with confidence, assure you that your telegram has been published, if at all, through some breach of faith on Caylor's part. However, the only reason on my part for desiring privacy was on Mr. Caylor's account, and as you inform me that he has himself slightly raised the veil, you might as well let the public know the whole truth.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Cleveland position on Dunlap

Date Wednesday, January 16, 1884
Text

There is some gouging going on. Dunlap is ready to leave the Union Association to-morrow if he can go where he wants to, as least he says so, and Cleveland is being urged to release him on the cry of ‘you cannot have him, and must do your duty and snatch him away from the Union Association by giving him a release and letting him sign with us.’ At any rate, this is treachery to Cleveland by a number of the National group, and won’t work. Dunlap will play here, retire from base ball, or go to the Union Association and be operated on by the Day resolution. But the parties who are with Dunlap, even if they succeed in their efforts to procure his release, would themselves be victims of a trick. Once released by Cleveland he would be free, and could go where he chose, or hang out and sell his services after the season opened to the highest bidder. The latter would be characteristic of the young man. St., quoting the Cleveland Herald

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

The Critic the UA organ

Date Wednesday, July 30, 1884
Text

...the leading organ of that organization [the UA], the Critic, of St. Louis, the home of President Lucas... The Sporting Life July 30, 1884

everyone hates Anson

It is no secret that Anson is very unpopular with the Chicago team, of which he is captain, and who regard him as a bully a tyrant, and there are many who attribute the bad playing of a team which contains great ability to a reckless spirit engendered in the men by their desire to get away from Chicago and the hated Anson. The Sporting Life July 30, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the League high delivery rule

Date Saturday, May 17, 1884
Text

The rule regarding League pitchers has not made any noticeable change in deliveries, as had been expected, this well showing that the rule was a recognized dead letter in 1883. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Metropolitan grounds; official scorer

Date Saturday, June 21, 1884
Text

If the Metropolitans are making anything besides expenses it must be deodorizing compound to deaden the smell of the dump, and it is our opinion that they cannot spend too much time preparing this mixture, as the hot weather is making the dump sizzle. National Police Gazette June 21, 1884

The east side dump, which is used as a baseball ground, is the most poorly and awkwardly arranged excuse for accommodating the patrons of any baseball-field in the United States. The press are given a front seat, which they can't get into unless they climb over the heads of all the spectators, and when they do get there they find the seats occupied by some one else, who won't give them up. Kennedy, the official scorer, has to get there at half-past five in the morning and take his breakfast and dinner along with him in order to secure his seat during the game. If some kind gentleman would give Mutrie ten or fifteen cents he could have a railing put around the two old beer-tables ha has there for the scorers' stand, and the reporters will take their chances at crawling through the meshes of the wire-screen if they are only sure of their seats after getting there. National Police Gazette June 21, 1884

Source National Police Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Metropolitans reportedly sold

Date Thursday, April 17, 1884
Text

The Metropolitan Exhibition Company has today [4/16] sold to Mr. Frank Rhoner of this city [New York] the right, title and good will of the Metropolitan Base Ball Club, including everything connected with it, and Mr. Rhoner will hereafter be the president and James Mutrie the manager of the same. Mr. Appleton no longer has any connection with the club. The backers of Mr. Rhoner are said to be several moneyed men of this city, but their names have not been made public. Outside of the contract money and money thus far expended on their grounds, the price received by the exhibition company is stated as being very small. Boston Herald April 17, 1884

Mr. Rhoner is a wholesale furniture dealer in New York City, and has taken some interest in the national game. He will retain James Mutrie as manager. St. Louis Post-Dispatch April 22, 1884

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Mullane case

Date Wednesday, June 11, 1884
Text

It seems that Tony Mullane has not passed the shoals and breakers, notwithstanding the fact that a Cincinnati judge decided that the injunction granted against Mullane in Missouri would not hold in Ohio. It now appears that Mullane, after having played elsewhere, can be punished for contempt of court on his appearance in Missouri. But the matter does not end here, for on Monday last Messrs. Pattison & Crane, attorneys for the St. Louis Athletic Association, filed a petition and bond in the Circuit court at St. Louis for the removal of the case to the United States Circuit Court [sic: probably District Court]. If an injunction is granted in the latter court against Mullane, he will be prohibited from playing anywhere in the United States. Whatever other faculties Mr. Lucas may have, one thing is certain, he is quite a stayer and seems determined to continue the fight to the bitter end against the American Association. The Sporting Life June 11, 1884

The statement that in St. Louis had been removed from the Circuit to the Federal Circuit Court by the Lucas party is incorrect. Mullane and the Toledo Club caused the removal in opposition to the wishes of the Lucas party. The Sporting Life June 18, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Nationals looking for a league

Date Sunday, December 28, 1884
Text

It would be rather rough on that elegant disciple of Lord Chesterfield, Mike Scanlan, if both the Metropolitans and Brooklyns concluded to remain in the American Association, and he and his $4 ball players would have to eke out an existence in that little side show, the Eastern League, next season. By June Mike and Harry Diddlebock will be all that is left of it. Cincinnati Enquirer December 28, 1884

Mike Scanlan is chuckling and having a good time over the prospects of his team being a member of the American Association next seaon. Mke had better reserve his exultant yells until he is safe out of the woods, as there is lots of truth in the old saying, “The best laid plans of mice and men,” &c. The Mets may conclude to try it again next season, and if they do the Eastern League will fit Mike's case exactly. Cincinnati Enquirer December 28, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Northwestern League hits the reset button

Date Wednesday, August 20, 1884
Text

It was thought that another club would be taken in to make up a circuit, and a number of applications for membership were received. But, to the general surprise, they were all rejected, and but one club, from Winona, Minn., was admitted, and Saginaw and Evansville were dropped. This was done with a view to making a short circuit, as with the circuit extending to Michigan and Indiana it was impossible to go on. It was resolved to entirely recast lines and begin a new series of games for the championship, and a committee is at work preparing a schedule calling for twenty-four games each between the four clubs constituting the new Northwestern League.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Olympic Club grounds; condition of the club

Date Wednesday, December 31, 1884
Text

In 1878 the [Olympic] club leased Oakdale Park, where they played many sociable games until 1881. In 1882 they secured a ground at Eighteen and Cumberland streets, adjoining the Pennsylvania State Fair Grounds, which has been fenced, seats erected and many improvements made. Here the club still maintains its old reputation, and every Tuesday and Friday, which are club days, from early march until late in November, will be found some if its members enjoying this most healthful exercise. Whilst skillful play is worked hard for by all, and a successful contest gratifying, yet respectability has always been the ruling desire of the club, hence no gratuitous additions have been sought for or admitted to build up and strengthen a first nine. One of the commendable objects of the club, always kept in view, has been to make it socially agreeable. Therefore, in weighting the claims of an applicant for membership, due attention is given to his merits in this respect. Owing to these influences the club is no doubt indebted, in a great measure, for its age and healthfulness.

At present the club consists of 40 members composed of gentlemen connected with our most prominent mercantile, insurance and manufacturing companies, and the past years have held on its roll some of Philadelphia’s most prominent and influential citizens. There are but six of the original founders of the club still living as follows: Robt. Lindsay,Robt. P. McCullough, William Hart Carr, W. Kirk Wells, Joseph Mart and Col. P. C. Ellmaker.

In 1884 much activity was again shown in the club, due mainly to the exertions of two of its members, Charles Buob and Walter Gilbert, who again placed the old club in the field with an active ball nine. Their efforts were most gratifying, as it was the means of “bringing out” several very fine players... [a list of games for 1884 is appended, record of 12-8-2.] The Sporting Life December 31, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

The St. Louis Unions reserve nine

Date Monday, February 11, 1884
Text

The Lucas Amateurs. Mr. George C. Cassilly has been engaged by Mr. Lucas to manage his reserve team to be known as above. ... St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the St. Louis reserves disbanded

Date Tuesday, June 3, 1884
Text

At noon yesterday President Von der Ahe called the St. Louis Reserves together and notified them that, inasmuch as the public did not demonstrate any amount of interest in their games, and that the experiment had been a constant and heavy loss, he would disband them and put them at liberty to make such other engagements as they saw fit. The men took the fiat most complacently and good naturedly, and to some extent it was done at the advice and suggestion of several of the member, who can place themselves at present and would not be able to further on in the season. Mr. Von der Ahe had concluded to carry out the St. Louis part of the schedule most faithfully, but in order to give the men full scope and every opportunity to better themselves he concluded to take the step. The Cincinnati Reserves were accordingly notified, and they left for home last evening. In regard to the Reserve experiment, although it is not likely to be repeated in future seasons, it has had some valuable results. Goldsby, an excellent out-fielder and general player and a hard left-hand batsman, will be retained for service on the regular force. Streuve and Krehmeyer, two of the most promising back-stops in the country, will be kept also for relief to Dolan and Deasley as occasion may require. St. Louis Post-Dispatch June 3, 1884

A statement has appeared that Mr. Von der Ahe lost between $7,000 and $8,000 on his reserve team. This is the truth multiplied by three–a good average size for a lie, and does very well. St. Louis Post-Dispatch June 4, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the UA and Sunday games

Date Wednesday, April 16, 1884
Text

The declination of the Altoona and Boston clubs to play games on Sunday will necessitate about forty changes in the Union Association schedules and Secretary White is busily engaged in formulating a revisited scheme. But three clubs will play Sunday games at home—Chicago, Cincinnati and St. Louis—and the changes will have to be made accordingly.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the UA attempts to attract a minor league to its organization

Date Sunday, January 6, 1884
Text

For several weeks the officers and newspaper organs of the Union association have been beseeching the Ohio League to recognize it in preference to the older organizations. The Ohio League quietly listened to and read all of this advice, and then signified its intention of standing by the National league, and the American and Northwestern associations, and thus bringing itself within the protection of the national agreement. This was a wise step to take, and furnishes but another instance of the fact that even in its own section of the country the Union association has not the confidence of the best friends of the national game.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the UA meeting; respecting contracts

Date Tuesday, March 18, 1884
Text

The Union Association of Base Ball Clubs began its session today with closed doors. There were present Thomas J. Pratt of Philadelphia, H. W. Bennett of Washington, A. H. Henderson of Baltimore, E. S. Hengle of Chicago, H. V Lucas of St. Louis, Justus Thorner of Cincinnati and W. W. Ritz of Altoona, Pa. The Boston club was admitted to membership, making eight club in the association. George Wright took his seat as its representative.... The matter of players who have broken contracts was referred to the board of directors, with instruction to use every legal means to obtain redress. A resolution was adopted to adhere closely to the principle of observing all contracts in a spirit of fairness.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the UA reserve fund

Date Sunday, December 21, 1884
Text

The amendment to the constitution introduced by Vice-President Espenschied, of the St. Louis club, providing for a reserve fund, to be used in case of an emergency for the general good of the association, is one of the wisest pieces of legislation ever enacted. Each of the eight clubs represented next season will have to deposit within five days after the annual meeting, which takes place in Milwaukee on the 15 th of January, either in currency or a certified check $500, as evidence of good faith that they will live up to all the rules and requirements of the association, and play out the schedule. This will aggregate a reserve fund of $4,000, of which President Lucas will be custodian, under a bond of $5,000. In case a club fails to carry out its schedule, it forfeits all right to the $500, and the $4,000, or as much of it as is necessary, will be sued toward securing another club to take its place a pro rata assessment will then be made to make good the drain on the reserve fund, so that there will be $4,000 guarantee on hand at all times. At the close of the season this will be divided equally among the clubs remaining in the association.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Union Association tries to put a club in Detroit

Date Wednesday, January 16, 1884
Text

The Union Association is making an effort to establish a club a Detroit. Ed Price, theatrical agent and journalist, has been offered inducements to take the project in hand and push it through. Price would possibly make a success of it. The Sporting Life January 16, 1884

baseball reporter for the Tribune

Mr. De Witt Ray, the base ball reporter of the Chicago Tribune, during the season of 1883, is now in charge of the sporting department of the Herald, and the work on the latter journal, always noted for its good sporting matter, was never more efficiently done than now. The Sporting Life January 16, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Washingtons attempt to preempt the Nationals ground

Date Monday, January 14, 1884
Text

The grounds leased by the Nationals of this city [Washington] are beyond question the most central of the city, and when the American team heard of their good fortune, knowing they had a lease upon them, they approached the owners, the property belonging to the Washington and Georgetown Railroad Company, and endeavored to get them to revoke the former lease and issue one to them. Failing in this they sent another party to the agent and endeavored to purchase a lot across the center of the grounds, the purpose being to cut the infield through and destroy the usefulness of the lot. When asked by the President of the company whom he represented the man replied “Mr. Maxley,” [sic] who is the backer of the Washington, or American Association team. He was then given to understand his attempt to throttle the other club would not work, as it *the lot) could not be purchased for $10,000. since this has been developed I am sorry to say there have been few if any complimentary remarks made in behalf of the new American team., quoting the Washington correspondent of the Mirror of American Sports

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the baseball war and player discipline

Date Friday, July 25, 1884
Text

Recent events in the base-ball world show that with the present base-ball war in full blast discipline is going to the dogs. What does the blacklist amount to when expelled players are eagerly welcomed by rival associations. Managers should put on their thinking caps. St. Louis Post-Dispatch July 25, 1884

The St. Louis Unions to-day [7/24] engaged Charles Sweeney, late of the Providence Club, paying him more money than is received by any other pitcher in the country. Cincinnati Enquirer July 25, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the baseball war raging; inflated player salaries

Date Wednesday, July 30, 1884
Text

The base ball war is still raging and will wax hotter as the season draws to a close. The expulsion of Charles Sweeney, the Providence pitcher, and his acquisition by the St. Louis Unions has been followed by the desertion of Dickerson from the Lucas ranks.

The National Agreement clubs claim that the Union Association has established an agent in every city where there is a club and that the offers made by these agents in their efforts to secure the best players have been the cause of the recent disaffection in different parts of the country.

“Discipline has gone to the dogs,” remarked a well-known manager at Recreation Park, “but while National Agreements clubs may suffer now, the tables will be turned upon the Unions in the end.”

Robert Matthews, pitcher of the Athletic, is among the latest to receive an offer from a Union club. He received a dispatch offering him $4,000 per year. The little pitcher opened his eyes, showed the dispatch to manager Sharsig and then tore it up. Base ball players are ruling high. Good pitcher bring all the way from $2,000 to $4,000, catchers are scarce at $3,000, infielders command as much, if not more, while very poor outfielders will bring $2,000, providing they jump a contract. No player will sign a contract now without real estate security. Millionaire Lucas has the call and is now bulling the market.

Source Philadelphia Times
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the benefit of a good location

Date Wednesday, January 23, 1884
Text

For the past six years the [Chicago] club has had the benefit of a location for its grounds which would not be possible in any other large city in the Union. It is very much as though a Philadelphia club had its park in the block bounded by Spruce and Walnut, Seventh and Eighth streets. In other words, the entrance to the Chicago Ball Park is but two squares distant from the retail center of the city, and from the upper windows of a large wholesale district an excellent view can be had of a ball game in progress. The saving of time and car-fare in reaching the grounds has been the means of putting many thousands of dollars into the Chicago Club’s treasury, and the loss of these grounds would prove a serious loss to the club.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the catcher borrows a chest protector

Date Friday, July 11, 1884
Text

[Kansas City UA vs. Chester 7/10/1884] Toney [of the Chester] was crippled on the fingers and played at a disadvantage, but did good work. In the second inning he got a rib tickler on a hot foul liner, and the remainder of the game covered his liver with the breast protector brought along by Alexander [of the Kansas City] (Chester, Pa.) Delaware County Times July 11, 1884

telling the umpire he needs glasses

Billy McLean is getting old, and he doesn't like to acknowledge it, and it made him so mad when Joe Hornung told him he ought to get a pair of spectacles that he fined Joe $20. National Police Gazette July 12, 1884

Source Delaware County Times
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the championship pennant 3

Date Wednesday, April 23, 1884
Text

The Boston championship pennant is white in color, 20 feet long and 17 feet wide. It will bear the inscription “Bostons” in red letters and “Champions” in blue letters. On the staff end will be two blue balls. The upper one will bear the figures “1877" in red and the lower ball will bear the red figures “1878,” the years when the Bostons won the championship of the League.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the danger of trying to trade a player

Date Wednesday, November 5, 1884
Text

The New Yorks need a pitcher to alternate with Welch. They have the man in Keefe, but can he be safely transferred by the Mets? In the interval between release and re-signing he may slip through their fingers and then both teams would be left for change pitchers.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the early curve credited to Cummings and Mathews

Date Wednesday, January 2, 1884
Text

[from an article by Jimmy Williams] Arthur Cummings and Bob Matthews had pitched a small lateral curve as early as 1868, but it was done by a regular pitch and not by a throw, as later. St. Louis Post-Dispatch January 2, 1884 [N.B. The article is a reasonably accurate history of the development of pitching.]

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the effect of the hit batsman rule

Date Sunday, November 2, 1884
Text

The rule in the American Association which gives a batsman a base when hit by a pitched ball worked not a little to the detriment of the pitchers in the Cincinnati American Club, and to this one thing as much if not more than any thing else may be attributed their position in the race. White is credited with the remark that it hurt him more than any legislation that has ever been made. As is well known, he used to hit as many if not more batsmen than any pitcher in the country. We do not pretend to say he did it maliciously, but in working players when at the plate the ball was sent in at such an angle that is was impossible to dodge it. Under the old regime he could use all of his curves and resort to all sorts of strategy to fool the batsman without suffering in consequence. The minute the penalty was attached to hitting a batsman it robbed him of much of his effectiveness. He lost a great deal of his confidence, and for a while at least (at the beginning of the season) he was transformed while in the box from a cool-headed general to a nervous and excited amateur. He was afraid to use his deceptive inshoot for fear of hitting batsmen, and thus being robbed of one of his most effective deliveries, he was greatly crippled.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the end of the Mullane litigation

Date Wednesday, September 24, 1884
Text

President Lucas, of the St. Louis Unions, has finally withdrawn all his suits against Tony Mullane.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the field manager

Date Wednesday, January 16, 1884
Text

The fact is that this question of management (and we are now speaking of supervising field practice and not financiering) has become of late years one of the most important connected with base ball matters. To be sure, each club has an official formally called a manager, and he is supposed to drill the men in their field practice, but how many of them are able to correct the fault of a player? When an infield player constantly passes sharp grounders he can, of course, call his attention to it and request him to improve himself in that direction, but can he point out the cause of the defect and impart to the player the information that may lead to his improvement? After a time, perhaps, it will be realized that there are certain qualities requisite in a manager that are now known to be possessed by but few in the fraternity at present; something more than a mere business talent or average skill as a player. It evidently requires an intelligent and thinking man, and one who can impart to others the result of his studies in that direction. Such men are Morrill, Wright and Sullivan. System and discipline seem to be the groundwork of their success, combined with the attributes before mentioned.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the flat bat

Date Wednesday, December 3, 1884
Text

The adoption of by the League was brought about by Harry Wright. This has been a favorite theory with the veteran manager for years, but heretofore, the League has set down solidly upon it whenever it was mentioned. It is only given a trial now, and is made optional with the player to use the round or flat bat, because the desire to increase the batting is so strong. “The use of will tend to more scientific batting,” says Mr. Wright, “‘placing’ the ball will be made easier, and players who have hitherto been ranked as weak batters will develop into strong ones, and strong ones as relates to long hard hits, but in the view of making safe line hits that will advance men on bases. I think the experiment will prove successful.

Source The Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the formation of the Boston Unions

Date Sunday, March 9, 1884
Text

Important events have transpired in Boston during the past week, which render it more than probable that a new professional base ball club will be established in this city the coming season, and that, moreover, the new club will be a member of the Union association. For several months a gentleman named Furniss has been actively engaged in endeavoring to secure the necessary funds for the establishment of a general athletic association in Boston, to which the sport of base ball was to be appended as a prominent feature, and a club organized for the purpose of joining the Union association. This movement professed so slowly that it was finally decided that if matters were not brought to a focus by Mr. Furniss by lat Thursday evening the would be dropped. Mr. Furniss did not come to time, and consequently the movement engineered by him is dead. In the mean time, another factor appeared on the scene in the person of President Lucas of the Union association. Mr. Lucas was in Boston on Tuesday last, and called upon several gentlemen who have been prominently identified with the national game in this vicinity in years past, and received their consent to cooperate with him in the establishment of a Union association club in Boston. He drove out to the proposed grounds on the Back bay, and expressed himself as well satisfied with their location and surroundings. He then offered to contribute liberally toward the enterprise, and did subscribe a large sum, the exact amount not being stated, but it is rumored his subscription was $1500. Then, in company with a gentleman well known in sporting circles, he called upon a number of gentlemen who are lovers of general athletic sports, and succeeded in getting some of them interested in the scheme to the extent of liberal subscriptions, till he closed his labors, when he had secured about $7500. Tim Murnan, who has six or seven players already signed to himself personally for the coming season, was seen, and he virtually agreed to allow them to be the nucleus of a professional club. Mr. Lucas aroused considerable enthusiasm during his stay, and, after he had departed, his lieutenants in this city kept up the work. Mr. Lucas informed the gentlemen in this city, that if Boston desired to join the Union association this season, such determination must be made known as soon as Saturday, the 13 th inst., or by Monday, the 17 th, at the very latest, as the schedule meeting of the association is to be held on that day, and Boston must be represented in arranging the schedule. Interviews yesterday with the leading promoters of this new enterprise found them very sanguine, amounting almost to a certainty that the project would be put through to the end. On Friday last the lease of the Back bay grounds was signed by the parties interested, the lease being for three years, with the privilege of extending the time to five years. Work on the grounds will be commenced at the first favorable opportunity that presents itself. It is proposed to organize a stock company, with $10,000 capital. The new enterprise, if the plans of its projectors are carried out, will not be confined exclusively to the interests and development of base ball, but will include the exhibition of all the prominent sports of the day. It is not regarded as among the possibilities that a ball club can be organized at this late day that will be as strong as desired, but the foundation will be laid for a far better one for the season of 1885. Those who are engineering the matter are confident that there will be no clashing of the interests representing the various sports, but that all will move along happily and harmoniously. Boston will be represented at the next meeting of the Union association, and during the coming week it is expected that the plans of the Boston enterprise will be fully matured and given to the public.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the future of the National Club

Date Sunday, December 7, 1884
Text

Considerable interest is manifested to know with which Association the Washington team will be identified next season. Manager Scanlan is devoting all his energies to receive admission into the American Association. Other members of the Directory, however, are averse to cutting loose from their Union allies, and they say that the action of the League recently shows that a war to the knife is to be inaugurated against all those who aided or abetted in the new organization. When such players as Dunlap, Sweeney, Daly and Shafer are refused permission to be stricken from the black-lists of the League and American Association, these gentlemen of the Nation Directory declare that their nine will not be excepted from the sweeping denunciation of the last meeting in New York. On the other hand, Manager Scanlan favors an absolute capitulation to the League and a burning of the Union bridge, for, as he puts it, if the League or American Association refuse to let the National Club in, the Eastern League will gladly open its door to the applicant.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the goal of the reserve teams

Date Thursday, April 17, 1884
Text

The Reserve idea was in fact to take hold of the most promising talent in the country and develop it. It is to establish a school or rather a graduating institution for players of this class before they turn out full-fledged professionals, and to furnish good building material for the old nines as the older players grow rust and drop out, as they invariably must in a certain number of seasons. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the guarantee system

Date Wednesday, January 9, 1884
Text

Concerning the report that seven out of the twelve American Association clubs are endeavoring to secure the adoption of a rule for the equal division between visiting and home clubs of the receipts of championship games, President McKnight says: “The matter was brought up at the Cincinnati meeting, but unfavorably acted upon. The weaker clubs favored it, of course, but St. Louis, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, New York and Pittsburgh would not consent. It is only a question of time, however, when the distribution of profits will be equalized and the stronger clubs in the Association made to contribute to the support of the weaker clubs.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the history of the formation of the UA

Date Saturday, April 19, 1884
Text

It is not six months ago since the Union Association was talked of. Early in November last Al. Pratt, at one time famous as the pitcher for the Forest City club of Cleveland, sent out letters with a view to forming a new association. Among those who heard from him were Thomas J. Pratt, a base-ball enthusiast of Philadelphia, A. H. Henderson, the organizer of the Chicago Union Club of 1883, and William Warren White, the mainstay of the old Olympic Club of Washington. A meeting was held at Pittsburg, and there after a pooling of issues it was found that there were not clubs enough to form a national body, and as a result the Pittsburg man dropped the matter. The others, however, pushed ahead and after some correspondence the services of Mr. Lucas were enlisted in the enterprise. He founded the organization in an embryotic state. It lacked a head and there was but little body to it. Chicago was all right. The club that proposed to enter from that point had splendidly inclosed grounds and the nucleus for a good team. The Philadelphia club had an organization but no grounds. The Washington club was on a level with the Philadelphia. The Baltimore club could give but little account of itself although the men mentioned as its promoters were known as gentlemen of wealth and energy. But the clubs of Chicago, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Washington and St. Louis were not sufficient in numbers for form a national body. Eight clubs at least were needed–four in the east and four in the west, and here were only five. The Richmond and Brooklyn clubs promised to come in, but at the last moment showed what they were after by applying to the American Association for admission. Brooklyn was admitted to that body, but the claim of Richmond was not honored. After such a move, however, the promoters of the Union Association quite corresponding with the Richmond Club, and started to look up some better and truer people. Mr. Lucas was the prime mover of the matter. He left here unaccompanied a made a tour of the country, the result of which was the complete organization of the Union. His first stop was at Cincinnati. Here Justus Thorner, the president of the old Cincinnati Club, was found, and he, after some talk, promised to put a first-class team in the new association. From Cincinnati Mr. Lucas went to Boston, and here he found Tim Murnane, the veteran player, with a full team on hand and ready to join any organization that presented itself. He was invited to joint the Union, and accepted the invitation. Boston and Cincinnati made seven clubs, and there was an application in from Altoona. The latter city was looked upon as quite a railroad center, but Mr. Lucas knew nothing of its claims as a base-ball town. He visited there, and finding an organization backed by the best men of the city, with a splendid complement of players and an excellent outlook, he honored the claim of Altoona, and believing that his labors were at an end he returned home. Scarcely had he arrived here when he heard that the Boston Club had concluded not to enter. Upon receipt of this information he returned to Boston and found the club there without a recognized leader. Those who had previously taken hold were still willing to enter, but they wanted some one to lead the way. Mr. Lucas found George Wright and told him that the Union must have a club in Boston. He advised Wright to go ahead and organize one, and his words were: “From your club and draw on me for any money you may want to forward the enterprise. With this kind offer ringing in his ears George Wright went to wrok, and before the knew it had the services of a score of good men enlisted, and the Boston Club’s stock was taken up by the home people with a rush. This ended Mr. Lucas’s labors so far as the whole organization was concerned. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the home run record

Date Saturday, March 29, 1884
Text

An Item reporter met Harry Stovey, the captain of the Athletic club, and the player who last season beat all records by making fifteen home runs in championship games... The Philadelphia Evening Item March 29, 1884

hit by pitch rule

[from an interview of Harry Stovey] “What about the changes to the playing rules?”

“There are several of them that are excellent. The one giving the batter his base when hit by the pitcher is a good one I suppose I suffered more in this respect that any other player in the profession last season, and several times I was quite badly hurt. A great number of pitchers, you know, have an idea that if they can intimidate a batsman by hitting him they have scored a big point. If is player gets a reputation for being a hard hitter the pitchers are liable to make him a victim. The Philadelphia Evening Item March 29, 1884

chest protector

The latest invention for the protection of catchers is a flat rubber case, which, when expanded with air, is worn over the chest and abdomen. It is an absolute safeguard from injury, so far as test made recently by O'Rourke and Jim White, of the Buffalo club, indicate. It was, while worn by O'Rourke, pounded with fists and clubs, jumped on, and finally O'Rourke allowed White to stand ten feet away and fire a base ball at him as swiftly as he could throw. O'Rourke says the felt not the slightest inconvenience. The Philadelphia Evening Item March 29, 1884

Source Philadelphia Evening Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the infield tarp

Date Sunday, March 30, 1884
Text

The diamond is now as level as a table. Superintendent Solari has the base lines in fine condition. They will be covered with tarpaulins in wet weather, as well also the batter and batters' squares. St. Louis Globe-Democrat March 30, 1884

The diamond and outfield at Sportsman’s park are in excellent condition, notwithstanding the heavy rains of last week. The tarpaulins in use, covering the bases, were of very effective service, while the material advantages of the park as a ball ground aid it very materially in drying up quickly after a rainstorm. Superintendent Solari has brought the diamond to a wonderful state of perfection. April 14, 1884

Notwithstanding the heavy rains of the previous days and nights it was almost as dry as a chip, and Superintendent Solari’s tarpaulins had kept the base lines as dry as dust. St. Louis Post-Dispatch April 22, 1884

The tarpaulin idea in operation at Sportsman’s Park is a great success; it keeps the points and base lines in splendid condition and affords their perfect protection from the rain. St. Louis Post-Dispatch May 5, 1884

Source St. Louis Globe-Democrat
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the legal status of the Lakefront Grounds

Date Wednesday, January 23, 1884
Text

That portion of the lake front property occupied for base ball purposes is wanted for a depot site by the Illinois Central Railroad Company, which for the past twelves years has maintained a standing offer of $800,000 in cash for the ground. The title is in the city of Chicago, but with this important restriction, that the old act of Congress dedicating the land tot he city contained a condition that it should perpetually be used for public park purposes. Under this stipulation the city could not sell the land, and so the transfer to the railroad company has hung fire for a dozen years, and the matter has been tied up by an injunction against such a transfer, issued long ago by Judge Drummond in the United States Circuit Court. But while the city could not sell, it could lease the land for temporary occupation from year to year, and in this way the ball club has kept possession of the north end of the tract for six years past, while further south stand the Exposition Building and the armories of Battery D, and the First Regiment of Cavalry, I.N.G., all of them substantial and expensive structures, erected upon permits issued by the city, and safe in their occupancy so long as the city was unable to give a good title to the land. But the situation is now changed. The Illinois Central Railroad is before the City Council with an offer to pay $800,000 for a certain portion of the land (including the ball park site), and take a quit claim deed from the city, the railroad company trusting to its own efforts to get through Congress a bill which shall release the original dedication for park purposes, and there make the title perfect in the Illinois Central Railroad Company. Mayor Harrison favors the immediate acceptance of the offer of $800,000, the newspapers favor it and public sentiment is not averse to it; so that all that is required to carry out the deal is for the railroad company to put up a few thousand dollars to make it pleasant for the Alderman. If this is done the city will give possession, and the ball club must move unless some new form of legal obstruction is invented to avert the catastrophe for the season. The two military organizations, whose large brick armories would have to be pulled down, will work hard for a year’s delay, but it will be but for a year at most, for the city needs the money and the taxes it can collect after the land passes into other hands. [An addendum notes that the Aldermen passed the measure to sell the property by a vote of 23 to 9.]

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the location of the Nationals grounds

Date Tuesday, May 6, 1884
Text

All the windows of the Washington Capitol facing the National ground are crowded with spectators during games and but little work does the Government get from its employees while the momentous conflicts are in progress. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the new pitching delivery rule

Date Wednesday, December 3, 1884
Text

The main object of this [rule] appears to be to reduce the tremendous speed of such pitchers as Whitney. No pitcher has yet developed a phenomenal speed who stood still in delivering the ball. All pitcher have been in the habit of stepping forward, or sideways, to gain the necessary momentum before delivering the ball. The narrow limits of the box compelled some pitchers to step over the line this season, and to such men as Buffinton, Whitney, Shaw, Weldman, Vinton and a few others owed their effectiveness. Had the umpires strictly enforced the rule, and kept the pitchers within their limits, some of the present high averages in the League would have been spoiled.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the old Athletics sue the new

Date Friday, May 30, 1884
Text

A bill in equity was filed to-day [5/29] by counsel representing the old Athletic Ball Club, which was incorporated in January, 1876, against William Sharzig, Charles E. Mason and Lewis Simmons, and the other members and the other members and player of the organization at present known as the “Athletic Base-ball Club,” asking the Court to enjoin the defendants from continuing the unlawful use of this title. It is averred that no authority for its use has ever been granted, and that tits unwarranted assumption by the defendants has hampered the old club, prevented it from putting a nine in the field or joining the American Association, and depriving it of great profits. The old club has not had a team in the field since the season of 1878, but was at one time quite an energetic organization, with about one hundred stockholders.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the old Atlantic Club; its trophy case

Date Sunday, March 30, 1884
Text

The Atlantic Club members have reorganized the old club—which has never been disbanded—and they are to have a meeting to elect officers this week at which Messrs. Boerum, Price, Hamilton, Oliver, Phelps, Vorhees, Smith, Babcock, Mawlem, Ireland, Henry and Chadwick, and other old members are to be present, the latter being a veteran of the old Muffin nine of the Atlantics, which was in existence in 1863. All the trophies of the club, which were placed in charge of Mr. Campbell, are now in possession of a man who has not the slightest claim upon them, and who refused to relinquish them to the old club members.

Source Brooklyn Eagle
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the overhand throw; a proposal to move the pitcher back

Date Wednesday, February 27, 1884
Text

There is one thing about the [full overhand] throw that militates against it and that is the punishment it inflicts on the catcher, but this, Mr. [Harry] Wright thinks, could be mitigated by a very simple method, and that is to place the pitcher back about two yards. A number of paragraphs are floating about in which he is credited with desiring the pitcher's removal back two feet. Two feet would not affect the desired object at all; two yards more, or 56 feet in all from the front line of the pitcher's position to the home plate, is what is wanted. When the pitchers were moved back to their present position, after much opposition, it was found that the change worked well. Then it gave the pitchers the chance to perfect the curve. It is by no means improbable that the legalized throw may develop some new “kinks” in pitching, as this department progresses with the rest of the game, and it would be well to give the batsman a chance to overcome or at least combat them. Needless to say that the increased distance would be beneficial to the catchers. Another important advantage accruing would be increased fielding chances for the pitcher. Place him back two yards and he will stop many of the balls that are now too hot and go through him, or which he has not time, owing to the short distance, to properly handle, and many hits and runs will be saved. It will also afford him better opportunity to watch base runners, particularly at first, as he will be more in a line and in a better position for quick and effective throwing. It may be that the catchers will not be able to get the ball to second as quickly to cut off a runner, but this may be offset by the pitcher, who may, in his new position, make the runner hug the base closer, and thus get less start. In every way a removal back two yards would be of advantage, and the change is worthy of serious consideration.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the placement of the umpire

Date Saturday, May 3, 1884
Text

Umpire Seward apparently has had but little experience in his official position. When the catcher is close up to the bat Mr. Seward stands too far back, and in such a position that it is impossible for him to judge the ball. As a result he has been decidedly off in calling balls and strikes. He is too slow, also, in giving his decisions and in running the game. It is hoped he will improve.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the reorganized Eastern League

Date Saturday, December 13, 1884
Text

A meeting of base-ball men for the reorganization of the Eastern League of Base-Ball Clubs was held at the Bingham House this afternoon [12.12]. Representatives of the following clubs were present: Trenton, J. Henry Klein and John Smith; Virginias, of Richmond, Va., V. W. Siddons and Josephs Simmons; Nationals of Washington, Michael Scanlan; Newarks, George M. Bullard and C. L. Clark; Ironsides, of Lancaster, Philip Bernard and J. Arnold; Lancasters, John Copeland and John J. Murphy.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the repeal of the requirement that the batter-runner should run

Date Wednesday, January 16, 1884
Text

One of the principal reasons why the rule by which a batsman could, after three strikes, prevent the making of a double or triple play by merely standing still was rescinded, was because it was found that under the operation of this rule a double or triple play could be prevented in the same way even after a fair hit had been made; that is, by failing to run the batsman was out, and in consequence, no base runner was forced.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the reporter for the St. Louis Globe-Democrat

Date Wednesday, March 12, 1884
Text

…Tom Gallagher, the sporting editor of the Globe-Democrat,...

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the reserve of the old Interstate Association was voided

Date Wednesday, August 27, 1884
Text

[from the Wilmington correspondent] The protection of the reserve rule after being guaranteed the Interstate of last year was withdrawn at the last minute and how does the Eastern League know but what it may receive the same treatment?

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the scramble for free agents

Date Thursday, August 21, 1884
Text

The Baltimore Unions claim that Pinckney, who played with the Clevelands yesterday, is a contract breaker, he having signed a contract to play with them the balance of the season. Such is the case, but the circumstances show that Pinckney has acted honorably in the matter, as far as lay in his power. It appears that nearly four weeks ago Manager Hackett of the Clevelands opened negotiations with Pinckney, who was the playing with the Peoria Club, and the result was that the latter agreed to give Hackett the chance to hire him if the Peorias disbanded. When this event took place Hackett and Pinckney again negotiated. Hackett telegraphing his terms and Pinckney accepting them by telegraph. This, under the national agreement, answers the same purpose as a written contract, and players can be held. As Pinckney went to Chicago to meet Hackett, he was met at the depot, it is said, by Manager Henderson of the Baltimore Unions, who used such influence over Pinckney that the latter was not permitted to see Hackett at all, but was hurried off to Baltimore, where he was induced to sign a contract with the Unions. Pinckney was ignorant, he claims, of the national agreement rule which makes a telegraphic acceptance of terms binding, but in the course of two or three days he learned of that fact. He at once notified Manager Henderson that he should be obliged to leave his employ in a few days, and yesterday when he arrived here [Boston] with the Baltimores and found, that the Clevelands were here. He had an interview with Manager Hackett and expressed a willingness to abide by his agreement to play with the Clevelands, and this he has done. While the Herald has no sympathy whatever with contract breakers, and will denounce them wherever found, the above facts are given in justice to Pinckney, who appears to have shown a desire to act fairly and squarely in the premises. St., quoting the Boston Herald

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the story of Altoona being dropped from the UA

Date Wednesday, July 9, 1884
Text

Mr. Curtis, of the Altoona Club, wrote to Mr. Lucas and told him that the organization was in a bad way financially, and that if Mr. Lucas and Mr. Thorner, of the Cincinnati Unions, did not come to the club’s aid it would not attempt to complete the season. ... Thinking this a strange revelation, for at the Cincinnati meeting the Altoona representatives had boasted of their financial standing, Mr. Lucas made up his mind to investigate the club’s affairs, and did so, and in order to protect the Association’s interests he so arranged matters that Kansas City should step in, in the event of Altoona not being worthy of the position she held. Armed with power to act for the Association, and with the full consent of Messrs. Pratt, Henderson and Thorner, respectively presidents of the Philadelphia, Chicago and Cincinnati clubs, Mr. Lucas went to Altoona. Arriving there he called the club’s representatives together and then demanded that they make known the financial standing of the club. He called for the books, they were produced, and full investigation proved that the club’s capital was but $1,500 and that it was in arrears to its players and to the Union Association for monthly dues, etc. Upon this showing Mr. Lucas informed the gentlemen that neither he nor Thorner would put a dollar into the concern and telegraphed Secretary White at Washington to call for the money due the Association, some $150, and that if it was not paid within twenty-four hours to cancel the club’s membership. White telegraphed as ordered, the Altoonas failed to pay up and as a result their membership was declared forfeited. Soon after Kansas City’s application was honored and that club, on the vote of half a dozen members of the Association, was admitted to full membership.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the theory of batting orders

Date Wednesday, August 20, 1884
Text

The old plan of changing the order of batting every game is not now adopted by the best managed clubs. Experience has shown that better results follow where a regular order of striking is observed throughout the season. The first thing in settling upon the order of batting is to ascertain, by practical experience, which batsmen are best fitted to follow each other. Thus a poor runner should be invariably followed by a good hitter, and a sharp runner should precede a poor or uncertain hitter. Then, too, when a regular order is observed, batsmen know what they have to do, alike in batting and base running. Thus, if the first striker makes his base and he knows that the batsman who follows him is not likely to bat him round the bases, he is prepared to take greater risks in base running than would be necessary if the succeeding batsman is a sure hitter. Then, too, the man at the bat is largely guided in his efforts in batting by what he knows of the runner’s ability who preceded him to steal bases, etc. In fact a regular and sustained order of striking is the only way to promote team work in batting and base running, while the plan of changing the order, with a view of making it a species of reward, is a bad one in every way, it being neither an honor to be at the head of the list, nor any discredit to be the ninth man at the bat.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the umpire refuses to enforce the rule as written

Date Thursday, July 24, 1884
Text

[discussing Charles Daniels’s suspension as AA umpire] An officer of the St. Louis club, being spoken to regarding Daniels’ suspension said: “I really know nothing of the merits of the case. The meeting at Columbus was in executive session and St. Louis was not represented there. I did hear of some fault being found with Mr. Daniels regarding his obstinacy in refusing to interpret the rules as written, and that is a fault. For instance a matter which was narrowly and broadly discussed at the last convention was the compelling a striker to become a base runner after a missed third strike. Mr. Daniels has declined to interpret the rule so, and the old system, which prevents many fine double and triple plays by the catcher and basemen, he has adhered to. Of course it is a rather serious fault when an umpire makes his own playing rules and sets at naught all the ideas and conclusions the members of the Association have arrived at. That is all I can think of as being against Mr. Daniels.” St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

theatrical precedent for buying a release

Date Wednesday, August 13, 1884
Text

There is a great deal of nonsensical twaddle uttered by ill informed base ball reporters about players being bought and sold. If these gentlemen would trouble themselves to examine the rules bearing on the subject they would discover that no player can be transferred, no matter what the consideration, without his own free will and consent. Buying a release from contract is a legitimate transaction and of frequent occurrence in theatrical and business affairs.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Thomas Pratt in the oil and paint business

Date Saturday, March 15, 1884
Text

Tom Pratt, the veteran ball tosser, is behind the Philadelphia [Union] Club. He is now in the oil and paint business and is well able to keep his club going.

Source Washington Evening Star
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

three balls used in one game

Date Friday, May 2, 1884
Text

[Columbus vs. Cincinnati 5/1/1884] The game was tiresome by reason of the fact that the ball was knocked over the fence so many times. The short right field and the little distance from the bas lines to the buildings make such things possible on the new grounds. Lots of time was lost in this manner, and it took three balls to finish out the game.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

three players jump to the UA; Cleveland on the rocks

Date Friday, August 15, 1884
Text

A Cleveland gentleman says: “Jack Glasscock has been help up a choice specimen of ingratitude because he withdrew from the Cleveland Club and accepted an offer from the Cincinnati Unions. I know that he would not have considered any proposition from an outside club had not Vice-President Howe asked him to run the club at his own risk or induce the other members of the club to join him in playing the balance of the season on the co-operative plan. After considerable coaxing Glasscock was induced to sound the other members of the club on the matter. The proposition did not meet with favor, and then the talk of outside propositions for a transfer of the club leaked out, and had a dispiriting effect. As a result Glasscock, McCormick and Briody thought they were warranted in contracting for themselves and pocketing the benefit instead of allowing the stockholders of the Cleveland Club to shift their burden, and reap a profit in so doing. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Toledo Club finances, disbands

Date Sunday, October 26, 1884
Text

The Toledo Base-ball Association has thrown up the sponge. The association, backed by President Colburn, made a game fight to continue the club through 1885, and a strong appeal was made to the lovers and patrons of the game in Toledo to come to the rescue with financial aid, but without success. The financial exhibit for 1884 showed net receipts, after paying visiting clubs, of only a trifle over $11,000. The expenses were $21,000, of which such a trifle over $15,000 was for players' salaries, making a deficit of almost $10,000. President Colburn said this evening [10/25] that $6,000 of this amount was contributed by the directors of the Toledo Association. Chris Von der Ahe, of the St. Louis Club, came here on Friday, and to-day engaged Morton, Mullane, Barkley, Welch and Poorman for the St. Louis Club for 1885, and the Toledo Association has agreed to release them. Morton goes as manager of the St. Louis Club, and all go on large salaries.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Toledo nearly collapses

Date Wednesday, August 13, 1884
Text

The Toledo Club, which was also on the verge of collapse, has straightened up and is now in condition to play the season out. When the club’s necessitous condition became known at Toledo, a meeting of stockholders and friends of the club was held at which it was unanimously decided to put the club through the present season, providing the citizens would raise a sufficient amount of money to strengthen the club, and at once subscription blanks were issued and circulated, and a very short time $4,000 of the $5,000 needed were subscribed and Secretary went to Cincinnati, where the club was playing Sunday, and paid up his players’ salaries in full. He says all the money needed to run the club through the season has been secured, and the club will be in the field next year also, which is a decidedly pleasant announcement to make.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Tom Pratt working on behalf of the Union Association

Date Sunday, February 17, 1884
Text

Tom Pratt of Philadelphia has been in Boston the past week in the interest of the Union association with a view of “booming” the movement in this city for a Union club. The result he met with is not known outside of a select few. President Lucas of the St. Louis Union club, and also president of that association, was expected to accompany Mr. Pratt, but failed to do so. He has evidently got his hands full to keep the western section of the country into line.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Tommy Bond and the revival of old-timers' careers

Date Wednesday, January 16, 1884
Text

Tommy Bond sees no reason why he should be left in the present revival of all the old-timers, and has announced himself. He has gone into gymnasium training.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Tommy Bond expelled by the Boston Unions

Date Friday, July 11, 1884
Text

At a meeting of the Directors of the Boston Union Club, held last evening, Bond and Brown were fined $100 each and then expelled, the former for insubordination and the latter for drunkenness. There is great indignation among Bond’s friends at the injustice done to him. On the 1 st of the month both players refused, after first notifying thge managers, to play longer unless their salaries were paid up. They didn’t get their money, and so quit. The club owed Bond $208 and Brown $180, which debt is reduced by the amount of the fine. The Boston Union players sympathize with Bond, and stoutly deny that he has been guilty of insubordination. St., quoting the Cincinnati Commercial Gazette

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

transportation to the Boston grounds

Date Sunday, March 23, 1884
Text

President Soden of the Boston club had a conference with President Richards of the Metropolitan horse car company last Friday, and, as a result, the latter has agreed to make a greatly desired improvement in horse car facilities to and from the Boston base ball grounds this season, and one that will be appreciated by the patrons of the Boston club. A spur of track will be run from Tremont street through Walpole street to Berlin street, enabling the passengers to alight at the gate leading to the private property adjoining the grounds, and within a minute's walk of the entrance of the same. Cars will also be in readiness at this same p oint at the close of the games, thus avoiding the usual crowding of the main line so prevalent last season. President Richards has also consented to have tin flags displayed from sockets on the top of all cars running to the grounds. These flags will be pained white on both sides, with a red base ball in the centre. Over the ball will be the words “Base ball today,” and underneath will be the word “League” and the league team is to play, and “Reserves” when the reserves play. This will enable the patrons of the game to see at a glance not only on what day a contest is to take place and also what cars will convey them to the grounds.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

turnstiles at an AA park

Date Friday, April 11, 1884
Text

The new arrangement of the directors’ office at Sportsman’s park is an improvement. It is placed half way down the Grand avenue front, giving a neat appearance to it. The turnstiles will immediately be put in position, and will be in use in a few days. A neat balustrade and steps will be added to the office on the Grand avenue front. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

two players' benches

Date Sunday, March 16, 1884
Text

It has been mutually agreed upon by the league officials that, during the coming season, there shall be two seats provided for the opposing nines, that on the right of the home-plate to be occupied by the visiting team. This will prevent the mixing of bats, and more or less confusion among the players.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA Keystones disband

Date Friday, August 8, 1884
Text

The Keystone (Union) club of Philadelphia has gone the way of all base-ball clubs whose support from the public is not of the lavish nature, which enables to provide the players with trotters, steam yachts, high hotel fare and the other luxuries of life. Tom Pratt has indeed carried the organization much further than he was expected to, and the finale was looked for over a month ago. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA allegedly recruiting players under contract

Date Sunday, January 6, 1884
Text

When the Union association was started its originators announced, with a considerable flourish of trumpets, that it should wage an unceasing war upon the reserve rule, but that it should strictly recognize all existing contracts between clubs and players. The mask has, however, been thrown off, and hereafter all pretenses of honesty and fair-dealing made by that organization will go for naught. Among the players signed by the Cincinnati association club for next season was Mountjoy. That player has informed the manager of his club, first by telegraph and then by letter, that he has been offered $2300 by the Cincinnati Union club, if he would break his contract with the old club. Deagle, another Cincinnati association club player, has also been approached by parties representing the Union club of that city and efforts made to have him break his existing contract. These instances are sufficient to show that the Union association means to ruin the good name of professional base ball, and, as far as it can, to sow discord and corruption in every one of the old organizations.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA clubs under the ban for outside clubs

Date Friday, March 14, 1884
Text

The Princeton College club recently wrote to President Mills of the league to inquire if it could arrange and play games with the Union association and league clubs. On being answered in the negative, the collegians canceled their dates with the Washington Union club. Boston Herald March 14, 1884

The Nationals (Union) of Washington, D.C., defeated the Portsmouth club at Norfolk, Va., on the 8 th inst. by a score of 21 to 1. The Portsmouth club is the organization which manfully told Manager Bancroft of the Providence club that they would play their scheduled game with the Nationals though it did disqualify them from playing their game with his club and from meeting other clubs in the national agreement. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican April 13, 1884

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA convention; Baltimore resigns; membership

Date Thursday, December 18, 1884
Text

The annual meeting of the Union Base Ball Association is being held in the parlor of the Laclede Hotel, President Lucas in the chair, and the following delegates also present: F. F. Espenschied, St. Louis; A. V. McKim and T. P. Sullivan, Kansas City; T. J. Loftus and C. M. Kipp of Milwaukee; Justus Thorner and F. B. Wright, Cincinnati. At noon the Board of Directors of the association, held an executive meeting, Messrs. Thorne, Lucas and White being present, at which the resignation of the Baltimore Club was accepted. The question of membership was discussed and it was decided not to admit more than eight clubs next season, and to admit no club which could not prove its undoubted financial stability. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA finances, plans for 1885

Date Saturday, September 20, 1884
Text

[reporting the UA meeting of 8/19] Reports from all the clubs showed that Wilmington, Pittsburg, Boston, Altoona, Cincinnati and Philadelphia had gone behind in their expenses, while St. Louis, Washington and Kansas City had made money, Baltimore being about even. Betters things were hoped for Boston and Cincinnati next year, and when the names of cities were called in which clubs are to be located next, they were placed in the follo9wing order from a paying stand-point: St. Louis, Washington, Kansas City, Baltimore, Cincinnati, Boston and Milwaukee. Concerning the eighth club, nothing definite was agreed upon, al6though the Directors of the various organizations pledged $10,000, or as much as should be necessary, for the maintenance of another Eastern club; also, that a fund should be provided from which prompt assistance could be furnished any club which found itself weak after coming into the Union—good collateral, however, to be furnished before such aid was rendered. Regarding gate receipts, a resolution was adopting guaranteeing visiting clubs 30 per cent. of the gross money, exclusive of admissions to the grand stands. Payment of exorbitant salaries to ball-players was the next subject discussed, and it was unanimo0usly agreed that next season the salary list should be curtailed instead of increased, and that each club should be privileged to select players by the 1 st of October, 1884. overtures from the League looking to a joint committee meeting in the interest of base-ball were considered favorably, and it was announced that the Union Association would meet the League half-way on any terms the latter might see fit to propose looking to a prolongation of the national game. On this point all present expressed themselves very freely in favor of harmonious action by a committee representing the three leading base-ball association, the main points aimed at to be a reduction of salaries, the abolition of the reserve rule and a perpetuation of the game upon an honorable basis. Cincinnati Enquirer September 20, 1884

more on the Mullane injunction

On a motion to remand to the St. Louis circuit court, the case of the St. Louis Athletic association (the Union Base Ball association) against Tony J. Mullane was argued and a ruling made upon it in the United States circuit court yesterday. The plaintiff wished the case remanded on the grounds that the defendant having refused to obey the injunction of the state circuit court was in open and notorious contempt of that tribunal, and that was the only place where he could be punished for this contempt. Judge Brewer thought otherwise, holding that since the case had been removed into the federal court, that court would pass upon and take notice of all preliminary steps, and that if any contempt had been committed against the original injunction it was as thought the injunction had issued out of the United States circuit court and the defendant would be held answerable thereafter. (St. Louis) Missouri Republican September 21, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA finances; replacement clubs

Date Wednesday, September 24, 1884
Text

[reporting on the UA special meeting of 9/20] Mr. W. W. White, secretary, presented a financial statement from which it appeared that St. Louis, Washington and Kansas City had made money and Baltimore was about even. The Wilmington and Pittsburg clubs were dropped and the Milwaukee and Omaha clubs were admitted to the association. For the balance of this season the Milwaukee Club will continue the Pittsburg’s schedule, and the Omahas will take up the dates dropped by the Keystone and Wilmington clubs.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA plans for 1885

Date Wednesday, August 20, 1884
Text

Messrs. Lucas and Thorner, the respectively Presidents of the St. Louis and Cincinnati Clubs, are perfecting arrangements for a complete reorganization of the Union Association in 1885. Eight clubs are to form the association, together with an Eastern and Western alliance. A large guarantee fund is to be placed in the hands of the Association Treasury at the annual meeting, and this fund is to be used in assisting clubs needing help during the season, and to aid them in strengthening their respective nines. The $75 guarantee rule is to be done away with, and all clubs will give 30 per cent. of their gross receipts to teams visiting them. By such an arrangement it is believed the association as a whole will be placed upon a paying basis. Of the eight cities which are to be admitted to membership, three have a population of over one hundred thousand each, two have a population of over two hundred thousand each, while the three remaining have a population of over three hundred thousand each.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA plans for Cleveland

Date Wednesday, September 17, 1884
Text

The Union Association have a pretty plan to work in Cleveland next season. The scheme is to put a Union team into Cleveland, and a gentleman who was told the details by an officer of the Cincinnati Union Club says: ‘The plan is to drive the League people into resigning their franchise. Then the wreckers will hire the men of the present team, or as many of them as they can get, strengthen them by a first-class battery, and let it have full swing as the Cleveland Unions. If the League team can’t be driven out, the Pittsburg Union will be brought to Cleveland, and an endeavor made to run the League team out by 25-cent games. I told my man that he was mistaken, that the feeling was too strong against the Unions in Cleveland to hope for their success, and that the press would fight it from start to finish and down it. Harry Price of Pittsburg is back of the deal and would like to get into the base-ball business in Cleveland, which he looks upon as his home.’ This scheme, whether imaginary or not, will be found to be one of poor conception when put to work. But let them try it. There will be fun for some one and that some one will not be the Unions. St., quoting the Cleveland Herald

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA plans for Philadelphia

Date Saturday, September 13, 1884
Text

Agents of the Union Association were recently in Philadelphia perfecting arrangements to place a Union nine there next season. Thomas Pratt, the lessee and present owner of the Keystone Park, has been offered a sum of money to run a Union Alliance Club for the remainder of the season, and he has also an offer for his grounds for next season. Should the Union Association obtain possession of Keystone Park, they promise to put the strongest nine in the country in that city next season. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA plans for the rest of the season

Date Saturday, September 20, 1884
Text

[reporting the UA meeting of 9/19] Owing to unfavorable reports from Pittsburg and Wilmington it was decided to disband the clubs now representing these cities, and substitute Milwaukee and Omaha teams. All the Wilmington games were ordered thrown out, and Milwaukee will take Pittsburg's games and schedule and Omaha that originally outlined for the Keystones of Philadelphia.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA playing outside exhibitions

Date Saturday, October 11, 1884
Text

[The Cincinnati Unions] played in Nashville yesterday, defeating the Nashville Club by a score of 6 to 3...

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA prospects for 1885

Date Wednesday, July 2, 1884
Text

President Lucas...was of the opinion that the new Association was doing better than its most sanguine friends had anticipated, and especially since some of the clubs had been compelled by force of circumstances to put comparatively weak nines in the field. Next season, however, would witness a change, for with a satisfactory showing the Unions could get as many crack players as they could accommodate.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA raises salaries in the NL

Date Sunday, January 20, 1884
Text

Hanlon, the left-fielder of the Detroit Club, has resigned from [sic] that organization. He had been reserved by the Detroits, and for a long time refused to sign. When he threatened to go to the Cincinnati Unionists, the Detroits weakened on their bluff and decided to give him the salary he had stipulated. The Lucas Union Clubs may not be successful, but they can be thanked for compelling the League and American Association to pay dearly for passing such an unjust and tyrannical rule as that of reserving eleven players. “Those who dance must pay the fiddler., quoting the Pittsburg Leader

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA to be a western organization

Date Friday, December 19, 1884
Text

[reporting on the UA meeting] It is now a settled fact that the Union Base-Ball Association will confine its operations entirely to the West next season, and that six good cities, if not eight, will comprise its membership. … The cities represented at the meeting to-day [12/18] were Cincinnati, St. Louis, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Kansas City. .. Another city was represented by proxy, but in obedience to the request of the President the name will not be made public until a later date.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA to share gate receipts

Date Friday, December 19, 1884
Text

[reporting on the UA meeting] The 20 per cent. plan of dividing gate receipts instead of the guarantee plan was adopted.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA votes to not recognize NL and AA contracts

Date Friday, July 11, 1884
Text

The Union association, at its recent meeting, decided to no longer regard any contract made by players with other associations, and of course it can have no cause to complain if the latter retaliate. A well-founded rumor is afloat that several players in the St. Louis, Baltimore and Chicago Union clubs will soon jump their contracts, and they have been encouraged to do so by this late action of their association.–[Post-Dispatch.

I sounds rather queer to hear of the other associations “retaliating” on the Union association. When the Union association started they passed a resolution binding all the clubs in it to respect all contracts (including those of the League and American associations) and every one of the clubs lived up to this resolution. Yet notwithstanding their honorable action, the National League, Northwestern league and American association, particularly the latter, have been engaged in the disreputable work of enticing contracted players away from Union clubs. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

UA-AA games

Date Wednesday, October 15, 1884
Text

For some time now negotiations have been going on for games between American Association players and Union Association clubs at the close of the regular contract season, and several games have been agreed upon, we believe. There has been a difference of opinion as to whether this could be legally done without infraction of the rules of the National Agreement. The following correspondence bearing upon the question is self-explanatory:

[a letter to A. G. Mills, as chairman of the arbitration committee, from James Hart, president of the Louisville Club, dated 9/11] The contracts of the Louisville players expire October 15, at which time the club’s management of them terminates. They are arranging to take a trip after October, on the co-operative plan, playing in St. Louis, New Orleans, &c. They have had letters from the St. Louis Union-Club asking for a game about November 1. I would respectfully ask, will the National Agreement allow them to play with Union clubs, they being reserved players? An early reply will oblige yours, respectfully,...

[the reply, dated 9/15] Your favor of 11 th reached me here to-day. If your men play as the Louisville Club, of the American Association, games with Union clubs would fall within the prohibitions of the National Agreement. The title of your club is your property, and the players can not, after the expiration of their contracts, assume it without your consent.

The mere fact that a player is under reservation (and not under contract) to a National Agreement club, does not forbid him to participate in a game against a Union club, but such an act would be injurious to us and a direct benefit to the common enemy, and I trust that means will be found to prevent it. I also trust that clubs will sign their reserved players October 20, or as soon thereafter as possible. The Sporting Life October 15, 1884

There is great interest manifested by the base-ball patrons over the result of the two games between the Louisville Americans and Cincinnati Unions, to be played at the Union Athletic Park next Saturday and Sunday. The Cincinnati Americans were not successful in their series of games with the Louisvilles, and it now remains to be seen what the Cincinnati Unions can do with the strong delegation from the Falls City. The Louisvilles will be here Saturday and Sunday sure, in spite of the vigorous and despicable efforts of some the American Association officials, who tried to intimidate them from playing the Unions by threats of expulsion. Cincinnati Enquirer October 16, 1884 [N.B. Two games came off, 10/18 and 10/19 resulting in a split.]

The Lousivilles left last night for Kansas City. They will play the St. Louis Unions before they disband. Cincinnati Enquirer October 20, 1884

Captain Dunlap was too ill to play and his absence, perhaps accounts for the beating the St. Louis received at the hands of the Louisville... Cincinnati Enquirer October 25, 1884 [N.B. Game played in St. Louis.]

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Umpire McLean wears glasses

Date Wednesday, July 16, 1884
Text

Some fun is being poked at Umpire McLean for using glasses. Now, why shouldn’t McLean use glasses? Will White has used glasses ever since he has been on the ballfield; and he contrives to see a good deal of base ball and to know it, too. The Sporting Life July 16, 1884

Metroplitans return to the Polo Grounds

The Metropolitan Club will resume playing on the Polo Grounds instead of the Metropolitan Park this week. Manager Jim Mutrie found it up hill work trying to establish the Metropolitan Park against the popularity of the Polo Grounds, which are centrally located and beautifully laid out. Old Chad of the Clipper says Mutrie has been “beautifully laid out in his scheme.” St. Louis Post-Dispatch July 18, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire called a runner out without an appeal

Date Thursday, September 18, 1884
Text

[Virginia vs. St. Louis 9/17/1884] In the last inning Billy Gleason, who had been given his base by being hit with the ball, stole second splendidly, and although Larkin made no appeal he was decided out; there was a breezy little scene for a few moments and then play was resumed. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire flinches from balls

Date Friday, May 2, 1884
Text

[Cleveland vs. Providence 5/1/1884] The “dandy” feature of the game was the umpiring. The gentleman who aspired to adjudicate on the merits of the game came from New Britain, Conn. His name is John S. Burns, and he is a brother of the Chicago short stop. He is raw, has had very little experience except in amateur games, and does not do well on balls and strikes. In his close decision of Thursday's game Providence suffered the most, but it is fair to presume that he erred through accident and not intention. The way he dodged away from the ball and failed to see it when it crossed squarely over the plate and at the right height, was enough to make a stone statue weep. After a while both the catchers got hardened to the thing and could laugh and guy about it, Briody expressing his opinion by saying, sotto voce, “Well, he is a daisy.” Perhaps after Mr. Burns has worn off his nervousness he will develop into a good umpire. At least, it is to be hoped that he will.

Source Providence Morning Star
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire vs. crowd

Date Tuesday, April 29, 1884
Text

[Philadelphia vs. Athletic 4/29/1884] The game was marked by an incident not down in the bills, and which seldom occurs in a ball field. Exceptions were frequently taken by the crowd to the decisions of William McLean, the umpire. McLean finally becoming enraged by the hoots and jeers of the spectators, picked up a base ball bat and hurled it into the crowded seats on the first base side of the field, striking a man on the head without seriously injuring him. This action called forth vigorous hisses from the assemblage, and three or four hundred men, who were among those near where the bat was thrown, leaped over the inside enclosure and were crowding toward McLean with the intention of mobbing him, when they were stopped by a number of police officers who, with the players, finally succeeded in getting the men back of the line. The game, which had been stopped, then proceeded to the finish, when the excited crowd again made a run for McLean, and violence was only prevented by the arrest of McLean upon a warrant sworn out by the man who was struck. McLean was taken before a magistrate, but the complainant was there induced to withdraw the charge, and McLean was simply placed under $500 bond to keep the peace. Baltimore American April 29, 1884 [see also SLPD 840501]

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpires' uniforms

Date Wednesday, April 9, 1884
Text

The Union association umpires will be uniformed in blue yacht cloth suits, and will wear straw hats, encircled by broad, black ribbon, bearing in gold letters the word “Umpire.” Each umpire will also be provided with a nickel indicator for keeping a record of the balls and strikes. (St. Louis)

Source Missouri Republican
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

using a concert hall for pitching and catching practice

Date Wednesday, March 19, 1884
Text

Mr. Barnie has engaged the concert hall of the Academy of Music to practice his three batteries in while the weather is unfavorable for outdoor work. Canvas has been hung from the galleries to the floor to protect the ornamentations from damages. A clear space of eighty feet is available for the ball.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

using two balls to avoid delays

Date Wednesday, September 24, 1884
Text

The Boston Union has started a practice which might be followed with benefit by other clubs. They use two balls and when one is knocked over the fence the second ball is brought into use until the first one is returned. Tedious delays are thus avoided. The Sporting Life September 24, 1884

[National vs. St. Louis (Union) 10/11/1884] For the past two weeks, to hurry the games through as quickly as possible, two balls have been used at the Union grounds, and two were used yesterday. One received considerable pounding in the first three innings, and the other at the expiration of the third inning remained comparatively new. After two men were out in the fourth inning, Boyle, who was at the bat, hit a foul ball which bounded over the low fence just east of the east corner of the grand stand. McCormick ran after it, vaulted over the fence and then pretended to be hunting for the ball. Capt. Baker, who knew that the ball which McCormick was hunting for the was one most worn saw that now was the time to call for the new one, for there was but one man more to put out on the St. Louis side, and then the Nationals would have their crack at it. Capt. Dunlap also saw the point and he ran over to where McCormick was, picked up the old ball and threw it out to Gagus the National’s pitcher. Capt. Baker would not let Gagus pitcher the old ball, however, and insisted on them putting in the new one. The umpire, before the game, had told Baker that whenever the ball in play was knocked so that it went “outside” the grounds, the other ball should be substituted. Capt. Dunlap in this case claimed that the ball was not knocked “outside” the grounds and hence they must continue playing without making the change. Umpire McCaffery decided that Dunlap’s claim was the just one, and, after the expiration of five minutes, called “play.” The Nationals refused to answer the call, and the game was decided in favor of St. Louis... (St. Louis) Missouri Republican October 12, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

vendors in the crowd

Date Wednesday, June 4, 1884
Text

[a letter to the editor] I would like to call the attention of the Athletic base ball management, through the medium of your excellent paper, to the annoyance of their patrons by the sub-vendors of refreshments, who insist on crowding and tramping over the audience to dispose of their goods. Last week two or three gentlemen, after being considerably annoyed, refused to let one of the boys pass, when they got in return impudence well ladened [sic] with curses. Yesterday one of the colored gentlemen with soft drinks stood for at least three minutes during a very interesting part of the game in front of some gentlemen below me, totally obstructing the view of two and of others partly, while a little boy sipped a glass of lemonade, purchased for him by his indulgent father. This is very annoying indeed, and I do not believe the management would allow it if it was brought to their notice. Certainly a more careful attention should be given this matter than it has yet received.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Von der Ahe to devote all his attention to baseball

Date Tuesday, April 22, 1884
Text

[from an interview of Von der Ahe] In future I will be able to devote all my time to base-ball interests, having disposed of my grocery, warehouse, etc. St.

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Washington AA Club disbands

Date Sunday, August 3, 1884
Text

The Washington Base-ball Club disbanded to-night [8/2], the players refusing to continue, on account, it is understood, of the financial embarrassment of the managers.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Washington Club on the edge

Date Wednesday, July 30, 1884
Text

There is trouble between the manager and members of the Washington Base Ball Club, and unless matters are arranged in the morning the club will disband. About five weeks ago they went West and the tour was very unsuccessful. The members have not been paid salaries for that period, and there has been considerable grumbling about it. Manager Moxley, of the club, returned from his farm in Pennsylvania to-night and the members of the club waited on him in a body. They told him that if their salaries were not paid they would play no more. After considerable discussion it was agreed to let the matter rest until to-morrow, when it will be settled. If Manager Moxley does not pay the salaries the club will disband and will not play in Baltimore with the Baltimores, as was arranged. About $1,500 is said to be due the members.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Washington baseball newspapers

Date Saturday, April 5, 1884
Text

The interest and excitement have invaded the newspapers with a vengeance, for where formerly the only sporting paper here [Washington DC] was the Sunday Herald, the Post, Republican and Sunday Capital are making it a feature.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

wild pitches and passed balls and bases on balls no longer errors

Date Wednesday, November 26, 1884
Text

[reporting on the NL annual meeting] The scoring rules were reworded so as to exclude from the error column in the score all errors except those known as fielding errors, leaving to the summary all errors known under the head of “battery” errors such as passed, called or wild pitched balls.

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Will White leaves the druggist business

Date Sunday, October 5, 1884
Text

Will White has sold his drug-store. It is probable that he will sell his base-ball suit at the end of the season, as he will not need it next year.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Will White's store

Date Thursday, April 3, 1884
Text

Will White of the Cincinnati club has sold out his tea and grocery store and will give his entire attention hereafter to his new drug store.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Wilmington Club disbands, accuses Lucas; a response

Date Wednesday, September 24, 1884
Text

When the Keystone Club of the Union Association disbanded the [Wilmington] club was importuned to take the Keystone’s place. According to the Wilmington News, President Lucas agreed that when the Wilmington Club was on its western trip he would guarantee that their salaries, board bill and traveling expenses would be paid, and that the club would get the $75 guarantee as usual. As the club was already deeply in debt, and nothing was to be gained by remaining in the Eastern League, the directors decided to withdraw from the latter and enter the Union upon these terms. Burns and Casey, however, jumped the club, and this so demoralized and weakened it that they made a miserable showing in their games. When it regained its form again it was but to meet some of the best clubs in the country, to which it succumbed, and the attendance was reduced to a minimum. When the time for the Western trip approached, the directors charge, Mr. Lucas failed to fulfill his contract and a meeting, which had been called at Washington the first week in September for the purpose of furnishing the aid promised, was postponed again and again for the purpose of freezing the club out in order to let Milwaukee in. It is fair to add that Mr. Lucas’ friends emphatically deny these charges. Be this as it may, the directors saw no hope of success in the future and rather than take the Western trip decided to disband, the directors paying all the losses out of their own pockets. The Sporting Life September 24, 1884

[a response from a “gentlemen, who is very close to Mr. Lucas”] At the time of the disbandment of the Keystone, Mr. Lucas telegraphed the Wilmingtons asking them to enter the Union and take the place of the Keystone. At that moment the Wilmingtons were not in the humor to leave the Eastern League and they replied that they would not join the Union. Right here all correspondence between Mr. Lucas and the Wilmington officials came to an end. Since that day Mr. Lucas has never met an officer or anyone connected with the Wilmington Club, nor has he had any correspondence with anyone connected with the club either by letter or telegraph. He never made them a promise of any kind and he never authorized anyone to make them a promise of any kind. Besides that, when Secretary White, of the Union Association, subsequently asked him to vote for the admission of Wilmington to the Union he replied that he would vote against their admission, and he did vote against it, and a majority of the directors of the Union also voted against their admission. But notwithstanding the fact that the vote denied them admission they by order of Secretary White, who acted according to the vote of the minority, took up the schedule of games originally allotted to the Keystones and this they did without even being elected a member of the Union. Mr. Lucas not only voted against their admission, but those who generally side with him on all questions of the kind voted with him. So their appearance in the Union ranks was really a surprise to him and he concluded to investigate the matter at the Baltimore meeting. Before it was held, however, the Wilmingtons had disbanded and he had other and more important business to attend to than the investigation of their entrance and exit. These are the full facts in the case and by publishing them you will simply be doing Mr. Lucas justice. The Sporting Life October 1, 1884

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Wilmington joins the UA

Date Wednesday, August 20, 1884
Text

The Wilmington (Delaware) Club, the strongest club that was in the Eastern League, has joined the Union forces. This club has played fifty-egiht games in the face for the championship of the Eastern League, of which number it has lost but twelves. The team made its debut as a Union Club at Washington in a game with the Nationals yesterday, defeating them after a closely contested game by a score of four to three. The Wilmingtons played a perfect fielding game. St. Louis Post-Dispatch August 20, 1884, quoting the Cincinnati Enquirer

Chicago Unions move to Pittsburgh

Arrangements were completed to-day [8/19] for the immediate transfer of the Chicago Union Base-ball Club to this city [Pittsburgh]. They will be taken in charge by the Exposition Park Association, which will divide the profits with President Henderson. The club will be known as the Pittsburg Unions. Cincinnati Enquirer August 20, 1884

Source St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Wilmington offered Washington's AA franchise

Date Wednesday, August 13, 1884
Text

The place of the defunct Washington Club was offered to the Wilmington Club, but the astute Manager Simmons wisely declined the barren honor. There was but little glory to be gained, while a very extensive and expensive Western trip was ahead, together with the risk of being left out in the cold next season, when the Association may conclude to reduce itself to eight club. The Virginia Club, of Richmond, Va., which is supposed to be well heeled financially, decided to run the risks mentioned for the chance of displaying itself in a wider field of action...

Source Sporting Life
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

winning the toss, batting first

Date Monday, June 16, 1884
Text

[St. Louis Union vs. Cincinnati Union 6/15/1884] The visitors won the toss and went to the bat. Cincinnati Enquirer June 16, 1884

[St. Louis Union vs. Cincinnati Union 6/20/1884] The Cincinnatis won the toss, and went to bat. Cincinnati Enquirer June 20, 1884

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

World Series challenge

Date Wednesday, October 1, 1884
Text

As there is no longer any doubt but that the Metropolitans will carry off the American Association championship pennant of '84, Manager Mutrie to-day [9/30] issued a challenge to the Providence Club, the champion League team of '84, to play them a series of five games for the championship of the United States and $1,000 a side, under the following conditions: Two games to be played under the National League rules and two under the American Association rules. The manner and place of the playing of the fifth game is to be decided thereafter. The $1,000 to go to the poor of the city represented by the club winning the greater number of games. Manager Mutrie thinks he can play a strong game against the Providence team, and should the Mets succeed in winning the series they will make an extensive tour through the South.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

World Series shares

Date Sunday, November 23, 1884
Text

“The championship games of the world” played in New York recently between the Providence and Metropolitan Clubs netted the players $87 apiece.

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

`a criticism of the National Agreement clubs and contract-breaking

Date Sunday, March 2, 1884
Text

The associations in the tripartite alliance or national agreement had a perfect right to adopt the reserve rule and to enforce the black-list penalty upon all players violating the rule. On the other hand, the players have a perfect right to disregard the reserve rule and take their chances of the future disabilities of the black-list. Up to this point the issue is clear and honorable, and reflects no discredit on either side. But when the national agreement clubs descend to bribery and contract-breaking they tacitly confess that the black-list penalty is a failure and has no terrors, and that their only object is to wreck the Union Association clubs at the outset, and thereby avoid the disagreeable necessity of admitting the Union Association to full fellowship at the end of this year. Thus far no case of contract-breaking has been proved against the Union Association, and to that extent its position to-day is more creditable than that of its enemies, who have made the mistake of placing a premium upon dishonorable conduct. That it is a mistake to tempt, encourage and uphold players in contract-breaking there can be no doubt. It is wrong in principle, and no good can ever come of it., quoting the Mirror of American Sports

Source Cincinnati Enquirer
Submitted by Richard Hershberger