Clippings:1872

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Clippings in 1872

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1872Clippings in 1872

Clippings in 1872 (289 entries)

Contents


advice for catchers’ gloves

Date 1872
Text

The catcher will find it advantageous when facing swift pitching to wear tough leather gloves with the fingers cut off near the joint and they will prevent him having his hands split and puffed up.

Source De Witt Base Ball Guide
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an amateur pitcher’s delivery

Date Sunday, January 7, 1872
Text

[describing Albert C. Carr, pitcher of the George M. Roth Club of Philadelphia:] His style of delivery is swift, regular, and twisting, and very difficult to bat.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

scoring a baseball game on ice; the scorer calls out the batters; the blackboard at Reach’s

Date Sunday, February 4, 1872
Text

[relating the hardship of scoring a game on ice:] Base hits required an amount of physical suffering to record, and looked upon paper like the distorted skeleton of a diseased herring; and fielding errors and base assistance was like pulling teeth to the unfortunate holders of pencil and paper. The order of striker was called out with a frightful verbal phantasmagoria, and some of the noted ones were re-christened by the scorer’s bad cold as Back, Backgeary, Prad, Balone, while Hicks Hayhurst and McBride were “vocal impossibilities,” as our capable and usually courteous musical critic would express it.

A day or two since, while enjoying a long six after our sumptuous noonday repast, we were clasped by the hand of one of our gushing “sources of information,” and the intelligence was gently broken to us that a match on ice would take place on Wednesday afternoon. With the vivid memory of the vicissitudes..in our mind, we shook our hand and replied “No! You don’t!” That source of information tore himself sorrowfully and despondingly away, when we were remorse-stricken at Reach’s where we saw that familiar old blackboard hauled up from the large and well-assorted stock of base ball material, with the announcement thereon. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch February 4, 1872

a bell is rung to clear the playing area

[Athletic vs. picked nine on ice 1/31/1872] The bell was rung...and the ice cleared for the game to commence. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch February 4, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Athletic Club’s dues

Date Sunday, February 25, 1872
Text

The “fifteen dollars” also allows the member to witness the games of the club played in this city without further charge. Suppose forty games were played to average twenty-five cents admission, the expense would be ten dollars, thus giving the purchaser of the ticket a discount of fifty per cent on all “championship” games. The additional five dollars is a very small yearly due for the privilege of belonging to the Athletic Club and having a voice in its proceedings.

We have a ticket from last season with forty-eight coupons punched from it. These tickets were held by members and sold to outsiders at the cost of five dollars. This is an average of ten and a half cents to the game, and the tickets were thus made low priced in order that they would be taken up in enormous quantities. A large number were sold, but the experiment was a failure. This poor man dodge is played out. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch February 25, 1872

As we said last week this sniveling about “poor men” has got to the end of its tether. The poor men, mechanics, shopkeepers, and so on, are the very people who support the game and pay full price for seeing matches. But they do not indulge in season tickets, for the simple reason that they can only spare an occasional holiday to witness match games, just as trade or calling gets a little dull. The plain fact is that the cheap tickets of last year were mainly held by those who were able to pay more for them; and, on the other hand, those who could least afford it paid the highest rate. Apart from the benefit accruing to the club from the new arrangement, it puts all on as equal a footing as possible, while those who do buy tickets obtain a liberal discount for the use of their money. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch March 3, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Mutuals’ training rules

Date Saturday, March 23, 1872
Text

The Mutuals have been ordered to hold themselves in readiness to obey a strict code of training rules the moment the weather admits of fielding operations. There are to be no more “soft things” and “easy times” for the hired men of the professional organizations; at least to the extent of loafing about doing nothing and being well paid for it, when there is no match playing going one, as was the case last year. Instead, they will be required to report for work at the grounds every find morning and be subject to strict sanitary regulations and training rules, which will bring them up to the long-needed point of thorough discipline and proper training.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings’s and Martin’s delivery

Date Saturday, April 27, 1872
Text

The feature in Cummings’ pitching, which makes it more difficult to punish than that of other swift, underhand throwers, is, that he imparts a dangerous curve to the live of the delivery of the ball to the bat, which is very deceptive in causing the batsman to misjudge the ball in striking at it. This curved line is only effectively, however, when marked by a very swift delivery, and unless the pace is properly supported behind the bat, all it advantageous effect is sacrificed in passed balls. This curved line delivery, however, unless marked by very great command of the ball, and assisted by sound judgement in strategic points of play, ceases to be damaging to an experienced and cool batsman, as such a man has only to watch the ball closely, and to avoid being tempted to hit at balls out of his legitimate reach to nullify its fatal effects. The error of those who face this curve-line delivery lies in their over-eagerness to hit at balls which seem to be coming just where they want them, but which are sent in by the curved line delivery either beyond the reach of the bat or too close to the striker’s body to be hit, in both cases being liable to be called balls. It is difficult to resist the temptation to hit, but it must be done if the batsman desires to prevent the telling effect of a curved line delivery. Martin bothers batsmen with curved line balls that drop short, Cummings with curved line balls that come in horizontally; that is the different of the effect. Both require active and sure catchers, and the swift pace in addition needs great pluck and endurance in the catcher. New York Clipper April 27, 1872

The Mutual-Baltimore game showed pretty conclusively that Cummings could be batted by mortal ball players. Fisher and Radcliff each made four first base hits against the boy pitcher. Evening City Item April 30, 1872

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Mutuals didn’t practice before the championship season

Date Sunday, April 28, 1872
Text

The Mutuals returned home on Friday from their tour with a credit of three victories out of four contests in the championship arena... Under the circumstances the result of the trip is regarded creditable to the skill of the “Green Stockings,” as they had had no practice games, and entered the regular arena less prepared for success than their opponents.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Barlow’s fair fouls

Date Saturday, May 4, 1872
Text

[Chelsea vs. Atlantic 4/24/1872] The batting of Barlow was the feature of the game, his success in hitting “fair fouls” being noteworthy.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Lord Baltimores’ uniform

Date Sunday, May 5, 1872
Text

Their [the Lord Baltimore Club’s] appearance was, to say the least, stunning. We had heard a great deal about their brilliant uniform, but in point of ugliness it triple discounts the original dress of the Chicago White Stockings, who had held the palm up to this time in that regard. Their trousers are terrible, looking as though they had been bathed in mustard water, while the “escutcheon” so often alluded to bore an agreeable resemblance at a distance to a slab of pepper and salt. Frank Moran inquired, after the style of his model Hamlet, “Why com’st thou in so questionable a shape?” while “Stonewall” gravely whistled “Who are these in bright array?’ The number of poor jokes and puns uttered in regard to the same would furnish a burlesque with abundant material.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings’ pitching 2

Date Sunday, May 12, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 5/8/1872] At the close of the fifth inning the Bostons had not only earned 7 runs off Cumming’s pitching, but they had scored 15 first-base hits and 20 total bases–a result which would have warranted a change of pitching. Instead, however, the pace was dropped, and a fire of alternately medium and fast balls was kept up, which proved more effective than the “pacers.

Source ” New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings’s delivery; how to bat it

Date Saturday, May 18, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 5/8/1872] Harry Wright was next, and, being too shrewd a hand to be victimised by Cummings’ deceptive curved line balls, waited for a fair one, and not getting it, took his base on called balls. When Cummings pitches swiftly and gets in his horizontal curves, the ball either goes beyond the reach of the bat or too close to the batsman’s body to be fair; in both cases, all the batsman has to do is to wait and watch, and not be tempted to bat at these apparently good balls, for they leave the pitcher’s hands in a line which makes them took all right, but half the time they curve in. Like a shooting ball in cricket, the curved line is a chance affair, and it only needs close watching to nullify its effect.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Spalding’s delivery

Date Saturday, May 18, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 5/8/1872] ...the Mutes could not for the life of them punish , his well disguised chance of pace, and the judgment he uses in studying his men, giving him command of the situation. Then, too, he had such a reliable man [McVey] behind the bat that he felt free to devote himself entirely to his work without regard to the catcher, an important element of success with any pitcher, for if he has to look out and pitch especially for the catcher, he necessarily loses much of his power for playing strategic points.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Spalding’s change of pace

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

Spalding is a fast-paced pitcher, but he occasionally varies his delivery by sending a slow ball to the batsman.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

stakes surrounding the pitcher’s and catcher’s positions

Date Thursday, May 30, 1872
Text

[Mansfield vs. Athletic 5/29/1872] Precisely at the time named, Professor Painter [Harry Painter, the groundskeeper] removed the stakes surrounding the pitchers and catcher’s position, and Billy McLean took up his position as umpire.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings’s delivery

Date Sunday, June 2, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Mutual 6/1/1872] This was close work, and it now became apparent that the contest would be unusually exciting, as the Athletics found Cummings’s tricky delivery exceedingly difficult to punish, one base hit in five innings proving this fact. ...In the sixth inning, Cummings changed his tactics somewhat, and resorted to speed, and now the Philadelphians began to see the land, and for the first time punished Cummings, three good base hits sending in one earned run, a wold pitch assisting them in scoring the second. The Athletics now had the lead by two to one, and they expected to increase the score, but Cummings dropped his pace, and run-getting ceased.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Harry Wright’s training regimen

Date Sunday, June 16, 1872
Text

As regards the average playing strength of the six regular professional clubs of Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Troy and Cleveland, there is scarcely a toss up as regards a choice: but in reference to the degree of training, discipline and harmonious work, the Boston nine far excels the all, and hence their success. Commenting upon this subject, the Baltimore American says:

“There is only one Harry Wright in the country, it is true, but the discipline and good management shown by this Boston nine we hope will tempt the managers of the Baltimore club to enforce something like it in their own organization. The time of leniency is passed, and a strict regime is the only thing that will rescue the club from the downward tendency it is taking. These are plain facts, and if we are to have a club here next year now is the time to act. The Boston club is thoroughly under the jurisdiction of its captain, both on and off the field. Gymnastic exercises during the early part of the season placed them in trim for ball practice, and the practice under good guidance has made the club now the most powerful organization in the country, and each member of the nine a perfect athlete, not only in appearance but in skill and strength. Everything necessary to keep them in perfect condition is the constant care of their captain. The night preceding a game all are required to retire at ten o’clock, a light breakfast is taken in the morning, and a cold lunch at 12 o’clock, and the beneficial result of this regime is so marked that in games with undisciplined clubs, although comprised frequently of much older ball-players, the Red Legs stand like giants above their opponents.

Source ” New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

resentment at the Athletics’ treatment of its former players

Date Saturday, June 22, 1872
Text

[from a letter to the editor] The management of the Club is illiberal–nay, it is mean. Some provision ought to have been made for the old members of the nine. They should have been voted a life membership, at least.

I do not forget that Berkenstock and Kleinfelder, Wilkins, Gaskill, Paul, and others, gave their time and money and services to the club in its poor days, and the least the club could do is to vote them a life membership.

...

There out to be a place set apart on the stand for the old officers and old players, and they should be honored on all occasions.

That they are not so treated, shows the pitiful character of the management. If shows ignorance, and want of gratitude and breeding!

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the City Item’s good advice; pulling the press pass

Date Wednesday, July 31, 1872
Text

We had almost begun to congratulate ourselves that the friendly and good advice which we took the time and trouble to give the Athletics, would in many instances be thankfully accepted, but, (and it always seems to be the way with this astonishingly mismanaged organization,) they prefer to add still further to their many foolish acts. We have received the following letter from our once dear friend, Mr. Elias Hicks Hayhurst:

...

The article in yesterday’s “All-Day City Item” is so unjust in its sentiments, and so universally condemned by out Members and all Good Men,” as being the expressions of a most “Bitter Enemy,” that I am compelled to ask you to return the “Free Pass to our Grounds,” and at the same time to inform you the representatives of the “Item” will not be permitted seats in our Reporter’s Stand. [A resume follows of the good advice Fitzgerald had given over the years.]

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early bunt: Barlow’s little bat and little hit

Date Friday, August 9, 1872
Text

[Baltimore vs. Atlantic 8/7/1872] Little Barlow, with his little bat, then went up to the plate, and though the Baltimore men were prepared for him gave one of his little hits, just dropping the ball in front of the plate, and safely reached his first, amid laughter and applause., quoting the New York Sun of 8/8/1872

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Fitzgerald’s necktie

Date Sunday, August 18, 1872
Text

In regard to Tom Berry’s letter...it narrows down to a point of veracity between Tom Berry and the gushing Colonel with the virgin-white necktie... Philadelphia Sunday Mercury August 18, 1872 [See the subsequent letter to the editor for a strong slam on Fitzgerald, the “white-chokered imposter.”]

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings’s pitching ability

Date Sunday, August 25, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Athletic 8/19/1872] The score now stood five to nothing in favor of the Mutual, and the betting changed accordingly. The well-known ability of Cummins to pitch on certain occasions in such a manner as to combat the best batsmen, helped to make the New Yorkers the favorites.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

criticism of the umpire’s calling of balls and strikes

Date Thursday, September 12, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Baltimore 9/11/1872] Considerable difficulty was experienced in obtaining an umpire, and it is to be regretted that the efforts in that direction were not entirely unsuccessful. Mr. Beals, of the defunct Olympics of Washington, acted as an umpire. Artistically speaking, Mr. Beales is not very good. He called balls and strikes, it is true, about once in ten minutes, on principle, like the man that ate crumpet; that is, he considered it his duty to all them at certain periods in the game, not because they ought to be called at that particular time, but simply to carry out the traditional idea than an umpire must do something. His views of the nature of called balls and strikes appeared to be somewhat muddled. Generally when he called balls he should have called strikes, and vice versa. It is charitable to suppose, however, that he acted upon the old maxim that “what is sauce for the good is sauce for the gander,” but as it turned out, the old saw did not cut both ways, but only on one side, and hence the Baltimores were beaten. In the sixth inning a foul ball knocked his hat off, instead of his head, which was a pity, as that appendage seemed to be of but little use to him, and its displacement might have entirely changed the result of the game. His decisions at the bases were generally very correct, though on two occasions adverse to the Baltimores. Doubtless his aim was to be thoroughly impartial, but he was fearfully slow and lethargic, and the disappearance of his Greeley in the seventh inning failed to instill into him the life which all had reason to expect. The Baltimore players would stand at the home plate and wait for proper balls until their patience was exhausted, and in sheer desperation they struck when there was no hope. Out of fifteen balls, most of which struck in front of the home plate, two balls were called. The game, though not as skillfully played as some that have taken place on the same grounds, was feverishly exciting from its commencement to its close. In fielding and hitting the Baltimores far outstripped their opponents, and had an umpire been chosen at all acquainted with the rules Harry Wright would have been compelled to deliver fair balls instead of rolling them along the ground as he did during the greater part of the game. Baltimore American September 12, 1872

[Boston vs. Baltimore 9/11/1872] In repeated instances ball after ball would fall in front of the plate, but no notice was taken of them, though the rule imperatively demands that any ball which falls in front of the plate shall be called. Baltimore Gazette September 12, 1872

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a point of play: catching the ball in one’s hat

Date Sunday, September 15, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/14/1872] In the seventh inning of the Athletics, Anson and Reach were at second and first bases, and one man was out, when Malone hit a high ball that George Wright caught in his cap, and then passing the ball to third, second and first bases, a scene of great confusion arose–the Reds claiming that they had put the side out by their not very creditable piece of sharp practice, and the Athletics claiming that only the striker was put out. Finally, after ten or fifteen minutes’ discussion, the umpire decided to allow Malone to strike again, and the Bostons protesting against the decision, took the field, and two men were put out without adding a run. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury September 15, 1872

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/14/1872] Malone, weak fly, taken by George Wright with his hat. Wright threw the ball to Spaulding, who threw to third base, Schafer promptly throwing to second, G. Wright coming in claiming that the side was thus put out, Anson and Reach being “forced” by his “catch.” {The “point” here is in regard to catching a ball in the hat.} Fifteen minutes talk!!! {The Umpire decided that Wright’s sharp play amounted to nothing, and sent Malone again to the bat!}

...

The rule in regard to a ball caught by a players hat or cap, is as follows:

“If a fielder stop the ball with his hat or cap, no player can be put out unles the ball shall first have settlled in the hands of the pitcher while he stands within the lines of his position.”

This, of course, compelled Anson to run to third, and Reach to second, and the umpire therefore showed a most disgraceful want of knowledge regarding the rules, in not deciding them out. Evening City Item September 16, 1872

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/14/1872] [Anson at second, Reach at first] ...Malone popped up a high ball that George Wright waited for, and instead of catching it in his hands, caught it in his hat, and as Anson and Reach remained on their bases, George fielded the ball to third and second bases. Judgment was asked on Anson and Reach being forced out, and as the umpire, who was first rather confused by the novelty of the point presented to him, decided that Malone was only out. An indescribable scene of confusion arose, both nines clustering around the umpire, and the Red Stockings were very demonstrative in their appeals to the umpire to decide it a double-play on the ground that no striker can be put out when the ball is caught in a fielder’s hat, and therefore both Anson and Reach were forced off their bases. The Athletics, however, produced the rules which distinctly says, “if an adversary stops the ball with his hat or cap, ... no player can be put out, unless the ball shall firs have been settled in the hands of the pitcher,” &c., and claimed that in case the picking of the ball out of his cap by George Wright as it most undoubtedly did, that the section of the rule providing that “the ball should have been settled in the hands of the pitcher” had not been complied with, and therefore no one could be put out, not even the striker. After some fifteen minutes discussion over the childish quibble raised by the Bostons, the umpire finally decided to call it a “dead ball,” and allow Malone to strike over again, and the Reds agreed to play the balance of the game out under protest. New York Clipper September 21, 1872

[from answers to correspondents] The match you refer to was reported by our regular Philadelphia correspondent whom we have hitherto found reliable. In his deciding that the ball caught by George Wright was a catch, however, he was in error. The point of play arranged by Harry Wright to be tried on the Athletics in this game was based on an erroneous interpretation of the rules, inasmuch as in base ball, as in cricket, a ball caught by a player with his hat or cap is dead for putting the striker it. In the case in point the striker was not only not out, but he had to strike over again. This rule needs amending so far as to make this catching a ball by the cap a dead ball in every respect, as it has hitherto been considered. Had we been umpire in the game we should have decided the striker not out, the ball dead to the extent of forcing the striker to run first base, and consequently dead as to forcing the other men off the bases. If this cap catching were allowed there would be endless disputed on points of play difficult to judge which would result from it. New York Clipper October 5, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

catching Cummings’s pitching

Date Sunday, November 24, 1872
Text

[The Mutuals’] chief hopes lay in the engagement of Cummings–the “boy phenomenon,” as he has long been known–who, after a series of coquettings with other clubs, finally settled down in Gotham. ... Cummings was backed by young Hicks of the Eckford nine of ‘71, and, as they had been the crack players of the Star Club of ‘70, their experiences were likely to be renewed. Chas. Mills, the popular veteran, had been tried behind the “boy’s” puzzling twister, and, as every one anticipated, the style of pitching did not suit him, and Charles had to give way, and take for the first time the secondary position of substitute.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Knickerbocker’s annual dinner

Date Saturday, December 14, 1872
Text

This time-honored base ball organization held their annual dinner at Picat’s, in East 12th street, on the evening of Thursday, Dec. 5th, and a most pleasant reunion of the members marked the occasion. The attendance was numerous and the utmost enthusiasm in regard to the future of amateur base ball playing characterized the proceedings. Among the veterans present were Messrs. Davis, Righter, Purdy and Taylor, the “youngsters” of the club being represented by such active youths as the Bacon Brothers, Kirkland, Rodgers, Clarke, Hinsdale, Junior, Brown, Thorn and the lively Tams. The literary event of the evening was the reading of a poetical effusion of “Young Jim’s,” which composition elicited hearty applause for its capital hits and witty allusions to incidents of the game and individuals of the club. Of course speeches, songs, sentiments, toasts, etc., were given with enthusiastic applause, and thorough social enjoyment prevailed throughout. A letter from Mr. Chadwick in reference to the club and its objects was read and placed among the club records, as it expressed the sentiments of the members in regard to the objects of the game and its proper pursuit. The prospects of the next season were discussed and the promise of quite an amateur revival for 1873.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the side bias of Cummings’ delivery

Date Saturday, December 14, 1872
Text

Probably among the most effective catchers of the season we should not be far wrong in placing Hicks, of the Mutual nine of 1872. Most assuredly no man had more difficult pitching to attend to than Hicks, the side bias implanted to the ball–practically useless in its effect on the batting–by Cummings, making the rebound from his delivery so eccentric as to require the most active movements on the part of the catcher to prevent passed balls.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings’s pitching

Date Saturday, December 28, 1872
Text

The youngest pitcher in the professional fraternity is Cummings, of the Mutual nine of 1872, and he is one of the most effectively, especially when he has a catcher familiar with his peculiar delivery, and active and expert enough to give him the necessary support. Without this aid, however, his pitching is more costly than profitable. Cummings imparts to the ball such a rotary motion as it leaves his hand, and gives it such a bias to the right or the left, that the catcher is obliged to be on the alert to watch the eccentric rebound in order to avoid passed balls. Now this giving of a twist to the ball in the delivery is practically more disadvantageous than it is effective, and for this reason:–The bias being rotary to the right or left, it follows that it cannot affect the direction of the ball from the bat, except to bother the fielder by the eccentricity of its rebound. Were the motion imparted to the ball by the pitcher a forward rotary bias then it would increase the number of foul balls hit; but, as it is, the only effect is to make the rebound of the “twisted” ball exceedingly difficult for the catcher to judge accurately; and, if hit, a troublesome ball for the in-fielder to catch or hold. Hence the difficulty a catcher has to encounter in standing behind the bat to Cummings’ pitching, and the number of balls which have rebounded in the in-field in an eccentric manner when hit from the same pitcher’s “twist” delivery. ... As a pitchist of the period, viz: a swift underhand thrower of skill and judgment, Cummings undoubtedly ranks A No. 1.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

catcher’s gloves, catchers’ gloves

Date Error: Invalid time.
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 Cincinnati Commercial Tribune, Reading Times
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

bunting for a home run

Date Sunday, March 3, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Independent of Bloomsburgh, Pa 8/21/1869] ...Tom Berry made a “home-run” [by] “blocking” the ball purposely in front of the home-base, and never stopping until he completed the circuit of the bases–a feat which the opposing nines thought impossible, especially as Tom is not, by any means, the fastest runner in the fraternity. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury March 3, 1872 [in a retrospective: this incident is not reported in PSM account of 8/29/69]

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

advice for catchers' gloves

Date 1872
Text

The catcher will find it advantageous when facing swift pitching to wear tough leather gloves with the fingers cut off near the joint and they will prevent him having his hands split and puffed up.

Source De Witt Base Ball Guide
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the proposed European tour off for this year

Date Sunday, January 7, 1872
Text

The Athletics and Bostons contemplated taking a trip to Europe, but this project has been abandoned, and in its place the two clubs will likely make an extended Southern tour in the month of March next. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury January 7, 1872

The Athletic and Boston clubs seriously contemplated taking a trip to Europe this season, but on account of the heavy expenses attendant upon such a tour, the idea was abandoned. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury January 28, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an amateur pitcher's delivery

Date Sunday, January 7, 1872
Text

[describing Albert C. Carr, pitcher of the George M. Roth Club of Philadelphia:] His style of delivery is swift, regular, and twisting, and very difficult to bat.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a monthly meeting of the Athletic Club

Date Sunday, January 14, 1872
Text

About fifty members assembled at the rooms–Eighth and Vine streets–on Monday evening last to attend to some important business regarding dues and the duties of the directors.

A committee was appointed to arrange with the club’s creditors for the amicable settlement of the debt contracted by the advancing of funds to the club, as several gentlemen have been kind enough to do.

There seems to be considerable rivalry between some members of the club. The directors have had several of their powers tied up; and, amongst other things, are restricted in the issue of complimentary tickets. A resolution that the members of the nine elect their own captain was handed in, and will be acted upon next meeting.

We hope that the members will amend their differences and enter on the season of ‘72 in harmony and brotherly feeling. The Athletic Club is the most prominent in the country, and its actions will be noticed minutely. The advisability of keeping up a good club spirit was never more apparent that at present. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch January 14, 1872

The proceedings were marked by nothing special save the adoption of an amendment to the by-laws, fixing the annual subscription at fifteen dollars, with the privilege of a reserved seat in the pavilion for each and every member. With a view to harmonizing the seemingly antagonistic elements of the club, and to provide for the settlement of all financial difficulties, two committees, consisting of some of the most influential members, were appointed. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury January 14, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Atlantic Club meeting

Date Sunday, January 14, 1872
Text

An important meeting of the Atlantic Club was held Tuesday night. Judge Buckley was re-elected President, and the business of looking up a nine given in charge of Ferguson.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a baseball club-turned social club

Date Sunday, January 14, 1872
Text

The tenth annual ball of the Orion Club, of this city, will be given at the Academy of Music on Wednesday evening next. The Orions, some seasons back, were known as one of our best amateur base ball clubs, and although not actively engaged in the pursuit of the National pastime of late years, yet their organization has been maintained intact, and now numbers some of the leading members of the Athletics and other base ball clubs. Their annual re-unions are notable for their brilliancy, and the present occasion promises to be a recherche and most enjoyable affair. The Athletic’s championship flag and streamer will occupy a prominent position in the decorations of the ball.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the need for two regular pitchers

Date Saturday, January 20, 1872
Text

We pointed out, years ago, the necessity of having a change pitcher as a reserve in case of need; but what is required now, is not only a change pitcher, but two regulars. A change comes into play when the regular is being badly punished and a different style of delivery is needed to put a stop to the effective batting. It should be borne in mind that a pitcher being punished is quite a different thing from that of his opponents simply scoring runs off him. A pitcher is “punished” only when first base hits are scored, and not when bases are made by errors in the field; it is only when he is thus punished that the change pitcher should be brought into play, and not simply because runs are being obtained through the lack of proper support, for in such a case a change will not mend the matter. The importance of having a change in a nine has been recognized for two or three seasons past, but the necessity of having two regulars has only been realized this past year. It is capable of ample proof that while the regular pitcher will, perhaps, be successful against five out of six of the nines he may encounter, there will be one, and perhaps two, who will punish him more than the others.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

batting out of turn 3

Date Sunday, January 21, 1872
Text

In the 6-4 game between the Bostons and the Eckfords last year the umpire (Sweasy) made a mistake that might seriously have affected the result of the game. Allison should have gone to the bat first, but he missed hist urn, and Nelson led off, making his first on a clean hit. According to the rules, the man who misses his strike is considered out. Instead of that, Sweasy rules that Nelson was out first man. Allison was then allowed to go the bat, which was not according to “Hoyle,” and Nelson was permitted to go a second time, in his proper turn, to the bat, which was an absurdity. As he was forced out, he was charged with two outs, one of which should have been credited to Allison. New York Sunday Mercury January 21, 1872

improvements at the Union grounds

Already has the energetic proprietor of the Union ball grounds commenced work in erecting additional seats for spectators, in anticipation of the increased demand likely to prevail at the leading contests. The pool-stand is to be located near the Pagoda, out of the bounds of the playing field in order that the business of betting may not interfere with the players as it did last season during the progress of games. A new reporters’ stand is among the improvements to be introduced, the new stand being built higher from the ground so as to prevent the players bother the scorers by looking over their scores, etc. New York Sunday Mercury January 21, 1872

It is to be hoped that the pool selling stand will be removed from the position it occupied last season. It would be far better if the speculators had a row of seats set apart for them near the pagoda, where their bets on base hits and on catches, &c., during the progress of a game would not e heard by the players. New York Clipper March 9, 1872

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the new Newington grounds

Date Wednesday, January 24, 1872
Text

Mr. Alphonso T. Houck having succeeded in obtaining sole control of the new base ball grounds, situation on Pennsylvania avenue, and in close proximity to all the city railway lines terminating in that section of the city, is having the grounds placed in the best possible condition for the approaching ball season. He has erected a monster Grand Stand for the especial accommodation of ladies, and who will have an unobstructed view of the ball players in time of games and at the same time be effectually screened from the rays of the sun. And should a rain storm prevail during the playing of a game the numerous buildings on the grounds will afford shelter for at least three thousand persons. At present about two-thirds of the enclosure is covered with water, it being the intention of Mr. Houck to convert the place into a grand skating rink during cold weather, and he is now patiently waiting for a sudden freeze, and should such an event happen this winter he intends to inaugurate a carnival that will claim more than ordinary attention, an

d at the same time only be opened to persons of character.

The base ball nine engaged for next season will dedicate the new grounds early in the season, and arrangements have been made by Mr. Houck whereby the best clubs in the United States will contest at the ground during the coming summer.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

William McLean running a gymnasium

Date Sunday, January 28, 1872
Text

All the up-town fraternity make Billy McLean’s, No. 929 Girard avenue, their headquarters. Billy has recently fitted up a gymnasium, where most of the prominent ball-tossers are exercising for the coming season. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury January 28, 1872

Billy McLean has opened a gymnasium at his hotel, No. 929 Girard avenue, and all the “ball-tossers” of that section of the city are to be found practising there and getting themselves in trim for the coming season. Billy intends enlarging his hotel shortly and introducing several new features. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury February 18, 1872

the case for legal underhand throwing

In regard to section 5, which is not altered [in draft rules by Harry Wright], it is questionable whether it would not be best to limit the prohibitions of throwing to over-hand throwing, leaving it optional with the ball “tosser,” “pitcher” or “thrower,” as the case may be, to send the ball in as he likes, either by a square pitch, like that of Martin, or by a well-disguised under-hand throw, such as that indulged in by nearly every swift so-called pitcher, from Creighton down to the professional experts of 1871. The only objection to jerked or underhand throws, in the delivery of the ball, is in the ability of the catcher to hold them; for the difficulty of hitting, there is no more than in hitting a swiftly overthrown ball, provided it is thrown straight to the bat and where the striker wants it. This prohibiting throwing and jerking of the ball by rule, while allowing it in actual play, is a farce. Either keep the delivery to a legitimate pitcher–or swift tossing of the ball–or let the pitcher send it in as he pleases, provided he does not throw it over-hand. New York Clipper February 3, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the case for clarifying overrunning first base

Date Saturday, February 3, 1872
Text

The amendment to section 10 Harry Wright advocates as follows:–“It is not often that a player, after overrunning the first, with the intention of returning to it, has an opportunity to run to second; it is only when there is a wild throw to, or muff by first base man. When that happens, I think the player running the bases should have the full benefit of it. Another thing I saw once or twice last season. When there had been a wild throw to first, and the player had continued on to second, there was an appeal made to the umpire that the player did not come back and touch his base. The umpire was puzzled, and it was a hard thing to decide. He could give his decision either way, as he favored one side or the other (and they all do, just a little, they can’t help it.) I think the umpires have enough, yes, too much responsibility now, without increasing it.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

scoring a baseball game on ice; the scorer calls out the batters; the blackboard at Reach's

Date Sunday, February 4, 1872
Text

[relating the hardship of scoring a game on ice:] Base hits required an amount of physical suffering to record, and looked upon paper like the distorted skeleton of a diseased herring; and fielding errors and base assistance was like pulling teeth to the unfortunate holders of pencil and paper. The order of striker was called out with a frightful verbal phantasmagoria, and some of the noted ones were re-christened by the scorer’s bad cold as Back, Backgeary, Prad, Balone, while Hicks Hayhurst and McBride were “vocal impossibilities,” as our capable and usually courteous musical critic would express it.

A day or two since, while enjoying a long six after our sumptuous noonday repast, we were clasped by the hand of one of our gushing “sources of information,” and the intelligence was gently broken to us that a match on ice would take place on Wednesday afternoon. With the vivid memory of the vicissitudes..in our mind, we shook our hand and replied “No! You don’t!” That source of information tore himself sorrowfully and despondingly away, when we were remorse-stricken at Reach’s where we saw that familiar old blackboard hauled up from the large and well-assorted stock of base ball material, with the announcement thereon. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch February 4, 1872

a bell is rung to clear the playing area

[Athletic vs. picked nine on ice 1/31/1872] The bell was rung...and the ice cleared for the game to commence. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch February 4, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Brainard refuses to sign on the cooperative basis

Date Sunday, February 11, 1872
Text

Brainard has declined entering the Atlantic nine on the risk of the “co-operation” profits, and it now rests on the monied friends of the club to say wether he shall be guaranteed his desired $1,500.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pitching vs. throwing; Cummings curved line delivery

Date Saturday, February 17, 1872
Text

The time has arrived when the code of rules in base ball should no longer be burdened with any dead letter laws, and one of the principal of this class which has been longer on the statute books than any other, is that which required the pitcher to confine himself to the simple act of tossing, known as “pitching.”

In the early days of the game, before the advent of Creighton, the ball was generally delivered by a square pitch, the pitchers of that day depending more upon strategic skill for success than upon anything else in their style of delivery. But when Creighton came upon the scene, and inaugurated the style of delivery which by courtesy has been called “swift pitching,” the old style was not long in becoming defunct, and since then speed has been regarded as the great desideratum.

In 1858, during the visit of the English cricketers to this country, Creighton was one day bowling in a little practice game of cricket while John Lillywhite was looking on. Creighton at the time was noted as the great swift “pitcher” of the day, and was bowling just as he pitched in base ball. While watching him Lillywhite quietly remarked, “why, that man is not bowling, he is throwing under-hand.” On watching closer, however, he qualified his remark by saying that “it is the best disguised under-hand throwing I ever saw, and might readily be mistaken for a fair delivery.” But two or three persons heard the comments of the noted cricketer, and as there was nothing ever said further about its legitimacy, Creighton’s delivery was never questioned in the base ball fraternity, at least to an extent that at all prevented him from playing in this position, and the result was that he became the model player in that swift style of delivery which has ever since been erroneously styled “swift pitching.”

The different between a pitched ball and an underhand throw, as far as the style of delivery is concerned, is, that a pitched ball is sent in with a straight arm, swinging perpendicularly to the side of the body, while an under-hand throw is made by the same swinging motion, but with the addition of bending the arm and wrist with a motion similar to that made when snapping a whip. Some men can disguise an underhand throw so as to make it difficult to tell whether the throwing motion is made or not; but the speed tells the story, it being impossible to send in a ball with the speed McBride, Zettlein, or any of the so called pitchers of the day do by a really square pitch. The curved line delivery such as that which marks Cummings’ style, is also impossible, except by means of an underhand throw. In fact, if the matter were thoroughly investigated by old and experienced judges, there is no a so-called swift pitcher in the country who would not be convicted of sending in “lightning balls” by means of a well disguised underhand throw.

The question naturally arises, therefore, if there has been little else than throwing for the past ten years, while such a style of delivery has been year by year prohibited by the rules, why is it that it has not been shown up before this? Because just such experience as this style of delivery introduced was necessary to a full development of th game, and hence has it been winked at, if not countenanced. As we said before, however, the time has arrived when the rules should be cleared of this prohibition of throwing the ball to the bat, at least to the extent of allowing any delivery except that of an overhand or raised arm throw.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

talk of an enclosed ground for the Philadelphia amateurs

Date Sunday, February 18, 1872
Text

An informal discussion took place in relation to the advisability of procuring a suitable ground for the use of the amateur clubs of this city, and where all championship games could be played. The proprietor of the ground at Fortieth and Aspen streets, West Philadelphia, made a proposition to enclose said ground and put it in perfect order, besides enlarging the field, provided the amateur clubs would select it as the place of playing their matches. The proposition will doubtless be accepted, and the Expert, Geo. M. Roth, Marion, Monroe and Pastime Clubs occupy this ground next season, and being easy of access, this ground will prove a favorite place of resort this year. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury February 18, 1872

The owner of the base ball ground at Fortieth and Aspen streets, we understand, demands the exorbitant rent of $1200 per year for the use of the same, and we fear that the amateur clubs will have to see elsewhere for a suitable ground. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury March 10, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the change to the form of home base

Date Saturday, February 24, 1872
Text

[discussing proposed rules amendments] The first, second and third bases shall be canvas bags, painted white and filled with some soft material; the home base shall consist of white marble or stone, so fixed in the ground as to be even with the surface.

The only change in the wording of the above section is that referring to the home base. Hitherto this base has been marked by an iron plate painted white. The coloring soon wears off and the pitcher cannot see the base. Harry Wright proposes that white marble or white stone be fixed in the ground for the home base, and we endorse his amendment.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a dissent on the prevalence of underhand throwing

Date Sunday, February 25, 1872
Text

To talk plainly, there is hardly a man in the fraternity who cannot distinguish between a square pitch, a jerk, or an “underhand throw.” Mr. Chadwick says that the practice was only allowable on account of the excellent “development” of the game which it produced, when, in point of fact, it has never been allowed at all, and there is not a ball-ground in the country upon which a pitcher would attempt an underhand throw without being instantly and emphatically ruled out. The talk about the arm being perfectly perpendicular, and regarding the twist of the wrist and elbow is all balderdash, and any lad of moderate discernment knows what the movement of a throw is. If it is practiced, it is in a very slight degree, and in the lightning movement of such pitchers as McBride, Zettlein or Spaulding would almost be impossible to detect. McBride pitches mostly with his body, its attitude helping the peculiar movement of the ball, slanting it up and across toward the end of the bat. The question has been raised as to the legality of Cummings’ pitching, and we must confess that it comes closer to an underhand throw than that of any other pitcher in the country. Martin, too, uses the turn of the arm and wrist, and although it is done toward his body, he could not otherwise impart the peculiar movement to the ball that he does, and it is a clean toss, having very little “pitch” about it.

...

Mr. Chadwick proposes to amend the rules so as to allow the pitcher to throw underhand. The natural result of such an abuse would be that no catcher in the country could play over two games a week, and even then he would in every contest risk the mangling of his hands to such an extent as would incapacitate him for the balance of the season.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Athletic Club's dues

Date Sunday, February 25, 1872
Text

The “fifteen dollars” also allows the member to witness the games of the club played in this city without further charge. Suppose forty games were played to average twenty-five cents admission, the expense would be ten dollars, thus giving the purchaser of the ticket a discount of fifty per cent on all “championship” games. The additional five dollars is a very small yearly due for the privilege of belonging to the Athletic Club and having a voice in its proceedings.

We have a ticket from last season with forty-eight coupons punched from it. These tickets were held by members and sold to outsiders at the cost of five dollars. This is an average of ten and a half cents to the game, and the tickets were thus made low priced in order that they would be taken up in enormous quantities. A large number were sold, but the experiment was a failure. This poor man dodge is played out. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch February 25, 1872

As we said last week this sniveling about “poor men” has got to the end of its tether. The poor men, mechanics, shopkeepers, and so on, are the very people who support the game and pay full price for seeing matches. But they do not indulge in season tickets, for the simple reason that they can only spare an occasional holiday to witness match games, just as trade or calling gets a little dull. The plain fact is that the cheap tickets of last year were mainly held by those who were able to pay more for them; and, on the other hand, those who could least afford it paid the highest rate. Apart from the benefit accruing to the club from the new arrangement, it puts all on as equal a footing as possible, while those who do buy tickets obtain a liberal discount for the use of their money. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch March 3, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the location of the pool sellers on the Union grounds

Date Saturday, March 2, 1872
Text

The Union ball grounds, Brooklyn, are being placed in order for the early resumption of play. It is to be hoped that Mr. Cammeyer will introduce the much-needed improvement of transferring the pool selling stand to the lower part of the ground, back of the pagoda, so as to remove the open betting business of the “gold board” out of the hearing of the contestant in a match game. Last year the betting on the innings, base hits, etc., which occurred in every game necessarily had a demoralizing effect on the players concerned. New York Clipper March 2, 1872

batter position and curved line pitching

[discussing proposed rules amendments] Last year’s rule allowed a forward but not a backward step. By the amended rule the striker is debarred from taking any step which shall take both his feet on one side or other of the line of his position about to strike, but as long as he keeps one foot on each side of the line he can take either a backward or forward step. By this means he is allowed that freedom of movement necessary to ensure a good hit, white he is, on the other hand, properly debarred from taking an unfair advantage either by lengthening the distance from the pitcher by a backwards step, or shortening it by a forward one. If a backward step were allowed, short balls hit down would invariably touch the ground foul, and in such a manner as not to be caught; and if a forward step were allowed, the batsman would nullify the effect of the curved line delivery, besides gaining other undue advantages. New York Clipper March 2, 1872

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the condition of the Olympic Club of Philadelphia

Date Sunday, March 3, 1872
Text

To-morrow the Olympic Club holds it regular annual meeting and election of officers. There is a movement on foot to put the nine in such a condition that it can hold its own against all competitors. There is some opposition to making the club a contesting organization, as that would apparently interfere with the practice of some of the members. But an arrangement will be made which will be satisfactory to all parties. The Olympic have a fine reputation all over the country, and will be regarded with great interest during the season. They owe it not only to themselves, but to the credit of the city, to put their nine in as strong a condition as possible. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch March 3, 1872

The annual meeting of the Olympic Base Ball Club, of this city, was held last Monday evening, at their club-room, N.W. cor. 13th and Market streets. The full attendance and the enthusiasm manifested evidenced the degree of interest taken by the members in keeping intact their organization. Dr. Neal presided over the meeting, which was characterized by the utmost good feeling and spirit. ... The majority of the members present were in favor of having an amateur nine, and we have no doubt that under the efficient management of the above-mentioned board of officers that a nine will be selected which will be a credit to the city. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury March 10, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the gate split for professional games

Date Saturday, March 9, 1872
Text

Harry [Wright] says that the Boston Club will share receipts this season with professional clubs on the basis of giving and taking a third of the gross receipts.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Prospect Park

Date Saturday, March 9, 1872
Text

At the , Brooklyn, the extensive parade ground–half a mile long by a quarter of a mile broad–is to be placed in fielding condition early in April for the use of the school and academy clubs of Brooklyn, and amateur clubs. New York Clipper March 9, 1872

The Parade Ground at , Brooklyn–half a mile long by a quarter mile broad–is being put in condition for playing, and will not only be the largest, but one of the best-kept grounds in the country. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch March 17, 1872

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Central Park for school nines only

Date Saturday, March 9, 1872
Text

The Central Park authorities have very properly limited the use of the Central Park grounds to the use of the clubs and nines connected with the public schools and academies of the metropolis. They propose by this to offer a sort of premium to boys to attend school who desire to enjoy the ball playing privileges of the park. Were they to throw the grounds open to all boys indiscriminately, the fields would be occupied all day long by gangs of idle youths.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Chadwick drafted the revised rules; the rules committee

Date Sunday, March 10, 1872
Text

[at the professional convention:] The most important business transacted was the revision of the playing rules; and the Chairman of the Committee of Rules of the association submitted a revised code, which had been prepared for the association by Mr. Henry Chadwick, the late chairman of the Committee of Rules of the old national association. This new code, embodying as it did the suggestions of Harry Wright, of the Championship Committee, and that of the chairman of the Committee of Rules of the Amateur Association, as well as such suggestions as the experience of the season in reporting the games had pointed out as advisable, were taken up section by section, and adopted almost as reported, the changes made, consisting of a few alterations of the wording of two or three sections, and the addition of a new rule–the eighth–which included the sections referring exclusively to the professional championship.

...

Singularly enough, each delegate had come prepared to present a new code of his own, and had all the written amendments sent in been discussed or read the proceedings of the convention would have occupied a week at least. Those presented by Mr. Chadwick having been previously explained and discussed through the papers, and moreover being in printed form, and involving but one single change in the rules of any special importance, were therefore selected as the most complete code, and the unanimity with which they were indorsed showed conclusively that they were the best calculated to promote the general interests of the game. New York Sunday Mercury March 10, 1872

The Chairman of the Committee on Rules, Mr. J. F. Evans, submitted his report, embracing eight rules, divided into fifty-nine sections, which had been previous prepared for the Association by Mr. Henry Chadwick, of the New York Clipper. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury March 10, 1872

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the championship committee also in charge of rules and treasury

Date Sunday, March 10, 1872
Text

The new championship committee of the association includes Mr. Alex V. Davidson, chairman; Mr. C. C. Clark, editor of the Troy Press, and Mr. E. H. Hayhurst, the president of the Athletic Club. This committee not only has cognizance of the championship contests and the award of the streamer, but also has been constituted as a committee of rules as well as treasurers of the association. In fact, they are now the governing body of the Professional Association.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire behind the catcher 2

Date Sunday, March 10, 1872
Text

One necessary and important amendment was made [to the rules], to the effect that when a ball passed the catcher and struck the umpire it should not be considered a dead ball...

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

improvements and pool selling on the Union Grounds

Date Sunday, March 10, 1872
Text

The Union Base Ball Grounds, Williamsburg, will be much improved before the opening of the season. New seats and other conveniences will be put up for spectators. Mr. Cammeyer contemplates moving the pagoda from the lower field to where the pool-box stood last year, for the accommodation of the pool-buyers and members of the “gold board.” Pool-selling will be continued as usual by Tommy Johnson, and all games played out of the city will be received by telegraph during the afternoon.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

division of gate receipts

Date Sunday, March 10, 1872
Text

Harry Wright, of the Boston Club, proposes to divide the receipts with the professional clubs this season, on the basis of taking one-third of the gross receipts.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

roster size

Date Monday, March 11, 1872
Text

The Boston Club have secured the services of J. J. Ryan of Philadelphia for eleventh man. At the openeing of the last season he played with the Forest City Club of Rockford, Ill, but he was taken sick in June and did not play the rest of the season.

Source Boston Globe
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

housing arrangements for the Baltimore club

Date Monday, March 11, 1872
Text

It is understood that the players will all be quartered under one roof, and that Mr. William Lennon, late catcher for the Kekiongas and Pastimes, will be the genial host, Mr. N. E. Young looking after the discipline and well-being of the men. Baltimore American March 11, 1872

Messrs. Craver, Fisher, Radcliff, Higham and York have taken quarters at a quiet boarding house on Biddle street near Eutaw, and Messrs. Pike and Mills are at present stopping at the Gibbons House, the former having concluded to rent a desirable dwelling for himself and family as soon as possible. Baltimore American March 23, 1872

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the new Baltimore Club uniform

Date Monday, March 11, 1872
Text

The uniform adopted will be a nobby affair. The escutcheons of Lord Baltimore, consisting of a party of seven, alternate yellow and black, with a bend surmounted by a Viscount's coronet, will be worn on the left breast of a tight-fitting body shirt. The cap will be divided into segments of yellow and black, the stockings stripes of the same colors and the breeches yellow, with a belt of yellow bordered with black for the waist.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Ferguson elected National Association president

Date Saturday, March 16, 1872
Text

The election of officers for the ensuing year being next in order, Mr. Davidson, of the Mutuals, stated that he thought some professional player should be chosen for president, and not an outsider. He therefore nominated a gentleman well known by the profession, and who is respected by all, Mr. Robert Ferguson, of the Atlantics.

...

Mr. Ferguson, in a neat speech, thanked the convention for the honor conferred upon him, which he said he considered not only an honor to him, but to the entire fraternity. His desire was, that the business of the meeting be gotten through with as quickly as possible.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

clarifying the rule on overrunning first base

Date Sunday, March 17, 1872
Text

In overrunning first base the base runners must either turn to the right or keep straight on. If he turns to the left or tries to make second base, over running, he ceases to be exempt from being put out, and can be given out at once for running out of the line of the bases to avoid the ball in the hands of a player. The best way, after overrunning, is to turn to the right, in which case the player is ready to run to second, if the ball is muffed.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

coaching players round the bases

Date Sunday, March 17, 1872
Text

The appended rule puts a stop to the habit captains and intermeddling players had last season of “coaching” players round the bases and buzzing the umpire: “4. No person shall be permitted to approach the umpire, or in any manner to interrupt or interfere during the progress of the game. The umpire shall require the captain or players of the side to the bat to remain at a reasonable distance (at least fifteen feet) from the home, first, third base, and outside the foul lines; also, to avoid interfering with the fielders when directing the movements of players running the base. If either side persists in infringing this rule the umpire shall declare the game forfeited by the score of 9 to 0 against the side violating it.

Source ” New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a resume of the history of thrown games

Date Sunday, March 17, 1872
Text

We are more amused than anything else at continually hearing general accusations of “throwing games,” and when asked to trot out their proof the accusers slide off on the back track. Only two notable instances of the kind–in fact such instances are all notable–have ever seen the light, viz. In the well-known case of the Eckford vs. Mutual, which requires no further reference, and the action of John Galvin of the Atlantic, who some years since in a fit of peevishness deliberately threw a game away, thus giving the championship to the Unions of Morrisania. A suspicious case will be remembered occurring in this city the latter part of last season, but it was founded on the supposition that a Brooklyn player was in league with the gaming ring, and it did look very bad for him. Still, this is a very serious charge to attach to a man, and a very nonsensical one to bring against a club. At one time, we confess, the susceptibility to such action was greater than at present. But to-day the several professional clubs are under the management of gentlemen of the highest standing, and players are well paid, and there is little or no room for operations of the kind.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the sale of season tickets; reserved seats?

Date Sunday, March 17, 1872
Text

A large number of season tickets for the Athletic’s ground have already been disposed of. Last week a large delegation of the Americus Club, including Alderman McColgan, Doughterty and Delaney, William C. Gillingham, E.N. Marks, and other influential members, purchased an entire section of seats. All who have not yet procured their tickets, should make immediate application to the worthy President of the Athletics, Hicks Hayhurst, either at No. 943 North Second street, or a Al. Reach’s.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the playing rules for 1872

Date Sunday, March 17, 1872
Text

see: for a complete copy

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Gothams reorganized on a strictly amateur basis

Date Wednesday, March 20, 1872
Text

The annual meeting of the Gotham Base Ball Club was held last night at the new club rooms, Park House, 103 Waverly place. There was a good attendance, and great interest manifested in the proceedings. … The club was thoroughly reorganized on a strictly amateur basis, and bids fair to revive its pristine glory.

Source New York Evening Telegram
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Mutuals' training rules

Date Saturday, March 23, 1872
Text

The Mutuals have been ordered to hold themselves in readiness to obey a strict code of training rules the moment the weather admits of fielding operations. There are to be no more “soft things” and “easy times” for the hired men of the professional organizations; at least to the extent of loafing about doing nothing and being well paid for it, when there is no match playing going one, as was the case last year. Instead, they will be required to report for work at the grounds every find morning and be subject to strict sanitary regulations and training rules, which will bring them up to the long-needed point of thorough discipline and proper training.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Forest City of Cleveland training rules

Date Saturday, March 23, 1872
Text

With a view to good order and efficiency, the directors of the Forest City Base Ball Association have adopted the following rules and regulations for the government of their club for the season of 1872:–

First.–The captain of the club shall be elected by the board of directors, and hold his office during their pleasure. He shall be subjected to all the rules and regulations of the association, the same as the other players.

Second.–The captain shall have full control, and will be held responsible for the discipline of the club. He shall require the members to practice each day, weather permitting, when not engaged for play (Sundays excepted) time and manner of practice to be under and subject to his direction with the approval of the Board of Directors. When the club meets for practice the captain shall call the roll of members and report any absentees or any misconduct on the part of members to the president of the board of directors after practice hours. He may suspend any member for disobedience of orders, intoxication, or conduct unbecoming a gentleman, and report this action to the president in writing.

Third.–No member of the club will be excused from practice or play unless upon a written certificate from Dr. N. S. Prentice, and said certificate must state the cause. In order to prevent suspension, the certificate must be handed to the captain before practice or play hour, and be approved by him.

Fourth.–During the playing season every member of the club is required to abstain from the use of intoxicating liquors in any shape and from keeping late hours. And if at any time during the season any member of the club becomes intoxicated, or incapacitated and unable to play base ball from the effects of dissipation, or disease brought on by the same, the board may suspend, fine or expel him on the charges being proven.

Fifth.–Absence on the part of any member without leave from the captain and the approval of the director in charge during any tour made by the club, shall be sufficient cause for the board to cancel his contract.

Sixth.–No members of the club shall accept any present or gift of money to lose or assist in losing a game. Any violation of this rule will subject the offending member to be expelled in disgrace.

Seventh.–Any member of the club who shall use improper language while on the field, or dispute the discipline of any umpire during the progress of the game except when called upon to do so, refuses to obey the captain in the exercise of his lawful authority, or leave the field when assembled for practice or play, without permission from the captain, upon being reported to the board of directors by the captain, they may fine or expel, as the case may require.

Eighth.–Each member of the club will be held personally responsible for the safe keeping of his uniform, and be required to keep it clean and in good order at all times. If the uniform is destroyed or lost by any carelessness on the part of the player, the expense of procuring a new one will be charged to his account. No member will be allowed to use the uniform of another member without the permission of the owner.

Ninth.–Members of the club will be paid their dues by the treasurer on the 1st and 15th of each month; but in no case will they be paid in excess of salary, nor will any order be recognized by the treasurer.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a special area for pool selling at the Union grounds

Date Saturday, March 23, 1872
Text

The Union grounds are being extensively improved for the use of the Mutual Club’s patrons and members, a feature of the alterations being the erection of a grand subscription stand over the covered rows of seats back of the base, the stand in question being for the special use of the betting class and for pool selling. One hundred subscribers are already guaranteed at $5 the season–exclusive of entrance fees–for this stand.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Haymakers change their name

Date Sunday, March 24, 1872
Text

The Haymaker, or, more properly, the Union Club, as the former was never the official cognomen of the organization, will change its name to the Troy Club.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a continuous-seam ball

Date Sunday, March 24, 1872
Text

A new ball has been manufactured by Wright & Gould, of Boston, which possesses the advantage of having one continuous seam encircling the ball.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the end of the Harrison Park ground

Date Sunday, March 24, 1872
Text

The old ball ground, known as Harrison Park, will this season by used for other purposes, and the numerous amateur clubs in the northeastern section of this city will have to find other quarters.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a member of the old New York Club

Date Sunday, March 24, 1872
Text

George W. Smith, the veteran ballet-master at Fox’s American Theatre, is also a veteran ball player, having served his apprenticeship with the old New York Club, an organization that used to make their headquarters at the Elysian Fields, Hoboken, a quarter of a century ago. George, although, of course, no so active as he then was, can still display a skill far surpassing that of many of the more youthful members of the fraternity.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire to call foul balls immediately upon determining the path

Date Friday, March 29, 1872
Text

[discussing the new rules] In calling foul balls the umpire must call “foul” the moment he sees that the ball is falling back of the lines of the bases.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpires to call all balls and strikes

Date Saturday, March 30, 1872
Text

The umpire is now positively required to call every ball mentioned in section 4 of rule 2d, whenever such is delivered, even if in succession. He fails to obey both the spirit and the letter of the rule if he does otherwise.

The umpire must now call strikes on the batsman in every instance in which he refuses to strike at balls designated as “fair” in section 5 of rule 2. March 30, 1872

[Atlantic vs. Concord 4/6/1872] Bass umpired the game and did it well, as a general thing; but he erred in allowing several “unfair”balls to go by uncalled. While the umpire can use his discretion to a certain extent in calling balls not sent in according to the rule headed “Fair Balls,” he has no option in the case of those described under the head of “Unfair Balls,” and every time he allows such a ball to go by uncalled, he wilfully violates an express law of the game. Inasmuch as every ball included under the head of “unfair balls” is a ball out of all fair and legitimate reach of the bat, it follows that it is but a just penalty for an unfair delivery to call every such ball delivered. In the case of balls, however, which, though not included under the head of “unfair balls,” are neverthless not exactly fair, because not over the home base or not at the height called for, the umpire cannot call a ball until the pitcher has “repeatedly” infringed to break the rule.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

intentionally swinging at bad pitches

Date Saturday, March 30, 1872
Text

If the umpire sees a batsman strike at a ball not within the reach he indicated and in such a manner as to show that the strike was made not to hit the ball, but to balk the catcher, he must decided him out at once, provided that the strike is not made for the purpose of willfully striking out for in such case he must disregard the strike altogether and not call it.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

when to call a ball foul

Date Saturday, March 30, 1872
Text

In called foul balls the umpire must call “foul” the moment he sees that the ball is falling back of the lines of the bases.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

courtesy runners 2

Date Saturday, March 30, 1872
Text

When a substitute runner is presented to run a base for another player, the umpire must ask the captain of the field nine if he objects to him, and, if he does, the umpire must rule him out, as the captain of the field nine can now select the substitute, as well as consent or refuse to allow any substitute at all.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a condemnation of professional ball players

Date Sunday, March 31, 1872
Text

There has grown up within the past two or three years a class of men who make their livelihood wholly by playing baseball matches. The professional player, aside from his private character, is not precisely a majestic object. It may not be incumbent upon any man to lead a life of really productive industry, but it certainly seems as though one might find some other occupation than hiring oneself to win matches for the Black Stockings and Whites, Blue Stockings and Gray, who claim to be exponents of the national game. Evidently the professional player himself sympathizes with this view, for except when compelled to play during the summer season, he keeps himself modestly out of sight in those quiet retreats connected with bars, and not free from a suspicion of rat-pits, where the sporting men of the metropolis meet for social improvement and unpremeditated pugilism. Not to put too fine a point upon it, the professional player, though doubtless occasionally an honest, inoffensive fellow, is usually a worthless, dissipated gladiator, not much above the professional pugilist in morality and respectability. Not only does the employment of these men in match games render the result simply a question of money, for the club which can afford to hire the best players is of course the winner, but it opens the way to dishonest and fraudulent practices. The professional player can, if he chooses, insure the defeat of the side on which he plays. It is only necessary for the gambler who has large sums at stake to buy him in order to make certain of winning his bets. That this is frequently done any one who reads the report of the quarrels which usually follow an important match game will find abundant reason to believe. The professional player thus makes the game an instrument in the hands of gamblers, and so brings it into deserved disrepute. If those who really enjoy baseball as a sport desire to retain for it the interest of the respectable classes, they must sternly set their faces against the professional player. In every point of view he is an eminently undesirable person, and he ought to be peremptorily and completely suppressed. Let our young men meet and play baseball if they choose. They will thus improve physical well-being without detriment to their morals. To employ professional players to perspire in public for the benefit of gamblers is, however, a benefit to no one, and furnishes to dyspeptic moralists a strong argument against any form of muscular Christianity. New York Sunday Mercury March 31, 1872 [quoting, and subsequently disagreeing with, an unnamed daily paper]

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Tremont grounds

Date Sunday, March 31, 1872
Text

In view of the scarcity of baseball grounds for amateur clubs in the metropolis and its vicinity, we deem it advisable to call the attention of the fraternity to the large and convenient ball field now at command, which is located within a minute’s walk of the Tremont Station and the Fordham horse cars, known as the Tremont Baseball park, which was the scene of so many first-class contests during the existence of the Union Club nine in 1870. The grounds are inclosed, and have shaded and sheltered rows of seats for 3,000 spectators. Base which the ground can be reached from the city in twenty minutes. There is a fine club-house and dressing-rooms on the grounds, besides a fine hotel. Clubs desirous of a fine ground can have the use of the Tremont Park for the season at very low rates on application at this office.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the medium Van Horn ball

Date Wednesday, April 3, 1872
Text

The Athletics, it is said, will use the Van Horn ball this season. The Van Horn ball is intended to be a medium between the dull and the very springy ball, and is highly praised by New York Clubs.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposed European tour

Date Saturday, April 6, 1872
Text

The proposition that the Athletics should visit England (first broached in 1866, by Col. Fitzgerald,) may, possibly, be carried out this year. They will take eighteen players, and be absent three months, which will require a fund of $10,000, a sun easily raised. Father Hayhurst is the man to accomplish this splendid result. It is possible that the Cricketers of Old England will so arrange exhibition games, that the receipts will pay the expenses. The thing is feasible, if ably managed. Let the matter be intelligently canvassed. We thing they out to run over to Paris, and give the French an illustration of the beauties of our National Game.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Boston grounds to lose fifteen feet from left field

Date Sunday, April 7, 1872
Text

The Providence Railroad Corporation, who own the [Boston] Union ball-ground, will, as soon as the frost is out of the ground, cut off some fifteen feet from the left field in order to lay down a third track. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury April 7, 1872

The scorer’s stand will be removed to the rear of the back-stop and elevated four or five feet, making it just ninety feet behind the home-plate, the required distance by the rules. A fence will be built in front of the seats on the southerly side, and a regulation will be enforced that no one but the players of the contesting club shall be allowed on the ball-field during the progress of a game, not even the directors of the visiting club or of the Boston Club. Evening City Item April 6, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire not calling balls

Date Tuesday, April 9, 1872
Text

[Concord vs. Atlantic 4/6/1872] Mr. Bass acted as umpire, and committed but few mistakes in calling balls, the principal error being his allowing unfair balls to go by uncalled. Every ball expressly stated in the rules to be unfair must be called in the order of its delivery, even if in succession. The umpire has no option but to do this or willfully violate the rules.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

practice uniforms

Date Saturday, April 13, 1872
Text

Their [the Baltimore Club] new , red shirts and white breeches and hats, make quite a picturesque appearance on the field...

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

training techniques

Date Saturday, April 13, 1872
Text

A proposition has been made to the [Baltimore] club managers, by a competent gentleman and warm admirer of the game, to give the players daily exercise in calisthenics, so as to more fully develop the muscles of the body and bring them up to a higher state of perfection in play, and it is to be hoped the proposal will be favorably acted upon. Surely there can be no doubt of its beneficial effects. Take the Boston nine as an example of what good discipline and in-door exercise can accomplish. Without a day's field practice they defeated a strong picked nine last week by a score of 32 to 0, and clubs who allow the morning hours to pass unemployed, who make no provisions for inclement seasons and unfavorable condition of the practice grounds, will surely see their want of foresight before the season is over. We hope that the Baltimore will not be numbered among the easy-going organizations, whose lack of discipline showed so disgracefully on every ball field last year, but that each and every member, player and officer will do everything do make the season a successful one, and commence at once to put in practice every plan worthy of a trial to further that end. Baltimore American April 13, 1872

The Board of Managers of the Baltimore nine have accepted the services of a medical gentleman who has kindly volunteered to give the players daily exercise in calisthenics, and the men will soon be improving their time and developing their muscle under his skilful management. His plan, as we understand, is to use the lightest dumbbells and Indian clubs, so that no strain or injury can be done, and by daily practice to gradually increase the elasticity of the limbs, and thus add strength and endurance to the frame. This seems to us to be the proper and rational system, and is the one pursued by all athletes. The man who runs a race does not depend solely on his pedal exercises for training, but builds himself up for his contest by a severe course of dumbbells and clubs as well, and the idea that a professional base ball player can depend solely on his afternoon practice in the ball field, interrupted as it frequently is by days of wet weather, is as fallacious as to suppose a pugilist can depend on the use of boxing gloves along to get himself in proper training for a coming fight. Baltimore American April 18, 1872

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

swift pitching delivery

Date Saturday, April 13, 1872
Text

[Concord vs. Atlantic 4/6/1872] Brett, of the Fly Away nine of 1871, put in an appearance in the Atlantic nine on this occasion, for the first time, and as far as we were able to judge of his play, we should say that he is an acquisition to the club. He possesses considerable speed in his delivery, and seems to have a fair command of the ball. Moreover, he evidently uses his judgment in pitching, and does not deliver in the accustomed wild style of young pitchers. His delivery is marked by the same underhand wrist-throwing as that which has made McBride, Zettlein, Wolters, Cummings and other players occupying the same position so effective. New York Clipper April 13, 1872

catchers provide the upper limit to pitching speed

A catcher can only handle a ball sent in with a certain degree of speed, and the limit has long since been reached; and therefore, if a swifter style were allowed it could never be brought into play, simply because no man could be found to handle such a swiftly delivered ball behind the bat. New York Sunday Mercury April 14, 1872

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

scheduling games; eligibility for the championship

Date Sunday, April 14, 1872
Text

There was a gathering of professional club-managers at Davidson’s on Friday to arrange for matches, tours, etc., and to settle championship questions. It was decided to regard any club as having duly entered for the championship from the date of their paying their entrance fee, and that consequently any two clubs can legally play a championship game that have paid such fees this month. It was also decided that no club should be considerd eligible to enter for the championship pennant except the clubs enrolled as members of the Professional Association. This excludes all clubs except the Atlantic, Athletic, Baltimore, Boston, Cleveland, Eckford, haymakers, Mutual, National, and Olympic clubs.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early use of a pitcher having 'relieved' another

Date Sunday, April 14, 1872
Text

[Eureka of Philadelphia vs. picked nine 4/11/1872] Freed, the new pitcher of the Eurekas, relieved Mccauly [sic] in that department in the seventh and eighth innings...

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a plea for rain checks

Date Sunday, April 14, 1872
Text

Before the season formally opens we desire to again plead with the Athletic managers to issue coupon admission tickets. It is but justice to the patrons of the game that upon being admitted to the ground, after paying their entrance fee, that if rain or other cause prevents a game, that the money should be returned. It is a gross wrong to keep the cash and render no equivalent for it, and would create a riot if done in any other place of amusement. It is impossible, under the present system, to refund the money paid, as there are always hundreds of persons on the grounds who obtain admittance either by season tickets or scaling the fences; therefore, the issuing of coupon tickets is the only resource to prevent the wrong and also the ill-feeling that always is shown upon such occasions.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Mansfields enter the championship

Date Sunday, April 21, 1872
Text

The Mansfield Club, claiming to be amateurs all last year, and this past winter, sent $10 to Mr. Davidson to enter the championship arena. It would be a rich note if every such amateur nine were permitted to block up the championship arena with their games, which would be the case if they were allowed to enter. All the clubs that can legally be entered for the championship streamer are in the arena now, and no more can be admitted. The clubs that are in now if they complete the series they are engaged to play will do well, considering that the aggregate is four hundred and fifty games. New York Sunday Mercury April 21, 1872

...the Mansfield Club, of Connecticut, a club which in March last was in the Amateur Convention, but which lately entered the professional championship arena by consent of the all-powerful championship committee of the professional association, that learned body being of opinion that they have not given the ten professional clubs sufficient work to do to play forty-five games each this season, and so added fifty more games to the list by letting in the newly-fledged professional Mansfields. New York Sunday Mercury April 28, 1872

By special permission [of the championship committee] the Mansfield Club, of Middletown, Conn.,...will be permitted to join the contest. This has been done on account of the Mansfield boys having gone to great trouble and expense to put a nine in the field which will compete well with many of the other entries. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch April 28, 1872

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the green monster?; the left field fence of the Boston Grounds heightened

Date Thursday, April 25, 1872
Text

The fence on the left side of the Boston grounds has been improved by being surmounted with slats which increase the height about four feet. This will obviate the necessity of a new rule in regard to balls “over the fence,” as the latter will now be of very rare occurrence, and when made will undoubtedly entitle the striker to the full benefit thereof.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the end of the Red Stockings

Date Sunday, April 21, 1872
Text

The bats, balls and appurtenances of the old Red Stocking club of Cincinnati were sold at auction last week, and the lease of the grounds surrendered to the owner. The organization is now entirely defunct. Philadelphia Sunday Republic April 21, 1872

The Cincinnati Club expired two years ago, and its spirit flew to the happy hunting grounds of Boston. On the 13th instant its stock of materials and case of trophies were put up at auction. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch April 21, 1872

The following is the record of the trophies. The amount of the various other articles is not given. Pitcher and goblets won in tournament of 1867, $40; gold medal, tournament in 1866, $30; Mutual, 2-4 ball, of 1869, $10; Athletic, 25-27 ball, of 1870, $5; Mutual, 12-15 ball, of 1870, $4; Haymaker, 32-38 ball, of 1869, $3.50; Eckford, 5-26 ball, of 1860, $3; Athletic, 18-27 ball, of 1869, $3; Buckey [sic], 10-28 ball, of 1868, $2; Forest City, of Rockford, 14-15, 1869, $2. Other balls, of Harvard, Stars, Marylands, National, Olympics, Forest City, of Cleveland, and other prominent clubs, from $1 to $3. Streamers of 1869, $7. Streamers of 1870, $5. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury April 28, 1872

Captain Harry Wright is in receipt of a letter from a Mr. Butler, later of the Junior Red Stockings of Cincinnati, informing him that many of the trophies won by the old Red Stocking nine, and recently sold by the managers of the Cincinnati Base Ball Club, were purchased by him and have been sent by express to Boston, with a request that he will divide them among his old comrades, retaining the champion gold medal won by the Reds himself. This is what should have been done with them before the sale. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury May 12, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings's and Martin's delivery

Date Saturday, April 27, 1872
Text

The feature in Cummings’ pitching, which makes it more difficult to punish than that of other swift, underhand throwers, is, that he imparts a dangerous curve to the live of the delivery of the ball to the bat, which is very deceptive in causing the batsman to misjudge the ball in striking at it. This curved line is only effectively, however, when marked by a very swift delivery, and unless the pace is properly supported behind the bat, all it advantageous effect is sacrificed in passed balls. This curved line delivery, however, unless marked by very great command of the ball, and assisted by sound judgement in strategic points of play, ceases to be damaging to an experienced and cool batsman, as such a man has only to watch the ball closely, and to avoid being tempted to hit at balls out of his legitimate reach to nullify its fatal effects. The error of those who face this curve-line delivery lies in their over-eagerness to hit at balls which seem to be coming just where they want them, but which are sent in by the curved line delivery either beyond the reach of the bat or too close to the striker’s body to be hit, in both cases being liable to be called balls. It is difficult to resist the temptation to hit, but it must be done if the batsman desires to prevent the telling effect of a curved line delivery. Martin bothers batsmen with curved line balls that drop short, Cummings with curved line balls that come in horizontally; that is the different of the effect. Both require active and sure catchers, and the swift pace in addition needs great pluck and endurance in the catcher. New York Clipper April 27, 1872

The Mutual-Baltimore game showed pretty conclusively that Cummings could be batted by mortal ball players. Fisher and Radcliff each made four first base hits against the boy pitcher. Evening City Item April 30, 1872

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the press stand at the Union grounds

Date Saturday, April 27, 1872
Text

The changes in the arrangements of the [Union] grounds consists chiefly of improved accommodations for the pool selling department and the crowd of betting men. The old stand assigned for the use of the reporters–to whom professional ground keepers are largely indebted for gratuitous advertising favors–still retains its place in the way of the catcher’s movements in running after foul balls, and the reporters will be, as hitherto, liable to the annoyance of having players look over them while writing their reports. At all the ball grounds of cities outside of the metropolis, improved facilities have been afforded to the members of the press, especially at Boston and Philadelphia.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

shares of the Boston BBA for sale

Date Saturday, April 27, 1872
Text

[a classified advertisement] Base Ball. Five Shares of the Stock of the Boston Base Ball Association offered for sale. Inquire of C. H. Leavitt, No. 3 School street. Boston Herald April 27, 1872

Cummings hard to catch

Cummings’s swift and difficult delivery being found more of a task than Mills [the catcher] was able to attend to properly. New York Sunday Mercury April 28, 1872

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Mutuals didn't practice before the championship season

Date Sunday, April 28, 1872
Text

The Mutuals returned home on Friday from their tour with a credit of three victories out of four contests in the championship arena... Under the circumstances the result of the trip is regarded creditable to the skill of the “Green Stockings,” as they had had no practice games, and entered the regular arena less prepared for success than their opponents.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the St. George ground; the end of the old Elysian Fields ground

Date Sunday, April 28, 1872
Text

...the opening proceedings of the time-honored Knickerbocker Club...took place on Friday, April 26, on their new field of operations, the St. George Cricket Ground, foot of Ninth street, Hoboken. ... The new ground presents a fine turfy covering, admirably adapted for fielding purposes, and in this respect is a great improvement on the old ground–now occupied by the debris of a lumbar-yard. The club will have to purchase a tent for lady visitors on match occasions, there being no shelter from the rain except at the cricket club house. New York Sunday Mercury April 28, 1872

[The Knickerbockers] have recently engaged one day’s use of the enclosed cricket field foot of Ninth street, Hoboken, at the large outlay of $300 the season... New York Clipper May 4, 1872

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

reserved seats in the pavilion; no rain checks

Date Sunday, April 28, 1872
Text

The Athletic managers have determined to rail off part of the east pavilion, and sell tickets at the gate for important games for one dollar, if so desired. Attached to these tickets will be coupons, which will give the bearer a reserved seat in the pavilion. We are sorry to see that the managers do not intend to insure the public the value of their money by issuing coupon tickets to be redeemed in case of postponement of a game. The time may come when such action will be regretted.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the state of umpiring; calling balls and strikes

Date Sunday, April 28, 1872
Text

[Athletics vs. Olympics of Philadelphia 4/24/1872] [Billy McLean the umpire] Cuthbert waited a long time, but, failing to get a ball to suit, went to first on called balls. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch April 28, 1872

[Baltimore vs. Mutual 5/4/1872] All were surprised at Ferguson’s umpiring. Several times he allowed wide balls to be delivered uncalled in direct violation of the rules, and he was altogether too lenient in calling strikers. Umpires have no right to be judges of the law, or to decide otherwise than by the letter of the rules. Ferguson ought to be better posted. All “unfair” balls must be called whenever delivered. New York Sunday Mercury May 5, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the new scoring system

Date Saturday, May 4, 1872
Text

It is about time that every base ball club should have a scorer competent to set down the details of the game properly. The old system of scoring by outs and runs only is not all that is required. The new plan embraces the figures of the runs scored, the first base hits made, the total number of players put out by each man, and the total number of times each assisted in putting out players. This, with the total runs earned, and total times first base is obtained by fielding errors, suffices to give the complete statistics of a game. Of course, the record of runs each innings is very requisite as showing the progress of the contest.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the runner kicking the ball

Date Saturday, May 4, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Baltimore 4/22/1872] York hit a fair foul, the ball rolling on to the foul line, and Craver, in running to home, struck it with his foot, York, in the meantime making first. {A claim of obstructing the ball was here made, but as the ball was directly in the way and the runner neither shortened nor lengthened his steps when nearing the ball, and the probabilities being that it was accident, Craver was given his score by the umpire.}[square brackets in the original] ... The rule says that should the player at the bat, or running the bases, “designedly” kick the ball, he must be given out. It lies with the umpire to judge of the intention of playing foully or not.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the advisability of having two pitchers and two catchers

Date Saturday, May 4, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Baltimore 4/22/1872] At this stage of the game the Mutuals did what they should have done before, viz., they brought in Hicks to catch, and placed Mills at right field, Charley evidently not being up to the mark of facing Cummings’ battery in this match. The wisdom of having two regular catchers as well as pitchers in a nine was now made clearly manifest.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Barlow's fair fouls

Date Saturday, May 4, 1872
Text

[Chelsea vs. Atlantic 4/24/1872] The batting of Barlow was the feature of the game, his success in hitting “fair fouls” being noteworthy.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Lord Baltimores' uniform

Date Sunday, May 5, 1872
Text

Their [the Lord Baltimore Club’s] appearance was, to say the least, stunning. We had heard a great deal about their brilliant uniform, but in point of ugliness it triple discounts the original dress of the Chicago White Stockings, who had held the palm up to this time in that regard. Their trousers are terrible, looking as though they had been bathed in mustard water, while the “escutcheon” so often alluded to bore an agreeable resemblance at a distance to a slab of pepper and salt. Frank Moran inquired, after the style of his model Hamlet, “Why com’st thou in so questionable a shape?” while “Stonewall” gravely whistled “Who are these in bright array?’ The number of poor jokes and puns uttered in regard to the same would furnish a burlesque with abundant material.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a Japanese delegation at a ball game, catches a foul ball

Date Sunday, May 5, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Athletic 5/4/1872] The attendance was immense, and there could not have been less than five thousand persons on the grounds. A pleasing feature was the presence of Colonel Wood’s Japanese, who attended in a body, and, during the game, one of them–singularly and appropriately cognomed “Fli Ketches”–made a really pretty catch of a hot foul which intruded in the pavilion. The applause received by that “Japanee” was no doubt a pleasing unction to his oriental mental calibre. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch May 5, 1872

The Japanese troupe had a game of base ball in Washington on the 6 th inst. Several reporters were pronounced “mentally incompetent” after the game. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch June 9, 1872

high payroll as a marketing tool

[from an advertisement for the upcoming Haymaker vs. Baltimore game of 5/11/1872] This [i.e. the Haymaker] is the Largest Salaried Club in the United States, which amounts to over $20,000 per year. Baltimore American May 10, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the games that draw spectators; a proposal for differential pricing

Date Sunday, May 12, 1872
Text

The season has progressed far enough to show pretty conclusively which matches of the professional arena the general public are going to patronize and which they are not. The attendance at the Union Grounds on Wednesday and Thursday proves the fact that the patrons of the game have become indifferent to the class of contests in which the “co-operative” nines take part, certainly so far as paying a half-dollar entrance fee to witness them. In Baltimore, Philadelphia, and in this city, where thousands have paid their half-dollars to see the “regulars” pitted against each other, scarcely as many hundreds have been present at the co-operative contests. On Monday the Troy nine played the Atlantics before about three hundred people, and the next day played the Eckfords before a still fewer number. On Tuesday the Bostons played the Atlantics before about two hundred, and on Thursday played the Eckfords before an assemblage numbering fewer hundreds than there were thousands at the Boston and Mutual match of the day before, although under the circumstances of the close game the Eckfords gave the Troy nine on Tuesday a better attendance might have been anticipated. But apparently the strength developed by the Reds in their contest with the Greens was such as to make a one-sided game with the Eckfords almost a foregone conclusion. In view of these facts it becomes a question affecting the interests of the co-operatives whether it would not be wisdom to established a rule for the season, making the charge to all the regular contests for the championship, between the six regular nines, had a dollar, and the charge for games between regulars and the co-operatives or between co-operatives themselves but twenty-five cents, with ten cents admission for practice-games with amateur nines. With such a regular tariff it would be found to pay better for both classes, and it would certainly be more satisfactory to the public.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings' pitching 2

Date Sunday, May 12, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 5/8/1872] At the close of the fifth inning the Bostons had not only earned 7 runs off Cumming’s pitching, but they had scored 15 first-base hits and 20 total bases–a result which would have warranted a change of pitching. Instead, however, the pace was dropped, and a fire of alternately medium and fast balls was kept up, which proved more effective than the “pacers.

Source ” New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Knickerbockers to play match games

Date Sunday, May 12, 1872
Text

When the members [of the Knickerbockers] were assembled in the club house, a meeting of the Board of Directors was convened, and among the business transacted was the election of Mr. Kirkland as captain oft he nine, and the organizing of a first nine to play matches. ... It is proposed to arrange a regular match with the Excelsiors and Stars, and also to have some international contests with the St. George and Manhattan Cricket clubs alternately at baseball and cricket.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

down in front!; spectators standing in front of the seats

Date Sunday, May 12, 1872
Text

[from a letter to the editor] Would it not be better that the gentlemen who persist in standing up in front of those who, having come earlier are seated, be compelled to move further down and find seats, or leave the grounds?

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

catcher playing close to the batter with the bases empty

Date Monday, May 13, 1872
Text

[Olympic of Princeton vs. Athletic 5/11/1872] The Olympics went to the bat at 3:20 P.M., and their first striker, Thomas, after being missed on three strikes by Malone, who was playing close up to the bat, made a run...

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the waiting game; disapproval of working a walk

Date Monday, May 13, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Boston 5/11/1872] Spalding then played the same “little game” that the Boston did last September with the Athletics, and was given a base on “called balls.

Source ” Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a tepid defense of the Baltimores uniform

Date Monday, May 13, 1872
Text

The dress of the Baltimore nine is not critically beautiful. It is, however, unique in its design, and its close affiliation with the coat of arms of Lord Baltimore gives it an attraction in the eyes of Marylanders which a uniform of brighter and prettier colors would fail to produce.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a foul bound off an earth embankment

Date Monday, May 13, 1872
Text

[Haymaker vs. Baltimore 5/11/1872] some comments were made upon a foul bound catch of Craver, which was beautifully made from the side of an earth bank, a few claiming that a bound from a bank was parallel to a bound from a fence, and that therefore Zettlein, the striker was not out. The umpire [Theodore Bomeisler] ruled otherwise and both clubs acquiesced to his decision.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an infield fly; controversy about this point of the game

Date Tuesday, May 14, 1872
Text

[Troy vs. Athletic 5/13/1872] [bases loaded, McBride on third] After waiting for some time, Fisler popped one up that dropped directly into Force’s [short stop] hands, and then out again, being purposely missed by that individual in order to make a double play. McBride, of course being under the impression that he was forced off third-base, attempted to run home, and amidst a scene of undescribable confusion, the Umpire [Nick Young] decided that Fisler was also out, “caught on the fly” by Force, but on what rule he based that decision, we confess that we are at a loss to know, as the ball just momentarily touched Force’s hands and was not held long enough to constitute a catch. The innings closed... Evening City Item May 14, 1872

...we never denied but that the umpire was right in deciding that there were two men out; Meyerle forced off second and McBride run out between home and third, but we did question the correctness of the decision made by him [the umpire] that “Fisler was out ‘caught on fly’ by Force.” How a man can be put out as being caught when the ball is deliberately missed, is still a mystery to us, and if all umpires should decide as Mr. Young did on that occasion, there would be no opportunity afforded for the playing of one of the sharp points of the game. Many persons seem to be under the impression that it is forbidden by the rules to purposely miss a ball, but there is nothing that will bear them out in that belief.

The whole question hinges upon this, whether Force held the ball long enough to constitute a catch, and if he did, as many persons say, then the umpire was correct; but if he dropped the ball immediately after it touched his hands, as we thought he did, then he was wrong. Evening City Item May 15, 1872

In the game between the Boston and Mutuals last Saturday, in Boston, a precisely similar point to that of Force’s, in the Athletic-Troy, was played by Geo. Wright, but the umpire in this case made a correct decision. Hicks and McMullin were on the first and second bases, when Hatfield popped up a fly that landed into Geo. Wright’s hands and then fell out. Quickly fielding it to Schafer, Hicks was put out by being forced by McMullin, who in turn was forced out at second. This play occasioned some talk between the umpire and the captains of the rival nines, but it was allowed, of course, to pass as a muffed fly. Evening City Item May 16, 1872

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

defining an 'earned run'; base on balls

Date Thursday, May 16, 1872
Text

The New York Standard says: “When a Red Stocking is given his base on called balls and is umpired around the rest of the way, the Boston scorers call it an “Earned run”.” Evening City Item May 16, 1872

[from Answers to Correspondents] An”earned run” is as follows:–A makes first base by a hit–B is put out–C, D and E make first base by good hits, and A gets in. The next two strikers are then given their bases by errors. Afterwards four more runs are made by good hits, but only one run is earned, because only one run was scored by base hits before three chances for outs had been offered. No run can be earned after three chances to put men out are offered off the pitching. New York Clipper May 18, 1872

Source ” Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings's delivery; how to bat it

Date Saturday, May 18, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 5/8/1872] Harry Wright was next, and, being too shrewd a hand to be victimised by Cummings’ deceptive curved line balls, waited for a fair one, and not getting it, took his base on called balls. When Cummings pitches swiftly and gets in his horizontal curves, the ball either goes beyond the reach of the bat or too close to the batsman’s body to be fair; in both cases, all the batsman has to do is to wait and watch, and not be tempted to bat at these apparently good balls, for they leave the pitcher’s hands in a line which makes them took all right, but half the time they curve in. Like a shooting ball in cricket, the curved line is a chance affair, and it only needs close watching to nullify its effect.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Spalding's delivery

Date Saturday, May 18, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 5/8/1872] ...the Mutes could not for the life of them punish , his well disguised chance of pace, and the judgment he uses in studying his men, giving him command of the situation. Then, too, he had such a reliable man [McVey] behind the bat that he felt free to devote himself entirely to his work without regard to the catcher, an important element of success with any pitcher, for if he has to look out and pitch especially for the catcher, he necessarily loses much of his power for playing strategic points.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the condition of the Baltimore grounds

Date Saturday, May 18, 1872
Text

The Forest City club of Cleveland arrived in this city yesterday at noon. Their nine, like the Boston and Troy nines, are unanimous in their condemnation of the poor ground at Baltimore, and say that the Baltimore nine have a decided advantage over all visiting clubs by their acquaintance with the peculiarities of said ground. It appears that only the in-field is covered with turf, and that as soon as the ball touches the very hard gravelly surface outside of the base paths, it is almost impossible to judge its rebound. The out-field is also very uneven and full of ruts. The Athletics provide the ball, and a very dead one will perhaps counterbalance any advantage the Baltimores may have in being acquainted with the grounds. Evening City Item May 18, 1872

...the Athletics and their friends proceeded to the ball-grounds, which they found had not been misrepresented to them. The in-field was good enough, but the out-field had not any turf on it, and the ground was so hard from want of watering that the ball sometimes bounded ten or fifteen feet in the air at a time. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury May 26, 1872

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

where to place extra fielders

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

[Knickerbocker First Nine against a Field of fifteen players 5/17/1872] ...the crowd of fifteen fielders got in each other’s way so much that the nine were enabled to run up the score of 19 on 3 runs earned. When a field party exceeds the regular number of nine the following rules should be observed in placing the field: When ten men play, of course the tenth man goes to right short. When eleven play, then the extra man is placed between second-base and centre-field, the latter player being sent out further for long balls. When twelve men take the field, then the two extra men take positions in the out-field so as to capture short high balls beyond the reach of the in-field and not far enough out for the out-fielders. In such a case two of the three out-fielders are sent out further to catch long high balls. When the field exceeds twelve, then the extra men are placed on foul-ball ground, back of first and third base. Unless an arrangement like this is made, the players are only in each other’s way.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Spalding's change of pace

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

Spalding is a fast-paced pitcher, but he occasionally varies his delivery by sending a slow ball to the batsman.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the state of the Athletic Club

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

[reporting on the monthly meeting] The Treasurer’s report stated that the Club numbered 254 members, paying fifteen dollars each at present; while at the same period last year, 370 members’ names, paying five dollars each, were on the books; so the increase of subscription from five to fifteen dollars, has made a material change for the better in the finances of the Club.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a scientific block bunt

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

[Troy vs. Athletic 5/13/1872] McGeary then scientifically “blocked” a ball along the third base path line, and before Bellan could pick up the ball, McGeary was safely moored on his first base.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

easing up on an amateur nine

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Villanova 5/16/1872] McBride pitched “slow” during the game. Messrs. Hayhurst and Pollock were substituted in the champion nine, in the absence of McGreary. Malone, although present, was unable to play on account of a sore hand.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early examples of 'wild pitch'

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

[Cleveland vs. Athletic 5/18/1872] A wild pitch let Hastings in. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch May 19, 1872

[Cleveland vs. Athletic 5/18/1872] Carlton then got in on a wild pitch. Philadelphia Sunday Republic May 19, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the umpire should strictly enforce all the rules

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

Should the rules passed at the last convention be unduly strict, or be found to conflict with the best interests of the game, it is only by enforcing them strictly that their weak points can be made apparent to the players themselves, who will see to it that they are altered at the next convention. An umpire, therefore, has no right to give his idea of what is the law. He is placed in the position of a man who is on a jury–not to interpret the law, but to decide what is brought before him, according to what he is told the law is. Hardly any two umpires will agree as to what the law ought to be in connection with calling strikes and balls, and it is to prevent the inevitably disagreeable results of such differences in opinion that a positive law on the subject is laid down. An umpire, therefore, should allow himself no latitude whatever in this respect; he has nothing to do with the making of the law–he is only there to execute it as it is written.

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

calls for a paid umpire corps

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

Having pointed out the evil of an indiscriminate selection of umpires, we will now suggest a remedy. And this is the appointment of certain persons by the annual convention to act as umpires, and who will receive a certain sum–say $10 and their traveling expenses–for every game they umpire. They need not necessarily be players, but must be intelligent men, who are, or who will make themselves acquainted with the rules–men respecting whose good faith there will be no doubt. Gentlemen like Charley Mills, Rob. Ferguson, or Theo. Bomeisler, would be just the persons to act; and let them have instructions to enforce the rules strictly, irrespective of whether they are too strict or too lenient; we will then have a regular system of umpiring by men whose business is will be to keep themselves acquainted with the rules, and from whose gradually ripening experience greater correctness may be expected. The contending clubs can each pay a moiety of the expenses, and it will fall heavily on neither. New York Dispatch May 19, 1872

The recent squabbling over the decisions of umpires—the two most prominent examples of which have been the Boston-Mutual match in Boston a couple of weeks ago, and the Athletic-Baltimore game in Baltimore on Monday—together with the increasing difficultly in obtaining any person willing to take the position, appears to call for some action on the part of the representatives of the professionals nines. One way out of the difficulty would be to appoint a certain number of official umpires, say one for each ground, and allow them a certain fixed compensation for the services. Of course no active member of any of the professional nines would be appointed to such a responsible position. Indeed there is no reason why the person so appointed should have ever played ball at all providing he knows the rules of the game, and is honest, quick, and firm in his interpretation of them. If something is not done for once this “umpire” muddle will lead to further trouble. Baltimore American May 28, 1872, quoting the New York World May 26, 1872

Another improvement is certain. Umpires will be paid, and they shall not be players. They will, eventually, be selected because they are gentlemen, and, as such, independent of gamblers, and worthy of confidence. Evening City Item October 1, 1872

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the enthusiastic and excitable fans in Philadelphia

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

[Troy vs. Athletic 5/13/1872] There were about 6,000 persons present, and those persons who have witnessed a “big game” at Philadelphia need not be reminded that 6,000 more enthusiastic or excitable people could not be found in this country.

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a game halted by a rules dispute

Date Tuesday, May 21, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 5/20/1872][Anson on second, McGeary on first] Mack was given his base on called balls, thus filling the bases. Before Mack, however, had his base given him by the Umpire Craver threw the ball to Fisher to head off Anson, who was trying to steal third. Fisher put the ball on him, and here arose a discussion as to whether Anson was out, pending which Pike got the ball and secreted it. Time was not called, and the Umpire decided that Anson was not out. As Cuthbert went to the bat Pike watched his opportunity, and when McGeary, who was on second, left his base, he, Pike, immediately touched him, and the Umpire decided him out and he came in. McBride, however, sent McGeary back to his base in spite of the decision of the Umpire. The striker was then called and Cuthbert refused to go to the bat. Matthews pitched three balls, no striker responding. McBride then attempted to take the ball from Matthews, but Craver was too quick for him and pocketed it himself. The crowd here broke into the field and surrounded the players, and much feeling was manifested, though no violence was attempted. The Athletics then left the ground, a few hisses greeting them as they moved towards their conveyance. The Umpire decided the game in favor of the Baltimore Club as the score stood in the seventh inning. Baltimore American May 21, 1872

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 5/20/1872][Anson on second, McGeary on first] Mack was given by the umpire a base on called balls and Anson was consequently entitled to his third and McGeary to his second, but Craver, throwing the ball to second, Anson was first decided out and then McGeary. The Athletics, of course, would not submit to such a bare-faced swindle, and naturally objected to such an unfair decision, and all of the Baltimore nine, with the exception of Craver, told the umpire that he was wrong in so deciding, and the umpire finally allowed both men to go back to their bases, but as Craver refused to play unless these two men were given out, a long argument ensued, which was terminated by the crowd breaking in upon the field, and the police had to escort the Athletics off the ground to protect them from violence at the hands of the hooting crowd of ruffians. Evening City Item May 21, 1872

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the financial condition of the Athletic Club; the attendance

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

[at the club monthly meeting of 5/13/1872] The treasurer’s report was first taken up and the items read by the president, Mr. Hayhurst, who congratulated the members upon the flattering condition of the finances. The sale of seats and season tickets, for which the cash had been received, amounts to $3310, the subscriptions of members, $370. These amounts, in addition to gate receipts on games already played amount to $5580.70. From this amount a portion of the club’s debt has been paid, together with salaries to players and other current expenses, leaving a balance on hand of $598.17.

The election of a director was then proceeded with, Messrs. William A. Porter and John I. Rogers being placed in nomination. The balloting was done on roll call, and resulted in the selection of Mr. Wm. A. Porter, the vote being as follows: Wm. A. Porter......63, John I. Rogers......48. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch May 19, 1872

The treasurer reported 254 stockholders as paid up, which, at $15 each, gives a total of $3,810, an increase of $1,960 over the same source and same time of last year. The total receipts so far have been $5,580.70, out of which all expenses have been paid, and also part of the debt incurred last year. There is a balance of $598.17. Philadelphia Sunday Republic May 19, 1872

The treasurer’s report stated that the club numbered 254 members, paying $15 each at present; while, at the same period last year 370 members’ names, paying $5 each, were on the books; so the increase of subscription from $5 to $15 has made a material change for the better in the finances of the club, but loses the club quite a number of its early supporters. New York Clipper May 25, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an advertisement for pool selling

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

Pools will be sold for all championship games, at Fred Miley’s, N.W. corner Fifth and Chestnut, basement, two afternoons and two evenings previous to each match. The innings of every championship match will be telegraphed Whitehead and Miley, to the pool room. Also, a correct record of the champion games kept.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

infield fly ruling

Date Sunday, May 19, 1872
Text

The the Sporting Editor of the Sunday Dispatch:–Dear Sir–Will you please give me your ideas regarding Mr. Young’s decision in the recent game between the Athletics and Troys where Force dropped a ball and made a double play? Did he have a right to decide the man out on the fly? Yours, NON DESCRIPT

We know of nothing in the rules which allows an umpire to decide a fly ball dropped as a fly ball caught. This dodge has been played year in and year out by Wright, Pearce, and other “heady” short stops who play points, and never have we seen the same disputed. Mr. Young’s position in this matter is, we think, decidedly misunderstood. So far as our “limited vision” (as Sam Weller has it) allowed us to see, Force, in his eagerness to detain the runners at their bases, actually held the ball for a moment–long enough, in some persons’ judgment, to constitute it a catch. This, we think, explains the matter.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an interracial game

Date Thursday, May 23, 1872
Text

A match game of base ball was played on the Technology grounds yesterday afternoon between the Albion (colored) and the King Phillips' clubs, which resulted in favor of the King Phillips, the score being 12 to 17. Boston Herald May 23, 1872

the new fifty cent tariff at the Union grounds

[Mutual vs. Eckford 5/18/1872] On Saturday, May 18, these clubs played their first championship match together, on the Union Grounds, on which occasion the new tariff of admission went into operation for the first time, the rates now being fifty cents for contests between the “regulars” and twenty-five cents for matches between regular and co-operatives, or between co-operatives themselves. As no one knew of the change of prices, and as the contest was expected to be one-sided, attendance was quite slim. New York Clipper May 25, 1872

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

intentionally giving up a charity run

Date Sunday, May 26, 1872
Text

[Canavan vs. Athletic 5/25/1872] ...the Canavan should have been chicagoed, but on the ninth inning, when two hands were out, and none on the bases, McBride, by an intentional muff and then by bad play of the same spirit, let them get a run. The effort was very transparent, and all present saw it, but Dick only laughed. Afterwards, however, by good hits, the Canavan sent their score up to 4, and were extremely gratified, although there is not doubt but that McBride’s intention was for them to have but one run. We are glad that Dick did so act, for it is very demoralizing to chicago any club, and the Athletic should do all they can to foster our amateur clubs, who will give a good return by practice afforded to the champions. Philadelphia Sunday Republic May 26, 1872 [final score 43-4.]

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

appeals to the umpire

Date Sunday, May 26, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 5/20/1872] In the third innings of the Athletics Mack commenced with a fine fair-foul hit for one base, but running to second he was decided “out” by the Umpire, Craver fielding the ball and in a loud tone of voice asking “how’s that?” The decision, however, was plainly an erroneous one, as Pike never touched Mack, and like an honorable player as he is, never asked for “judgment,” and afterwards told the Umpire that he had made a mistake, if such it could be called. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury May 26, 1872

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 5/20/1872] Treacy, for the Athletics, hit to Pike, who stopped the ball well, but threw it so wildly that Mills, to get it, was obliged to step off his base, and before he got back Treacy was there, or thought to be. The umpire was appealed to, who decided Treacy out, much to the latter’s surprise. He took a back seat, however, when the decision was announced. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch June 2, 1872, quoting the Clipper

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

stakes surrounding the pitcher's and catcher's positions

Date Thursday, May 30, 1872
Text

[Mansfield vs. Athletic 5/29/1872] Precisely at the time named, Professor Painter [Harry Painter, the groundskeeper] removed the stakes surrounding the pitchers and catcher’s position, and Billy McLean took up his position as umpire.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire not calling enough balls

Date Thursday, May 30, 1872
Text

[Mansfield vs. Athletic 5/29/1872] The Umpire [Billy McLean], although he tried to be impartial and undoubtedly succeeded in that respect, yet failed to call balls as strictly as he might have, and, consequently the game was needlessly prolonged.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

calling runners out on a base on balls; the disgraceful behavior of the Baltimore club

Date Sunday, May 26, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 5/20/1872] Anson got his base on called balls after one hand was out, and McGeary made a first-base hit. Next Mack took his base on called balls, and of course Anson and McGeary should each advance a base, for where else could they go? To the surprise of all, and no doubt by a pre-concerted arrangement, Craver threw the ball to Pike, at second, and the umpire decided both Anson and McGeary out for being off bases. To this rascally act, of course, the Athletic would not consent, and all the Baltimore players denounced it as a bare-faced swindle also. All, did we say? We should except Mr. Craver, notorious throughout the length and breath of the country for his lack of principle. He, of course, insisted that it was right. Finally, however, the pressure was so strong that the servile umpire could stand it no longer, and he reversed his decision.

Then Craver refused to play unless the first decision was held. The “Blood Tubs,” “Plug Uglies,” “Dead Rabbits,” and the kindred associations of killers, for which Baltimore is notorious, broke through the ropes, surrounded the Athletic players, and attempted personal violence. The Baltimore players rallied to the protection of their imperilled antagonists, and at last a strong force of police guarded the Philadelphians off the field, and Mr. Graham coolly decided that, as they refused to play, the game was forfeited to the Baltimore club by 7 to 4. This man, all through, showed an utter ignorance of the simplest points of the game, and the matter will be laid before the judiciary committee, whom it is perhaps not premature to say must necessarily decide the game null and void. Either it is that, or the Baltimoreans have it by a score of 9 to 0, not 7 to 4.

...

In connection with the Baltimore nine mentioned above, we have learned that before leaving Baltimore for Washington, the Athletic officers had agreed with those of the Baltimore that the game of Monday should be considered invalid, but on Wednesday Mr. Hayhurst was informed that some trickery was about to be played, and he at once went to Baltimore and demanded an agreement in writing. After much dodging of the question this was finally refused by the Baltimoreans, and the Athletics then rightfully refused to play and came home. The object of this trick was to get another game in Baltimore with the Athletic, and then disclaim the agreement. The conduct of the Baltimore people on Monday was simply disgraceful, and pledges of proper treatment to visiting clubs should hereafter be exacted, or else all clubs should refuse to play in that city. Every club that has played there this season has experienced trouble, which finally culminated in the affair of Monday. Philadelphia Sunday Republic May 26, 1872

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 5/20/1872] [after confirming the Athletics version of events:] The Athletics, we are told, intend to lay the matter before the Judiciary Committee. We have had numerous questions as to the disposition of bets made upon the result of this match. Our opinion is that such bets must stand until the case has been decided by the Judiciary Committee, for it is evident that the prime cause of the trouble was the umpire who does not seem to understand the laws of the game; or, if understanding, he was totally at fault in his application of them for the exigencies of the play... New York Clipper June 1, 1866

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 5/20/1872] Before the umpire called a base for Mack, and just as the ball left the pitcher’s hand, Anson started to run to second, where the ball, being promptly thrown, met him. The ball leaving Craver’s had at the moment the umpire called a base for Mack, a question is raised perhaps as to wether Anson was out or not. But when the intention and the time of his starting are taken into consideration, the doubt is instantly dispelled. He was captured while stealing a base, and, having started before Mack was given his base, the award could not fairly cover him, and he was justly decided out. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch June 9, 1872 quoting (and disputing) the Baltimore Clipper [see also New York Clipper June 15, 1872, quoting the Baltimore Gazette]

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Knickerbocker club game: oversized sides

Date Saturday, June 1, 1872
Text

...on Friday, May 24 th, [the Knickerbockers] had a first-class game; the nine being distributed on both sides, there being too many members present to play nine against the field. [The sides were twelve and thirteen respectively.]

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings's delivery 2

Date Sunday, June 2, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Mutual 6/1/1872] This was close work, and it now became apparent that the contest would be unusually exciting, as the Athletics found Cummings’s tricky delivery exceedingly difficult to punish, one base hit in five innings proving this fact. ...In the sixth inning, Cummings changed his tactics somewhat, and resorted to speed, and now the Philadelphians began to see the land, and for the first time punished Cummings, three good base hits sending in one earned run, a wold pitch assisting them in scoring the second. The Athletics now had the lead by two to one, and they expected to increase the score, but Cummings dropped his pace, and run-getting ceased.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire calling neither ball nor strike

Date Sunday, June 2, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Mutual 6/1/1872] In the eighth inning, after two hands were out, the Athletics again got three men on bases and Cuthbert at the bat. Two balls were called and one strike before he made an attempt to hit the ball. Then he sent up two fouls, after which he hit and missed the ball—the second strike. Two balls were pitched without the umpires [sic] saying anything; but when Cummings sent a fair ball right over the base and Cuthbert failed to strike at it, Ferguson called the third strike, for doing which he was heartily applauded.

Source New York Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a pop up behind the plate is a 'foul tip'

Date Sunday, June 2, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Mutual 6/1/1872] Hicks [catcher] played splendidly behind the bat, taking some high foul tips close up to the fence with much judgment.

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an attempted waiting game; out on three called strikes

Date Saturday, June 8, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Mutual 6/1/1872] [Anson at first base] McGeary was the next striker, and adopting the regular Athletic tactics, he, of course, waited to give Anson a chance to leave second. In the interim Cummings sent in three fair balls, and as McGeary let them go by without striking at them, the penalty was properly inflicted, and McGeary struck out.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposal to complete a suspended game

Date Saturday, June 8, 1872
Text

[regarding Athletic vs. Baltimore 5/20/1872] As the trouble seems to have originated from an error on the part of the umpire, we would suggest, if the evidence warrants it, that the Judiciary committee recommend the two nines to meet at some time mutually agreeable, and renew the game at the point in the eighth innings where it was so abruptly broken off. At that phase of the play the Baltimores stood seven to the Athletics four; Anson, Mack and McGeary, for the Athletics, were on the bases, with Cuthbert as next batter. The Baltimore nine would not be deprived of their advantage in the score they had already made, and the Athletics would have a fair opportunity afforded them to show whether they could have overtaken Baltimore’s lead. Should the committee so decide, and the day be pleasant, one of the largest assemblages ever seen at a game of base ball would be I attendance to witness the closing innings of this championship contest.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Chadwick at the Clipper and the Eagle; feud with the Athletics

Date Sunday, June 9, 1872
Text

Chadwick’s despicable calumnies and attacks against the Athletic Club have been so full of mere spite and prejudice, that the editorial curb has been put on him at the Clipper office. We are informed that he still has entire control of the base ball column in the Brooklyn Eagle, and from the nature of the nature of the subjoined statement we cannot doubt it. It is intended for the New York public, and its miserable falsity exposes itself...

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings the 'boy pitcher' and 'phenomenon'

Date Sunday, June 9, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Athletic 6/8/1872] The Athletics... punished the “boy pitcher” [i.e. Cummings] for five runs... ... The Athletics punished the “phenomenon” in the next innings for five more earned runs...

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

taking a Mansfield forfeit for a Boston gate

Date Sunday, June 9, 1872
Text

The Baltimore club arranged to play a game with the Mansfields, in Middletown, On Thursday last, but they failed to come to time, and the Mansfields, of course, claimed the game by a score of 9 to 0. It appears that the Baltimores, for the sake of a little extra gate money, preferred playing in Boston with the Boston Club, and by so doing they forfeited the Mansfield game, and as they also lost the Boston game, two defeats instead of a victory may be set down as the result of their poor management and dishonorable conduct in failing to keep their engagement. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury June 9, 1872 [The game in Boston had been scheduled for the previous day, but was cancelled on account of rain.]

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

fair foul hits

Date Sunday, June 9, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Athletic 6/8/1872] McGeary then accomplished one of his favorite . Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch June 9, 1872

[Athletics vs. Baltimore 6/28/1872] A rousing fair foul hit by Fisler brought Meyerle home, West taking one base. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch June 30, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

internal Athletic Club politics

Date Sunday, June 9, 1872
Text

On Monday it was announced that Malone was permanently off the Athletic nine, and that Flowers was to take his place, and so it proved in the afternoon, when the game with the Nationals was played. The public excuse was given that this was done because Malone had a sore finger, but this tale was very “fishy” to us, when re recollected the Fergy had good-naturedly been playing for two weeks with this self-same important finger in as bad condition as when it was found that it was to render Fergy hors du combat in the very exciting and close-fought game about to be played. We accordingly went on the war-path, and it did not take us long to find members of the Athletic brimful of indignation, for the amiable Malone counts his friends by legions. All vowed dire vengeance on the instigators, and numerous were the tales and causes given, but we take what appears to be the most truthful, namely–the McBride, who habitually uses Malone as a butt, knowing his good nature, quarreled with him several weeks back, and came out second best. McBride then sword, on the sacred altar of the crossed bats, that “he would be even with him,” meaning the luckless Malone, and as the later was so presumptuous as to oppose the election of Mr. Porter as director, a most heinous offence, the two combined to oust the daring innovator of the admirable discipline and tyranny of the powers that be. Mr. Malone, therefore, now awaits the pleasure of the cabal who rushed frantically off for a new player, who is found in an engine house of the Paid Fire Department in the person of Flowers, an old and fair general player. Whether he obtains leave of absence through the influence of Fire Commissioner Porter we don’t know, but will soon find out.

...

The fact of the matter is that in the Athletic club there is entirely too much idolatry, Mr. McBride being the venerated saint to whom all are expected to kow-tow. We are willing to give McBride all the credit that is due him, and will say he has been one of the main stays of the club; but others on the nine are just as good players and as fully entitled to some rights, and, if this spirit is continued, the club will retire from the public view, a la Olympian. A word in time is worth nine, and at the next monthly meeting of the club let there be a thorough investigation of affairs. We have heard of some very loose management of the internal economy of the club, and may shortly review it. In the meantime, for the honor of Philadelphia and the Athletic club, we hope that these private quarrels will be settled in another and fairer manner than as we have related. The slaughter of Sensenderfer was disgraceful enough. Let is suffice for this year. Philadelphia Sunday Republic June 9, 1872

In justification of our article of last week as to the removal of Malone, we can point to the fact that he is once again upon the nine in his old position, our predictions in regard to Flowers having been verified, as he with Anson share the glory of the Boston defeat. We are glad to see that the directors here resolved to eschew private prejudices and look more to the reputation of the club, and we are as ready to approve the present action as we were to condemn the former, and we hope that now we will hear the last of these disgraceful quarrels. The supporters of the Athletic club have found to their cost in the thousands of dollars lost on the Boston game that “swapping horses while crossing the stream” don’t pay, and want no more of it. Philadelphia Sunday Republic June 16, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Reach paid a nominal salary as a substitute

Date Sunday, June 9, 1872
Text

Now, if it was necessary to displace Malone, why couldn’t the old “vet” Al. Reach be placed at short? He is certainly as good a general player as Flowers, and would have saved just that much expense, as he gets a nominal salary as substitute...

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings pitching slows

Date Sunday, June 9, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Athletic 6/8/1872] Cummings was now pitching slows, and they bothered our boys considerably.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the temptations of the road

Date Thursday, June 13, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Boston 6/12/1872] The old story. Boys away from home. Bad hours–too many segars–too much billiards–one more drink–that last bit of cracker–over-confidence–conceit–want of moral discipline, and all that sort of thing. The Bostons were fit to play for a man’s life–the Athletics were blase. Good game for the Bostons–bad for the Athletics.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

structural failure in the Boston grandstand

Date Thursday, June 13, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Boston 6/12/1872] At about this time one of the braces under the Grand Stand gave way and caused a stampede of its occupants, who rushed pell-mell down the stairway and almost tumbled over each other in their frantic eagerness to put themselves out of reach of the falling structure. The alarm proved unfounded, however, as the broken brace did not endanger the safety of the structure in the least. Most of the frightened multitude resumed their seats, the only result of the scare being the fainting of several ladies, who soon recovered on finding themselves at a safe distance from the stand.

Source New York Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Harry Wright's training regimen

Date Sunday, June 16, 1872
Text

As regards the average playing strength of the six regular professional clubs of Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Troy and Cleveland, there is scarcely a toss up as regards a choice: but in reference to the degree of training, discipline and harmonious work, the Boston nine far excels the all, and hence their success. Commenting upon this subject, the Baltimore American says:

“There is only one Harry Wright in the country, it is true, but the discipline and good management shown by this Boston nine we hope will tempt the managers of the Baltimore club to enforce something like it in their own organization. The time of leniency is passed, and a strict regime is the only thing that will rescue the club from the downward tendency it is taking. These are plain facts, and if we are to have a club here next year now is the time to act. The Boston club is thoroughly under the jurisdiction of its captain, both on and off the field. Gymnastic exercises during the early part of the season placed them in trim for ball practice, and the practice under good guidance has made the club now the most powerful organization in the country, and each member of the nine a perfect athlete, not only in appearance but in skill and strength. Everything necessary to keep them in perfect condition is the constant care of their captain. The night preceding a game all are required to retire at ten o’clock, a light breakfast is taken in the morning, and a cold lunch at 12 o’clock, and the beneficial result of this regime is so marked that in games with undisciplined clubs, although comprised frequently of much older ball-players, the Red Legs stand like giants above their opponents.

Source ” New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a player as a director

Date Wednesday, June 19, 1872
Text

McBride is a clever fellow and a good pitcher–one of the best–therefore, we would continue him in that office; but he should no longer be Director–because the office of Director and “hired man,” are incompatible.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

crowd reaction to a bunt

Date Saturday, June 22, 1872
Text

[Atlantic vs. Athletic 6/17/1872] ...Barlow, amid much laughter and applause, “blocked” a ball directly in front of the home plate, and reached the first base before the ball did.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

clearing the field 2

Date Saturday, June 22, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Boston 6/12/1872] Both nines were early on the ground, but in consequence of the of vast assemblage, some six thousand, were so stationed as to not interfere with the playing, some time elapsed before play was begun.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

resentment at the Athletics' treatment of its former players

Date Saturday, June 22, 1872
Text

[from a letter to the editor] The management of the Club is illiberal–nay, it is mean. Some provision ought to have been made for the old members of the nine. They should have been voted a life membership, at least.

I do not forget that Berkenstock and Kleinfelder, Wilkins, Gaskill, Paul, and others, gave their time and money and services to the club in its poor days, and the least the club could do is to vote them a life membership.

...

There out to be a place set apart on the stand for the old officers and old players, and they should be honored on all occasions.

That they are not so treated, shows the pitiful character of the management. If shows ignorance, and want of gratitude and breeding!

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

intentionally dropped third strike

Date Sunday, June 23, 1872
Text

[Baltimore vs. Athletic 6/17/1872] [Meyerle at first base, Malone at bat] ...Craver [catcher], purposely missing Malone on his third strike, threw the ball to second in time to head off Meyerle... and Carey [second baseman] throwing the ball quickly to Mills [first baseman], Malone was also retired.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pre-game 'warm up'

Date Sunday, June 23, 1872
Text

[Baltimore vs. Athletic 6/17/1872] The visitors were faintly applauded as they came on the field, and they immediately set to work tossing the ball about in order to “warm up.

Source ” Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

ball fields of Central Park

Date Sunday, June 30, 1872
Text

The Central P ark baseball grounds were covered with juvenile ball-tossers yesterday. The two large greens set apart for the boys were inadequate to the demand for space.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

amateur nines replacing amateur clubs

Date Sunday, June 30, 1872
Text

Amateur ball tossing has taken a new turn this season, and in the place of regularly organized amateur clubs, amateur nines have sprung up organized under the auspices of leading mercantile banking houses to an extent that is really surprising. ... The growth of these amateur nines has, of course, interfered with the formation of amateur clubs. Ultimately, however, these players will work into regular club organizations. In the meantime quite an excitement is created by the rivalry for the lead in the several houses of our business community, as to which of their nines will fly the whip pennant this season.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the umpire positioned behind the catcher

Date Sunday, June 30, 1872
Text

[Athletics vs. Baltimore 6/28/1872] Robert Ferguson, of the Atlantic, umpired the game. Two close decisions against the Athletics, and on one occasion, by standing behind the catcher, a passed ball struck his person, losing the Athletics one if not two runs, as a man was at third and another at second. His umpiring was, however, generally impartial.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Al Wright left off a trip

Date Sunday, June 30, 1872
Text

The funds of the Athletic, we surmise, are not so plenteous as the managers would have the public to believe, as they left their scorer home on the Chicago trip on the plea of economy and reduction of expenses. We are very much afraid the November balance sheet will show a surplus on the wrong side.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Ross Barnes and the fair foul

Date Wednesday, July 3, 1872
Text

[Forest City vs. Boston 7/2/1872] Barnes was the next striker, and upon him depended the result of the game, as a base hit would at least bring in the tying run. After waiting for a ball that suited him, he his one of his favorite fair fouls, for which he has an enviable reputation, and as the ball traveled out toward left field, Rogers and Harry Wright came dashing home and winning the game.

Source Boston Evening Journal
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

what is a legal player?

Date Sunday, July 7, 1872
Text

Section 7 of Rule V., of the Professional Rules for 1872, says, regarding legal players: “They must not have been members of any other base ball club, or have played in any match game with any other club, for sixty days prior to the date of the match they are to play in...”

...

Now, when the above rule was made, it was the intention of the association to put a stop to revolving, but it was never intended to apply to such a case as the present, It is, therefore, doubtful whether the disbanding of a club does not free its members entirely, and give them an entirely new status. In our opinion, which make [sic] be taken for as much as it is worth, we think the members of the Olympic Club are not legally, entitled to play with any other club until the 28th of the present month; but if regarded as a question of equity alone, we think that, as the rule was never intended to cover such a case as this, they may be allowed to play. The men are not revolvers, and had no intention of revolving, but are only anxious to earn their bread honestly and fairly, and it does appear hard they should be deprived of the opportunity of doing so. Should the Athletics think proper to protest against Brainard tomorrow, they have a perfect right to do so, but it is hardly probably that they will.

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an amateur club on an enclosed ground

Date Sunday, July 7, 1872
Text

The Canavans have changed their ground from Oakdale Park to the one at Twenty-fourth and Columbia avenue...

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an over-strict umpire calling every pitch a ball or a strike

Date Sunday, July 14, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Atlantic 7/8/1872] The umpiring of Higham was too strict–every ball pitched, with the exception of the first ball to each batsman, was called either a ball or a strike.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Olympic Club members overrule their own nine

Date Sunday, July 14, 1872
Text

We understand that the game [between the Olympic and Roth clubs] had been duly arranged, but some of the members of the Olympic Club wished the use of the ground for practice, and therefore declined to let their nine play. A precisely similar case happened last year, when the third Olympic-Roth game was indefinitely postponed.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Bostons take a vacation

Date Sunday, July 14, 1872
Text

The Bostons had a picnic on one of the islands in Boston Bay, for which they took their departure on the 6th inst., there to stay for ten days’ fishing, shooting, bathing, and sport. Here is where Harry Wright shows his head to be level, and where, also, the club managers act most judiciously. Harry knows that base ball is rather dull in July after the Fourth, especially during the prevalence of any heated term; and, moreover, he is fully aware of the advantages to health, strength, and training which a week’s sojourn such as he has given his men will yield in p repairing them for the arduous field work of the fall campaign. Our Athletic managers might profit by the example and do no harm.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an umbrella for the umpire?

Date Tuesday, July 16, 1872
Text

If a stray donkey or cow should happen to be on the field during an important match, it is highly desirable to select either one or the other for umpire, giving a preference to the donkey. Under no consideration whatever should an umbrella be offered to the umpire, unless there is no sun out, when a dozen or two should be handed to him. Evening City Item July 16, 1872 [from a list of sarcastic advice to the Athletic Club, suggesting that umpires sometimes were given umbrellas]

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a 'drop hit' bunt; playing in to defend against it

Date Sunday, July 14, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Mutual 7/13/1872] Sixth inning.–McGeary made his base on one of his beautiful drop hits. ... [Eighth inning] McGeary was next, but Boyd [third baseman] was on the lookout for him this time, and he did not think it safe to try the “drop hitting” dodge again, so he made a hard drive to left field, and McMullen took it splendidly on the foul fly. New York Dispatch July 14, 1872

[Athletic vs. Mutual 7/13/1872] Since he [McGeary] had made his base by one of his artful drop hits in the sixth inning, Boyd [the third baseman] had crept in as close as he dared and watched his every movement, prepared to spring upon the ball as a cat would on a mouse with which she had been playing... Baltimore American July 16, 1872, quoting the New York World

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the excitement of a shutout

Date Tuesday, July 16, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Mutual 7/13/1872] The excitement was now almost beyond control. Not a sound was heard as the ninth inning commenced, and McGeary walked up to the home plate, bat in hand. ... The excitement [with the third out] and enthusiasm which had so long been kept in subjection now broke forth in the wildest cheering, waving of handkerchief and hand-shaking. The crowd broke into the field, and seemed inclined to carry the victors in triumph to the Club House... The Athletics, the champion nine, had been Chicagoed, and that was happiness enough for one day., quoting the New York World

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings the 'little wonder'

Date Tuesday, July 16, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Mutual 7/13/1872] Cummings well deserved his title of “The Little Wonder,” so true and so well judged was his pitching., quoting the New York World

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a ball hits a building and its stoop

Date Saturday, July 20, 1872
Text

[from Answers to Correspondents] A ball is knocked foul, strikes a building, and rolls back on a stoop attached to said house, and is taken by the catcher before touching the ground. Is the striker out? ... He is not out.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

definition of a professional

Date Saturday, July 20, 1872
Text

[from Answers to Correspondents] Snakey works at his trade and is a member of a junior club. He cannot get off to play matches without losing the time. His club pay him a certain sum to make up for lost time at each match. Moneyless bets Max that Snakey is a professional player, on the ground the he, Snakey, receives pay from the club. Max holds that Snakey cannot be called a “professional,” as he receives pay for lost time and not for his services. Who wins? He is not a professional, as he does not make it his business.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

calculating the championship

Date Saturday, July 20, 1872
Text

[from Answers to Correspondents] In case the Athletics lose more games than the Bostons, but no series, and the Bostons fewer games, but one series, to which club would the championship be awarded? ... The most games win, series not counting.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings delivery

Date Sunday, July 21, 1872
Text

It is a well-known fact that no amount of experience will enable a nine to bat his [Cummings’s] peculiar delivery at times, although again it is very easily collared. In two games the Boston Club made but seven runs and earned five. In the two games in which the Athletic Club suffered defeat his pitching has never been excelled, while in the 19-0 game played in this city, it was totally devoid of its singular curve, and was, consequently easily hit.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

failed attempts to hit a fair foul

Date Saturday, July 20, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Mutual 7/13/1872] McGeary led off in the ninth innings, and having got his base on a neatly put “fair foul” in the sixth innings, he tried it again in this, but failed, as the ball went hot to Fulman [sic: should be Fulmer, short stop] and thence to Start [first baseman] in good time. New York Clipper July 20, 1872

[Mutual vs. Baltimore 7/19/1872] Bechtel went to the bat, and in his efforts to knock a fair foul struck some three or four balls to the fence and finally went out on a foul bound to Craver [the catcher]. Baltimore American July 20, 1872

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the financial condition of the Athletics

Date Sunday, July 21, 1872
Text

The season opened with the Athletic Club heavily in debt. Whatever may have been the cause of this, it is unjust to discuss it. There are a hundred ways of unprofitable expenditure, such as stormy weather on trips and the like. The management of a professional club requires more skill and generalship than people are willing to admit at a passing glance, and here is where we thing the managers of the Athletic Club deserve full credit rather than abuse. The debt of the club is about one-third its original amount. The balance will be cleared off before the season is finished, all things progressing as they promise, and the organization will be placed on a solid stock company footing for the year ‘73.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

advertising a game

Date Sunday, July 21, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Athletic 7/20/1872] The game was extensively advertised by posters, but as we have before remarked, this does not bring out audiences. Whether this affected the size of the audience or whether it was that our people have become tired of the Athletic club, we do not profess to know, but it is certain that there were not near so many persons present as were expected; we think that 2,500 spectators will cover all who were upon the ground.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire calls strike count; mistaken 'foul' call from the crowd while advancing the bases

Date Sunday, July 21, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Athletic 7/20/1872] [McBride on second, Meyerle on first] ...and then Malone made an unsuccessful strike. The umpired called “one strike,” and, as Hicks [the catcher] let the ball pass, McBride and Malone were each taking a base when several persons in the pavilion called “foul, foul, go back.” Both did go, but by that time the ball had got to second, and McBride was put out. This unfortunate interference was very damaging to the Athletic who were already fearfully dispirited...

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a criticism of the City Item; a dig at Chadwick

Date Sunday, July 21, 1872
Text

The City Item, with that modesty which always characterizes and accompanies true merit, quietly puts all the other Philadelphia papers out of court, by arrogating to itself the title of being “the only unprejudiced base ball journal in Philadelphia,” and it is therefore because it describes itself as unprejudiced that we direct our attention more particularly to its remarks... Like the “Father of the game,” whom the Item has lately taken to eulogizing, it looks at everything through red spectacles... New York Dispatch July 21, 1872

The nonsensical and uncalled-for abusive criticisms of the Athletics that have lately appeared in an afternoon paper of this city meets with a deserved and scathing rebuke in an article from the pen of Mr. J. W. Brodie, one of the most able of the base ball reporters of New York city... [It goes on to quote at length the NY Dispatch pice of 7/21/72.] Philadelphia Sunday Mercury July 28, 1872

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

bad judgment trying to score with no outs; forgetting to slide; poor coaching

Date Monday, July 22, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Athletic 7/20/1872] [Boyd at second, thrown out at the plate trying to score on McMullin’s hit] Bad judgment was shown here. As there were no hands out, it was not necessary for Boyd to be so anxious about getting home; in doing so, he made a most miserable start, and seeing that the point would be close, forgot to slide. The captain should have exercised his judgment at this point... Evening City Item July 22, 1872

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/09/1872] [McVey on third] Gould, high hit to Treacy [center fielder], out on fly, Treacy also putting McVey out (who ran “home,”) by a quick bound throw to McGeary [catcher]. {McVey made a very feeble effort to come “home,” getting a poor start, and failing to heed Wright’s advice–“Slide in!”} Evening City Item September 10, 1872

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a null and void game

Date Sunday, July 28, 1872
Text

The Judiciary Committee met on Friday evening, to adjudicate on the Athletic-Baltimore game, of May last. The game in dispute was the second of the series between the Athletic and Baltimore clubs. At the end of the seventh inning the score stood 7 to 4 in favor of Baltimore. In the eighth a dispute arose about the umpire’s decisions, and the crowd rushing in, play was stopped, and the umpire decided it won by the Baltimores on the seventh inning. The committee declare the game null and void, and directed that it be replayed in Baltimore.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

increasing the number of championship games

Date Sunday, July 28, 1872
Text

At a special meeting of the National Association, held July 26, the following resolution was adopted: “Resolved, That In view of the fact that several of the clubs that commenced the season as competitors for the championship have disbanded, thereby reducing the number of games to be played, that the Championship Rules be so amended as to make the series for the championship nine instead of five games for the season of 1872.”New York Sunday Mercury July 28, 1872

It was stated that, in consequence of several of the clubs which entered for the Championship Pennant at the beginning of the season having been disbanded, the number of games it would be necessary to play would be reduced by nearly one hundred and fifty.This would so materially curtail the Championship series, that, instead of ending on the 1st of November, it would terminate about the middle of August.Of course, the interest in our National game might be kept up by a series of exhibition games; but, the public having so strongly manifested their distaste for, and disapprobation of, exhibition contests, it was thought better that, out of deference to public opinion, the Championship series should consist of nine games instead of five.

Source ” New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the organization and finances of the Troy Club; an early proposal to put clubs under the interdict

Date Sunday, July 28, 1872
Text

This club [Troy BBC] was organized last Fall. It was a regularly incorporated society and issued its stock, which, we believe, was all taken up by wealthy and responsible citizens of Troy. The finest players in the country were engaged for this season and no expense was to be spared to put a first class nine in the field–a nine which would be as good as, if not superior to, any other team in the country. Contracts were signed with the various players and the sanctity of such a document was fully enlarged upon by the directors, and duly impressed upon the minds of the players. The latter have, with one exception, been true to their agreement, but, before half the season is over, the directors tell them they cannot pay them their wages, and feel surprised to find the mend object to go on playing on speculation. If the stock which was taken up had been fully paid up and exhausted, of course, no one could say a word against the management, and as none of the stockholders would be liable for more than the amount of stock he held, nothing could be said against them. We understand, however, that the stockholders have not paid up the full amount on the stock they hold, and they ought to be made to do so, if possible. Previous to their last visit to Boston, the players, when asking for their overdue salaries, were told the books of the club had not been posted up, but that they would be put in order while they were away, and they would get their money upon their return. Placing every reliance on the good faith of the stockholders, the men went away, defeated the Mansfield Club by a score of 7 to 0, and the renowned Boston Red Stockings, by a score of 17 to 10, but upon their return they were greeted with the intelligence that there was no money for them, and the men were then, of course, obliged to decline going on any further expeditions until their wages were paid up. Several of the players have not yet received their salaries for May, while some others, a little more fortunate, have only a month or six week’s salary due them. What penalty should be inflicted on a defaulting club like the Troy? Were they positively bankrupt–that is to say, their entire capital had been paid up and expended–they would have the sympathy of the public generally; but this not being the case, the National Convention should pass a resolution expelling them from the Association, and preventing any club, in which the defaulting members of the Troy Club had a pecuniary interest, from becoming a member of the Association, or being allowed to play with Association Clubs. A resolution should also be passed that all members of disbanded clubs, excepting such as had been expelled from such club, should be eligible to play at once with any other club who may require their services.

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

organizing the Baltimore Club for 1873

Date Sunday, July 28, 1872
Text

A number of gentlemen interested in base ball matters in Baltimore, had a meeting last week for the purpose of completing the organization of a first-class professional nine for next season. After considerable discussion had been indulged in respecting the new nine, the following committee to solicit subscriptions from merchants was appointed: Houck, Dale, Popplein, McJewell and Gordon, and before the meeting adjourned over $2,500 was subscribed. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury July 28, 1872

the condition of the Pythians

We learn that the Pythians will hold a meeting on Tuesday evening (30th inst.,) at which time they will discuss the expediency of putting a nine in the field. We feel confident that the friends of this well-known club will give them a hearty welcome should they again enter the base ball arena. Evening City Item July 29, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the City Item's good advice; pulling the press pass

Date Wednesday, July 31, 1872
Text

We had almost begun to congratulate ourselves that the friendly and good advice which we took the time and trouble to give the Athletics, would in many instances be thankfully accepted, but, (and it always seems to be the way with this astonishingly mismanaged organization,) they prefer to add still further to their many foolish acts. We have received the following letter from our once dear friend, Mr. Elias Hicks Hayhurst:

...

The article in yesterday’s “All-Day City Item” is so unjust in its sentiments, and so universally condemned by out Members and all Good Men,” as being the expressions of a most “Bitter Enemy,” that I am compelled to ask you to return the “Free Pass to our Grounds,” and at the same time to inform you the representatives of the “Item” will not be permitted seats in our Reporter’s Stand. [A resume follows of the good advice Fitzgerald had given over the years.]

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire not calling balls or strikes 2

Date Friday, August 2, 1872
Text

[Eureka vs. Hartville, of Philadelphia 8/1/1872] The umpiring of Mr. Byram was the most unsatisfactory we have seen for a long while. First, he failed throughout the game to properly enforce the rule in regard to calling strikes and balls: we noted several instances where seven, eight, and even ten balls were pitched, and neither strike nor ball called.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

defining an earned run; bases on balls are earnedor are they?

Date Saturday, August 3, 1872
Text

“What is an earned run?” is a question of vital importance in estimating the true merit of a contest. For instance, a club might make 40 runes in a match, and earn only one; it becomes evident at once that their opponents must have made a large number of serious errors, and that they do not deserve the credit the ordinary base ball reporter would be apt to give them. What then is an earned run? In order to define this important point, we will take it first in its simplest form:

A clean home run is an earned run.

The batter who scores his run after a clean first, second, or third base hit, is entitled to an earned run, provided, that he is not carried around the bases by overthrows or passed balls (both of which are considered errors) and that three outs, (or the failure to accept three outs,) do not occur in succession, immediately after the batter has scored his run, by such overthrows or passed balls.

Should the batter reach first base by a clean hit, steal second, and come home on overthrows and passed balls, such a run is not earned until the requisite number of clean base hits shall have been made to bring hm “home.”

After the field has failed to accept three chances for “outs,” no runs can be considered earned.

A base on called balls is considered an earned run if scored subject to the above provisos.

Overthrows, in every instance, and passed balls, should be carefully noted, as by such errors, bases are given to the runners which they have not deserved.

Thus is will be seen that fielding errors may allow a club to score any amount of runs, where proper play would not give them one.

Earned runs are therefore the true estimate of the contest. Our brief analysis will give the public an opportunity to judge properly, and will show them that The All-Day City Item is a reliable authority on the subject. Evening City Item August 3, 1872

Upon reflection, a run on called balls should not be considered as an earned run, because it is sometimes obtained by the partiality or ignorance of the umpire, and because it is not earned by the player himself. Evening City Item August 5, 1872

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early uses of Baltimore 'Orioles'

Date Saturday, August 3, 1872
Text

[Mansfield vs. Baltimore 8/2/1872] A change was made in this inning, Clapp going to c.f., Brainard to r.f., Allen to s.s., Bentley to p., and O’Rourke to c. The change was effective, and for three innings the Orioles could not tally, when, seeing the necessity for work, they went for heavy batting ,and aided by errors on the part of the visitors, scored two runs in the last three innings. Baltimore Gazette August 3, 1872

[Baltimore vs. Mutual 8/8/1872] [headline:] Baltimore vs. Mutuals–The Orioles Retrieve Themselves. Baltimore American August 9, 1872

Source Baltimore Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the disbandment of the Troy club; the effect player eligibility

Date Sunday, August 4, 1872
Text

The disbandment of the Troy nine presents a similar case to that of the Olympic Club in one respect–namely, that the receipts of the first part of the season not coming up to the amount anticipated by the stockholders, they thought it best to back out before serious losses were sustained. In doing this, however, they appear to have been indifferent to the result of their action, as far as the injury done to the players was concerned. A question involved in this matter is that concerning the eligibility of the players of a disbanded club to take part in games in another club until the expiration of sixty days. In this regard it must be borne in mind that this sixty-day rule was adopted solely with a view to stop “revolving.” By a resolution adopted at the first meeting of the Professional Association, and which still remains in force, a disbanded nine can legally join another organization at once, the rule in question...releasing a player from his written agreement to play with a club the moment the club he is a member of “fails to live up to their engagement with him.” By this rule the lately-disbanded Troy nine are free to join the Eckfords–as the majority have done–and to play a match game this week as they intend doing. The list includes Wood, Zettlein, Martin, Gedney, and Neslon, all old Eckford players of former nines.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

baseball originated in 1857, based on rounders

Date Sunday, August 4, 1872
Text

Some one of the editorial corps of our English contemporary has been trying his hand at an article on “our national game,” and a very bad first he makes of it. ... ...he says that our game is “not national.” Inasmuch as the game as played here originated in America in 1857, and is known nowhere else, we do not see how it can be otherwise than “National.” Cricket is the English national game, and yet it is based on an old French game, just as our game is based on rounders.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the condition of the Atlantic Club 2

Date Sunday, August 4, 1872
Text

No nine in the country has improved so steadily, and at the same time so decidedly, as the Atlantics have done under the watchful care of Mr. Ferguson. With all the disadvantages to contend against of an impoverished exchequer, and consequently a very limited number of players to make a selection from, they have worked indefatigably to resuscitate the character and standing of their club until they have arrived at a position second to but few of the contestants for the champion pennant.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an outfield assist at first

Date Sunday, August 4, 1872
Text

[Mansfields vs. Athletics 7/31/1872] Brainard followed with what he considered a clean hit to right field, trotted along too leisurely, and a handsome throw by Meyerle put him out at first.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pulling a press pass

Date Sunday, August 4, 1872
Text

The editor of an afternoon sheet, that has of late abounded with all kinds of fair and unfair attacks upon the Athletic club, has thereby got up a first-class row with the managers, who very foolishly sent him a note requesting the return of his free pass. This was a sore blow to the facetious ink slinger, who responded with a pithy note, in which he rather gets the best of it. Mr. Hayhurst ought to have been sagacious enough to see that he was only furnishing ammunition to his enemy and could have prevented the attendance of “ye editor” in an easier and more effective way by stopping the ticket at the gate.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the catcher responsible to direct fielders

Date Tuesday, August 6, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 8/5/1872] During this inning a ball was sent to right field, and Fisher [the right fielder] and Carey [the second baseman] both started for it. Craver [the catcher] did not call out in time who should take it and they came into collision, Carey being thrown violently to the ground a badly hurt.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a critique of fair foul hits

Date Tuesday, August 6, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 8/5/1872] In the seventh inning...the Philadelphians scored three more runs, Mack and McGeary both indulging in fair fouls, according to the Umpire’s judgment. ... The Athletics then [in the eighth inning] went in for ten runs. Treacy and Anson, the first strikers, making their bases on fair hits, and Mack, McGeary and Cuthbert indulging in so-called “fair fouls,” hit which place the opposing side entirely at the mercy of partial umpires–hits not within the scope of the best of fielding to neutralize, and scratches entirely unartistic and not worthy of a well-trained athlete. ... Counting “fair fouls” as base hits, the Athletics made nine in this inning, and scored seven earned runs.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

complaint about the fifty cent admission; reduced admission after the third inning

Date Wednesday, August 7, 1872
Text

[from a letter to the editor] I witnessed a game on the Union Grounds, Brooklyn, last season, the admission to which was 50 cents. About one-third the crowd remained outside until the third inning, when they were very glad to admit them at 25 cents a head. I hear that at the last game in New York, between the Atlantics and Red Stockings, that the former were anxious to charge 25 cents, knowing by that course they would be able to make more money; but Harry Wright very foolishly refused to agree to that plan.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early bunt: Barlow's little bat and little hit

Date Friday, August 9, 1872
Text

[Baltimore vs. Atlantic 8/7/1872] Little Barlow, with his little bat, then went up to the plate, and though the Baltimore men were prepared for him gave one of his little hits, just dropping the ball in front of the plate, and safely reached his first, amid laughter and applause., quoting the New York Sun of 8/8/1872

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early uses of Baltimore 'Orioles' 2

Date Friday, August 9, 1872
Text

[Baltimore vs. Mutual 8/8/1872] [headline:] Baltimore vs. Mutuals–The Orioles Retrieve Themselves.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Ferguson as umpire not calling balls

Date Saturday, August 10, 1872
Text

The umpire on the occasion was not up to Ferguson’s mark. There were several balls entirely out of the fair reach of the batsman, which he allowed to go by uncalled, in direct violation of the written rule. No umpire has a right to go back of the rules, no matter what opinion he may have of their correctness. We content that every ball out of the reach of the batsman should be called, whenever delivered. This is the law, and Ferguson did not obey it. Evening City Item August 10, 1872, quoting the Brooklyn Eagle.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

criticism of the fifty cent admission; how the gate is split

Date Sunday, August 11, 1872
Text

We take the present opportunity of once more calling the attention to the various base ball clubs throughout the country to the serious injury they are doing to themselves by still insisting upon the fifty cent admission fee to all championship games. Last season, and again in the beginning the present one, we admonished the base ball fraternity that they were pursuing a suicidal course in keeping the price of admission up to fifty cents. Had they listened to our advice, and that of some of our contemporaries, we are satisfied that there is no club of professional players which would not have been better off, financially, than they are at present. Twenty-five cents was always considered amply sufficient for admission to a game of ball, until the Cincinnati Red Stockings introduced the fifty cent innovation, and the excitement to see them play was taken advantage of by them to dictate to all the other clubs what prices should be charged at any game they condescended to play.

In the season of 1870 the Red Stocking were so much superior to all the other clubs that the public did not object to pay the increased admission to witness their performance, but there are several clubs now in existence which would have beaten the old Red Stocking nine, and therefore the same reason does not exist for the extra charge. Few persons who have followed and watched the progress of our national game will not admit that its progress has been not only checked but materially retarded by the imposition of the fifty cent fee. Hundreds of persons who used to attend three out of every five match games played on the Union and Capitoline grounds have not seen a game for the last two seasons, and will not go again until the admission is reduced to the old figure. Thus the interest in base ball has been checked, and if this imposition be continued for another season, cricket or some other out-door game will take the place of base ball.

We have on several occasions spoken with the Mutual, Atlantic, and Eckford Club managers on the subject, and the reply has always been the Bostons won’t play unless fifty cents are charged for admission, but we consider that a poor excuse. The Boston Red Stockings are undoubtedly very find players, but they do no constitute the entire base ball fraternity, and there is no reason why they should dictate to eight or nine other clubs what must and what must not be. If the Bostons do not choose to accede to the terms of the other clubs then let the Bostons amuse the good people of the “Hub” themselves, and they will soon see whether they can afford to play in Boston only. If the Bostons choose th charge fifty cents or fifty dollars admission on their own grounds, let them do so, and let them keep all the receipts and allow all the other clubs to do the same.

This is the plan the Athletics proceed upon; they do not share their receipts with visiting clubs, and they do not presume to dictate what price shall be charged for admission when they go on a tour. They very properly consider that each club is the best judge of its own interests, and that it ought to know what admission fee will return the largest amount to its exchequer. The Bostons have been too wide awake, however, to adopt this course, as there are always much larger crowds at the games in Brooklyn than there are in Boston. The Atlantics, in the last game played here with the Bostons, wanted to charge twenty-five cents admission only, but the Bostons demanded half the receipts if they were to lower their status by playing for a quarter, and the result was a very modest attendance. Still making a determined effort to return to the old popular price, the Atlantics announce that the admission to their game with the champion Athletics, on Friday next, will be twenty-five cents, and we feel sure the public will appreciate their desire to return to the old price by giving them the best attendance they have had this season.

In all championship matches between the Mutuals, Eckford, and Atlantics, the admission will only be twenty-five cents, and we have no doubt the Eckfords will follow the sound financial policy of the Atlantics, and when they play with the Athletics will also only charge a “quarter.” Whether the Mutuals will do so or no, remains to be seen. If they are in earnest in their desire to return to the old price, they will do so. The Clevelanders make no objections to play the Atlantics and Eckfords here this season at the reduced price of admission, and we don’t think the Baltimores will do so, either. There only remains, then, for the Mutes, the Atlantics, and Eckfords to make a firm stand against this charge, and it must come down. New York and Brooklyn can afford to support our three home clubs, and with occasional visits from the Athletics and Clevelanders, we will be able to get along comfortably.

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the condition of the Eckford Club

Date Sunday, August 11, 1872
Text

The Eckford Club, though one of the oldest base ball organizations in the country, has, for want of financial backers, been struggling for the past few years to keep its head above water but with very moderate success, and less so this year than ever.

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

crowd noise attempted to distract the fielder

Date Sunday, August 11, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 8/5/1872] There was the usual noisy, boisterous crowd (estimated at about two thousand) at Newington park, and they took especial pains to exhibit their enmity against the visitors. They have got the hooting business down to the very finest point of the science, and whenever a fly was sent to the Athletic field, they repressed their whoops until it was about to fall into the player’s hands, and then set up a horrible screeching, sufficient to frighten the dead from their resting places. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch August 11, 1872

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 8/5/1872] The Baltimoreans were confident of victory, but were doomed to a sad disappointment, as were also about two thousand spectators, many of them the worst roughs of the roughest city of the Union. These fellows, when seeing a fly go into the out-field of the Athletic, would indulge in obscene oaths and loud threats in case the ball was caught, but Cuthy and Treacy were not to be thus bluffed. Poor Meyerle, however, was intimidated by a volley of oaths, and dropped an easy fly. Philadelphia Sunday Republic August 11, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Forest City club reorganizes

Date Sunday, August 11, 1872
Text

...the Forest City club, of Cleveland, has been reorganized. The Forest City Base Ball Association, as heretofore constituted, has wound up its affairs, the players having been settled with and the contracts cancelled. This was the result of a compromise between the officers of the Association and the players, which was brought about through the unwillingness of the association to keep the nine on its hands doing nothing, and as there was no prospect of doing any better, negotiations were entered upon with the above result. The players have associated themselves together with Jim White as Captain, Sweasy being left out altogether, and propose to finish up the season under the same name, so as not to forfeit their championship record. Their games will be played on the old grounds, and the gate receipts will be divided among the nine. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury August 11, 1872

On Saturday the contracts of the base ball players of the Forest City club were cancelled. Subsequently the players met and organized to continue the campaign. The only change made is the transferring of the management from the board of directors to the players. James White was chosen captain and manager... Philadelphia Sunday Republic August 11, 1872, quoting the Cleveland Plain Dealer

The two defeats sustained by the co-operative Cleveland nine at the hands of the Boston Club broke up the co-operative arrangement, and the players disbanded as a nine on Tuesday last... Philadelphia Sunday Mercury August 25, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a ball into the crowd, who assist the home team

Date Monday, August 12, 1872
Text

[Baltimore vs. Athletic 8/10/1872] [Mack on first base] McGeary followed Mack, with a weak hit to Force [third baseman], who make a most shocking underthrow to Mills [first baseman], the ball going into the crowd. Of course it didn’t come out again until Mack and McGeary were both safely across the home-plate!

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cleveland Forest City Club finances

Date Monday, August 12, 1872
Text

A Cleveland paper speaks as follows in regard to the Forest City Club of that city: “The management of the Forest City Club have wound up the concern. The nine is to be paid off to-day, and the contracts of the players canceled. The nine will henceforth play on its own hook as a co-operative club. James White has been chosen captain and will play second base, Sweasy being left out of the new firm. The head-quarters of the club will be in Cleveland as heretofore, and it is to be hoped that it will be more successful than the managers have in bringing clubs to Cleveland to play. It is now the first of August and we have seen but three first-class games in Cleveland. We wish the boys success. They can play a good game if they choose, and now that they are working for themselves they have a chance to show what they are made of.

Source ” Boston Globe
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

stock and cooperative clubs

Date Monday, August 12, 1872
Text

There are now but four regular stock company nines in the professional arena, the Athletic, Baltimore, Boston and Mutual. All the others are co-operative nines.

Source Boston Globe
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the decline in the furor for professional games

Date Sunday, August 18, 1872
Text

The furor for professional playing being now on the decline, it becomes the pecuniary interest of the ground keepers to reduce the tariff in proportion to the loss of the power to attract large crowds, which the professional clubs possessed two or three years ago. What with “exhibition” games and their sequence of suspected hippodroming the patrons of the game have gradually lost interest in a majority of the club games played, and they will now no longer pay the half-dollar fee as they did in 1869 and 1871. In those years so great was the rush that it became advisable to increase the tariff in order to lessen the crowd. Now the reverse action is necessary.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a lawsuit for wages

Date Sunday, August 18, 1872
Text

Carlton and Sweasy, of the late stock company Cleveland nine, who have not been paid since June, have sued the stockholders for their entire salary, and from the result of the preliminary examination it seems likely that they will win their case. The club can show no legal cause for nonpayment in the way of insubordination or neglect of the club rules, such as in getting drunk or not reporting for play, etc.; and as the club is a chartered company, they are legally liable for all their engagements with players. It is one thing to engage a party of men for a special season, and then do divide the profits at the close of the service, and quite another to discharge such men before half the season is over, because the investment does not pay. When directors of clubs engage men they run the risk of profit or less, and must stand by the latter as well as benefitting by the former. The others of the Cleveland nine let up their employers, but Carlton and Sweasy do not see it in that light.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Fitzgerald's necktie

Date Sunday, August 18, 1872
Text

In regard to Tom Berry’s letter...it narrows down to a point of veracity between Tom Berry and the gushing Colonel with the virgin-white necktie... Philadelphia Sunday Mercury August 18, 1872 [See the subsequent letter to the editor for a strong slam on Fitzgerald, the “white-chokered imposter.”]

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the pitcher covers first on a ball to the right side

Date Sunday, August 18, 1872
Text

[Eckford vs. Athletic 8/12/1872] A very excellent piece of play by McBride [the pitcher] deserves mention. A. Allison hit a hard ball past first; as soon as he had done so, Malone [the first baseman] started for the ball and McBride for the base, to catch the striker, which he did successfully.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a slow drop ball

Date Sunday, August 18, 1872
Text

[Maple Leaf vs. Athletic 8/14/1872] Sunley, their regular pitcher, who delivers , was easily punished by the Athletics...

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

proposals to the Athletics for reform: better seating, lower admission, rain checks

Date Sunday, August 18, 1872
Text

...we suggest, as points worthy of consideration: the reduction of admission fees, the construction of decent stands for persons not members, but who, by the payment of an admission fee are entitled to as good a seat as at any other place of amusement, and last but not least the oft complained of system of tickets. Coupons are what all friends and supporters of the club want. It is a downright shame to take fifty cents from a man for a game which don’t [sic] take place and then refuse to return it or admit those tickets to another game; and every person who so suffers bears enmity to the club, which in time begets luke-warmness as to the game at large.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

slackening pitching speed for the sake of the catcher

Date Monday, August 19, 1872
Text

[Olympic of Baltimore vs. Baltimore 8/17/1872] Fisher pitched for the Baltimores, and it was found that so long as he kept up his speed it was almost impossible to bat him, but when it became necessary to slacken his delivery in order to save the catcher the Olympics batted him effectively.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

defining a fair-foul hit

Date Thursday, August 22, 1872
Text

[in reply to a question what a “fair-out hit” is] A “fair-foul hit” is made when the ball bounds close inside and then twists far out outside, the foul line. Such hits have become so frequently recently that we use the expression “fair-foul” to designate them.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

locals roughs scaring off potential umpires

Date Sunday, August 25, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 8/22/1872] On account of the unenviable reputation of the roughs of Baltimore who attend base ball games, no foreign umpire could be persuaded to officiate in that position, Ferguson and Burdock, of the Atlantics of Brooklyn, both declining to serve, although they had been previously agreed upon by the managers of the two clubs. In this emergency, the Athletics were compelled to take an umpire from Baltimore, or else the game could not be played, and therefore Barrett, who has hitherto had a fair record as an honorable man, was selected to act...

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire calling few balls

Date Sunday, August 25, 1872
Text

[Athletic v. Baltimore 8/22/1874] The pitching of Matthews and Fisher was so wild that the Athletics, with a strict umpire, would have more than a dozen bases on called balls. As it was they had three...

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Fitzgerald and the City Item caught in a plagiarism trap?

Date Sunday, August 25, 1872
Text

A good joke was his stealing the Age’s score of the Athletic-Baltimore game on Friday, heading it “special to the Item.” I find in the Age’s report that Hall played first base and Mills left field, and this error, purposely made by the special correspondent of the Age, the sheet in question, was copied verbatim. I made a comparison with the reports named and those of the Baltimore players, and find that Mills played first base and Hall left field, thus proving that the sheet in question stole the special message, emasculating it so as to say that the Athletics earned no runs, when the Age had two earned runs for the champions, and this shows the animus of this party. Both of these ludicrous blunders have been well circulated and laughed at. As soon as this idiot gets a competent reporter he had better keep his fingers out of the business, or the unfortunate man will follow suit and take leave of his senses. Yours truly, RILEY.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings's pitching ability

Date Sunday, August 25, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Athletic 8/19/1872] The score now stood five to nothing in favor of the Mutual, and the betting changed accordingly. The well-known ability of Cummins to pitch on certain occasions in such a manner as to combat the best batsmen, helped to make the New Yorkers the favorites.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

attendance at professional and amateur matches

Date Sunday, August 25, 1872
Text

We have often remonstrated with the base ball public in regard to the poor manner in which they attend the matches of the amateur clubs. They will swarm in the thousands to witness a professional match, but to a game hardly inferior, they come barely by the hundred.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an outfield assist 2

Date Sunday, August 25, 1872
Text

[Baltimore vs. Athletic 8/24/1872] McGeary hit a short fly to left, and as Anson [at third] foolishly attempted for home he was put out by Hall’s [left fielder] throw.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

backing up the catcher on a pop foul

Date Sunday, August 25, 1872
Text

[Baltimore vs. Athletic 8/24/1872] Force sent up a foul that McGeary [catcher] dropped on the fly, but Anson [third baseman], who was under him, quickly got it on the bound. Philadelphia Sunday Republic August 25, 1872

word of the big game reaches Baltimore

[Baltimore vs. Athletic 8/24/1872] At no time this season has there been such an excitement on our streets over base ball as was witnessed on Saturday afternoon. ... It was generally known on Saturday morning that the result of the game by innings would be bulletined at The American office, and at half-past three o’clock the south side of Baltimore street from Calvert to South street was blocked by an excited multitude of persons. The merchant, banker, mechanic and even ladies halted in their walks, and when the seventh inning had been given to the excited throng wild huzzas rent the air. The crowd now began augmenting. Men begged and obtained permission to occupy second and third story windows in many of the buildings on the south side of the street facing The American office, and when the eighth inning [in which the Athletics scored seven runs] was announced it was laughable to witness the countenances of those persons who had cheered the game to that time. Expressions of regret that the Philadelphians had gone to the lead were uttered by the ladies as well as by the sterner sex, but when the ninth inning disclosed the fact that the Baltimoreans had reversed matters and won the game, with four to spare, the excitement became intense. Men and boys threw up their hats and caps, while a number of young men deeming that the occasion required something more than expressions of voice to evidence their joy began pounding their companions in the back, and which ebullition of feeling on any other occasions would have been construed into an invitation for a fight. The males screamed, shouted, laughed and danced; the ladies waved their handkerchiefs and departed from the scene seemingly as happy as if they had just witnessed a first-class marriage. Baltimore American August 26, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

calculating earned runs

Date Monday, August 26, 1872
Text

[Baltimore vs. Athletic 8/24/1872] [the Athletic half of the eighth inning: City Item calculates zero earned runs of the seven scored] McBride opened with a lively ground hit, which Carey allowed to go clean through him; Reach followed with a safe hit to left field. Malone to first on called balls. {Fisher put in pitcher’s position, Matthews going to right, and Pike to centre.} Fisler, safe fair-foul hit to Force, McBride coming home. Treacy out at first on a sharp bounding hit to Mills; Reach coming home. {But for the fact that Mills muffed Treacy’s hit, which was within two feet of his base, Reach could never have got “home.” Even considering the muff, a sharp throw would have cut him off.} Anson out on a fly by centre-field, {Pike,} Malone coming home. Fisler to third on passed ball. Mack to first on called balls, after having two strikes, in succession, called on him! McGeary, weak hit to Force, who made a shocking underthrow to Mills, allowing Fisler and Mack to come “home.” Cuthbert, weak hit to Force, {who made a tremendous overthrow to Mills,} getting 2d, McGeary coming in. Cuthbert to 3d on passed ball. McBride, weak hit to Force who again underthrew wildly to first! Reach out at first on shart hit, well fielded by Radcliff. Evening City Item August 26, 1872

[the Phila Sunday Mercury’s account of the same inning] McBride and Reach commenced with safe one-base hits, when Fisher relieved Matthews in the pitcher’s position. Malone was given his base on called balls off Fisher’s wild delivery, and Fisler made his base by a hit that Force failed to handle in time. Treacy and Anson were put out–three runs being scored, and before Reach made the third out, four additional runs were added by the wild throwing of Force and Radcliff,... Philadelphia Sunday Mercury August 25, 1872

[the Phila Sunday Dispatch’s account of the same inning] McBride and Reach commenced the Athletic’s eighth inning by putting balls in safe places. Fisher then took pitcher’s position, and Matthews went to right field and Pike to centre. Malone took first on called balls. Fisler then hit a fair foul, which Force juggled badly, McBride home. Treacy out at first by Mills. Reach got first on called balls, and McGeary was given a life by Radcliff on a bad throw. Raddy then changed places with Carey, and a series of muffs, wild throws and blunders ensued, which resulted in giving the Athletics no less that seven runs... Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch August 25, 1872

[the Phila Sunday Republic’s account of the same inning] McBride, of the Athletic, then hit a bat ball over second and made first, and Reach helped him to second by a short, safe hit behind second. This alarmed the Baltimore, needlessly, we think, and they put Fisher in to pitch. Pike going to centre and Matthews to right. Malone waited and got his base on balls, and there were three on bases. Fisler waited and then hit to Force, who juggled the ball until McBride got home. Fisler got his base. Treacy hit to Mills, the best place except a safe hit, and Reach got in. Anson then sent a fly to Pike, but it gave Malone plenty of time to score his run. Mack waited, and a hit on the back from a wild pitch gave him his bases on balls and sent Fisher [sic: should be Fisler] to third. McGeary then hit to Radcliffe, who made a bad throw. Fisler came in. Then Mills made so bad a throw to home that the ball went in the pavilion, and Mack got in, and McGeary went to third. Cuthbert was now saved by a bad throw of Force, which gave him second and sent in McGeary. The Baltimore now sent Carey to short and Radcliffe to second. Force made a wild throw on McBride, and Cuthbert got home. It was evident that the Baltimoreans were badly demoralized, but our boys got no more advantage from it, as Reach went out at first on a weak hit to Carey. Thus were seven runs made... Philadelphia Sunday Republic August 25, 1872

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a 'steal' on a batted ball

Date Monday, September 2, 1872
Text

[Eckford vs. Athletic 8/31/1872] [Cuthbert on second base] Reach fielded out at first by Snyder. {Cuthbert allowed to steal third on Reach’s hit.}

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a question on allowing substitutes

Date Thursday, September 5, 1872
Text

[a letter to the editor, and a reply] I think there should be more definite rules with regard to the Junior Championship matches, particularly with respect to substitutes. In the match between the Keystone and Eureka on Tuesday, the Eureka substituted a player at centre-field in the ninth inning, he having just arrived. The Keystone naturally complained, as they had a right to, but rather than stop the game, they allowed him to play. The consequence was, he took a brilliant fly-catch, and the Keystone was blanked, while the Eureka made two runs and tied the score. This not being the only case in which a man has been substituted in the latter part of the game, I would like to have your views on the subject, and see if some rules could not be formed to suit the case.

An agreement should always be made between the captains to allow the regular players to participate, provided they do not come later than the fourth or fifth inning. After the fifth inning, the players should not be changed, and in case a change be insisted upon, the umpire should decide the game against the club so insisting.–Ed.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

guarding against fair-fouls

Date Saturday, September 7, 1872
Text

[Atlantic vs. Baltimore 9/6/1872] Little Barlow, for the Atlantics, did not succeed in making a single base hit, so sharply was [sic] his fair fouls watched by Force [third baseman] and Hastings [catcher].

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire behind the catcher 3

Date Sunday, September 8, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 9/7/1872] [Pearce on third base] ...Pearce got home on a very pretty point. A ball passed McVey [catcher] and struck Swandell [umpire] on the leg; this made the ball a dead one, and it had to be returned to the hands of the pitcher, which was not sooner done than Dickie got home.

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

taking an out for a run

Date Sunday, September 8, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Boston 9/5/1872] Spalding, after sending Leonard around by a hard hit that Anson just managed after a desperate effort to stop, got caught purposely between first and second bases, so that McVey could score his run, the Bostons always being willing to give an out for a run.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a member of the contending clubs as umpire

Date Sunday, September 8, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Athletic 9/2/1872] The choice of umpires fell upon John Sensenderfer, of the Athletic, and while we give the “Count” all due praise as n upright, straightforward gentleman, we most heartily condemn the practice of choosing umpires from the forces of the contesting nines. The reasons are very patent: In the first place, a man who umpires a game, when he is placed in the position of Mr. S., is very delicately situated. Mr. Reach found it so some days previous, and the first impulse of such men as either of the above named is to steer clear of bias or partiality in favor of their own club, who are sometimes the sufferers in consequence. On the other hand, should the umpire be unscrupulous, he will not hesitate to umpire the game into the hands of his own club. Therefore we hope to see no more of this near-sighted business.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

counting games from defunct clubs

Date Monday, September 9, 1872
Text

Whether the professional association will decide to throw out the games of defunct clubs, or what action they will take in settling the championship at the close of the season, is at present unknown.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the hated 'Yankee Red Stockings'

Date Monday, September 9, 1872
Text

Probably there is no club at present in the contest whose members would not rather see the pennant in the hands of either of their opponents in preference to the “Yankee Red Stockings,” as our boys are called, and the feelings of jealousy which exist in the minds of the other clubs, are liable to lead to almost any action which shall keep the pennant away from Boston. The public will not be gulled by any such thin tricks as that of the increase from five to nine games, and whether the whip pennant comes out of Philadelphia or continues to hand in the clubhouse of the Athletics, is of very little consequence, as the record at the close of the season will very clearly show what club is entitled to the honors.

Source Boston Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

gameday announcements

Date Wednesday, September 11, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Baltimore 9/10/1872] The night before the rain had fallen in torrents, and as though exhausted, but not satisfied with its previous efforts, it continued to fall yesterday morning in a mizzling, drizzling sort of fashion, which took the starch out of shirt collars and very sensibly wilted their owner’s spirits. Towards noon a bulletin in front of the American office announced there would be no game. Towards three o’clock the fall of moisture ceased for a while and a counter statement appeared. About four or five hundred people congregated at the Park at the hour for the game to commence.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

practice uniforms 2

Date Wednesday, September 11, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Baltimore 9/10/1872] The rain had then begun to fall again, and continued to fall during the rest of the evening. Those present were allowed to go in and inspect the grounds for themselves, and the prevailing impression was that it was not in proper condition for a game. Shortly afterwards the Bostonians made their appearance in their uniforms, but with heavy coats buttoned over them, which a few did not lay aside at all. As the crowd was present and seemed to expect a game, it was determined to play an exhibition game for their amusement. The Lord Baltimores quickly doffed their ordinary clothes and donned their official raiment, only selecting a portion of their practice uniform, a red shirt, as a protection against the inclemency of the weather. But little skylarking was indulged in previous to the game, the boys hugging the stands or fences as a protection against the fine mist which was beating in their faces.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

using sawdust to dry the field

Date Thursday, September 12, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Baltimore 9/11/1872] The grounds looked more like the arena of a circus than a ball field. To guard against the slipping and sliding of Tuesday, sawdust in huge quantities had been sprinkled over ll the moist spots and back of the home plate. Its effect was magical. The moisture yielded before it, and after a few innings had been played but little difference from former games could be observed in the fielding of the two clubs.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

criticism of the umpire's calling of balls and strikes

Date Thursday, September 12, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Baltimore 9/11/1872] Considerable difficulty was experienced in obtaining an umpire, and it is to be regretted that the efforts in that direction were not entirely unsuccessful. Mr. Beals, of the defunct Olympics of Washington, acted as an umpire. Artistically speaking, Mr. Beales is not very good. He called balls and strikes, it is true, about once in ten minutes, on principle, like the man that ate crumpet; that is, he considered it his duty to all them at certain periods in the game, not because they ought to be called at that particular time, but simply to carry out the traditional idea than an umpire must do something. His views of the nature of called balls and strikes appeared to be somewhat muddled. Generally when he called balls he should have called strikes, and vice versa. It is charitable to suppose, however, that he acted upon the old maxim that “what is sauce for the good is sauce for the gander,” but as it turned out, the old saw did not cut both ways, but only on one side, and hence the Baltimores were beaten. In the sixth inning a foul ball knocked his hat off, instead of his head, which was a pity, as that appendage seemed to be of but little use to him, and its displacement might have entirely changed the result of the game. His decisions at the bases were generally very correct, though on two occasions adverse to the Baltimores. Doubtless his aim was to be thoroughly impartial, but he was fearfully slow and lethargic, and the disappearance of his Greeley in the seventh inning failed to instill into him the life which all had reason to expect. The Baltimore players would stand at the home plate and wait for proper balls until their patience was exhausted, and in sheer desperation they struck when there was no hope. Out of fifteen balls, most of which struck in front of the home plate, two balls were called. The game, though not as skillfully played as some that have taken place on the same grounds, was feverishly exciting from its commencement to its close. In fielding and hitting the Baltimores far outstripped their opponents, and had an umpire been chosen at all acquainted with the rules Harry Wright would have been compelled to deliver fair balls instead of rolling them along the ground as he did during the greater part of the game. Baltimore American September 12, 1872

[Boston vs. Baltimore 9/11/1872] In repeated instances ball after ball would fall in front of the plate, but no notice was taken of them, though the rule imperatively demands that any ball which falls in front of the plate shall be called. Baltimore Gazette September 12, 1872

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a failed sacrifice bunt?

Date Saturday, September 14, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 9/7/1872] [Bechtel at third base] ...Pearce hit to Spalding [pitcher], who returned the ball in time to McVey [catcher] to put out Hicks [sic throughout: should be Bechtel] at home base, Pearce escaping being put out at 1 st by the throw home, Dick running the risk of going out at 1st in order to get Hicks’ run in.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

borrowing a more prestigious name

Date Sunday, September 15, 1872
Text

During the week the Putnam Club, of Troy, came down to gather in some gate money, and, as a Troy paper very naively remarks, “the Putnams, thinking it would draw better, called themselves the Haymakers.” This dodge failed, and after their game with the Mutes they were unable to arrange any more games... New York Sunday Mercury September 15, 1872

squarely admitting defeat; trouble hitting Cummings

It is surprising how frequently defeated nines are umpired out of games. It is quite a novelty to hear of a nine who acknowledge themselves squarely defeated. Harry Wright does it. He did it on Thursday when he said, “They beat us fair. Our boys don’t bat Cummings as they do other pitchers.” New York Sunday Mercury September 15, 1872

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a dropped ball caught on the bound

Date Sunday, September 15, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 9/12/1872] G. Wright then drove a fearfully hot liner (foul) to Start, but it was too hot to hold, and Joe dropped it; he recovered it on the bound, however, and George retired.

Source New York Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

an antiquated point, drawing a throw to allow a runner to score

Date Sunday, September 15, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/9/1872] [Boston down by one run, two outs, McVey on second, Spalding on first] ...Gould [hit] one to McBride [pitcher], who again made a bad throw to Malone [first baseman], and Gould kept on running to second, where Spalding was standing, Gould wishing that the ball would be thrown down to second, and thus allow McVey, who was on the third, to come home and score the tieing [sic] run, and this rather antiquated point completely deceived the Athletics, and throwing the ball to second, they were much chagrined at seeing McVey run home. This ruse was tried twice before on the Athletics by the Bostons, and we think that it is about time that the former club should see that it is greatly to their disadvantage to give a run for the chance of putting a man out, especially when, as in this case, no one was put out.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

crowd calls of 'foul ball' create confusion

Date Sunday, September 15, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/9/1872] Malone opened the sixth inning by a good hit, and was followed by Fisler with a good long hit to left field, which was almost captured by Rogers. Malone could have come home, but the crowd shrieked “Foul,” and there seemed to be no one to captain the men, so Fergy did not run.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the runner masking the batted ball

Date Sunday, September 15, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/9/1872] Anson was running to second when Fisler struck one towards Leonard. Anson seemed to slacken his pace, and the ball almost hit him. Leonard juggled it and got it to Gould too late. ...an appeal was made to have Anson decided out for obstructing the player, but it was unwarranted and the umpire declined to allow it.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

effective pitching 3

Date Sunday, September 15, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/9/1872] Not a fly ball was sent to the Athletic’s out-field, but ten were taken by the in-fielders, which speaks for the efficiency of McBride’s pitching.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

continued complaints about outsiders in the press stand

Date Sunday, September 15, 1872
Text

Something should be done in regard to the scorers’ stand. It is so crowded on the occasion of regular match games that it is very hard for the reporters and scorers to write with any comfort. On the occasion of extra-important games the bench is full of those who have no business in the place, and some of the members of the press have to beg for their seats from those occupying them. Now this can be very easily remedied. If a lock was put on the door at the foot of the stairs, and each of the reporters provided with a key, there would be no further cause for complaint.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the championship series increased from five to nine games

Date Sunday, September 15, 1872
Text

...a meeting of the Judiciary Committee was held, and it was decided to increase the number of competitive games to nine. It was a self-assumed prerogative on the part of this committee, and deemed by many an arbitrary action. They called the meeting without previous notice, and called it a meeting of the National Association. It was understood that this was done to settle a dispute between the Athletics, of Philadelphia, and Baltimores, of Baltimore. In legislative parlance the committee railroaded the rule with regard to the games through, and all interested here were obliged to shoulder this action without complaint. The Boston Club voted against this arbitrary action, but were overridden, and, to prove their entire willingness to contest the championship even under adverse circumstances, came here [Philadelphia] to-day to play the fifth game with the Athletics.

Source New York Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a point of play: catching the ball in one's hat

Date Sunday, September 15, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/14/1872] In the seventh inning of the Athletics, Anson and Reach were at second and first bases, and one man was out, when Malone hit a high ball that George Wright caught in his cap, and then passing the ball to third, second and first bases, a scene of great confusion arose–the Reds claiming that they had put the side out by their not very creditable piece of sharp practice, and the Athletics claiming that only the striker was put out. Finally, after ten or fifteen minutes’ discussion, the umpire decided to allow Malone to strike again, and the Bostons protesting against the decision, took the field, and two men were put out without adding a run. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury September 15, 1872

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/14/1872] Malone, weak fly, taken by George Wright with his hat. Wright threw the ball to Spaulding, who threw to third base, Schafer promptly throwing to second, G. Wright coming in claiming that the side was thus put out, Anson and Reach being “forced” by his “catch.” {The “point” here is in regard to catching a ball in the hat.} Fifteen minutes talk!!! {The Umpire decided that Wright’s sharp play amounted to nothing, and sent Malone again to the bat!}

...

The rule in regard to a ball caught by a players hat or cap, is as follows:

“If a fielder stop the ball with his hat or cap, no player can be put out unles the ball shall first have settlled in the hands of the pitcher while he stands within the lines of his position.”

This, of course, compelled Anson to run to third, and Reach to second, and the umpire therefore showed a most disgraceful want of knowledge regarding the rules, in not deciding them out. Evening City Item September 16, 1872

[Boston vs. Athletic 9/14/1872] [Anson at second, Reach at first] ...Malone popped up a high ball that George Wright waited for, and instead of catching it in his hands, caught it in his hat, and as Anson and Reach remained on their bases, George fielded the ball to third and second bases. Judgment was asked on Anson and Reach being forced out, and as the umpire, who was first rather confused by the novelty of the point presented to him, decided that Malone was only out. An indescribable scene of confusion arose, both nines clustering around the umpire, and the Red Stockings were very demonstrative in their appeals to the umpire to decide it a double-play on the ground that no striker can be put out when the ball is caught in a fielder’s hat, and therefore both Anson and Reach were forced off their bases. The Athletics, however, produced the rules which distinctly says, “if an adversary stops the ball with his hat or cap, ... no player can be put out, unless the ball shall firs have been settled in the hands of the pitcher,” &c., and claimed that in case the picking of the ball out of his cap by George Wright as it most undoubtedly did, that the section of the rule providing that “the ball should have been settled in the hands of the pitcher” had not been complied with, and therefore no one could be put out, not even the striker. After some fifteen minutes discussion over the childish quibble raised by the Bostons, the umpire finally decided to call it a “dead ball,” and allow Malone to strike over again, and the Reds agreed to play the balance of the game out under protest. New York Clipper September 21, 1872

[from answers to correspondents] The match you refer to was reported by our regular Philadelphia correspondent whom we have hitherto found reliable. In his deciding that the ball caught by George Wright was a catch, however, he was in error. The point of play arranged by Harry Wright to be tried on the Athletics in this game was based on an erroneous interpretation of the rules, inasmuch as in base ball, as in cricket, a ball caught by a player with his hat or cap is dead for putting the striker it. In the case in point the striker was not only not out, but he had to strike over again. This rule needs amending so far as to make this catching a ball by the cap a dead ball in every respect, as it has hitherto been considered. Had we been umpire in the game we should have decided the striker not out, the ball dead to the extent of forcing the striker to run first base, and consequently dead as to forcing the other men off the bases. If this cap catching were allowed there would be endless disputed on points of play difficult to judge which would result from it. New York Clipper October 5, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Al Wright once worked for the City Item

Date Tuesday, September 17, 1872
Text

ALL WRONG AND AL. WRIGHT. We fear Mr. Wright, of the Mercury “official” scorer for the Athletics will never forgive us, because we dismissed him from out employment for ignorance and incompetency. He does not know how to score. He has never properly read the rules, does not know how to interpret them, cannot write grammatically, and does not know what a base hit or an earned run is. In hiring Mr. Wright to write for our paper, we fell into the general error that he was a reliable reporter of base ball; the moment we discovered his ignorance and incompetency, we dismissed him, and since then, we of course felt it was but mere justice to the public, (and our twenty thousand base ball readers,) to show his numerous faults plainly and promptly. We have no personal ill-feeling toward Mr. Wright–no desire to call him a blackguard, a toady, a New York renegade, or any thing of that sort: quite the contrary! Egad, we think he ought to be grateful for our sincere efforts to improve him. That’s what’s the matter. Of course, he abuses us. But, that’s nothing.

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a game between professionals for a purse

Date Saturday, September 21, 1872
Text

The South Weymouth Park was thronged yesterday to witness various sports, among others a game of base ball between the famous Mutuals of New York and the Red Stockings of Boston, a purse of $300 being offered by the managers of the park.

Source Boston Globe
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

argument over the pitcher 'throwing' the ball

Date Friday, September 27, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 9/26/1872] In the eighth inning Treacy, the first striker, faced Fisher, who had been put in to pitch again, and on the second ball being delivered called for judgment on Fisher’s delivery. The umpire [Charles Fulmer] decided it “a throw.” Another ball was pitched, and the umpire again said “a throw.” Treacey, however, hit the next ball and was fielded out at first by Radcliffe, the umpire deciding him not out, but entitled to another strike. Captain Mills, of the Baltimores, declined to put in Matthews to pitch again, as he very properly said if Fisher was throwing instead of pitching some objection should have been made to it sooner, and as he also declined to allow Treacey to strike over again, the umpire declared the game in favor of the Athletics by a score of nine to nothing, and the Baltimores started off the field. Mr. Hayhurst, manager of the Athletics, here interfered and said he was willing to continue the game without any further objection, and the umpire reversed his decision and decided Treacey out at first.

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

roughs in the crowd in Baltimore

Date Friday, September 27, 1872
Text

[Athletic vs. Baltimore 9/26/1872] The umpiring was certainly most exceptionable, but even that fails to excuse the groaning and yelling indulged in by a crowd of roughs, who manage to get within the enclosure whenever an important game is played. A summary ejectment or two by the police would be very effectual in stopping what is growing to be a positive disgrace.

Source Baltimore Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

season tickets not honored on the final game

Date Sunday, September 29, 1872
Text

The ninth, or home-and-home game for a championship series the rules say, should be played on neutral ground, and, therefore, the Athletic-Mutual and Athletic-Baltimore games of last week would have to be played elsewhere, but owing to the commendable and energetic efforts of Hicks Hayhurst, they were played in this city, thus giving our citizens an opportunity–that they would not otherwise have had–of seeing both games.

As a matter of course, being ninth, or home-and-home games, the season tickets held by the Athletics’ members were not good on those occasions, and a majority of said members under these circumstances paid willingly for admission, a few, however, grumbling and being dissatisfied at being charged for admission. The discontented ones should remember that the games were played in this city only by the courtesy of the visiting clubs, and that if played elsewhere not only the Athletics, but all who wished to witness the game, would have been subjected to a much heavier expense. In consequence of the unreasonable dissatisfaction manifested, the home-and-home game between the Athletic and Bostons will be played in Brooklyn, instead of this city, as originally contemplated. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury September 29, 1872

...the Athletic management induced the Mutual and Baltimore Clubs to visit this city and play their final and concluding games on their grounds. The arrangement was made–of course–that the ground was neutral, and all should pay admission. It is a logical truth that if the Mutuals have had four games in New York and the Athletics four games in Philadelphia, their ninth game must be played on equal terms, so far as gate receipts are concerned. It is the extreme of folly to question the justice of this action. Now, the Athletic managers, in order to have our citizens enjoy to last of these contests, arranged to play the games in this city when it was almost compulsory to have them finished in cities where the ground was absolutely neutral. The season tickets were refused at the gate, (they number several thousand,) and, in justice to the visiting clubs, the regular fee was charged. In consequence, numerous abusive and would be sarcastic letters have been received by the directors of the club, who feel so badly over the matter that in all probability the finale with the Boston Club, which could have been arranged for Philadelphia, will take place almost positively in New York. This is the fitting moral of the business. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch September 29, 1872

Much indignation was expressed at the unexpected refusal of members and press tickets at the Athletic games on Wednesday last. Many were “bling over,” and declared it a down-right swindle. We think so too, and it will have a bad effect. People who pay $15 for membership and season tickets expect their tickets to be good always, and that extra sums will not be extorted from them on a shall pretense that it is a “home and home” game, which is not any better than any other. It is mean, petty and contemptible, and deserves the reprobation of all, not for fifty cents, but because it is a breach of contract. Philadelphia Sunday Republican September 29, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Nick Young leaves the Baltimores

Date Sunday, September 29, 1872
Text

N. E. Young, we regret to learn, as severed his connection with the Baltimore Club as business manager, on account of the interference of some of the directors with his management of that nine. Mr. Young, who enjoys the confidence and respect of the managers of all the professional nines, is a good disciplinarian and the Baltimore Club under his regime had a very successful career, but within the last six weeks they have had more defeats than victories, owing to the manner in which the nine has been changed in every game, and good players superseded by inferior. Mr. Wm. J. Davidson, the much respected Treasurer of the Baltimore Club, alone should be exempted from censure for the present loose management, that gentleman having given liberally of his means and time to advance the best interests of the club. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury September 29, 1872

support for the ten-men game

Our B.B. friends will take notice that the day is not distant when a tenth man will be introduced, to play right short. This will balance the field, and make the game more complete. The slow and ignorant may pooh-pooh, but right short will come. Evening City Item October 1, 1872

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

neither an error nor a base hit

Date Saturday, October 5, 1872
Text

[from answers to correspondents] A ball is struck which goes right for the short stop, who is awaiting it, but right in front of him it strikes a stone or an uneven portion of the ground and bounds far above his head. Is this to be considered an error for the fielder, and is it a base hit to be counted for the striker? ... It is not an error, nor can it rightly be given as a base hit.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a critique of the Athletic grounds

Date Saturday, October 5, 1872
Text

The field was only in tolerable condition, the grass requiring cutting badly in the outer field. We also noticed that though there was room to put the seats back twenty or thirty feet, they were crowded upon the ball field in a way well calculated to annoy the fielders, not only by preventing foul ball catches, but also from the vicinity of the crowd of talkers who invest in wagers on the contests. In fact, the field is badly laid out, and offers ample room for improvements in this respect.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

'innings' should be plural

Date Saturday, October 12, 1872
Text

[from answers to correspondents] Innings is a technicality of base ball and cricket, meaning the turns of the players at the bat, and as each innings is a series of nine or eleven turns, the verb should always be used in the plural number. The word inning is not used in the printed rules of the Mary-le-bone Club, therefore Webster’s definition is wrong.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

pitches called neither balls nor strikes

Date Saturday, October 12, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Athletic 10/7/1872] The umpire...helped Barnes to a run on called balls, after letting a number of good balls pass without calling strikes.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a proposed English tour

Date Sunday, October 13, 1872
Text

The most novel piece of baseball news is the arrangement of a tour to England by the Boston and Philadelphia clubs to be made early next spring, preparatory to the commencement of our championship campaign. The idea is to take over the two champion club nines of 1872 and 1873, the Athletics and Bostons, and together to play not only a series of games of baseball, but out of the two nines to present a cricket eleven wherewith to play country elevens in exhibition contests. The idea is a good one, and if properly carried out, will not only be a pecuniary success, but greatly to the interest of baseball and cricket both at home and abroad. The expense will not be greater than a trip to New Orleans, and both nines could be back by June in time for our season. New York Sunday Mercury October 13, 1872

Cammeyer sponsors a tournament; a dig at Chadwick

One of the most agreeable and interesting features of the present base ball season was the organization of a grand base ball tournament by Mr. Cammeyer. Believing that the carrying out of such a project would afford considerable amusement to the patrons of the base ball playing fraternity, as well as some profit to the clubs engaged, he offered the very handsome sum pof $4,000 to be played for by the Athletic, Boston, and Mutual clubs. He had some little doubt at first as to whether the Boston Red Stockings would take a hand in the affair, as the venerable Brooklyn organist of the Boston Club had continually deprecated the playing of our national game for a purse of money, and confidently asserted that eh Boston Club would not join to any such derogatory proceeding.

On making application to the club, however, they most heartily joined in the affair, and said they would be delighted to play, much to the disgust of the aforesaid organist, who is now running down the club he has been all season cringing to and fawning upon. The necessary arrangements were accordingly made and the $4,000 were divided into the following prizes, viz.: $1,800 for the first; $1,200 for the second; and $1,000 for the third prize. Of course Mr. Cammeyer did not calculate to be out the full amount of these prizes, as the receipts taken at the gate would possibly recoup him for the amount presented, for competition, and it is pleasing to know that his enterprise has been rewarded with success. New York Dispatch October 13, 1872

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

base on balls counted as an error

Date Wednesday, October 16, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 10/15/1872] With the exception of called balls...but one Bostonian reached the first base on an error...

Source New York Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

shortstop backing up on throws from the outfield

Date Wednesday, October 16, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Mutual 10/15/1872] Pearce...filled his position [shortstop] most admirably. Whenever the ball was being thrown in from the out field he showed remarkable dexterity in backing up the bases, and not once during the game could a ball be batted through him.

Source New York Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a throwing contesting; the position of the Pagoda

Date Wednesday, October 16, 1872
Text

Two stakes were driven in the ground, down near the Pagoda, and a rope stretched across them. From this rope the ball was thrown up towards the catcher's position, the distance from the stakes to the home plate being just 110 yards. A base bag was placed on either side of the home base and about sixty feet apart, and the rules governing the throwing required the ball to be dropped inside of these bounds. Six small stakes, each having attached to it a card bearing the name of a participant in the match, were provided, and when the ball was thrown the judges would immediately drove the stake, bearing the name of the man who had thrown over the spot where it fell. Each man was allowed three throws, and his best was measured from the home plate, which was, as above stated, 110 yards from the rope. There were three prizes offered--$25 for the best throw, $15 for the next best and $10 for the third best. New York Herald October 16, 1872 [Hatfield won with a throw over 133 yards.]

Cummings and Matthews the same style pitcher

[Mutual vs. Baltimore 10/17/1872] Each club possesses a pitcher of the same style of delivery... Baltimore American October 18, 1872

Source New York Herald
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early use of 'homer' 3

Date Friday, October 18, 1872
Text

[Mutual vs. Baltimore 10/17/1872] ...until the fifth, when, by some safe hitting and muffing on the part of Fulmer and Pearce, we put in a couple more [runs], which, excepting a “homer” on a long hit to left field by Pike, in the seventh inning, was all we got for the remainder of the game.

Source Baltimore Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a throwing competition; the location of the Union grounds pagoda

Date Sunday, October 20, 1872
Text

A contest in throwing a baseball took place on the Union Grounds, Brooklyn, on Oct. 15, which resulted in the finest exhibition of throwing on record. ... Two stakes were driven in the ground down near the Pagoda, and a rope stretched across them. From this stake the ball was thrown up toward the catcher’s position, the distance from the stakes to the home plate being just 110 yards. A base-ball was placed on either side of the home base, and about sixty feet apart, and the rule governing the throwing required the ball to be dropped inside these bounds. Six small stakes, each having attached to it a card being the name of a participant in the match, were provided, and when the ball was thrown the judges would immediately drive the stake, bearing the name of the man who had thrown, over the spot where it fell. Each man was allowed three towns, and his best was measured from the home plate...

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the condition of the amateur Expert club

Date Sunday, October 20, 1872
Text

The Experts, at one time the best amateur club of this city, still maintain their organization intact, and will give their fifth annual reception on the 31st inst., and the Musical Fund Hall.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

umpire has difficulty calling fair-foul hits

Date Sunday, October 20, 1872
Text

[Boston vs. Athletic 10/19/1872] The umpire, Mr. Rastall, during the game made several erroneous decisions in the matter of fair foul balls, and the Athletic thus lost three base hits and the Boston one.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

year-long contracts to prevent dissipation

Date Saturday, October 26, 1872
Text

Six of the next season nine have signed contracts, the contracts, in all cases, dating from November 1 st, 1872, to run one year, so that the players may be under the surveillance, if necessary, of the board of directors during the winter. Thus we may be assured that when the season of ‘73 opens we will present a set of players who are fresh and free from the injury that so surely and swiftly follows in the course of dissipation. Several of this year’s nine will be discharged. Baltimore Gazette October 26, 1872

Cammeyer Harry Wright’s father?

A good joke was unwittingly perpetrated on Harry Wright and Boss Cammeyer last week. While they were leaving the ground, C. was arguing a point with W., and some of the warriors who adorn the trees outside the ground were interested. “Did you hear Harry Wright’s father scolding him?” said one. “Dat wasn’t his father,” was the reply. “Called him Boss, any how–what d’ye call that?” Cammeyer is in danger in future of being known as Harry Wright’s father. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch October 27, 1872

Source Baltimore Gazette
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the state of the professional arena; weak cities should be kept out

Date Sunday, October 27, 1872
Text

Taken altogether, the season has been damaging to professional base-ball players, for, although nearly all the clubs came out with clean balance sheets, het this is due to the fact that much fewer games were played and that much of the money was taken in during the early part of the season. It behooves the championship committee, at their meeting next month, to take steps by which next season the public interest can be revised [sic]. Besides this, cities which cannot support clubs for a whole season should keep out of the arena, so that the disbandment of clubs in the heighth [sic] of the season can be prevented. Nothing has been more demoralizing than the sudden disbandment of the Troy, Forest City and other clubs. The fee for entering the championship should be placed at a figure so high as to prevent any but the really good clubs from entering, and this would do much to keep the small cooperative nines out. Let the latter, if they desire, enter for a championship of their class, and then there will be a double attraction, and it will pay them much better.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

a rumor of a revived Union of Morrisania club

Date Sunday, October 27, 1872
Text

...it is probable that the old Union, of Morrisania, N.Y., will be revived.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

David Reid reporter for the Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch

Date Sunday, November 3, 1872
Text

[Osceola vs. Olympic 10/31/1872] The Olympics were short-handed. Warbrick and Wagner being the absentees, and in their stead was substituted Yeager and a well-known Knight of the Quill, Dave Reid, of the Sunday Dispatch.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Baltimore club forced other clubs to disband; prospects for next season

Date Monday, November 4, 1872
Text

It was the Baltimores who, through their superior batting qualities, compelled such clubs as the Cleveland, Mansfield, Nationals, Olympic and Troy to disband, but if the Baltimore Club was powerful in 1872 it will certainly be still stronger in 1873. Baltimore American November 4, 1872

alleged hippodroming

[Baltimore vs. Mutual 10/29/1872]“From the betting in the pools sold, the report that one or two of the Mutual players had been squared, appeared to be true, as hardly a bid could be obtained for the Mutes, although some venturesome spirits risked $10 against $25 in a very few instances, despite the ancient and very fishlike smell which surrounded the affair. In just to the Mutual players who are above being bribed, an investigation will be made into this affair, and, if discovered, the names of the parties concerned will be made public, in order that their example prove a beacon to others. With such a suspicion surrounding this affair, it would be absurd to enter into the merits of the game.”

...

“The betting was at first $100 to $50 on the Baltimores: but one gentleman, who it was currently reported had two of the Mutual players in his pocket, was so anxious to lay the odds that speculation suddenly ceased, excepting when some innocent individual with a strong belief in the natural goodness of human nature risked nine or ten dollars against twenty-five. If there was anything really wrong, it is satisfactory to know that the sharps benefitted but little. Some very pretty play was exhibited on both sides.” New York Clipper November 9, quoting the New York World 10/30/1872 [Baltimore won 4-1.]

Source Baltimore American
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

twelve men on a side

Date Sunday, November 10, 1872
Text

[Knickerbocker BBC vs. Manhattan Cricket Club 11/7/1872] As the Manhattans did not come on the field as early as the Knickerbockers–it not being cricket-like to be on hand at the hour appointed–they had to borrow aid from the Knicks to make up their side in the [base] ball match, twelve players on each side taking part in the game.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

no proof of thrown games

Date Sunday, November 10, 1872
Text

No positive proof can be brought forward in support of any direct charges of collusion among players for fraudulent purposes, but yet not one man out of ten who witnessed the majority of the games of October last, can be persuaded that the contests were fairly and honorably contested. In this respect, just as one player of a nine can alone be guilty of the mischief, one club out of seven can be mischief enough to taint the reputation of a dozen. The fact is too plain that just so long as parties can find pecuniary profit in fraudulently arranged contests, just as long will “hippodroming” mark professional playing.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

throwing versus pitching reprised

Date Sunday, November 10, 1872
Text

It will be remembered that the controversy last spring in regard to the rule admitting of underhand throwing as a legitimate style of delivering the ball to the bat was marked by assertions that the rule would “kill the game,” etc. The experience of the working of the new rule has amply proved what we asserted in its behalf in the early part of the season, viz., that underhand throwing having practically been a rule of the game since the days of Creighton, it was absurd to prohibit it by statute while allowing it by custom; and, moreover, that there was no legitimate objection to its working favorably in the interests of the game at large. This rule will be continued in force by the amateur fraternity, and no doubt the professionals will see the uselessness of any longer allowing a small minority of their class to oppose on the old fogy grounds they do.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

early rumor of the Philadelphia Club; dissatisfied members of the Athletics

Date Sunday, November 10, 1872
Text

We hear a little of the project of forming a stock company to organize a first-class base-ball club in this city next year, to rival the Athletic. The starters, if success attends their endeavors, will mostly be dissatisfied members of the Athletic, some of them men who would not hesitate to put their hands deep in their pockets to support the enterprise. While not wishing to disparage the Athletic in any way whatever, we do not see, as we have often said, why Philadelphia cannot support two first-class clubs.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Republic
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the status of the Mutual Club

Date Sunday, November 17, 1872
Text

One of the most prominent of the professional organizations of the country is the Mutual Club, which during the past year has been exclusively controlled by Cammeyer and Davison.

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Athletic finances

Date Sunday, November 17, 1872
Text

Indebtedness of the club, December 1, 1871...................$5,141.25

RECEIPTS.

From membership............................................................$3,825.00

Games, visiting and home clubs.......................................21,457.23

Rent, Eureka club.............................................................. 300.00

Rent, stand on ground........................................................ 130.00

Donation, cash.................................................................. 20.00

One seat............................................................................ 5.00

Rent, Red Stockings, Jr.................................................... 10.00

Credit to treasurer............................................................. 300.00

____________

Total................................................................... $26,047.23

EXPENDITURES

Players, 1871 and 1872.................................................. $15,860.25

H. Painter’s salary.......................................................... 535.00

Loan in full..................................................................... 3,000.00

General expenses........................................................... 2,370.71

Traveling expenses........................................................ 3,899.03

Furnishing account......................................................... 373.85

Cash on hand................................................................. 8.39

____________

Total................................................................... $26,047.23

... As a club’s expense account generally exceeds its receipts, this statement is in every way a creditable one.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

catching Cummings's pitching

Date Sunday, November 24, 1872
Text

[The Mutuals’] chief hopes lay in the engagement of Cummings–the “boy phenomenon,” as he has long been known–who, after a series of coquettings with other clubs, finally settled down in Gotham. ... Cummings was backed by young Hicks of the Eckford nine of ‘71, and, as they had been the crack players of the Star Club of ‘70, their experiences were likely to be renewed. Chas. Mills, the popular veteran, had been tried behind the “boy’s” puzzling twister, and, as every one anticipated, the style of pitching did not suit him, and Charles had to give way, and take for the first time the secondary position of substitute.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

renewed talk of a Europe tour

Date Tuesday, November 26, 1872
Text

Five years ago, when Col. Fitzgerald proposed to take the Athletics to Europe for three or four months, the ignorami laughed and said the idea was absurd! To-day, they are earnestly discussing it, and, possibly, they may go over in May in a Philadelphia steamer!

If only the club had someone to give it ideas!

They can, if properly managed, clear $10,000 by the excursion–but they will require a good business man, and a gentleman.

Harry Wright is important in this connection, and we understand a letter has been addressed to the Oxford Journal, relative to an international match at base ball, from which we quote: “Arrangements are about to be completed for the Athletic and Boston to start early in the spring of 1873. They propose to travel through England playing against each other, or to play any nine that will appear against them; they will also play cricket, as there are some very good players in the two nines.”

Can the Athletics borrow the necessary $5000? If they had a gentleman for President, it might be done. Evening City Item November 26, 1872

This international match was discussed some seasons ago, but owing to a lack of energy on the part of the chief promoters thereof, if “fell through,” but now if the Boston club should not be too badly crippled financially by the late conflagration, we may consider the European tour as a settled fact. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury November 24, 1874

AN INTERNATIONAL SERIES OF MATCHES.–There is now almost a certain prospect of the Boston Club paying a visit to England in the spring with twenty players, including the Boston Twelves. The London Sporting Life has the following in relation to the proposed visit:–Oxford University vs. America.–The following letter has been addressed to the Oxford Journal relative to an international match at this popular game:--

THE PROPOSED VISIT OF THE BASE BALL PLAYERS OF BOSTON AND PHILADELPHIA TO ENGLAND.–Sir,–The visit of the English gentlemen to this country has aroused a desire among the base ball clubs to give England an exhibition of the national game of base ball, which is played so much in this country. Arrangements are about to be completed for the above clubs to start early in the spring of 1873. They propose to travel through England, playing against each other, or to play any nine that will appear against them; they will also play cricket, as there are some very good players in the two nines.

“I hope, Mr. Editor, that if Messrs. Harris, Ottaway, Hadow, and Francis liked the game of base ball when they were in this country, that they will try and get up a nine to oppose them, as they will be sure to pay a visit to Oxford. I remain, yours, &c.,

THOMAS HALL (or, as they call me, ‘Tim.”

CHELSEA, Boston, Mass., Oct. 17, 1872" New York Clipper November 30, 1872

the state of the Atlantic Club; their soiree

We are indebted to our old friend Mr. Jack Chapman, for a polite invitation to the fourth Soiree Dausante of the Atlantic Club, at the City Assembly Room, Brooklyn, on Monday, Dec. 16.

Mr. Chapman writes that the first gentlemen of Brooklyn and their families, will be present, and the air will be heavy with the perfume of flowers, and vocal with the music of birds.

Some of the leading men of Brooklyn have resolved to resuscitate the old Club, and a fund of $25,000 will be raised for that purpose. Evening City Item November 30, 1872

Source Evening City Item
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

more on the Baltimore uniforms

Date Saturday, December 7, 1872
Text

We hope that Mr. Young did not select the uniforms for the Baltimore Club. If he did his taste in costuming is not equal to Daly’s of the Grand Opera House in New York–for it was notable as the ugliest, perhaps, ever seen on a ball field. In addition to pants which resembled in color the subdued yellow of chamois skin, was a shirt which had for a breast pocket what purported to be the arms of Lord Calvert, and which looked like a soiled spot when the men were in the field. The tout ensemble was not pleasing; and, while in Baltimore they were soothed with such pet names as the “Canaries,” the “Calverts” and the “Lord Baltimores,” outside they were cognomened the “Mustard Trowsers,‘ the “Yellow Legs” and the “Dandelions.” However, as they seemed to repent the error of their costumes as the season advanced, and made some alterations in the same, we will be hereafter dumb. Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch, December 1, 1872

the new Philadelphia Club; the reporter for the Philadelphia Dispatch; the benefit of a local rival club

Mr. Reed, of the Philadelphia Dispatch, informs us that the newly organized Philadelphia Club is a regular stock company association and not a club organized on the cooperation principle, and adds that–“The Athletic Club should regard the new club with favor as by having a rival institution in the city they will be supplied with a source of exciting local contests well calculated to make up for the deficiency of contestants which is likely to mark the season of 1873.

Source ” New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the financial status of the professional clubs

Date Saturday, December 7, 1872
Text

Thus far this new [Philadelphia] club, Athletics, and Baltimorians, are the only regular teams spoken of as likely to take part in next seasons’s campaign. There will be no regular stock company nine either in Chicago, Boston, or New York,, judging from the present appearance of things. In this city the Mutuals will run on the co-operative system, and the chances are that the Bostons will follow suit, unless the Cincinnati people should take advantage of the opportunity to secure the services of the Wright Brothers and re-organize the Red Stockings. The fact that the Boston Club has allowed McVey to leave them shows rather plainly that the late fire has made it doubtful whether the nine will be re-organized for 1873.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Capitoline Grounds subdivided; the Tremont grounds

Date Sunday, December 8, 1872
Text

The sale of the Capitoline Ball-grounds of building-lots deprives the baseball fraternity of the largest and best ball-ground they have ever had at command, and now the only inclosed ball-field left to Brooklyn is the Union Ball-grounds, which can only furnish facility for practice to three clubs–the Mutual, Eckford, and Atlantic–as it is needed for regular matches too much to admit of more clubs playing there regularly. The fraternity must, therefore, look to Westchester county for new fields, and, as is well known, there is a splendid field still left open for any parties desirous of taking timely measures for securing a permanent ball-field for the metropolis, there being no place at command on Manhattan Island or even on the Jersey shore. The grounds referred to are the Tremont Club-grounds, located within rifle shot of the Harlem Railroad, and possession special facilities for seating 3,000 spectators under the shade of the large grove of trees fronting the field. This ground is reached in twenty minutes from the City depot, and it presents a fine field for the purpose of a permanent inclosed ball ground. New York Sunday Mercury December 8, 1872

numbered reserved seats; a seating chart

You can see a diagram of the reserved seats on the Athletic grounds at Al. Reach’s. The first and second rows are not numbered consecutively, and we cannot spare the space to publish said numbers. Philadelphia Sunday Mercury December 8, 1872

Source New York Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Knickerbocker's annual dinner

Date Saturday, December 14, 1872
Text

This time-honored base ball organization held their annual dinner at Picat’s, in East 12th street, on the evening of Thursday, Dec. 5th, and a most pleasant reunion of the members marked the occasion. The attendance was numerous and the utmost enthusiasm in regard to the future of amateur base ball playing characterized the proceedings. Among the veterans present were Messrs. Davis, Righter, Purdy and Taylor, the “youngsters” of the club being represented by such active youths as the Bacon Brothers, Kirkland, Rodgers, Clarke, Hinsdale, Junior, Brown, Thorn and the lively Tams. The literary event of the evening was the reading of a poetical effusion of “Young Jim’s,” which composition elicited hearty applause for its capital hits and witty allusions to incidents of the game and individuals of the club. Of course speeches, songs, sentiments, toasts, etc., were given with enthusiastic applause, and thorough social enjoyment prevailed throughout. A letter from Mr. Chadwick in reference to the club and its objects was read and placed among the club records, as it expressed the sentiments of the members in regard to the objects of the game and its proper pursuit. The prospects of the next season were discussed and the promise of quite an amateur revival for 1873.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the side bias of Cummings' delivery

Date Saturday, December 14, 1872
Text

Probably among the most effective catchers of the season we should not be far wrong in placing Hicks, of the Mutual nine of 1872. Most assuredly no man had more difficult pitching to attend to than Hicks, the side bias implanted to the ball–practically useless in its effect on the batting–by Cummings, making the rebound from his delivery so eccentric as to require the most active movements on the part of the catcher to prevent passed balls.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

the Troy club not the Haymakers

Date Sunday, December 15, 1872
Text

The [Troy club of 1872] started under the understanding that they were neither part nor parcel of the old Haymaker organization, although some of its material was used.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Dispatch
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

modern pitching

Date Saturday, December 28, 1872
Text

Pitching in base ball has been brought down to more of a science than the originators of the game ever dreamed of. The duties of a first-class pitcher now require a far greater amount of skill than formerly appertained to the position, and especially has a marked improvement in the style of the delivery of the ball to the bat been noticeable within the past year.

...

It should be borne in mind that no matter how swift a player can deliver the ball to the bat by this or that method, the speed must always be governed by the ability of the catcher to stop and hold the ball. If, therefore, a player is found who can either pitch or throw a ball to the bat with more than ordinary speed, no rule is required to prohibit the delivery which admits of it, as the speed itself is prohibitory in its effect, from the lack of any player able to stop or hold the ball from such a delivery. Therefore so long as the speed is only such as will admit of the ball being caught being the bat, such delivery, whether by underhand throwing or jerking, should be regarded as legitimate.

But speed is no longer regarded as the point of excellence in a pitcher; on the contrary experience has conclusively shown that mere speed, without the accompanying essentials of a thorough command of the ball and judge in its delivery, is too costly a feature to be made available in winning matches, except against a party of the merest tyros in a practical knowledge of the game. The great essential of success in the position if the ability to outwit the batsman. If you can achieve this object by intimidating him by your speed, and thereby deceiving his sight, well and good; but his cannot be done against experienced and plucky batsmen. The scientific pitcher no a-days is he who, with the aid of a swift delivery and a thorough command of the ball, has also sound judgment to assist him. Such a one will send in one ball swiftly, another slowly, and in every legitimate way use his best endeavors to bother the sight and judgment of the batsman; in other words, he will try his best to send him in a ball he cannot hit. The habit of sending in swift “pacers,” without any idea as to where the ball is going after it leaves the pitcher’s hands, and with no other object in view save that fo delivering it as swift as possible, is a style of delivery which now only marks the play of the poorest pitchers in the fraternity. Wild pitching is now properly punished by the rule governing the calling of balls, every all illegitimately wide of the bat being an “unfair fall” and that must be called. To conclude our preface, we have to state that the model pitcher of the period, as far as the delivery of the ball is concerned, is he who has a thorough command of the ball, the judgment to direct its delivery with effect, and the pluck, nerve and endurance to face hot balls and to stand being punished without “losing his head,” or becoming demoralized.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

Cummings's pitching

Date Saturday, December 28, 1872
Text

The youngest pitcher in the professional fraternity is Cummings, of the Mutual nine of 1872, and he is one of the most effectively, especially when he has a catcher familiar with his peculiar delivery, and active and expert enough to give him the necessary support. Without this aid, however, his pitching is more costly than profitable. Cummings imparts to the ball such a rotary motion as it leaves his hand, and gives it such a bias to the right or the left, that the catcher is obliged to be on the alert to watch the eccentric rebound in order to avoid passed balls. Now this giving of a twist to the ball in the delivery is practically more disadvantageous than it is effective, and for this reason:–The bias being rotary to the right or left, it follows that it cannot affect the direction of the ball from the bat, except to bother the fielder by the eccentricity of its rebound. Were the motion imparted to the ball by the pitcher a forward rotary bias then it would increase the number of foul balls hit; but, as it is, the only effect is to make the rebound of the “twisted” ball exceedingly difficult for the catcher to judge accurately; and, if hit, a troublesome ball for the in-fielder to catch or hold. Hence the difficulty a catcher has to encounter in standing behind the bat to Cummings’ pitching, and the number of balls which have rebounded in the in-field in an eccentric manner when hit from the same pitcher’s “twist” delivery. ... As a pitchist of the period, viz: a swift underhand thrower of skill and judgment, Cummings undoubtedly ranks A No. 1.

Source New York Clipper
Submitted by Richard Hershberger

growing membership of the Athletic Club

Date Sunday, December 29, 1872
Text

The members’ pavilion on the Athletic’s ground will have to be enlarged next year, as nearly a hundred new members have been added to the club since the close of last season.

Source Philadelphia Sunday Mercury
Submitted by Richard Hershberger
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