Saturday, December 30, 2017

Right Short

On page 27, a meaningful number for sure, of his Base Ball Manual, Henry Chadwick writes:

"In the present position of the game there is but one "short-stop," and he stands to the left of the infield between the second and third base positions. Ultimately, however, a "right-short" will be introduced, which will make the field one of ten men instead of nine, as now. In America the professional clubs this season play what they call exhibition games -vis., not regular matches-under the rule of ten men and ten innings, but all championship contests are played with nine men, there being no "right-short" fielder.

Chadwick's Base Ball Manual was published in London in 1874. The front page contains that title, as well as a nice illustration of a batsman, and the following, "Containing the New Rules of Base Ball as revised at the Base Ball Convention held at Boston, U.S., March 2, 1874, together with special instructions in all the scientific points of pitching, batting, and fielding, with instructions for scoring the game and rules for umpiring, by Henry Chadwick."

So...this is the latest thing I'm looking for, these ten men, ten inning or ten position game box scores. I have one, but its kind of an anomaly for these because its from 1863, and in Victoria, on Vancouver Island in what would eventually become the colony of British Columbia and part of Canada.
Here is a copy of that, its from March 31, 1863, reported in the British Colonist, a newspaper in Victoria. John Calhoun Keenan was the pitcher, and owner of the Fashion Hotel. He was from Sacramento [originally from Ireland], and played both cricket and baseball in both Sacramento and Victoria. He was also noted as a fireman.





































In addition, further research...
So, using that, I found some articles in "Forest and Stream", a sporting magazine, initial find is for October 29, 1874.

The article reviews the championship matches for the 1874 season then states:
"-The professional championship season closes on Oct. 31st, after which date exhibition games, under the ten men and ten innings rule, will be in order. From the appended record of games won and lost up to October 25th, inclusive, it will be seen that the Bostons stand first-winning the pennant-the Mutuals second and the Athletics third. The table is as follows (gives rankings, you can go to bbref and look up the 1874 standings)..
-An exhibition match, under the ten men and ten innings rule was played on the Union Grounds, Brooklyn, October 24th, between the Mutuals and Atlantics, which resulted in the success of the Mutuals in a ten innings games, played in an hour and three-quarters, with a score of 7 to 1. West, of the Chelseas, played right short for the Atlantics and made a splendid double play. Geer, of the Fly Aways, assisting with the Mutuals. The Atlantics earned the only run earned in the game.

In August, the Forest and Stream reported on a game between the Atlantics and Chicago:

"-The finest display of ball playing ever seen in Chicago was on the occasion of the benefit match given Jimmy Wood on July 29th, the match being an exhibition game between the Atlantics and White Stockings, played under the ten men and ten innings rule, Ferguson playing at right short for the Atlantics and Collins for the Whites. At the end of the tenth inning the score stood at 4 to 4 only, and in the eleventh inning the Whites won by one run. The score was as follows:
Atlantics......0  0  0  2  0  0  2  0  0  0  0  -  4
Chicago.......1  0  1  0  0  2  0  0  0  0  1  -  5
The new game is highly spoken of in the Chicago papers."


Here is another report from Forest and Stream, earlier in 1874, from March 19:

"-By the report of the proceedings of the Professional Association Convention held in Boston, it will be seen that the ten men rule though excluded from championship contests is to be the rule for all exhibition games played by professional clubs. In fact they are debarred playing any 'exhibition' game under the regular rule of play until they have played their championship series to a close. The first series of these games therefore under the ten men rule will be played the same week, in April, when the Boston Club will make an exhibition tour prior to their commencing the championship series. As at the Amateur Convention in New York last December, some of the delegates declared that the basis of their opposition to the ten men rule was the fact that the Professional Convention would adopt it, and that they wanted something different to the game that class played, by the same course of reasoning the Amateurs should adopt the new game themselves. Under their proposed rule of allowing but a square pitch in delivery, they well want ten men in the field to keep down the large scores that will be made against a simple pitch of the ball to the bat."

I've found William J. Ryczek gives the March convention good coverage in his book on the National Association, Blackguards and Red Stockings. Peter Morris also gave the attempt a page in his book A Game of Inches.

Here is a box score, finally, of a professional match. December 25, 1873. This is from "Record of the Boston Base Ball Club, Since Its Organization: With A Sketch of All Its Players for 1871, 72, 73, and 74, and Other Items of Interest. By Rockwell & Churchill, Printers, 1874." It is preceded on page 45 with the following:


Base Ball In Winter.

     "Among the sports of Christmas day was a game of base ball upon the Boston grounds between the nines or 'tens' selected for the occasion. Harry Wright and Spalding chose sides from the various players, amateurs and juniors, who happened to be present, and the game proved very interesting to four or five hundred spectators.
     The score was a tie at the end of the third, eighth, and ninth innings, Harry's side getting the winning runs in the tenth. Following is the score:-"

































Peculiar, is that Wilson is Short Left Field and Mathews is Right Short.  Al Spalding would pitch 617.1 innings in 1874, so hopefully this game didn't take too much out of him.

A retired blog on St. Louis baseball, This Game of Games, has the following article, which talks of a game played in the ten men ten inning format, also a winter exhibition. I find it interesting that Sweasy is also in this game: http://thisgameofgames.blogspot.com/2007/10/game-played-under-ten-men-ten-inning.html

In The Pride of Havana: A History of Cuban Baseball by Roberto Gonzalez Echevarria, he states
"a curious feature of nineteenth-century Cuban baseball is that it was played with ten men to a side, a fact that left its mark in Cuban baseball jargon. As kids we referred to sandlot games where sides were chose on the spot as a pit en, as in echar un piten, to play a casual, pickup game. The expression I know now comes from a "picked ten," a selected team of ten players."

In March 1874, the University of Virginia magazine, in Google Books as The Virginia Spectator, had this observation:

"-The Yale Courant is always quite interesting. It is generally full of news about boating, base ball, & c. We copy from a late number the following:
    The prospects that the coming base-ball season will be a successful one with amateur and professional ball-players seem very encouraging. Up to the present time seven first-class professional teams have entered the lists to compete for the whip pennant. The much talked of Connecticut "ten" will probably do so at the next meeting of the Professional Association. The new rule, which constitutes ten men and ten innings the legal game, is received with little favor by unprofessional players in this vicinity, and there exist serious doubts of its adoption by the Amateur Association, notwithstanding the efforts which will be made in its behalf by all the prominent sporting papers in this city. It is now settled beyond dispute that the Athletics, of Philadelphia, and the Red Stockings, of Boston, will play a series of championship games in England, Mr. Alexander Spaulding [sic] having already been sent over to make all the preparations necessary to a successful debut of our national game in that country. The struggle for the professional championship promises to be a very lively one. At present the prospects of the whip pennant ever being held in New York or Brooklyn are very slim, neither city being able to raise a stock organization, though New York will be represented by a team, which will be partially run on the stock principle. The following is a list of the salaried paid by some of the more prominent stock organizations this season: (the article lists players for several teams, with salary. I will note one of interest, Fergy Malone, of the Chicago team, was highest paid at $2,200. He died in Seattle, a Special Customs inspector around age 70, in January 1905. He'd been out drinking all night, and died around 4 a.m. in a cab while the driver and a fellow inspector were in bar. His body was shipped back to Philadelphia where it was given a burial.)

Continuing, in Peter Morris' Baseball Fever: Early Baseball in Michigan, he states the Jackson Mutuals voted down implementing ten men, ten innings.

The most extensive coverage, at least of Chadwick's arguments, which have been well known and the purpose of my exercise here is to find scores, accounts of the games more particularly, lineups to see who played, etc, is in Andrew J. Schiff's The Father of Baseball: A Biography of Henry Chadwick. He elaborates the winter of Chadwick's discontent and the eventual defeat of the concept and how it was representative of the game moving away from Chadwick's influence.

Okay, now, have come across another one...

September 22, 1863, New York Clipper, Excelsiors v Knickerbockers (like baseball royalty you know?). Chadwick was the scorer for this game, so another clue. However, like the other early versions, this is 10 men, 9 innings. Which I now have two box scores of.





Saturday, December 23, 2017

Game 37, Seattle Returns to the Winning Column with the arm of Wheezer Dell

Wheezer Dell vs Walter Mails. Wheezer Dell would throw over 1,400 innings for Vernon over 4 PCL seasons later in the decade. His minor league career lasted from 1909 to 1926, with a brief respite for the Brooklyn team of the National League in the mid-Teens.
Walter Mails was also on those teams, along with George Cutshaw (their star 2nd baseman) who was on the Seattle bench for this contest. Duster Mails and Wheezer Dell.


Babs B. B. Ladies Orchestra


Game 36, In Which The Indians are Best'd by Peaches Kunz

Earl Dewey Kunz, born Christmas Day in 1898, played for Sacramento, Oakland, San Francisco, and Seattle in a PCL career that spanned 1920-1930. His time with Seattle was still a couple years away when he beat them on a May day in 1924. Wikipedia identifies his nickname as Pinches, so maybe the columnist is yanking his chain in calling him Peaches. But, Peaches is a more familiar nickname of the time, so maybe Peaches is correct. In this game, Peaches beat Suds Sutherland.


Charles Hollocher, The Saga of

May 15, 1924 Seattle Daily Times

The Tragedy


Game 35, reported May 15, 1924, Seattle moves into tie for 4th place

"FOURTH STRAIGHT WIN FOR INDIANS MOVES THEM HIGHER
Seattle Makes Everything Count, Killefer Takes No Chances, and Acorns Are Beaten 4 to 3."

Seattle's hot hitting continued...


Game 34, Reported May 14, 1924

"FIRST VICTORY OVER OAKLAND CLUB GIVE FANS RIGHT TO HOPE
Earl Baldwin Features Win With Homer Over Left Field Wall With Bases Full-
Hard Hitting Keeps On."

The Seattle club was moving closer to .500 with a victory over Oakland. the march to the Pennant one day closer. Catcher Earl Baldwin brought the power, and Vean Gregg brought the arm.


May 14, 1924 ad for upcoming visit of the ZR-1 Shenandoah, memorialized in The Wreck of the Shenandoah


Chesterfield Ad, Seattle Times, May 14, 1924


Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Well

The Mariner's won yesterday. Felix and Kuma are coming back, 2 weeks out. Okay, so awhile since I've posted, I was going to migrate this to a website, but I've realized I will never gain that level of technical competence and just prefer writing.

First, I'll get my post up about my presentation at the 2016 Fred conference at the BBHOF. Other than that, well, that's that.