May 11, 2004

Baseball was being played in 1791,: according to an ancient Pittsfield, Mass. bylaw. Abner Doubleday, meet Roger Maris. Enjoy your footnote. (Nice publicity windfall for Jim Bouton, though.)

posted by Prince Valium to baseball at 05:17 PM - 7 comments

Oh, that is really sort of neat. What is this "Massachusetts Game" they are refering to? Time to do some Googling...

posted by Joey Michaels at 07:46 PM on May 11, 2004

I wonder what Cooperstown's reaction to this is? And why didn't the article mention that the Pittsfield nine could not afford the star players employed by the "New Amsterdam Jankees"?

posted by msacheson at 08:19 PM on May 11, 2004

It's a great story, and worth exploring, but -- not even a mention of Alexander Cartwright? He who (allegedly) invented foul territory, the 90-foot basepaths, nine a side, and tagging out instead of beaning? The officially acknowledged father of the game? You know. That guy. Just asking.

posted by chicobangs at 08:24 PM on May 11, 2004

doubleday has always been a footnote in jersey.

posted by goddam at 08:35 PM on May 11, 2004

So baseball may have started in Massachusetts rather than in New York. Hmmm.

posted by sixpacker at 09:38 AM on May 12, 2004

baseball really didn't start anywhere. it's been more of an evolution type of thing.

posted by goddam at 09:49 AM on May 12, 2004

That's true. I just thought it was an interesting switch considering the Yankees/Red Sox fight this season. Actually, I thought it was common knowledge now that Doubleday didn't invent the game. The article made it sound like the common belief still is that he did. I read a book on the origins of baseball several years ago; I've forgotton much of it, but do remember the author saying that not only didn't Doubleday invent it, but it is probable that he never even saw a game.

posted by sixpacker at 10:35 AM on May 12, 2004

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