February 4 in Baseball HIstory

February 4, 1861

“In front of a reported crowd of over 10,000 spectators, the champion Atlantics defeat the Charter Oak Club, 36-27 on a game played on frozen Litchfield Pond in South Brooklyn. The players, wearing ice skates, were permitted to glide pass the bases, which were painted on the frozen surface.”

Lucky Ty Cobb wasn’t involved or some of the players would have left with fewer limbs than when they started….

Holy cow, this was actually a thing!

Learn something new every day.

February 3 in Baseball History

February 3, 1961

“Charlie Finley douses an old school bus bearing the sign ‘the Kansas City-to-New York shuttle’ with gasoline and sets it on fire in the left field parking lot of Municipal Stadium. As the vehicle becomes engulfed in flames, the new owner of the A’s tells reporters the stunt symbolizes the end of the team sending talented young players to the Yankees in exchange for major leaguers well past their prime, a practice deeply resented by the Kansas City fans.”

 

Another bananas story that would be much bigger today.  Maybe a Braves owner could set fire to an old airplane symbolizing the end of the home team shipping off every breathing ball player.

February 2 in Baseball History

February 2, 1876

“The National League is officially formed with franchises located in Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Hartford, Louisville, New York, Philadelphia and St. Louis. The Hartford Dark Blues will play its second season in Brooklyn, being renamed the Hartfords, before the charter team is disbanded in 1877.”

Hrrmmmm.  Only the anniversary of the start of professional sports as they exist today. No biggie.

Can’t wait for some travel team to model a full-dye sublimated uniform set on the 1876 Hartford Dark Blues….

February 1 in Baseball History

February 1, 1976

“Mike Marshall is arrested by the East Lansing police for taking batting practice on the campus of Michigan State University. MSU officials had asked the Dodger reliever not to hit baseballs near the tennis courts, fearing for the students’ safety.”

Wait, WHAT!

That would break twitter, espn, and facebook all at once these days!  Bonkers!

Glad I never had to worry about that when I was younger….

January 31 in Baseball History

This will be a fun new daily series. Travel baseball is, for most of us, heavily focused on the present and future, understandably so.  That being the case, I don’t think it hurts to look to the past for context, anecdotes, or just something interesting.

Kicking this off with today, January 31:

“1961 – Houston voters approve financing for a domed stadium, removing the last hurdle to gaining a major league franchise for the Texas city. The Astrodome, the eighth wonder of the world, will be the result of today’s approval and will serve as the Astros’ home from 1965-1999.”

Love this one!  How many of the indoor facilities that are so much a part of travel baseball are part of the family tree of the Astrodome?  Climate-controlled baseball! Yeah!