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1880s Base Ball in Golden Gate Park

Time machine Sunday: Baseball by 1886 rules and old-timey uniforms
By - posted 3/1/2015 No Comment

Come on out to Big Rec in Golden Gate Park (7th Ave and Irving) and see base ball played by 1880s rules, using vintage style uniforms and equipment.

On opening day, Sunday March 1, 2015, watch two vintage base ball games as the San Francisco Pacifics take on the the SF Barbary Coast at noon, and the San Francisco Pelicans will play the Dublin Aces at 3 pm.

Bay Area Vintage Base Ball is the first and longest running vintage base ball league in the Bay Area. They play by the rules of 1886 with small gloves, large wooden bats, old style uniforms, umpires in fancy hats (who must be addressed as, “sir”), and strive for historical accuracy.

You won’t even see high fives; they are banned because they weren’t invented until the last 20th century.

1880s Vintage Base Ball Opening Day
Sunday, March 1, 2015 | Noon
Big Rec Field, Golden Gate Park (7th & Irving)

Hurlers (don’t call them pitchers) work not from a mound, but from a box 50 feet from the plate. They cannot employ knuckleballs or split-fingered fastballs or any other delivery that was developed post-1886. Spitballs? Why not? They were legal back then. Read more at sfgate.com

Vintage Base Ball Terminology

Aces = Runs
Baller, Ballist = Player
Behind = Catcher
Blind, Blinder = No score
Bound = Bounce
Bounder = A bouncing ball that doesn’t go out of the infield
Capital = The best, first rate. (ie.”capital play!”)
Captain = Manager
Cranks = Base ball fans
Daisy Cutter = A sharply hit ground ball
Garden = Outfield
Ginger = Determination, quick fierce play
Hand = An out. “Three hands down” ends an inning.
Hurler = Pitcher
Match, match game = A game between two clubs, as opposed to intra-club games
Muff = A muffed ball is a missed catch or grounder
Muffin = A less talented player on a club. Also called a “scrub.”
Picked Nine = An early type of all star team. The best local players picked to play a specific club passing through the area.
Safety = A safe hit
Sky ball = Pop-up
Short Field = An early name for a shortstop
Striker = Batter
“Striker to the line” = Batter Up
Tally = To score a run; score

You may hear phrases during the game such as:

“Nice ginger!”
“Let’s get a daisy cutter.”
“We’ve got two hands down.”
“Sounds like the cranks are restless.”
“Ducks on the pond for ya.”