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Where did baseball in the 19th Century originate?

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βˆ™ 2005-05-26 05:15:32

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Contrary to popular belief, Baseball was not invented by a single individual, but evolved from various European "bat and ball" games. Russia had a version of Baseball called Lapta, which dates back to the fourteenth century. It consisted of two teams (five to ten members) with a pitcher and batter. The ball would be thrown to the batter who would attempt to hit it with a short stick and then run to the opposite side and back before being hit by the ball. England has played Cricket and Rounders for several centuries. The first recorded cricket match took place in Sussex, England in 1697. Cricket is played in a large open circular field and has two sides of eleven players that attempt to "put out" a "batsman" who tries to prevent a ball thrown by a "bowler" from knocking over "bails" placed on "wickets," or three upright sticks. If the batsman makes contact with the ball, he runs to the opposite side of the "pitch" and continues running back and forth until the ball is retrieved by the opposing team. Rounders, which shares more technical similarities to Baseball, dates back to Tudor times in England. This game consisted of two teams, six to fifteen players, including a pitcher, batter, "bowling square," "hitting square" and four posts, similar to bases used in Baseball. Each player had to bat in each "inning" and the game lasted two innings. The pitcher tossed the ball to the batter who attempted to hit it. If contact was made the batter ran to the first post. Points were awarded depending on what post was reached by the batter and the manner in which the post was reached. Germany played a game called Schlagball, which was similar to Rounders. The ball was tossed by the "bowler" to the "striker," who struck it with a club and attempted to complete the circuit of bases without being hit by the ball. Americans played a version of Rounders called "Town Ball," which dates back to the early 1800's. In this game, the first team to score one hundred "talleys" won the game. In 1858 the rules were formalized as the "Rules of the Massachusetts Game of Town Ball." Occasionally, early 19th century American newspapers would mention games listed as "Bass-Ball," "Base," "Base Ball," "Base-Ball," "Goal Ball" and "Town Ball." The first known printed record of a game that was slightly different from Rounders and resembled a game closer to Baseball, is from an 1829 book called "The Boy's Own Book," in which the game is referred to as "Round Ball," "Base" and "Goal Ball." A crude field diagram was included with specific locations for four stones or stakes (bases), that were arranged in a diamond. The article described how to "make an out" as well as how to get "home." The word "party" was used to describe a team, and the team at bat was called the "in-party." Each party pitched to themselves, bases were run in a clockwise direction and players could be put out by swinging and missing three pitched balls or by being hit with the ball while moving between bases. Perhaps the first Town Ball club to adopt a constitution was the Olympic Ball Club of Philadelphia, founded in 1831. Their constitution was first published in 1838 and consisted of fifteen "articles." Duties of the board of directors, members, and captains were described. Practice days and a fine structure were also outlined. The earliest known newspaper account of a Baseball game in the United States was published on September 11, 1845, in the New York Morning News, which announced a game that occurred the previous day. The first recorded Baseball game was played on October 6, 1845 at Elysian Fields, in Hoboken, New Jersey by fourteen members of the New York Knickerbockers Club. One team may have been captained by Alexander Cartwright and the other by club president Duncan Curry. Curry's team won 11

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