Sunday, June 28, 2009

Their Future Home

The lovers of out-door sports, should the weather prove fine, will, in all probablility, fill the Grand Avenue Park to its utmost capacity this afternoon, on the occasion of the first professional base ball game of the season, which is to be called promptly at 3:30 o'clock. The contest is for the League championship, and the contestants, the Boston and Indianapolis, or rather St. Louis clubs, two of the strongest organizations in the arena. Clapp and his comrades arrived in the city yesterday morning, and the Bostons, who played at Peoria yesterday, will reach here on an early train. Both nines are in splendid trim. The Bostons must win to-day to retain first place in the race for the championship, and as the Indianapolitans naturally desire to create a favorable impression on their first appearance in their future home, the struggle will be a desperate one, and should be witnessed by all who take an interest in the national game.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, July 9, 1878

A couple of thoughts:

-Putting the situation in context, it should be remembered that St. Louis had placed teams in the NA and the NL during the previous three seasons and had seen some success in 1875 and 1876. The 1877 season was a disaster for several reasons and the Brown Stockings folded in difficult circumstances. Indianapolis and Boston came to town the following season, which was the first since 1874 that St. Louis hadn't fielded a major league club.

-I really can't speak to the intentions of the Indianapolis Club and what their plans. What I can say is that this series was being sold as the first home games of a new St. Louis League Club. Was Indianapolis selling the St. Louis public a bill of goods? Don't know. Was the Globe misrepresenting the situation? Maybe. Was their a deal that fell apart? Possible-and I'll get to that later.

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