The Brown Stockings reached home Sunday, and this afternoon, after a much needed rest of two days, will play the Chicago Clubs at the Grand Avenue Ball Park. A great deal of interest is manifested here and at Chicago over the result of these games this week, as it will have much to do with the final result of the struggles between these two clubs in the race for the championship. They will finish the games to be played here between these organizations, and the numerous admirers of the sport in this city will have no other opportunity of witnessing the organizations which stand the highest in the League play again this season. Chicago, ingloriously beaten last year by the St. Louis Club, this season engaged at an enormous salary the best players in the profession, and have apparently determined on securing the pennant of 1876. The nine is thus far at the top of the heap, but as much of its success is due to smiling fortune as good playing, and the Chicago Club has won several games which properly belonged to their opponents, some lucky circumstance occurring, or a doubtful decision of an umpire rendered just in time to give it victory.As Chicago has been lucky, St. Louis has been unlucky, and several games were lost when the superb playing of the club should have scored them a victory. With a few unfortunate exceptions, the St. Louis Club have throughout the season made as good a showing as Chicago. It is not yet too late for St. Louis to retrieve her lost laurels. There is a possibility of the championship coming to this city if the Browns can get the best of their opponents in the next two weeks' play. The friends of the home club are hopeful, and some even so confident as to believe that such an event will yet happen.The Brown Stockings are now playing for all they are worth, and their most solicitous admirers could not desire a better exhibition than they have been giving lately. There is no reason why they should not keep up the good work for two weeks longer. Their victories over Chicago would doubtless insure them first position, but to defeat the terrible nine from the breezy borders of Lake Michigan will require some hard work upon the part of the Browns, which they are certainly capable of showing, and if Bradley only does what he is able to do in the pitcher's position to-day, the friends of the club need not fear the result.While the people of St. Louis would be happy in the possession of the boss Centennial ball club, Chicago could not survive the shock of a reverse, feeling, as she would, that all her efforts to out-distance this end of the bridge had proved futile. The largest crowd of the season should be on hand this afternoon.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, August 15, 1876
After taking two of three from Louisville, the Browns were eight games out of first. But with six straight games against Chicago, played between August 15 and August 26, the Browns had an opportunity to close the gap with their rival. The teams had split four games and the season series (as well as the mythical Championship of the West) was hanging in the balance.