St. Louis prides itself on its amateur base ball clubs, and such faith have the residents of that town in the harmlessness of the game, and to show that it is an innocent one, the authorities allows it to be played on the Sabbath. In fact, very few games are played on any other day of the week, and a recent Monday issue of one of the St. Louis organs devotes considerable space to the account of two "great" amateur games, and mentioning in addition about a dozen minor games, all played on Sunday.
-Inter Ocean, July 16, 1874
Again (and again and again), I go back to the cultural differences between St. Louis, which was settled by the French and had a large Creole population, and the rest of the country, which was, generally speaking, settled by Anglo-Saxon Protestants. Creole, Catholic St. Louis simply had a different view of how the Sabbath was to be observed. As the Creole influence wained over time, St. Louis would join with the rest of the country and enact blue laws but this wasn't the case in 1874 and there was no reason for the Chicago papers to get all snotty about it.