Monday, December 12, 2011

The 1884 Maroons: Rainchecks

Rainchecks given away at the Union grounds yesterday will be honored both to-morrow and Thursday, when the St. Louis and Keystones play regular championship games.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, May 26, 1884

This is kind of interesting.  First, the Maroons were issuing rainchecks in 1884.  The practice of issuing rainchecks was not universal at the time and there was some controversy in St. Louis in 1883 when Von der Ahe did not issue them.  Also, there was a story floating around in the late 1880s that Lucas formed the Maroons and the UA after he and a group of friends went to a Browns game in 1883 that got rained out and they were not issued rainchecks.  The fact that the Maroons were handing them out gives a bit of credence to that story.  Not a lot, but a bit.

Secondly, the Maroons' game that got rained out was not a UA game.  The Bostons wouldn't play on Sunday and they rearranged their schedule to get the series in before then.  The Maroons were scheduled to play an exhibition game against the Prickly Ash that day.  It's interesting that Lucas would issue rainchecks for an exhibition game and honor them for a league game.  I understand that Lucas did things a bit differently than others but it's a bit odd.  It's a possibility that this was an attempt to improve attendance, which except for Sunday, was a bit disappointing.  

No comments: