Monday, October 1, 2012

The Top Twenty Games In 19th Century St. Louis Baseball History: # 10

10. May 4, 1875: Brown Stockings vs. Red Stockings

About one thousand spectators were present yesterday afternoon at the Compton avenue park to witness the first professional game ever played in St. Louis, the contestants being both St. Louis clubs, namely, the "Brown" and "Red Stockings."  The weather, which had prevented the games on Saturday and Monday, cleared off about noon and a more beautiful afternoon could not have been wished for.  Had the sun made an earlier appearance and the certainty of the game coming off been more generally known a much larger attendance would no doubt have been the result.
-St. Louis Republican, May 5, 1875

This was the first major league baseball game in St. Louis history and the first game involving openly professional St. Louis baseball clubs.  I posted the game account from the Republican last month, so I'll spare you the whole thing.  I'll just say that it speaks to the extraordinary nature of 19th century St. Louis baseball history that the first major league game barely cracks my top ten list.  In most cities in the United States, a game like this would have been number one on the list.  But, according to the Republican, this wasn't even the game of the season.  It's kind of odd to be so casual about a game as important as this but, in all honesty, it was only the second most significant game of the 1875.  Still, this is where St. Louis major league history started and, as such, it's a worthy number ten.          

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