Skip to comments.Who Scores Games by Hand Anymore?
Posted on 07/12/2013 2:07:56 PM PDT by nickcarraway
The first thing Bruce Levy did upon recent entry into Yankee Stadium while accompanied by his in-laws and teenage son was to purchase a program in the area of the concourse behind home plate.
The vendor handed it to him along with a small blue pencil.
For keeping score, the vendor said.
I know I always keep score, said Levy, 50, from Morristown, N.J.
The vendor, who said he was prohibited by his employer from giving his name to a reporter, explained: People today dont know what the pencil is for. Its a dying thing.
Dying, perhaps, but not dead yet. Against a tide of technology and a ballpark culture of entertainment options and limited attention spans, the scorekeeping pencil like its first cousin at miniature golf courses has persisted.
At about 3 ¼ inches long and with no eraser on top, the pencil has helped carry on the traditional method of scoring a ballgame that is generally believed to have begun with a late 19th-century sportswriter named Henry Chadwick.
Levy, who grew up near Yankee Stadium and who attends a few games every season, vowed to continue the struggle for conventional scorekeepings survival.
Im going to teach my son tonight, he said. The boy, Aaron Levy, 15, admitted that he did not know the proper markings a 9-2 putout (right field to catcher) from a backward K (strikeout looking).
His grandfather, Ira Antin, said one deterrent to ballpark scorekeeping has been the inability to purchase a mere scorecard.
I worked across the street in the old Stadium in the 1940s, selling ice cream, he said. They sold scorecards for a nickel.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
I used to love keeping score with a paper and pencil. I do have to say that apps such as GameChanger have made scoring games really easy.
Back when I was still going to ball games, I probably would keep score about once a season or so. It’s therapeutic, almost meditative. And geeky, I know. I would basically score myself by how few “WW”s I marked - “wasn’t watching”
Walter Sobchak: OVER THE LINE!
Walter Sobchak: I'm sorry, Smokey. You were over the line, that's a foul.
Smokey: Bullshit. Mark it 8, Dude.
Walter Sobchak: Uh, excuse me. Mark it zero. Next frame.
Smokey: Bullshit, Walter. Mark it 8, Dude.
Walter Sobchak: Smokey, this is not 'Nam. This is bowling. There are rules.
Out comes the .45...
The entire broadcast announcing crew of the Pittsburgh Pirates. They make quite a big deal of it.
I never understood it. My dad did his scoring in a whole log book, just seemed goofy to me.
I was lucky My Team MOM knew how to keep it for all the games.
I sometimes think the Team Mom had the hardest job of all.
Depending on what she would stand for!
The best crutch I ever had on a LL team!
Talking about this reminds me of another type of “score” I have seen at the baseball game.
In the Royals hay-days of the late 70s and in the 80s I had some season tickets — these were good seats.
Across the aisle and two rows forward of me was an elderly couple that came to the games regularly as well. She brought her knitting. He brought a tape player and a home made wire hanger that he used to hang it on the rail in front of his seats. He had a set of headphones and a pad of musical transcription score paper. He would listen to the music he was working on and do transciption arrangements of the musical score as he was watching the game.
I assumed he was a professor of music and he was arranging classical scores for a small ensemble or something. It was interesting because he followed the game carefully while he did this and could seem to do both at the same time.
When you "score" by hand.. it really doesn't count.
Scoring games on scorecards sucks anymore because of all the lineup changes after the 7th inning. Even with an eraser.
Are any of those familiar names later stars in the majors?
My husband knows, much because he always kept complete records for his softball team. As long as there are softball leagues, someone will know how to score.
And I still know how to score bowling, even though I hardly ever play it and the last time was 4 years ago.
yeah, Cal Ripken and Wade Boggs, coupla Hall of Famers - that’s pretty sweet
...and Boggs was hitting sixth.
...and Ripken was 2-for-13 on the day (well, two days).
High school coaches and their charges.
I used to largely because it helped keep the flow of the game straight in my head. (”Did the Mariners strike out in order in the third inning or the fourth? Oh, both? Never mind.”) I think it’s a little easier in the American League because of the double-switching that is common procedure in the National. These days I just drown my sorrows in beer. Did I mention I’m a Mariners fan? ;-)
Oh no. Thrown out rounding third again.
I had tickets for the Mets. Had a book from little league which I used to score games.
I miss that. Think I will go to some Missions games and keep score.
Front row Amy does at the MIlwaukee Brewers games
To this day I often keep score when going to a Chicago Cub game. I also take my turn keeping score for my Roy Hobbs Baseball Association team (48 year olds and older league) in the Chicago area.
Here’s a funny story from my first time keeping score. My family of origin went to Cub games since way before I was born in 1960. I started keeping score in 1968 at the age of 7 while at a SCHEDULED Sunday double-header. Yes, they actually had many Sunday double-headers back then. Anyways, I was eating a hot dog with mustard on it while keeping score and as I was taking a bite of the hot dog I bit the tip off the pencil. Needless to say I was spitting out hot dog, bun, pencil wood and lead. It turns out that was the last time I had mustard until I started dating my wife 15 years later. Every time I had mustard it tasted like lead, so I hated it. Not sure why I started eating mustard again - must have been true love.
Not that interesting, but that’s my scorekeeping story....
I guess your wife cut the mustard with you. So, how did you keep score after you bit the pencil? What kind of pencil tastes best? Dixon Ticonderoga #2? b(kind of like a wine?) Did the Cubs ever go on to be in the World Series in 1969? Did you get to meet Ernie Banks? Inquiring minds want to know.
It was a masturbation reference.
I used to keep score by hand all the time. But, that was years ago.
When did the backward “K” for “strike out looking” become a scoring symbol? Of course, I see it all the time now, but I can’t remember when I first saw it.
(Basement corridor for the X-Files office. There is baseball game on a small TV which is sitting on a cleaning cart in the hall. Vin Scully is announcing for the LA team.)
VIN SCULLY: It’s a gorgeous day for baseball here in the City of Angels and I’m told it is a gorgeous day all over our republic today— from Bangor to Bellflower, from Amarillo to Anchorage the sun is shining and it’s a perfect day to play baseball... That ball is ripped... and it’s going, going, gone...
(SCULLY, carrying a heavy load of large files, comes down the stairs, acknowledges the JANITOR at the TV and [for lack of a better word -sorry SCULLY] waddles into the office and drops the large books onto MULDER’s desk. MULDER looks up at her over the top of the record book he is reading. She goes over to the back wall, steps up on the boxes there and gazes wistfully out the window.)
SCULLY: Mulder, it is such a gorgeous day outside. Have you ever entertained the idea of trying to find life on this planet?
MULDER: (still looking at the record book) I have seen the life on this planet, Scully and that is exactly why I am looking elsewhere.
(SCULLY opens a paper bag she is carrying and removes a paper-wrapped frozen dessert. This gets MULDER’s attention.)
MULDER: Did you bring enough ice cream to share with the rest of the class?
SCULLY: (smugly, beginning to eat) It’s not ice cream. It’s a nonfat tofutti rice dreamsicle.
MULDER: (returning to his book) Ugh. Bet the air in my mouth tastes better than that. You sure know how to live it up, Scully.
SCULLY: (stepping down and continuing to eat) Oh, you’re Mr. Live-it-up. Mulder, you’re really Mr. Squeeze-every-last-drop-out-of-this-sweet-life aren’t you? On this precious Saturday you’ve got us grabbing life by the testes stealing reference books from the FBI library in order to go through New Mexico newspaper obituaries for the years 1940 to 1949 and for what joyful purpose?
MULDER: Looking for anomalies, Scully. Do you know how many so-called “flying disc” reports there were in New Mexico in the 1940s?
SCULLY: I don’t care. Mulder, this is a needle in a haystack. These poor souls have been dead for 50 years. Let them rest in peace. Let sleeping dogs lie.
MULDER: No, I won’t sit idly by as you hurl cliches at me. Preparation is the father of inspiration.
SCULLY: Necessity is the mother of invention.
MULDER: The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom.
SCULLY: (taking another bite) Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we may die.
MULDER: I scream, you scream, we all scream for nonfat tofutti rice dreamsicles.
(MULDER sets the book down and lunges for SCULLY. He grabs her arm and takes a bite of the dreamsicle. The cone breaks and pieces of the dessert splatter down on the book.)
SCULLY: No-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho! (delightful laugh) Mulder!
(She looks closely at the dairy-product-smeared page.)
SCULLY: (accusing) Mulder!? You cheat. I can’t believe that you’ve been reading about baseball this whole time.
MULDER: Reading the box scores, Scully. You’d like it. It’s like the Pythagorean Theorem for jocks. It distills all the chaos and action of any game in the history of all baseball games into one tiny, perfect, rectangular sequence of numbers. I can look at this box and I can recreate exactly what happened on some sunny summer day back in 1947. It’s like the numbers talk to me, they comfort me. They tell me that even though lots of things can change some things do remain the same. It’s...
LOL, I had forgotten about that episode. Great catch.
I used to keep score at the games. Back in the day before video screens at the ballpark, some guys sitting behind me were teasing me about keeping score. But then later in the game, they started asking me what so-and-so hitter did the last time he was up.
Do the guys with the long white coats in Australian rules football hand score still?
My son was team manager for his high school team. He cankeep score by hand. Still does at Reds and Cubs games.
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