1860's Base Ball Rules & Terms

When attending an 1860's styled game, you may find yourself confused by what you see or hear.
Below is a list of common rules and terms to assist in your vintage experience.

Rules

  • Gloves are not used.
  • Pitch is to be a fairly flat underhand pitch, thrown without jerking the arm.
  • Striker may request pitch location and/or speed.
  • Striker must keep bat on shoulder until ball is delivered.
  • Ball caught in the air is an out; free return to base by runner and no tagging up.
  • Ball caught on one bounce: striker is dead, but runners may advance as on a ground ball.
  • Striker may overrun first base.
  • No stealing of bases.
  • No called balls or strikes unless umpire suspects delay tactics.
  • Runner will be called dead for sliding.
  • For an ace to count, player must ring the bell at the scorer's table and ask for the ace to be tallied.
  • First, second, and third basemen must be within a step of the bag when the pitch is made.
  • Outfielders must play straightaway.
  • Runners may take a two step lead.
  • The point at which a struck ball first touches the ground will determine fair or foul.
  • Bunting is not allowed.
 

Terms

  • Ace or Tally: Run
  • Apple, Pill, Horsehide or Onion: Ball
  • Behind: Catcher
  • Blind: No Score
  • Blooper or Banjo Hit: Weak Fly Ball
  • Boodler: Ungentlemanly Maneuver
  • Bowler, Hurler, Feeder: Pitcher
  • Break One Off: Throw A Curve Ball
  • Club Nine: Team
  • Cranks: Fans
  • Daisy Cutter: Grounder
  • Dead: Out
  • Dew Drop: Slow Pitch
  • Dish: Home Plate
  • Duff or Muff: Error
  • Foul Tick: Foul Ball
  • Huzzah!: Hooray!
  • Leg it: Run
  • Muffin: Player Of Less Talent
  • The Line: The Batter's Line
  • Match: Game
  • Ginger: Enthusiastic Play
  • Side Out: Three Outs
  • Sky Ball: High Pop-Up
  • Stinger: Hard Hit Ball
  • Striker: Batter
  • Striker To The Line: Batter Up
  • Talley Keeper: Scorekeeper
  • Hands Dead: Number Of Outs
  • Whitewash: Scoreless Inning
  • Baller or Ballist: Player
  • Base Tender: Infielder
  • Willow: Bat