Friday, February 20, 2015

Pitchers and Catchers Report

Pitchers and Catchers Report.  After a long, cold winter, these are the words that baseball fans like to hear.

Last evening on Twitter @SABR retweeted @mighty_flynn's tweet on an early use of the term "pitchers and catcher(s) report".

Baseball in old newspapers. That caught my eye.  The link led to a clipping from which I've copied below.

The Indianapolis News - March 18, 1907

@mighty_flynn is T.S. Flynn, Social Media Director for the Halsey Hall Chapter of SABR, one of the more active chapters.  T.S. did a nice job qualifying his tweet.  It was earliest instance of the phrase that he had found.  Not the definitive "it is the earliest instance".

He used one set of tools, I thought I should use a another set and see if I could get a different result.  I turned to and found the following from a few years earlier.

Plain Dealer - February 22, 1905

There might even be an earlier mention of the phrase.  I didn't find one over at Chronicling America.

Now to be very clear: this is not about one upping another researcher.  This is not about being first or better.  This is about adding to the collective knowledge of baseball.

Is this important?  Sure, on some level.  But what I got out of this is a new (to me) baseball researcher that I can learn from and perhaps call on in the future.  Thanks, T.S.

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