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Baseball has been providing us with fun and excitement for more than a hundred and fifty years The first game resembling baseball as we know it today was played in Hoboken New Jersey on June 19 1846 The New York Nine beat the New York Knickerbokers that day 23-1 The game was played according to rules drawn up by Alexander J Cartwright A surveyer and amateur athlete It is a myth that Abner Doubleday1 invented baseball It was Alexander Cartwright not Abner Doubleday who first laid out the present dimensions of the playing field and established the basic rules of the game The first Professional baseball team was the Cincinnati Red Stockings who toured the country in 1869 and didnt lose a game all year Baseball began to attract so many fans that in 1876 the National league was organized-the same National league that still exists today Although the game was played in 1876 it was recognizable as baseball-nobody would confuse it with football or basketball-it was quite a bit different from baseball as we know it now For example pitchers had to throw underhand the way they still do in softballthe batter could request the pitcher to throw a high or low pitch it took nine balls rather than four for a batter to get a base on balls and the pitching distance was olny 45 feet to home plate The rules were gradually changed over the following 20 years until by about 1900 the game was more or less the same as it is today In 1884 the pitchers were permitted to throw overhand in 1887 the batter was no longer allowed to request a highor low pitch by 1889it took only four balls to get a batter to a base on balls
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