Vintage Preface: The Game Seen 'Round the World'
One of the beautiful intrigues
of vintage base ball is the unique blend of historical rawness
and reality it delivers. For starters, there's no such thing
as a routine play. It is also a game rife with historical interpretation
and friendly rules debate among those who play and follow it.
Just like the 19th century game, vintage base ball continues
to evolve and define itself as it meanders along on some quirky
little journey intent on creeping into empty fields in towns
and cities all across America. Today, participation in the game
grows slowly like algae on a pond. Tomorrow, the hoped for growth
may be like crabgrass in your front lawn.
Its mission? To become one of the country's most exciting
new national sports that will inspire baseball fans and players
everywhere or maybe influence today's professional game into
better understanding and remembering its roots.
Vintage base ball is an open fenceless field inviting creativity,
direction, development and presentation for those with the wildest
imaginations who are willing to experiment. Ballists (players)
love it. Cranks (fans) adore it. Somewhere Mike "King"
Kelly, Jim "Orator" O'Rourke and Albert Spalding must
This past summer, something very special happened with vintage
base ball in New England. Through a series of uncanny events,
the planets aligned in a manner that only the Vintage Base Ball
Gods could probably explain, or have directed. The final product
presented was pure vintage baseball magic.
For purpose of educating and inspiring, these splendid candid
pictures by freelance photographer Ray Shaw, and accompanying
text by yours truly, will hopefully provide an insight to three
games played last summer that just may have planted the crabgrass
seed of vintage base ball's future.
Enjoy the games!
Greg "Moonlight" Martin
Vintage Base Ball Factory, LLC
Hartford Senators Vintage Base Ball Club
Photography: Ray "Shutta" Shaw
Copy: Greg "Moonlight" Martin
Cast: Hartford Senators Vintage Base Ball Club
Cast: Pittsfield Hillies Vintage Base Ball Club
Special thanks to ESPN Classic, Jim Bouton, John Thorn,
Gary "Pops" O'Maxfield, Bill "Spaceman" Lee,
Chip Elitzer, Steve Vozzolo & The Rookies, Town of Pittsfield,
City of Hartford, Hartford Senators, Pittsfield Hillies, Herb
"20/20" Bush and the 10,000 Cranks who attended these