In today’s episode of Today in Baseball, we pay attention to a game on June 5, 1869, in which more than two hundred runs were scored.
In a time that baseball was mainly an amateur game, the National Association of Baseball Players allowed semi-professionalism. Nevertheless, the Cincinnati Reds were the first fully professional team in those days. Those same Reds beat the Niagara Club of Buffalo 42-6. But five days later the Niagara Club of Buffalo would set an all-time record of runs scored.
In their NABP game vs the Columbia ball club, the Niagara Club opened the game with a 40-run(!) first inning that would set the tone for the remainder of the game. Still, that 40-run inning would not be the biggest. In the eighth frame, the Niagara Club would score 58 runs. What catches the eye in the box score below is that one inning the club did not manage to score.
Hard to believe that the Columbia club did use only one pitcher in that game. He threw an average of four pitches per batter and totaled about 950 pitches. He threw them underhand but still that is an impressive number of pitches.
In that 58-run eighth inning, Niagara batted around almost seven times and sent 61 batters to the plate. There have been only 27 games in which a team has sent at least 61 batters to the plate in an entire nine-inning game. The Chicago Cubs hold the modern MLB record by sending 66 batters to the plate in a game in 1922.
With a score like this, one may think of Charlie Brown and his team. But how bad they might have been, they never lost with these numbers. Their biggest loss was 100-0.
Hard to believe that both teams managed to finish this game in three hours.