Clipped From The Brooklyn Daily Eagle
THE THOMAS F, I'TtATT, riteher. sin c. RMiTir, Want Field. N. J., against whom the Excelsiors were playing, was a strong club, composed of men weighing all the way from 150 to 100 pounds. Cummings' youthful appearance caused a smile of derision to appear ou the faces of the batsmen as they faced his delivery, hut ho . had confidence in himself and as ho received good support, he beat them by 24 to 12. "I was a proud boy over the result, as you can Imagine," remarked the old time twirler. "I was taken by the Excelsiors when they went to Washington to play their annual game with the Nationals. These contests were alternately played in Brooklyn and Washington. We played the Unions lirst. I pitched two Innings, the final score being 3C to 32. 1 was not put in against the Nationals on the next day, but I think we won the same. In tho following year we went to Boston and played such clubs as the Lowells, Tri - Mouutaius and Harvard University. "It was in a game against tho collegians that I first used the curve. I got my theory from throwing clam shells in playlns with boys. I saw that they curved to the right and left and I conceived the idea of trying to make a base ball do the same thing. After I a great deal of constant practice i aec.mi - I pushed the feat. I received no encourage ment irom tiaso ball exports and was. in fac laughed at, as no one thought it could be dono. I often became discouraged, but kept on. At times I would think I had It and some of my companions would get behind the catcher to watch tho ball. Sometimes they said they saw a curve and other times they thought it was straight. All of this re - rr. - . . . ft or t - x nr"r" n ATLANTIC BASE BALL CLUB, 1863. . V. PKAnCK, JOSr.I'l! ST.M - .T lior; Sep. First Hn - , v:ti:i o'iuui - .v, Mntint 1 - IIAltI.KS 1 (iJIITH, Third llast joun r. Left game once mere. When asked if he thought tho present style of base hall was more scientific than that of his days, he replied: "I do not think so. 1 haven't seen mauv games lately, but those that I have did not impress me as showing many improvements. We used to have signals but our catchers did not take care - cf thein as they do now. I did all this myselr, and they were so simple, too. that no opposing batsman got on to thorn for that reason. I don't s - ce any blocking in batting to ri.ght field as some of the old batsmen used to do and they displayed much science in that. I think a pitcher ought to do the signaling, that is an experienced one, for he should know tile batsmen belter than any on " "Fielding nowadays is no hotter than It was in my time; in fact, I don't think it Is as good. You must, remember we had a ball that contained two ounces of rubber. It was extremely lively and when It was hit, it came along with tremendous velocity. Why, I remember many balls being sent over the Cap - Itollno grounds into the next street, which would be an impossible feat with the present balls. Flies would be sent into the air for such a distance that the bull would appear like a little five cent rubber ball. No one vised gloves in Ikldin;;. either, uiul a sharp nit 0110,1 catll';1 it hands. .Manager Baniie, wbo used to catch inc. said to me the other day that tho talk of the present day sneed of pitchers is nonsense and that it is no better than that of our days. Ho should know, for i a ho hnd experience in those day and has caught present day twirlcra lu practice. Look at I cirAr.MAN - , r. h. ( - it.xi:. l - 'ii'l.'.. .Scfur.d M. - imc. JOHN G.U.YtN, U'HUT l'i' FRANK NOIVJO ::, Catcln'r. Id. was an Interacted listener to the conversation. He is a base ball enthusiast and can tell many interesting stories concerning the old time games when the Knickerbockers, who played on the Elysian fields in Hobjken and tho Eurekas of 'Newark were the most prominent clubs in this vicinity. Hr kiw..v all of the players personally and when the skill of the old timers came up in tho conversation he said with emphasis that the present day players are no whit better than those of his day; in fact he thought them not as good. George Wright, a brother o: Harry, he ventured to say, was the most remarkable player that evi - r lived. In evorv department of the - - .i - i:e he was iv t:dcrfully proficient. Wright was everywhere on the field and backed up every player. Often he saved an error by squatting beneath a man just in he was about to drop the ball. Many pLiyors nowadays make in pretense of backing up their associates; In fact they simply lock after their record. Wright played for the success .1' hU team first. and all tho time. Itobcrt Ferguson, who died a few years ago - in this city was another remarkable player. He v. .i. - . at home in every inlield position. Dick Pearce, Burdock," Chapman, R. - rs Barnes. Jewell the White and Whitney brothers and others toj numerous to mention he raid could give many valuable hints 1. 1 players who draw big salaries nowadays. : Mr. Cummings has a .vumigcr brother about i l!i or L'U yeaiv oui, wno also famous nltcher. Last vear hn , itch., ,7,1 ' the Ben Hur Athletic club and did line work I in the box. Ho is being trained by William, m , ji i i j j : ; !