You see the darndest things while bicycling in Forest Park. From knights jousting with Nerf, to juggling joggers, to nuns on bikes and many other unusual sights. Today’s oddity was 1860s baseball. A tournament of ten teams were playing for the Saint Louis Cup. The Greater Saint Louis Base Ball Historical Society (GSLBBHS) was sponsoring the games that were being played on fields near the Missouri History Museum. Familiar team names like the Saint Louis Brown Stockings and the Saint Louis Perfectos were represented along with some unheard of team names, the Vermilion Voles and the Rock Springs Ground Squirrels. There were even visiting teams from as far away as Indianapolis and Milwaukee, the Hoosiers and the Juneau Base Ball Clubs respectively. The players and fans or “cranks” as they were then known, the term fan hadn’t been coined yet, were all very friendly and eager to explain the rule difference between their game and what is played today. First off, my bike gloves were the only pair of gloves on the field. Baseball gloves weren’t developed until later in the 1880s. There were no called balls or strikes, the opposing pitcher had to serve up a pitch good enough that the batter or rather the “striker” would be willing to swing at. The ball could be caught after the first bounce for an out. The first bounce also determined if a ball was fair or foul. I’m not sure what is up with stars on the American flag, maybe it was one of those Civil War battle flags?