OCTOBER 22, 1845
NEW YORK, NEW YORK
– Several sources indicate that the first baseball box score appeared in the New York Morning News on this date in 1845. This was just a month after the Knickerbocker Club of New York compiled the first known set of rules for base ball (see September 23 story on this site). The box score recorded a game between The New York Ball Club and a team from
Brooklyn (unfortunately, the actuall box score could not be located).
The box score appeared to be patterned after cricket, a more commonly played game in Manhattan at the time, a box with two columns listing players for each team in the order of how they batted. It recorded little more than their names, number of outs made and runs scored. It didn’t have pitching statistics, except for what the pitchers did at the plate.
Nowadays, the typical box score has, at least, names, positions, at bats, runs, hits and runs batted in.
sample current box score
Many box scores also record who had extra base hits, committed errors, hit sacrifice flies, stole bases and stats on all pitchers. Plenty to lose yourself in for a half hour or so.
The New York Times
New York City,” by Fox Butterfield, October 4, 1990