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Elizabeth Woodworth: In honor of World Series, here's some baseball trivia

 
By Elizabeth Woodworth
Contributing writer
updated: 10/26/2018 11:07 AM

The shattering Ginkgo Moon is full on the 24th. One year in three brings frost with the Oct. 23 cold front above the border states, and the full Moon is likely to strengthen the front. Tornadoes, hail and floods are most likely to occur in connection with tropical storms near the time of the full Moon. Morning fogs become more common. harvest continues all around the country, with about half of the corn and three-fourths of the soy beans cut. In the cranberry regions of the country, most of the berries have been brought in from the bogs. Fertilize the lawn as the Moon wanes. Then feed the trees after all their leaves are down. High pollen counts are over in most of the country until early spring. The last weather system of the month, strengthened by lunar perigee on the 31st come across the country with Halloween. (Countryside)

Oct. 27: Election for a proposed school site on East Church Street passed, 1865. this resulted in the original East Side School. Oct. 28: funding of Cumberland Telegraph and Telephone Co. in Harrisburg, 1898. Oct. 29: Royal Arch Masons, Saline Chapter No. 165, was chartered, 1875. First drawing of numbers under the Selective Service Act for World War II, 1940.

It's World Series time. Since Opening Day, some 2 million fans have rooted for their home teams, from the collegiate summer league Wisconsin Woodchucks in Wausau and Anchorage Glacier Pilots in Alaska to the big league Houston Astros and New York Yankees. And on each field, in 2018 as it was 1839 (when some say that Abner Doubleday invented the game before he went on the be a Civil War hero), time is measured in outs, millions of ballpark franks are slathered in mustard and foul balls are caught in stands by young fans.

Ted Williams said, "Baseball is the only field of endeavor where a man can succeed three times out of 10 and be considered a good performer;" $99,100 is the highest price ever paid for a modern-day baseball card -- Derek Jeter's rookie card, sold in May 2018. Do kids still clip cards to bicycle spokes? Wonder how many are crying about doing so with Jeter's card.

When Jack Norworth and Albert Von Tilzer composed "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" in 1908, neither had ever been to a game. Norworth was inspired by a sign on the subway that read "Baseball Today -- Polo Grounds." Norworth and Von Tilzer didn't see their first MLB game until 32 and 20 years later, respectively. What crunchy snack got a big boost by the song? Why, Cracker Jack, of course!

Some numbers: 6 feet 11 inches is the height of the tallest player in pro baseball history, relief pitcher Jon Rauch, who played for seven MLB teams from 2002 to 2013; 108 is the number of stitches in every baseball; 88 inches of waxed thread is used to stitch each ball. This season, the New York Mets scored 24 runs in a win over Philadelphia, something that hasn't been done in 124 years. New York, which gave up 25 runs to Washington earlier this season, is the first team to score at least 24 runs and give up at least 24 runs in the same season since 1894. Not a record that a team should glory in. 768 is the combined number of career home runs for Hank and Tommie Aaron, who hold the record for most homers between brothers. Hank hit 755 career home runs with the Milwaukee and Atlanta Braves and the Milwaukee Brewers. Tommie hit 13 homers for the Braves. Talk about one brother carrying the other.

In 1860, while other teams wore floppy, pillbox or even straw hats, the Brooklyn Excelsiors began wearing rounded top caps with a long bill and a top button. By 1900, the Brooklyn-style cap took off. In 1934, Buffalo-based New Era began making caps for the Cleveland Indians. Today it's the world's largest sport-licensed headwear company, making caps for all MLB teams, the NFL, NBA and other teams. In 1996, Spike Lee, a Yankee fan, helped caps morph into a fashion accessory when he ordered a custom red Yankees cap, that when seen at the Series sparked demand for caps of all colors. New Era makes more than 200 styles including plaid, argyle and camouflage.

Today, baseball-style caps are everywhere and have become fashion faves for actors, rappers, truckers, hunters, soldiers, quarterbacks on the sideline and even presidents, starting with George W. Bush. Did you know that baseball's first umpires wore top hats and coats with tails? Or that road teams began wearing gray uniforms because there was no time to do laundry?

Only one thing has changed; we no longer have to wait until next year. The Cubbies have their Series.

• Elizabeth Woodworth lives in Harrisburg.