(The following story was published in The New York Times on May 1, 1887, the day after the Phillies opened their new ballpark, Baker Bowl. Source: Baseball Reference.com).Philadelphia, April 30 -- The new grounds of the Philadelphia Baseball Club, at Broad-street and Lehigh-avenue, were opened this afternoon and 18,000 people
(The following story was published in The New York Times on May 1, 1887, the day after the Phillies opened their new ballpark, Baker Bowl. Source: Baseball Reference.com).
Philadelphia, April 30 -- The new grounds of the Philadelphia Baseball Club, at Broad-street and Lehigh-avenue, were opened this afternoon and 18,000 people who were present to witness the initial game. These figures are based upon a fair and official calculation, and the crowd was undoubtedly the largest that ever witnessed a game of baseball in this city. Among the guests were Mayor Filter and hundreds of ladies. The accommodations were perfect, the playing skillful, and the occasion altogether a most enjoyable one.
Every street in Philadelphia seemed to lead to the grounds. The street cars carried great crowds. Men road on the roof and hung to the dashboards. When the cars reached the grounds the scramble was so great that men jumped through car windows in their eagerness to get good seats. Every car on the different lines was pressed into service, and every available employee was put on to collect fares or drive the horses. Hundreds of carriages, furniture vans and huckster wagons did a thriving business, and many people walked all the way to the grounds. The Reading and Pennsylvania Railroads ran special trains. Nine trains of the Pennsylvania stopped at Germantown Junction between 2 and 4 o'clock and 14 on the Reading line at the ball grounds.
• Phillies alumni
Getting to the grounds was not half so hard a job as getting in. Men struggled and pushed and squeezed to reach the ticket windows. Still no bones were broken, and everybody who wanted to spend a quarter or a half dollar managed to get in. But it took a good many all the afternoon to accomplish their undertaking. The men who hadn't secured a tickets had to get in line at the pavilion ticket window and that line was a square long for two hours. Politicians, brokers, bankers, lawyers, merchants, gamblers and all sorts and conditions of men were jammed against each other, and the turnstile wouldn't let the people in nearly as fast as the tickets were sold. The entrance for ladies was at the corner of Fifteenth and Huntington streets. The ladies didn't have to pay, and walked up the stairs to the pavilion and over to the roped off seats at the north end of the pavilion. There were about 500 women present, and many of them were in stunning costumes.
• Phillies ballparks
So far as the Phillies were concerned, it was a regular old-time batting game, in which runs were made by the use of muscular power and crafty base running. Keefe used all his skill, but it seemed impossible to pitch a ball the Philadelphia batsmen could not hit safely. Last Thursday, in the first championship game at New York, Keefe held the Phillies down to five safe hits. To-day he was batted for 20, with a total of 28 bases, which included a home run and five two-basers. In the eighth inning, which was afterward cut from the score, the home team hit him for four two-basers and a single. Daily led the Phillies at bat for two doubles, and one of the latter was the longest hit of the game. Fogarty hit safely three times and, Wood, after making a single, lifted the ball over the right field fence, winning a suite of clothes for making the first home run on the new grounds.
Ferguson occupied the box for the Philadelphians. It was his first championship game, and he was expected to do great work. The only one of the New-Yorkers who hit him hard was Ewing, who sent the ball over the centre field fence twice for home runs. The other eight Giants were pigmies in Ferguson hands and, and the six hits they made between them were widely scattered.
Larry Shenk is in charge of alumni relations and team historian for the Phillies.