“Pretty soon the ball player will not have rest enough between seasons to get acquainted with his folks.” ~ The Sporting News, November 7, 1912
In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “Off-Season.”
They call it “The Grind.” That long baseball season. That life ballplayers choose.
For the pros, it begins in February at spring training and, if you’re lucky, it will extend to the far reaches of October.
College ball starts in February and stretches through four months, then summer league teams, and a “bonus” fall season tucked in before the snow falls.
Whatever’s left, that’s your “off-season.”
I thought “off-season” was a baseball term that had worked its way into the rest of the language. But, “off-season” is a business term that was first used in the 1840s.
In 1912, The Sporting News complained that Charles Comiskey, President and Owner of the Chicago White Sox, was running his players ragged by shortening the off-season and putting his team on a train to California in the middle of February to begin spring training, forcing his players into exhibition games along the way, stopping at any place where a pick-up game might put extra “coin” into the owner’s pocket.
We don’t lay fallow much. There’s not much off-season for anybody these days. Apparently, there never was.
Photo: Davenport Field, The University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia. The end of the “Fall Ball” season. © The Baseball Bloggess