Derivative Games

Many games have altered baseball’s basic rules to derive new games to fit special circumstances or playing populations. Each one has stood as an enduring tribute to the pervasiveness of our national pastime. Among the most common of these derivative games are softball, stickball, kickball, and wiffleball, each played widely today.

Below is a working list of known or likely derivative games. Even if chance-based tabletop games, rotisserie games, and other non-athletic games are set aside, we now have well over a hundred distinct games that may have branched off from baseball. If you can add other local variants to this list, or can add to the descriptions of the games already listed, please contact Official Baseball Historian John Thorn at john.thorn@mlb.com.

Game Family Location Region Era
American Cricket

A hybrid cricket-baseball game reportedly introduced in Chicago in 1870. The game is described as having cricket rules, except with no LBW rule, and with the addition of a third base, so that the bases form a triangle with sides of 28-yards. We have no other accounts of this game.

Reportedly in the Philadelphia Mercury.  An account of the article  appeared in the Penny Illustrated Paper (London), December 17, 1870 (page 370).  Contributed by Tom Shieber, email of 2/25/2009.

Baseball 1800s,Derivative
Aqejolyedi

From the 1860s to the 1880s, Navahos in NM played a gmae that evolved from one (possibly the Massachusetts game?) taught to them on a NM reservation mannned by the US Cavalry.  This game is recalled as involving plugging, very feisty baserunning customs, no foul ground, four strikes, one-out-side-out innings, and multiple batters at the same time.

S. Culin, Games of the North American Indians, 1907.

Baseball New Mexico 1800s,Derivative
Ball Stand

Elmore (1922) describes this as a game of attrition for ages 8-12 that involves throwing a ball against a wall. One player is named to catch it. If the player does, “stand” is shouted, and other players are to freeze in their places. If the player with the ball can plug someone, that player is out; if not, the thrower is out. This game has not batting or baserunning.

Emily W. Elmore, A Practical Handbook of Games, (Macmillan, NY, 1922), pages 16-17.

Hook-em-snivy Derivative
Ball and Bases

per Perrin (1902). A school-time running game of one-on-one contests between a pitcher and a batter, who propels the tossed ball with the hand and runs bases while the pitcher retrieves the ball. Caught flies and a failure to reach third base before the pitcher touches home with the ball in hand are outs. Batters receive one point for each base attained, and five for a home run. Three-out half innings are used.

E. Perrin, et. Al., One Hundred and Fifty Gymnastic Games (G. H. Ellis, Boston, 1902), pages 58-59.

Kickball Derivative
Balyagu

Balagu ("foot-baseball") is identified as a form of kick-ball in Korea, a "staple in PE classes within elementary schools."

"Kickball" article in Wikipedia, accessed October 25, 2012.  No further source is given.

Kickball South Korea Contemporary,Derivative
Base Dodge Ball

Elmore (1922) describes this game as a form of Square Ball (Corner Ball) for 7th graders through high schoolers in which a player can prevent being called out by catching a ball thrown at him. An “indoor baseball” is used. The game involves no batting or baserunning.

Emily W. Elmore, A Practical Handbook of Games, (Macmillan, NY, 1922), pages 19-20.

Hook-em-snivy Derivative
Baseball

America’s national pastime since about 1860. Writing about rounders in 1898, Gomme mused that “An elaborate form of this game has become the national game of the United States.”  The term “baseball” actually arose in England as early as 1748, referring to a simple game like rounders, but usage in England died out, and was soon forgotten in most parts of the country.  The term first appeared in the United States in 1791.

Gomme, Traditional Games of England, Scotland, and Ireland, Volume 1.2, page 146.

Baseball Derivative
Baseball on Ice

The first known game of base ball played on ice skates occurred on in January 1861 near Rochester NY.  Skating was very popular, and the hybrid game was played in the late 1800s.

A few special rules are known from the 1880s, a key one being that runnders were not at risk when they overskated a base.  Deliveries were pitches, not throws; a dead ball was used and the bound rule was in effect.  A ten-player team deployed a left shortstop and a right shortstop.

 

Priscilla Astifan, "Baseball in the Nineteenth Century," Rochester History LII (Summer 1990), page 9.

Peter Morris, A Game of Inches (Ivan Dee, 2010 Single-volume edition), page 500.

Baseball Derivative,1800s
Beep Baseball

Baseball for blind players. The balls emit beeps, and a base buzzes once a ball is hit. Runners are out if the ball is fielded before they reach base. Sighted players serve as pitcher and catcher for the batting team, but cannot field. There is a national association for the game, and annual World Series have been held since 1976.

The National Beep Baseball Association: see http://www.nbba.org/, accessed 11/9/2009.

Baseball Contemporary,Derivative
Beezy

per Fraser (1975) - A game played in Dundee, Scotland, in about 1900 and later understood as a “corruption of baseball.” Balls were hit with the hand instead of a bat, and the game evidently sometimes used plugging.

Amy Stewart Fraser, Dae Ye Min’ Langsyne? (Routledge, 1975), pages 59-60.

Kickball Dundee, Scotland Derivative
Bo-Ball

Maigaard (1941) notes they while most forms of rounders and longball are now lost, three - baseball, cricket, and bo-ball - remain vigorous. He places Bo-Ball in Finland. The only known source on this game, called Lahden Mailaveikot in Finnish, is a Finnish-language website, one that shows photographs of a vigorous game with aluminum bats, gloves, helmets, and much sliding and running but no solid hints for English-speakers about the nature of the game. Similarities to Pesapallo, including the gentle form of pitching, are apparent.

P. Maigaard, “Battingball Games,” reprinted in Block, Baseball Before We Knew It, Appendix 6.  See page 274.

Baseball Finland Contemporary,Post-1900,Derivative
Boston Ball

per Perrin (1902) – Apparently an indoor game derived from baseball. A member of the in-team throws the ball to an area guarded by the pitcher, and runs if and when the ball passes through. There is tagging but no plugging.

E. Perrin, et. Al., One Hundred and Fifty Gymnastic Games (G. H. Ellis, Boston, 1902), pages 59-63.

Kickball Derivative
Box Baseball

per Bronner [1997]. Using three sidewalk squares, a “pitcher” throws the ball into the box closest to his opponent, who tries to slap the ball into the box closest to the pitcher. If he missed the box or the pitcher catches ball on the fly, it is an out. There is no baserunning. Also called “Boxball.”

Simon J. Bronner, "Concrete Folklore: Sidewalk Box Games," Western Folklore 36, no. 2 (1977)., page 172.

Fungo Derivative
Brannboll (Brennball)

A Swedish game, also played in Germany and Denmark. A batting and running game with four bases, this game involved fungo-style hitting to start a play. As in some forms of longball, a base can be occupied by more than one runner. A caught fly ball gives a point to the out team, but the runner is not thereby retired. Innings are timed. A home run is six points. A 90-degree fair territory is employed. This game may relate to Swedeball, a game reportedly played in the US upper midwest. It has been reported that that Brannboll is played in Minnesota, but no such references are known.

Baseball Sweden Post-1900,Derivative
Bunt

Bunt is downsized baseball. One reported Massachusetts version was a one-on-one game in which any hit ball that reached the not-distant field perimeter was an out. The batter ran out hit balls, and the pitcher fielded them, but thereafter base advancement was done by ghost [imaginary] runners. Terrie Dopp Aamodt reports playing a similar game as an adolescent girl.

C. Bevis, “A Game of Bunt,” in G. Land, Growing Up with Baseball (UNebraska, 2004), pages 128-130.

T. Aamodt, “The Impossible Dream,” in G. Land, Growing Up with Baseball (UNebraska, 2004), pages 61-62.

Fungo Derivative
Burn Ball

per Appel [1999]. Appel reports that the young Mike Kelly, growing up on Washington DC in the late 1860’s, first played Burn Ball, a form of base ball that included "plugging" or "burning" of baserunners by thrown balls.

Marty Appel, Slide Kelly Slide (Scarecrow Press, 1999), page 9.

Baseball 1800s,Derivative
Call Ball

A game in which a ball is tossed up among players and one player’s name is then called out. That player must obtain the ball and try to hit fleeing compatriots with it. Newell [1883] notes that this game was played in Austria.

William Wells Newell, Games and Songs of American Children (New York: Dover [1963 reprint], 1883)., page 181.

Hat ball Derivative
Cat-and-Dog (Cat and Doug)

A game for three players. Two defend foot-wide holes set about 26 feet apart with a club, or “dog.” A third player throws a four-inch cat toward the hole, and the defender hits it away. If the cat enters the hole, defender and thrower switch places. Gomme, who uses the name Cat and Dog Hole, describes a game using a ball in which a stone replaces the hole where the batter stands, and adds that if the third player catches a hit ball in the air, that player can try to hit the stone, which sends the batter out.

John Brand, Observations on the Popular Antiquities of Great Britain: The Origins of Our Vulgar and Provincial Customs, Ceremonies and Superstitions (London: George Bell and Sons, 1900)., page 95.

In their account, Steel and Lyttelton put the distance at 13 yards. Cricket (Longmans, Green, 1890), page 4.

A. B. Gomme, The Traditional Games o f England, Scotland, and Ireland (David Nutt, 1898),page 410.

Fungo Scotland Derivative
Catch a Fly

A fungo game played in Manhattan in the 1950s. A fungo hitter is replaced by a fielder who catches a ball (or sometimes three balls) on the fly. Played when fewer than six kids were at the ballyard and a team game wasn’t possible.

John Pastier, email of February 12, 2009.

Fungo Manhattan, New York Derivative
Catch-Ball

per “Boys’ Own Book” (1881). A game similar to Nineholes, but without the holes. A ball is thrown up, and a player named. If that player cannot catch it before it bounces twice, he must plug another player or lose a point.

Boys’ Own Book: A Complete Encyclopedia of Athletic, Scientific, Outdoor and Indoor Sports (James Miller, Pub’r, New York, 1881), page 14.

Hat ball Derivative
Corkball

A St. Louis pastime, derived from baseball, involving down-sized bats and balls. The ball is pitched overhand from a distance of 55 feet. There is no running, but imaginary runners advance as in other scrub games. Hit balls are defined as singles, and sometimes as longer hits, depending on where they land. The game is said to have originated in about 1900 among brewery workers using broomsticks and the bungs [corks] used to seal beer barrels. Team sizes vary.

Special thanks to Jeff Kittel, email of 10/11/09, for material on this game.  See also http:///www.angelfire.com/sports/corkball/STLhistory.html. Accessed 10/8/09.

Fungo Derivative
Curb-Ball

Gregory Christiano describes this as a non-running game in which a player threw a spaldeen against a curb so that it lofted into the field of play. A caught fly was and out, and otherwise the number of bounces determined base advancement, wilth four bounces counting as a home run.

Fungo Derivative
Diamond Ball

A game played from 1916 to 1926, when it transformed into Softball.  Diamond ball was also known as women's baseball.  Particularly popular in Sarasota FL, this game was played in the 1920s on sandy beaches (sometimes at night under lights) , and uses a 14-inch ball like used in indoor baseball.  Games were played in less than an hour, affording lunch-hour play. 

Paul Dickson, The Worth Book of Softball (Facts on File, 1994), pages 57 and 58. 

Baseball Post-1900,Derivative
Dully

A Scottish name for rounders as played by “Edinburgh street boys” in about 1880 and by schoolgirls in about 1900.

Amy Stewart Fraser, Dae Ye Min’ Langsyne?: A Pot-pourri of Games, Rhymes, and Ploys of Scottish Childhood (Routledge, 1975),  page 59.

Baseball Scotland 1800s,Derivative
Five Hundred

Fielders catch fungo hits, with a caught fly worth 100 points, a one-bouncer 75 points, etc. A player who accrues 500 points becomes the hitter. In some versions, muffed catches deduct points, and the Hit-the-Bat option for returned throws is employed. Land’s review of schoolyard games includes two references to 500. It is also evidently called Twenty-One in some localities.

G. Land, Growing Up with Baseball (UNebraska, 2004), pages 61 and 174.

Fungo Derivative
Flip Up

Writing in volume 5, no. 4 (April 2012) of ''Originals,'' Tom Altherr notes that a 1900 source on schoolyard games noted "The game of Flip Up or Sky-Ball is still played by smaller children, and sometimes by large ones (especially girls).  It is often played by as many as a dozen players and is here as "Tip-Up," or "Tippy-Up." The 1900 source is D. C. Gibson, "Play Ball," ''Mind and Body: A Monthly Journal'',Volume 7, no 73 (March 1900), page 7.  No rules for this game are given, but Sky-ball is elsewhere descrived as a fungo game.

Fungo Derivative
Flys-Are-Up, Flies-Up

Gregory Christiano recalls this as a fungo game for times where there were too few players for stick-ball in New York. A fielder who caught the ball on the fly went “up” to bat. Land quotes New York City resident Michael Frank: “Hardball? Never. Other baseball-related games we played included Stickball in the street and “Flies-Up” in the playground. The latter game is not further described, but could be a species of Fungo.

http://www.myrecollection.com/christianog/games.html

G. Land, Growing Up with Baseball (UNebraska, 2004).

Fungo Derivative
Fungo

Culin (1891): A batter fungoes balls to a set of fielders. A fielder who first catches a set number of balls on the fly becomes the batter.

Chadwick (1884) describes Fungo as requiring the hitter to deliver the ball on the fly to the fielders, or he loses his place. This practice probably has had numerous local variant names such as Knock Up and Catch and Knocking Flies.

Culin, S. (1891). "Street Games of Boys in Brooklyn." Journal of American Folklore, volume 4, page 232.

Henry Chadwick, Sports and Pastimes for American Boys (Routledge, New York, 1884), page 18.

F. G. Cassidy et al., Dictionary of American Regional English (Harvard University Press, 1996), page 245.

Fungo 1800s,Post-1900,Derivative
Fuzz-Ball

Fuzz-Ball evidently takes many local variant forms, but all employ a tennis ball (often with its surface fuzz burned off and a slim bat. The number of strikes per out and outs per inning, among other parameters, vary from place to place.  It is placed in the "fungo" category here, but in some areas real baserunning is seen, making it close to baseball.  Teams are often small.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fuzzball_%28sport%29

Fungo Post-1900,Derivative
German Ball Game

per Perrin (1902). This game involves pitching a ball to a batter who hits it into a field where an opposing team’s fielders are. He tries to reach a goal line at the end of the playing area [80 feet away] and to return to the batting zone without being plugged by the ball. There is no mention of the possibility of remaining safely at the goal area. Three outs constitute a half-inning, and a team that scores 25 “points” [runs] wins the contest.  The game resembles the family of "battingball" games reported by Maigaard.

E. Perrin, et al., One Hundred and Fifty Gymnastic Games (G. H. Ellis, Boston, 1902), pages 22-23.

Baseball Post-1900,Derivative
German Baseball

This game, described as an amalgam of Baseball and traditional German Schlagball, was introduced in 1986 by Roland Naul in the context of a revival of Turner games for German youth. In the mid-1990s, a one-handed wooden bat was developed especially for the game. As of October 2009, we are uncertain how the two sets of rules were blended to make this new game. The author mentions that the fielding team can score points as well as the batting team.

From 2012 searches, it is not clear that this game is still played.

Roland Naul, “Applied Sport History,” Proceedings of the Sixth Congress of the International Society for the History of Physical Education and Sport (Plantin-Print, Budapest, 2002), pages 432ff.

Baseball Germany Post-1900,Derivative
German Bat Ball

A 1921 handbook and a 1922 handbook depicts German Bat Ball as a team game that uses a ball like a volleyball and that has neither a bat nor pitching. A “batter” puts the ball in play by serving or “posting” it [as in schoolyard punchball] and then running around a post (Clark) or to a distant safe-haven area (Elmore/O’Shea). A run is scored if the runner can return to the batting base without being plugged. It is unclear whether the runner can opt to stay at the distant base to avoid being put out. A caught fly is an out, and a three-out-side-out rule applies.

Lydia Clark, Physical Training for the Elementary Schools (B. H. Sanborn, Chicago, 1921), pages 240-243.

Emily Elmore and M. O’Shea, A Practical Handbook of Games (Macmillan, New York, 1922), pages 36-39.

Kickball Derivative
Gi-Gi Ball

per Leavy. A biography of Sandy Koufax reports that he played “stickball, punchball, square ball, and Gi-Gi ball in his neighborhood. We don’t know what Gi-Gi Ball is.

Jane Leavy [Koufax bio, page ref needed].

Hook-em-snivy Derivative
Grutz

per Wieand. This is a game with pitching and batting but no running. A caught fly ball results in an out, and the batter then goes to the outfield, or grutz, to begin his rotation back to the batting position. If a ball is not caught, the fielder tries to return it to home through an arch made by the batter.

Paul R. Wieand, Outdoor Games of the Pennsylvania Germans (Plymouth Meeting, PA: Mrs. C. N. Keyser, 1950)., page 9.

Fungo Derivative
Half-Rubber (Half-Ball)

Thomason (1975) recalls Half-Rubber as a 1930s school recess game involving a sponge-rubber ball sliced cleanly in half and a sawed-off broomstick as a bat. Thrown side-arm, the ball had good movement, and was difficult to field. There was no running, but outs and innings were recorded and (virtual) base advancement depending on the lengths that the ball was batted. A 1997 newspaper article recalls a similar game recalled as Half-Ball being played in the Philadelphia area.

This game emerged in a bout 1910 in the SC/GA area of the south, and retained strong popularity into the 1970s.

Hugh M. Thomason, “A Depression-Days Schoolyard Game,” Western Folklore, Vol. 34, Issue 1, January 1975, pages 58-59.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Half-rubber.

Brian Howard, “Wild in the Streets,” City Paper June 5, 1997, http://archives.citypaper.net/articles/060597/article077.shtml.

Fungo US. South Post-1900,Derivative
Halfball

Halfball was a game using half of a rubber ball and imaginary baserunning.  It was apparently the same game as Half-rubber.

It was described as a street game.

See Half-Rubber and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halfball.

Fungo Derivative
Hit the Bat
A fungo game in which a ball is hit to a group of fielders. If one of them can roll the ball back and hit the bat so that the ball hits the ground before the batter can catch the ricochet, the two exchange places.
Fungo Derivative
Hit the Stick

per Culin. A team game resembling Kick the Ball, but using a simple catapult to put into play a 3-inch stick instead of a ball. Fly outs retire the batsman. The bases are the four street-corners at an intersection.

Culin, "Street Games of Boys in Brooklyn, N.Y.", page 231.

Kickball Brooklyn Derivative
Hole-Ball

H. J Philpott used the names "hole-ball and "wibble-wobble" as games that seem consistent with hat-ball.  One player would place the ball in a hole or hat, and the other players would scatter before being hit with the ball by the player designated as "it."  This game thus shares evasive running and plugging with base ball.

Henry J. Philpott, "A Little Boys' Game with a Ball," Popular Science Monthly, volume 37 (May-October 1890), pages 651-652.

Hat ball Midwest US Derivative
House Ball

Scotland - per MacLagan. The Scots name for the ordinary English game of Rounders. Pitched balls are struck by hand.

 R. C. MacLagan, "Additions to 'the Games of Argyleshire'," Folklore 16, no. 1 (1905), page 83.  A similar description appears in Folk Lore; A Quarterly Review of Myth, Tradition, Institution, and Custom (David Nutt, London, 1905), page 83.

Kickball Derivative
Howland Rounders

Confected in 2009 at an unidentified school in Howland, Ohio, this game (“usually played from May to September”) melds baseball and rounders. Teams of six players populate an area with an infield in the form of an isosceles triangle [two sides are 83 feet long, and the base is 62 feet long, with home set at the angle at the right side of the base, and foul lines extending from home through the two running posts]. The counterparts to balls and strikes are influenced by whether a pitch lands in a net to the rear of the home square. Apparently, a batter cannot stay at a base, but must try to complete a round before the fielders can return the ball to the net.  A local league is reported to play the game.

http://howlandrounders.com. Unique among sports organizations, perhaps the Board for this game features a chair and two CEOs.

Baseball Ohio Contemporary,Derivative
Indian Ball

per Brewster. A down-sized, non-running baseball variant. Two teams of five players form. A regular softball is pitched underhand to the batter. Outs are recorded for caught fly balls and ground balls cleanly fielded inside the baselines. Unlimited swings are permitted. Three-out-side-out innings, and five inning games.

Brewster, American Nonsinging Games.

Fungo Missouri Derivative
Indoor Baseball

Evolving from an 1887 innovation in Chicago involving a broomstick as a bat and a boxing glove as the ball, indoor baseball is described in a 1929 survey as particularly popular in gymnasiums in the US mid-west in the early 20th century. The game of softball traces back to indoor play.

Origins -- On Thanksgiving Day at te Farragut Club in Chicgo in 1887, a participant recalled, "[T]he fellows were throwing an ordinary boxing glove around the room, which was struck at by one of the boys with a broom.  George W. Hancock suddenly called out, 'Bpys, let's play baseball!'"  Hancock was later known as the Father of Indoor Baseball.

 

 

See Paul Dickson, The Worth Book of Softball (Facts on File, 1994), Chapter 3 (pages 46-59).  Also, John Allen Krout, Annals of American Sport(Yale University Press, 1929), page 219.

The above quotation is found in Peter Morris, A Game of Inches (Ivan Dee, 2010 single-bvolume edition, page 498. 

Baseball Derivative,1800s,Post-1900
Ins and Withs

A name for Scrub used in Philadelphia in the 1930s and possibly before/after that.

F. G. Cassidy et al., Dictionary of American Regional English (Harvard University Press, 1996), pages 47-48.

Scrub Philadelphia, PA Derivative
Irish Rounders

A communication received from Peadar O Tuatain describes what is known of the ancient game of Irish Rounders. Details of the old game are apparently lost to history, but some rules encoded in 1932 were used for a revival in 1956, and the revival version, which resembles baseball much more than it does English rounders, is still being played. It employs a hurling ball and a game comprises five three-out innings. The game is played without gloves and, perhaps unique among safe-haven games, batted balls caught in the air are not outs.

“Irish Rounders,” email from Peadar O Tuatain to L. McCray, January 30 2002.

Baseball Ireland Contemporary,Post-1900,Derivative
Kekivar

per Brewster. A team form of Hat Ball. A player throws a ball to the other group, and runs toward it. If the receiving group can plug the thrower, he is captured, and the game continues until one side is depleted.

Brewster, American Nonsinging Games.

Hat ball Armenia Derivative
Kichke-Pale

"As a rule, boys played rougher games. One of them was the competitiveKichke-pale or Chizshkes, as it was known in the Polesie region. Kichke-pale was an East European Jewish version of cricket or baseball, and was similar to the English game called Peggy. The kichke was a small peg pointed at both ends, while the pale was the longer stick. The kichke was placed on an elevated spot, near a hole in the ground. The player would hit the pointed end of the peg with the larger stick that would send the peg flying into the air. He would then run and again try to hit the peg while it was airborne, to send it farther away from the plate. The more times one hit the peg, the more skilled the player. The other player would run to get the peg and throw it to the plate. The peg was not to be struck on its return to the plate. But if it were not successfully returned, the first player would then strike the peg wherever it happened to fall. This would continue until the second player got the peg back to the plate, after which he became the striker and the other player, the catcher. The game would go on until the second player scored a given number of hits of the peg, usually twenty or thirty. The loser would then have to give the winner what was called a yarsh, which meant that the winner would have the right to strike the peg even when it was being returned to the plate. The yarsh would end when the peg fell on the plate."

http://www.yivoencyclopedia.org/article.aspx/Toys_and_Games.  (Yivo Encyclopedia of Jews in Eastern Europe)

Submitted by John Thorn, email of 8/28/12.

Fungo Poland Contemporary,Derivative
Kick the Ball

per Culin (1891). A team game generally resembling Kickball, but using a small rubber ball. There is no plugging; runners are out if they are between bases when the fielding team returns the kicked ball to a teammate near home. No mention is made of fly outs. There is a three-out-side-out rule, and a game usually comprises four innings. Johnson (1910) lists Kick the Ball as a Baseball game.

Culin, "Street Games of Boys in Brooklyn, N.Y.", pages 230-231.

G. E. Johnson, What to Do at Recess (Ginn, Boston, 1910), page 32.

Kickball Brooklyn Derivative
Kick the Can

per Culin. A game identical to Kick the Wicket [below] but using a can instead of a wicket.

G. E. Johnson, What to Do at Recess (Ginn, Boston, 1910), page 230.

Scrub Brooklyn Derivative
Kick the Wicket

per Culin. The wicket is a piece of wood or a short section of a hose. Players kick the wicket, and then run among [usually four] bases. An “it” player tries to catch the ball, or to retrieve and reposition it while baserunners are between bases. The game is not described as a team game.

G. E. Johnson, What to Do at Recess (Ginn, Boston, 1910), page 230.

Scrub Brooklyn Derivative
Kickball

A traditional school recess game in the U.S., Kickball has lately grown in popularity as a co-ed adult game. Kickball strongly resembles Baseball, but the large rubber ball is put in play by bowled delivery and struck by a kicker-runner, who then runs from base to base. Plugging below the neck retires a runner who not at a base. The rules of the World Adult Kickball Association, with 25,000 registered members, specifies 11 players per team, 60-foot basepaths, and a strike zone about 30 inches wide and one foot high.

http://www.kickball.com/, accessed 10/09/09.

Kickball Derivative
King’s Play (Cluich an Righ)

per MacLagan. A player stands at the center of 11 stations marked with a stone, and a player at each. At the central player’s signal, the other 11 must change positions, and he tries to strike one with the ball before they can complete their move. Each position can be occupied by but one player.

MacLagan, "Additions to 'the Games of Argyleshire'.", page 80.

Hat ball Scotland Derivative
Kitten Ball

An off-shoot of Indoor Baseball played early in the 20th Century.  In 1920, 64 men's teams and 25 women's teams played regularly in the Twin Cities.  Authorites changed the name of the game to diamond ball in 1922.  In the 1930s, the game merged with sofball.

See Paul Dickson, The Worth Book of Softball (Facts on File, 1994), page 52-53.

Baseball Chicago, Minnesota Post-1900,Derivative
Knock-Out

A fungo game in which a player who catches the ball on the fly qualifies to become the hitter. Regionally variant names include Knock-Up and Knock-Up and Catch.

F. G. Cassidy et al., Dictionary of American Regional English (Harvard University Press, 1996), page 245.

Fungo Derivative
Kopfspeel

“Among the several types of Dutch kopfspeel there is one like rounders.” No other lead to kopfspeel is provided, and we don't know if the game is still alive.

Walter Endrei and Laszlo Zolnay, Fun and Games in Old Europe (Budapest: Corvina Klado, 1986).

Baseball Holland Post-1900,Derivative
Kuningsapallo
a traditional Finnish game, features of which were incorporated into Pasepallo.
Hook-em-snivy Finland Derivative
Lahden Mailaveikot

Maigaard (1941) notes they while most forms of rounders and longball were now lost, three - baseball, cricket, and bo-ball - remain vigorous. Bo-Ball is played in Finland. The only known source on this game, called Lahden Mailaveikot in Finnish, is a Finnish-language website, on that shows photographs of a vigorous game with aluminum bats, gloves, helmets, and much sliding and running but no other helpful hints for English-speakers. Similarities to Pesapallo are apparent.

HELP?  Can you help us get a fix on the nature of contemporary Lahden Mailaveikot?

Per Maigaard, “Battingball Games,” Genus 5 (1941).  Reprinted in Block, Baseball Before We Knew It, Appendix 6.  See page 260ff in Block.

Baseball Finland Contemporary,Post-1900,Derivative
Line Ball

Apparently a form of Stickball played in Chicago area streets as early as the 1940s that uses 16-inch circumference softballs (the standard softball is about 12 inches), a slow-pitch delivery, small teams, and an unspecified bat. The type of hit achieved depended on where the ball fell among lines marked on the street (implying that baserunning was not part of this game.

F. G. Cassidy et al., Dictionary of American Regional English (Harvard University Press, 1996), page 365.

Fungo Derivative
Long Dutch

Only two sources mentions this game. Cassidy implies that there were only two bases, and that if a runner only got to the far base, that runner would need to return home as the pitcher and catcher played catch.  The era of play is uncertain.

A 2004 website for a teen camp program also soptslights its "long-dutch baseball" tradition for both boys and girls.  The camp is located at Onaway Island in Wisconsin.

 

F. G. Cassidy et al., Dictionary of American Regional English (Harvard University Press, 1996), page 415.

The camp program is found at  http://www.bgbrigade.com/programs-8th.asp

 

Baseball Contemporary,Post-1900,Derivative
Matball (Big Base)

This invented game, an invented form of Kick Ball, is an indoor game reportedly played in many US schools. It uses large mats instead of bases, and multiple runners can safely occupy a base. The standard format uses an all-out-side-out rule to define a half-inning, can involve large teams, can have areas (e.g., a scoreboard or a basketball hoop) for designated home runs, a fly rule, tagging, and scoring only when a runner passes home and successfully returns to first base. Some schools use the infield format of Massachusetts base ball - the striker hits from between the first and fourth base. Foul territory varies, but forward hits are required.

Kickball Derivative
Mickey

Described in 1977 as a children’s game played at PS 172 in New York City, Mickey resembles traditional Barn Ball. A pitcher bounces a spaldeen ball off a wall and a batter tries to hit it on the rebound. Rules for baserunning and scoring are not given.

F. G. Cassidy et al., Dictionary of American Regional English (Harvard University Press, 1996), pages 586-587.

Hook-em-snivy New York City, NY Derivative
Move-Up

per Brewster. Baseball for small groups. This game is very similar to Scrub, Work-up and Rounds, but sets the usual number of players at 12, and specifies a rotation of 1B-P-C-batter instead of 1B-C-P-batter. A variant name is Move-up Piggy.

Brewster, American Nonsinging Games.  Brewster cites Mason and Mitchell, Active Games [“Rotation”], page 327 and Boyd, [“Piggie Move Up”], page 65.

F. G. Cassidy et al., Dictionary of American Regional English (Harvard University Press, 1996).

Scrub Derivative
Nations

per Brewster. A Czech variant of Call Ball is called Nations. Each player is assigned a country name, a ball is placed in a hole, and a country name is called out. The player with that name retrieves the ball as all others start running away. The ball-holder can then call “stop,” and the others must freeze in position while he attempts to plug one of them.

Brewster, American Nonsinging Games.

Hat ball Czechoslovakia Derivative
Norwegian Ball

This game is mentioned, along with Swede Ball in a 1908 book on North Dakota folkways. Said to be taught to local children by Swedish newcomers and a Swedish teacher, the game is only depicted as being “played somewhat like 'one old cat.’” It seems conceivable that this game is Brannboll. Maigaard (1941) notes a Norwegian form of Long Ball, noted as “probably recent,” that uniquely uses a field that resembles baseball’s use of a 90-degree fair territory delimitation.

Collections of the State Historical Society, Volume 2 (State Printers and  Binders, Bismark ND, 1908), pages 213-214.

Per Maigaard, "Battingball Games," Genus 5 (1941); see Block, Appendix 6, page 263.

Hook-em-snivy Derivative
Novaball

Novaball was played as All-Star competition by the Arlington softball program in 2001 and 2002.  Each inning, one team selected a special rule for that inning; examples are clockwise baserunning, the use of 6 bases in place of 4, force outs implemented by throwing the ball into a 5-gallon paint bucket, etc.

Baseball Northern Virginia Contemporary,Derivative
Off-the-Wall

A game played at the intersection of West 184th Street and Park Avenue in New York City, as recalled by Gregory Christiano. A player would slam the ball into a painted square on a concrete median barrier, and it would rebound onto Park Avenue, then still paved with cobblestones. The player would then try to reach the first base (an open sewer) before a fielder could field it and throw to the baseman there. There were two sewer-bases and home in this game.

Kickball Derivative
Old Hundred

A game described in 1945 another name for town ball, and played in North Carolina with an all-out-side-out rule. 

There is not conclusive evidence that Old Hundred is or was a safe-haven ballgame.

W. Battle, Memories of an Old-Time Tar Heel, (UNC Press, Chapel Hill, 1945), page 57.

Baseball NC Post-1900,Derivative
Old-fashion

The game was played as late as the 1940 by the Mi-kmaq tribe in eastern Canada. "Old-fashion preserved an intriguing number of remnantsof ball-games of the pre-Knickerbocker era,including no foul ground, one out per inning, soaking (plugging), and soft, hnome-made balls."  The rules were reported to be flexible. 

Colin Howell, Northern Sandlots (U of Toronto Press, 1995), pages 186-189, per Peter Morris, A Game of Inches (Ivan Dee, 2010 sisngle-volume edition, page 504.

Baseball Canada Derivative,Post-1900
Om El Mahag

In a 1939 account, Om El Mahag is described as elementary baseball, and said to be analogous to rounders and old-cat. It was reported that Om El Mahag was only played by the Berber tribes.

Descriptions of the game are not detailed enough at this point to determine how it related, or relates, to base ball, long ball, or other early safe-haven games.

Ado Gini, "Rural Ritual Games in Libya," Rural Sociology 4, no. 1 (1939).

Baseball Libya Post-1900,Derivative
One-Three-One-One

A 1934 reference from Massachusetts: “One-three-one-one” was the old game the boys used to play when I went to school. Regular baseball - very similar to Stub One.”

Query: This is our only reference to one-three-one-one or Stub One.  Can we find others?  Is it reasonable to surmise that "1 3 1 1" reflected the number and deployment of fielders?

F. G. Cassidy, Dictionary of American Regional English  (Harvard University Press, 1996), page 882.

Baseball Massachusetts Post-1900,Derivative
Over-the-Line

This game[141] is described as a reduced form of softball with no running (ghost runners determine when runs score) and soft tossing by a team-mate as pitching. Fair ground is defines by an acute angle much smaller than 90 degrees, and a line is drawn about 20 yards from home. Three or four players make up a team. Balls hit past the line and not caught on the fly are counted as singles, unless they pass the deepest fielder. A bobbled grounder is counted as Reached on Error. The game is played as a beach game in the San Diego area[142].  Pitches are gentle lobs. Peter Morris writes that this game is an offshoot of softball.

http://www.baseballfit.com/otl.htm

http://www.ehow.com/how_2251292_play-over-line.html

Peter Morris, A Game of Inches (Ivan Dee, 2010 single-volume edition), page 499.

Baseball Derivative,Post-1900,Contemporary
Peanut Baseball

Described as akin to Pepper, this bat-control game involved hitting lobbed pitches toward a fence featuring extra-base zones. Cleanly-fielded balls, wide hits, and hits over the fence were outs. Baserunning is not part of this game.

W. Runquist, “The Hill,” in G. Land, Growing Up with Baseball (UNebraska, 2004), page 98.

Fungo Derivative
Pepper
A drill to sharpen the batting eye and fielding reflexes in baseball. A few players stand side by side in a line and toss the ball to a batter who hits short grounders to them in turn. Forms of the game involve penalizing players for fielding errors and mis-hits.
Fungo Derivative
Pesapallo

Pesapallo is “Finnish Baseball.” This invented game is based on American baseball, and on the traditional Finnish games kuningaspallo, pitkapallo, and poltopallo, and was introduced in 1922. Some call it Finland’s national game.

Pesapallo  involves two 9-player teams, pitching via vertical toss from close to the batter, a zigzag basepath of progressive length [about 65 feet from home to first, about 150 feet from third to home], optional running with fewer than two strikes, a three-out-side-out rule, runners being either  “put out” or “wounded” (thus not counted as an out, and allowed to bat again), no ground-rule home runs, and four-inning games.

Nations with sizable Finnish emigrants (Sweden, Canada, Australia, New Zealand) compete in the annual world cup of Pesapallo.

 

Baseball Finland Contemporary,Post-1900,Derivative
Philadelphia Bat Ball

Called an “advanced form” of German Bat Ball, this game involves three bases for runners instead of one, and runners can remain at a base if they believe they cannot safely advance further. Runners can tag up after caught flies. Otherwise, the rules of German Bat Ball apply.

Emily Elmore and M. O’Shea, A Practical Handbook of Games (Macmillan, New York, 1922), pages 93-95.

Baseball Post-1900,Derivative
Pie-Ball

Heslop (1893) defines this word: “a game resembling the game of Rounders, however, the ball is always struck with the hand.”

O. Heslop, Northumberland Words (Oxford U Press, London, 1893), page 535.

Kickball Derivative
Pingball

A game - evidently evolved uniquely by Bob Boynton -- with two players, a field marked with zones for singles, doubles, etc., and employing a ping-pong ball thrown from 33 feet to a batter standing at a home plate of 12 inches square. Bats were the size of broomsticks with toweling for padding. There was some fielding but all “baserunning” used only imaginary runners.

B. Boynton, “Diceball and Pingball,” in G. Land, Growing Up with Baseball (UNebraska, 2004) pages 156 - 159.

Fungo Derivative
Pitching-In

Gregory Christiano recalls this urban game as being a derivative on Stickball for two or more players. A square painted on a building was the strike zone. A batter used a broomstick to hit a pitched spaldeen ball across the street, where the height at which the ball hit a wall across the street determined the degree of base advancement. This game resembles Strike-Out.

Fungo Derivative
Pitkapallo

a traditional Finnish game, features of which were incorporated into Pesapallo.

Hook-em-snivy Finland Derivative
Playground Ball

Johnson (1910) lists Playground Ball among seven “Baseball" games.  The rules of this game are not explained.

G. E. Johnson, What to Do at Recess (Ginn, Boston, 1910), page 32.

Baseball Post-1900,Derivative
Podex

This game is modification of cricket evidently designed to expedite play, and is played at several English schools. Batters must run when they make contact with a bowled ball. Bowled balls can not hit the ground in front of the wicket, and a baseball bat is used instead of a flat cricket bat.

Baseball Contemporary,Post-1900,Derivative
Prelleries

Maigaard (1941) lists this game as the Swiss variation of Long Ball.

Per Maigaard, "Battingball Games," Genus 5 (1941); reprinted in Block, Baseball Before We Knew It (U. Nebraska, 2005), Appendix 6, page 263.

Baseball Switzerland Post-1900,Derivative
Punchball

This is a variation of baseball in which a rubber ball is punched, and not hit with a bat, to start a play. One set of modern rules is at http://www.spaldeen.com/punchball.html. Johnson (1910) lists Punch Ball under “Baseball games.” An urban form of this game is recalled by Gregory Christiano.

G. E. Johnson, What to Do at Recess (Ginn, Boston, 1910), page 32.

http://www.myrecollection.com/christianog/games.html.

A brief 4/30/1989 letter to the New York Times argued that stickball was a "sissyfied" sport in comparison to punchball. "We played with six or seven players, nickel a player. We had one-sewer homers and two-sewer homers. The game was so popular in Brooklyn that a daily newspaper, The Graphic, sponsored a punchball tournament, pitting one street against another." The players used a spaldeen, and chalked in foul lines and first and third bases.

Kickball Derivative
Retenido

per Brewster. When a player throws a ball high in the air, the others run away. When he catches it, he yells “caught,” the others freeze in position, and he tries to plug them.

Brewster, American Nonsinging Games.

Hat ball Spain Derivative
Roley Poley

per Culin. (Elsewhere Roly Poly, Roll Ball, Roley Holey.) Each player defends a hole (or hat). If another player rolls a “medium-sized” rubber ball into the hole, he tries to hit another player with it to prevent having a count made against him.

Culin, "Street Games of Boys in Brooklyn, N.Y.." page 234.

Hat ball Brooklyn Derivative
Rotation

McCurdy (1911) lists this game, along with Old Cat and Fungo, as minor forms of bat-and-ball. One might speculate that it is a non-team game like Scrub and Move-Up, in which players rotate among positions on the field as outs are made.

J. H. McCurdy, “Classification of Playground Activities,” American Physical Education Review Volume 16 (1911), page 49.

Scrub Derivative
Round Cat

Round Cat is a game noted by Tom Altherr in September 2009. We find several brief mentions of this game being played from Washington DC southward, but no explanation of how it was played. One account identifies it as similar to Scrub as played in New England.

Dialect Notes (American Dialect Society, Norwood MA, 1896), page 214.

Baseball US South 1800s,Derivative
Rounds

per Brewster. Baseball modified for small groups. Players count off, the first two or three becoming batters, the next the pitcher, the next the catcher, the next first base, etc. For most outs, the retired player goes to the last fielding position, and others move up one position, the pitcher becoming a batter. For fly outs, the batter and the successful fielder exchange places. The game is not notably different from Scrub and Workup.

Brewster, American Nonsinging Games.

Scrub Iowa Derivative
Roundsies

Gene Carney describes this game as a one-out-all-out team game, but notes that “a fielder catching a ball on the fly joined the offense immediately.”

G. Carney, “The Tennis Court,” in G. Land, Growing Up with Baseball (UNebraska, 2004), page 110.

Baseball Post-1900,Derivative
Scrub

Another label for the game Workup and Move-Up: The available number of players is initially divided between several defensive positions and a smaller number of batters. If a batter is put out, he/she becomes the fielder who is last in line to return to batting, and must work the way back position by position. A fielder to catches a fly ball exchanges places immediately with the batter. Because the small number of player precludes team play, “ghost runners” and special ground rules are sometimes required. Plugging is allowed, at least when the ball is soft enough to permit that. Once called Ins and Withs in the Philadelphia area.

Scrub Derivative
Sixteen-Inch Softball (No-Glove Softball)

A 2009 article reports on a game played mostly in Chicago involving a ball of 16” circumference and using no gloves. No other variations are covered. The article is not clear on the local name for the game, but another account calls the large ball a “clincher,” and notes that games were sometimes played in the street. (Note: Line Ball, another Chicago game, also used a large ball.)  It appears that the game generally follows the rules of softball.

Query: Can you supply further details about this game?

M. Davey, “Gloveless Players Hold on to Softball Dream,” New York Times, 9/18/09.

E. Hageman, “The Clincher,” In Gary Land, ed., Growing Up with Baseball (UNebraska, 2004), pages 131-132.

Baseball Chicago area Contemporary,Post-1900,Derivative
Slavonic Long Ball

Maigaard (1941) lists this game. It varies from other regional variations in placing the batting area mid-way between the home area and the first of two "resting areas" for runners. It is possible that this represents a form of Palant.

Query:  can we determine the local name for this game?

Per Maigaard, "Battingball Games," Genus 5 (1941); reprinted in  Block Baseball Before We Knew It, Appendix 6, page 263.

Baseball Poland Post-1900,Derivative
Sockball

"There were no bats, no nything except a lot of boys, as a ball with which they were trying to hit one another.  But if one threw and missed, or his ball was caught, he was out.  When all but one, or an agreed number, were out, the game was ended." 

Thus, "sockball" seems to have been a game we might now call dodgeball.

Henry J. Philpott, "A Little Boys' Game with a Ball," Popular Science Monthly, volume 37 (May to October 1890), page 651.

Hat ball 1800s,Derivative
Sockey

An 1887 source reporting that Rounders was still being played in some Southern and Western states, also noted that the game was called Sockey in some states. Our only reference to Sockey is in an 1888 recollection of ballplaying at a PA school, and notes that this game was played against the wall of a stable.

Hall, The Tribune Book of Open-Air Sports (1887), cited in K. Grover, Hard at Play: Leisure in America, 1840-1940 (UMass Press, 1992), page 244.

F. C. Tatum, Old West Town Ferris Brothers, Philadelphia, 1888), page 8.

Baseball Derivative
Softball

As described in Bealle, Softball evolved from Indoor Baseball, which was first played in 1887. Softball rules are close to Baseball rules, but the infield dimensions were set to be smaller and the ball is pitched with an underhand motion. A full team has ten players. Many forms are played, depending on the age and agility of the players. The term Softball debuted in 1926.

Paul Dickson, The Worth Book of Softball (Facts on File, 1994).

Morris A Bealle, The Softball Story (Washington: Columbian Publishing Group, 1956).

Baseball 1800s,Contemporary,Post-1900,Derivative
Spoonie Hoosie

The name for rounders in Crathie in Scotland around 1900, according to a 1975 source.

Amy Stewart Fraser, Dae Ye Min’ Langsyne? (Routledge, 1975), page 59.

Baseball Scotland 1800s,Post-1900,Derivative
Square Ball

per Leavy. A biography of Sandy Koufax reports that he played “stickball, punchball, square ball, and Gi-Gi ball in his neighborhood. In one 1922 handbook, Square Ball appears to be a variant of Corner Ball in which the peripheral plugging team and the central target team are equal in number, and is which the ball, after hitting a player on the target team, can be retrieved, “Halt!” called, and the ball thrown at “frozen” members of the peripheral team.

 Jane Leavy [Koufax bio, page needed].

Emily W. Elmore, A Practical Handbook of Games, (Macmillan, NY, 1922), pages 17-18.

Hook-em-snivy Brooklyn Derivative
Stickball

A game usually played in urban streets. The ball is rubber -- a “spaldeen,” now virtually the same that used in racketball, and bats vary but include broom handles. Allowances are made for traffic of various sorts, and the bases are specified at the start of play. (Verification needed.) One variation of the game is found in a recollection of New York play by Gregory Christiano.

Baseball Urban Areas Contemporary,Post-1900,Derivative
Strike Up and Lay Down

A fungo-style game for two teams as shown in an 1863 handbook. A feeder throws the ball to a batter, who hits it as far as possible. A member of the out-team picks up that ball and bowls it toward the bat, which lies on the ground. If the ball hits or hops over the bat, the batsman is out. The batsman is also out with three missed swings.

The Boy's Handy Book., pages 18-19.

Fungo Derivative
Strike-Out

This game is most often seen as a schoolyard game with from two to five players. A strike zone is drawn on a suitable wall, and a batter stands before it, attempting to hit a tennis ball or rubber ball. Baserunning is not usual. All other rules - for base advancement by imaginary runners, changing of batters, etc., seem flexible to circumstance. (Verification needed.)

Fungo Derivative
Stub One

Apparently a baseball-like game, perhaps played in Massachusetts in the early 20th Century. We have but one obscure reference to this game, in Cassidy.

F. G. Cassidy, Dictionary of American Regional English  (Harvard University Press, 1996), page 882.

Baseball Massachusettes Post-1900,Derivative
Swede Ball

This game is mentioned, along with Norwegian Ball in a 1908 book on North Dakota folkways. Said to be taught to local children by Swedish newcomers and a Swedish teacher, the game is only depicted as being “played somewhat like 'one old cat.’” It seems conceivable that this game is related to Brannboll. Maigaard (1941) lists two Swedish variants for Long Ball.

Collections of the State Historical Society, Volume 2 (State Printers and  Binders, Bismark ND, 1908), pages 213-214.

Maigaard, "Battingball Games." Genus 5 (1941).  (Reprinted as Appendix 6 of Block, Baseball Before We Knew It.)  See page 263.

Hook-em-snivy Derivative
Tabeh

Arabian -- In an 1873 book on Arab children’s games Tabeh is described as “base ball and drop ball.” That’s all we know right now.

Henry H. Jessup, The Women of the Arabs, with a Chapter for Children (Dodd Mead, 1873), page 90.

Hook-em-snivy Derivative
Tire-Ball

Only framentary information is as yet known about Tire-Ball.  The game takes its name from the length of bicycle tube that served as the game's ball (later, a short section of garden hose filled that need more often.  Other rules are unclear to us at this point.

See also the 4th paragraph at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halfball.

Fungo Philadelphia Contemporary,Post-1900,Derivative
Tournoi

Writing of the late 1860’s boyhood of a World War I General, Johnston (1919) writes that “the French boys were accustomed to play a game called tournoi, or tournament, which was something similar to the game of Rounders.” That’s all we seem to know about Tournoi.

Charles Johnston, Famous Generals of the Great War (Page Company, Boston, 1919), page 253.

Baseball Derivative
Tradgy

Heslop (1893) defines this word as “a boys’ game of ball, otherwise known as Rounders, and formerly called Pie-Ball locally.

O. Heslop, Northumberland Words (Oxford U Press, London, 1893), page 741.

Baseball Derivative
Trunket

Gomme (1898) compares this game to Cricket, except that the ball is “cop’d” (whaa?) instead of bowled, and it uses a hole instead of stumps.

Alice B. Gomme, The Traditional Games of England, Scotland, and Ireland (Davit Nutt, London, 1898), page 310.

Baseball Derivative
Twenty-One

This game is a fungo game that enhances fielding skill. A batter hits a ball, fungo style, to a number of fielders. A fielder receives 7 points for a caught fly, 5 points for a ball caught on one bounce, 3 points for catching a bouncing ball, and 1 point for retrieving a ball at rest. Points are similarly lost for muffed balls. Fielders who amass 21 points become the batter. Another form of this game is Five Hundred, which proceeds similarly.

Fungo Derivative
Vigoro

A sport that claims 1500 players among the women of Queensland, Australia, Vigoro is a souped-up version of (slightly down-sized) cricket. A key point is that if a ball Is hit forward of the crease, running is compulsory.

Baseball Queensland, Australia Derivative
Waggles (Whacks)

Gomme (1898) compares Waggles to a game of four-player Cricket using cats instead of balls.

Alice B. Gomme, The Traditional Games of England, Scotland, and Ireland (Davit Nutt, London, 1898), page 329.

Baseball Derivative
Welsh Baseball

This game uses a smaller ball than US baseball, and features a flattened bat, underhand pitching, eleven-player teams, no foul ground, an all-out-side-out rule, and two-inning games.

www.welshbaseball.co.uk

George Vecsey, "Playing Baseball in Wales," New York Times, August 11 1986.

Kevin O'Brien - www.welshbaseball.co.uk

Baseball Wales, UK Derivative
Whoop

A writer's recollection of past Boston sports, including  base ball,  includes the unexplained game of "Whoop."

Letter to the editor, Boston Eveing Transcript, December 21, 1859. Contributed by Joanne Hulbert.

Hook-em-snivy Post-1900,Derivative
Wibble-Wobble

H. J Philpott used the names "hole-ball and "wibble-wobble" as games that seem consistent with hat-ball.  One player would place the ball in a hole or hat, and the other players would scatter before being hit with the ball by the player designated as "it."  This game thus shares evasive running and plugging with base ball.

 

Henry J. Philpott, "A Little Boys' Game with a Ball," Popular Science Monthly, volume 37 (May-October 1890), pages 651-652.

Hat ball Midwest US Derivative
Wiffleball

A Wiffle Ball is a hollow plastic ball with holes strategically placed in order to exaggerate sideways force, and thus enabling pitchers to produce severe curves and drops. Competitive games of Wiffleball are known, some exhibiting team play. None, we believe, appear to involve baserunning.

Fungo Post-1900,Derivative
Wireball

In this game opponents position themselves on the opposite sides of as wire strung over the street. Singles, doubles, etc., are determined by whether the ball hits the wire and whether it is caught by the out team as it descends. There is no running or batting in this urban game.

Fungo Derivative
Workup

Another label for the game Scrub/Move-Up: The available number of players is initially divided between several defensive positions and a smaller number of batters. A batter who is put out, becomes the fielder who is last in line to return to batting [right field, when there are enough fielders], and must work the way back position by position. A fielder to catches a fly ball exchanges places immediately with the batter. Because the small number of player precludes team play, “ghost runners” and special ground rules are sometimes required. Plugging is allowed when the ball is soft enough to permit that.

Two examples of Work-Up are depicted in G. Land, Growing Up with Baseball (UNebraska, 2004), pages 83 and 175.

Scrub Derivative