Thursday, August 30, 2012

Norwood Gibson

I read that Zach Stewart's 9-run Red Sox debut was the worst since Norwood Gibson's in 1903. But the reports that said that only went that far. So I went and found the box score from the game.

From the Philadelphia Record, 4/30/1903:

So Norwood (the only guy in MLB history with that first name) was a little wild that day. Nine walks, and Washington stole 8 bases. He only gave up 8 hits over 9 innings, though, so I wouldn't say he was "lit up" as ESPN did, though two of the hits were triples and one was a dong. Gibson hit a triple himself, too.

Also note that only one run was earned. (But since Boston only made 2 errors and Washington scored in 5 different innings, I'm thinking maybe runs scoring due to walks weren't counted as earned runs back then. Anybody?)

That earned run difference makes no sense. But it is clearly a "1" and not something like a "7".
Never heard that about walks = unearned runs.

There's an odd note about "historical differences" on the Wiki page for "earned run." But I think it's just implying there were more errors back pre-1900. But if they were counting walks as unearned when they scored, that would explain the much higher amount of unearned runs back then. I looked at a few boxes from 1911 and saw similar things to this, though not all the time.

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