Original Wraps. Chicago and New York: A. G. Spalding & Bros. 1884. First Edition. Very Good.
First edition. Original publisher's tan printed wrappers. A very good copy with some wear and minor loss at the corners, very minor soiling and the first several leaves dogeared at the upper corner. Spalding's Official Base Ball Guide was an annually issued baseball guide first published in 1877 by sporting goods magnate A. G. Spalding's American Sports Publishing Company. During the 19th century, Spalding and Reach's guides were the primary source of sports statistics and analysis of the prior year; they also included the rules and regulations for playing the game. Spalding and Reach fully merged by 1942 to form The Sporting News. The 1884 guide includes statistics for 1883 for the National League champion Boston Beaneaters and the American Association champion Philadelphia Athletics. Notable statistics include John Montgomery Ward becoming the first pitcher to hit two home runs in a single game, the Providence Grays defeated the Philadelphia Quakers 28-0 in the biggest shutout in MLB history, Hall of Fame pitcher Tim Keefe of the New York Metropolitans wins both games of a double-header giving up a combined 3 hits, and Cap Anson's Chicago White Stockings set a record number of doubles in single game with Anson contributing 4 of the 14 doubles. Also that same year, the American Association further expands to 12 teams, which includes the original Washington Nationals.