Baseball Spotlight

Each month the baseball spotlight will shine on a figure from the game. It will be someone who contributed in a big way. Check back to see who's next in the baseball spotlight.

Henry Chadwick

 Henry Chadwick was a baseball writer and statistician. But that's just for starters.

He was the first one to start accumulating and keeping track of baseball statistics. He wrote a book called The Beadle Guide in 1861. In this book he listed stats for games played, outs, runs, home runs, and strikeouts for some baseball stars of that day. This was the first time anyone had bothered to keep track.

He once said that his goal was to prove statistically which players helped and which players hurt their clubs. He also became one of baseball's first official scorers.

One of Henry Chadwick's greatest "inventions" was something we as baseball fans now take for granted. The box score. In these original box scores, Chadwick first used the "K" for the symbol for a strike out.

Henry Chadwick's box score from 1874

He is also the first to officially calculate batting and earned run averages.

Can you imagine the game today without box scores and batting averages? I guess you could say that Henry Chadwick was the father of baseball statistics. Many of the stats he came up with haven't changed much in over a century.

Chadwick died in 1908 and was elected to the Baseball Hall Of Fame by the veterans committee in 1938.