1877 October

2nd  In the final game of the IA season, the London, Ontario, Tecumsehs defeat Pittsburgh 5–2 and win the pennant. Pitcher Fred Goldsmith has errorless support until 2 out in the bottom of the 9th, when 3 errors give the Allies their runs. Their championship record is 14-4.

5thNow that it’s too late to win the flag, the Louisvilles win their 6th game in a row, beating Chicago, 4–0. The Grays score all their runs in the 8th following 2 bad throws by 3B Al Spalding.

6thOn the final day of the season, Lawrence Reis, a local teenager who pitched the final 4 games for Chicago, shuts out Louisville, 4–0.

The final standings (not counting Cincinnati) are Boston (31-17): Louisville (28-20: Hartford (24-24): St. Louis (19-29): Chicago (18-30). When the games against Cincinnati are counted the standings are: Boston (42-18): Louisville (35-25: Hartford (31-27): St. Louis (28-32): Chicago (26-33): Cincinnati (15-42).

16thBuffalo closes its season, losing to Rochester, 3–0. The club shows a profit of $490, making it the only pro team of 1877 to actually make money, according to contemporary sources.

20th  At an exhibition, LH Bobby Mitchell of Cincinnati and RH Tommy Bond of Boston offer conclusive proof that a ball can curve. Three stakes are set up in a straight line; Bond curves the ball around the center stake on one side, while Mitchell curves it around on the other side. After the exhibition the two pitchers oppose each other, with Boston winning 8–3.

23rdThe 1878 St. Louis squad, including Devlin, Snyder and Hall of this year’s Louisville team, beats Boston, 9–1, in an exhibition game.

26th  Louisville club vice president Charles Chase confronts George Hall, the HR leader in ’76 with 5, and Jim Devlin with charges that they threw road games in August and September. Both admit to throwing non-league games (an exhibition game in Lowell, MA August 30 and another in Pittsburgh September 3) and implicate teammates Al Nichols and Bill Craver. Hall implicates Devlin saying that the 2 helped in losses to the NL Cincinnati Reds on September 6 and to the minor league Indianapolis Blues on September 24, but he argues that since the Reds were about to be suspended and the games nullified, it amounted to an exhibition game.

27th  The Louisville club formally expels Devlin, Hall, and Nichols for selling games and tampering with other players, and expels Craver for “disobedience to positive orders.” Their remaining 1877 salaries, which the Louisville team acknowledged, are “forfeited”. Nichols, the exposed go-between who had been dropped by Pittsburgh (International Association) earlier in the year for trying to bribe pitcher Pud Galvin, left town weeks earlier. Craver will deny any wrongdoing but refused to make public his telegrams. Devlin and Hall received $75.00 and $25.00 respectively in the mails. While this was going on, Devlin forwarded an eviction notice from his landlord to the Louisville club for $150.00, which the team ignored despite owing Devlin $470 salary. Devlin’s testimony also stated that Louisville paid umpire Dan Devinney extra to deliver about 20 victories this year to the team, but Louisville directors said that “that part of Devlin’s testimony was a lie.” After the season rules are changed as to how each team picked umpires for home games (as noted by Frank Vacarro).

31stAt a stockholders meeting, the St. Louis club announces an agreement with the players that will reduce the salaries still owed from $4,389.68 to $2791.46.