Page:America's National Game (1911).djvu/196

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that day was Ellis, the same with whom the subject had been discussed one night at Cleveland. The effect of the play on the crowd was simply paralyzing. None present had ever seen anything like it, and nobody knew what was up. The umpire, passing me, hissed: " That was mean of you, Spalding." The spectators were wild with rage. Shouts of " dirty ball," " Yankee trick," etc., etc., came from all quarters. Interest was at once centered on poor Ellis, the umpire. It was clear that if he declared the base runners out he would be mobbed. If he decided otherwise, he would do so in direct violation of the strict letter of the rule. Meanwhile the crowd became more and more riotous, now threatening our team, and now the umpire. Through it all I kept a stiff upper lip, demanding "judgment." "It's up to you, Mr. Umpire," I shouted. "What's your decision?"

"I decide," said he after a short pause, during which he looked into the faces of the angry mob, "that nobody's out and that the batsman must resume his place at bat as though nothing had happened."

I do not recall which team won that game, but I do recall the fact that at the close of the contest four burly policemen came on the field to escort me from the grounds.

"What's the matter now? Am I under arrest?"

"Naw, you ain't under arrest; but the management thought we'd better be on hand to protect you."

After the game was over and we had returned to our hotel, I was plied with all kinds of questions about that trick: "What about the umpire?" "Was his decision right?" and I made this reply: