Box Scores - To Infinity And Beyond

By Frank Workman | Apr 09, 2017

Baseball is back and with it the daily box scores in the morning paper.


For all the numbers in a box score on any given day, some stand out more than others - double-digits in the K column, or a number bigger than a 4 in the RBI line.

This first week of the season also affords us the opportunity to see.....not a number, but a symbol... in the box score.

Or it used to be shown.

In a way, it IS a number.

Think of an 8, but laying on its side.

The symbol for infinity.

It happens when a pitcher makes his first appearance of the season, gives up (at least) one earned run without getting anybody out, then comes out of the game. Until he retires a batter during the season, there's no limit to what his ERA can is infinite.

Used to be the box score would rightly show his ERA to be infinity.

This week, alas, the Seattle Times mistakenly credited two such pitchers with an ERA of 0.00.

Another testimony to the changing times, I guess.

I blame Bud $elig, the root of all evil.


There's no question about it.



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