The old ball game

St. Croix’s begin 15th vintage base ball season Sunday

The St. Croix Base Ball Club, which plays by the rules of 1860 and is a program of the Washington County Historical Society, opens its season Sunday at Pettit Park in Lake St. Croix Beach against the Afton Red Socks.

This 2 p.m. match begins the vintage base ball programs 15th season and is free to the public.

The St. Croix club has played all over Washington County, Minnesota and even as far as Ohio, Colorado and Washington, D.C. This year the club plays games in Stillwater, Scandia, Rochester, Becker, Northfield and at the Washington County Fair. The St. Croix’s will also play at the Barron County, Wis., Historical Society in Cameron, Wis., and at Osceola, Wis.

The rules of 1860 have some very interesting differences. The players do not wear gloves. If the ball is caught on the first bounce the batter is out. There are no balls or strikes called by the umpire – although a batter can still strike out if he swings and misses three times. Foul balls are not considered strikes, and the base runners can be tagged out if they over run first base.

To see the complete schedule of St. Croix club matches and other programs of the Washington County Historical Society visit or call 651-439-5956 for more information.