Whet Your Baseball APBAtite

by Teddy Ballgame

66.jpg Way back in 1969 when I was just 13 years old I went out to visit my cousins. I was fascinated by the dice baseball game they were playing called APBA. First off the dice were very small, one slightly larger red die & one extremely small white die, were mesmerizing as they tumbled across the table. Then there were player cards representing every single major league baseball player. These cards had almost mystical numbers on them beside the dice rolls, 11 through 66. There were four charts with every base situation from bases empty to bases loaded. My cousins were actually managing real live major league baseball players playing actual games. The randomness of the dice created unpredictable outcomes along with statistical accuracies that were hard to believe. After each game was played the results were recorded into spiral notebooks, each player having his own page on which his statistics would magically accumulate.

Richard Seitz first played APBA as a boy in 1932 and then later in the barracks while he was in the service. But it wasn’t till 1951 that APBA came to life as Seitz wanted to recreate the 1950 baseball season in which his beloved Philadelphia Phillies captured the National League Pennant. Whenever APBA games were played in the barracks an enthusiastic crowd would gather to watch the intense competition as dice & cards would create the baseball action. It was at this point that Richard realized he might have something here.

Twenty years later I got my first APBA game as a Christmas present. And what a Christmas present it was! I could hardly wait for the UPS guy to deliver the game before I was ripping open the package, looking at the cards, and playing baseball. Baseball in January was a dream come true for this baseball crazed kid!

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