Scored a Baseball Game (298/366)

298ScoredTopI had only one superstition. I made sure to touch all the bases when I hit a home run.”
~ Babe Ruth



Okay first of all, I want to thank Patrick McGovern of; when we thought of this INDT, we googled “Baseball Scorecard” just to find something to print out, and stumbled upon this free site with great, straightforward information, that made this such a fun and educational experience!  Patrick created the site because he started becoming interested in scoring games he went to with his son, and couldn’t find much information on scoring from the Internet at the time.  Awesome!  If you’re at all interested in scoring a baseball game, make Mr. McGovern’s site your first stop.  He’s got you covered.

The scoring of a baseball game – especially with pencil and paper – is somewhat of a dying practice (I guess to a certain extent, you could say the same about just *writing* with a pencil and paper!  Yikes!).  They used to give scorecards out to everyone at baseball games, but over the years have done so less and less; probably because of a combination of lack of interest and desire to save paper/money.  Nowadays, you’ll pretty much only find scorecards being passed out at minor league games (so grab one if you go!).  Fewer scorecards of course also resulted in fewer people scoring the games they were watching, and so on … so now most people don’t know how to score a game (of course, myself included – until now!).  I’ve always wanted to try scoring a game myself, and tonight I decided to go for it.

You can download the “Enhanced Vertical Scorecard” we used from the site here (there are others, but I just liked this one).  The first step to scoring the game is of course, to fill in all the info about the game you already know, such as the teams playing, date, start time, etc..  You can fill in as much or as little as you want, but as Patrick suggests, you want to make sure you at least fill in the team names and the date, so you, “know what game you were scoring when you find the scorecard in the bottom of a drawer a few months later.”  Ha!  Next, you want to fill in the starting lineup, down the left side of the score card.  There’s a space for each player’s number, name, and position.

Here’s a diagram of the position numbers; so the next time you see a “Buster to Brandon to Brandon,” … you’ll know that’s what the announcers mean by a “2, 6, 3 Double Play!”

After you’ve got all your starting info filled in, you’re ready to score the game.  #RallyZito!!!

Here’s where the insanity fun begins!  For each player’s at-bat, you note his performance.  There’s a LOT more you can read about scoring from the site if you’d like to learn in-depth how to score a game properly, but I’m just going to touch on a few things here.

For example, if Angel hits a lead-off double, it looks like this:
298DoublePic we’d darken the baselines from home, to first, to second, and write a “2B” to signify the two bases he’s earned.  But alright alright, it actually went like this: 298Groundout1sttoPitcher
That means Angel Grounded to the 1st baseman (pos. #3) who threw to the pitcher (pos. #1, covering 1st) and was [the first] out (signified by the circled “1” at the lower left hand corner).

The Enhanced card we were using also has five squares at the top left of each at-bat box, for you to keep track of balls and strikes, if you’d like.  This requires more attention, especially if this is your first time scoring.  Whew, I just had to make it the most nerve-wracking for myself, didn’t I?

Pablo‘s three home runs (the first two off of Justin Verlander, the second also batting in Marco Scutaro) looked like this, by the way:
298HomeRun298HRRBI298HomeRunAll the baselines darkened, an “HR” written in the middle of each diamond, and an “RBI” written where the other Runner was Batted In by the home run.

And like I said, there’s much, much more to scoring.  This page has example of what it looks like to mark the different ways a player can get on base or make an out, and this page has the abbreviations you can use when marking your scorecard.

At the end of the game, this score and these stats:

were reflected on my scorecard, but in much greater detail:

This was, like I said, a bit nerve-wracking, but mostly because it was such a very special (and very exciting) game.  I wanted to make sure I got every pitch and play accounted for, but that was a challenge with all the awesomeness coming from our team.  What a great first game to score!  Let’s go, Giants!!!


Related Links:
Enhanced Vertical Baseball Scorecard (.pdf)
“Scoring a Game” Page
Scorecard Examples Page
Scorecard Abbreviations Page

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