Somehow or other, they don't play ball nowadays as they used to some eight or ten years ago. I don't mean to say they don't play it as well. ... But I mean that they don't play with the same kind of feelings or for the same objects they used to.So said Pete O'Brien, captain of Brooklyn's Atlantic club ... in 1868.
Eighteen years later, in 1884, a writer looked back wistfully to the "glorious matches of old", which had been played for "the love of true sport", before "the boodle they take at the gate" had ruined the grand game of baseball.
And the "fact" that young kids no longer flock to the game of bat and ball and glove - a lament we have heard often in recent years as postseason games routinely last long into the night? ... It was first raised in the 1920s!
Read a lot more about the on-going "death" of baseball here.