The candidates for the freshman nine are now practising in the cage three hours a week. Their number has now been lowered to nineteen, and a first and second nine will be chosen from these men in a few weeks. At present they are under the supervision of Captain Fargo and the executive committee. The men have had unusual advantages this year, as the committee have been untiring in their efforts to train the nine, and they will have another great advantage in having a separate field for practice.
At present the men practice batting, catching, and pitching, take short spurts on the running track for their wind, and exercise on the chest weights.
The men are divided into two squads, which occupy the cage every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday afternoon from two till four. The first squad, exercising from two till three, is composed of the following men: Choate, Snow, Ingersoll, Palmer, J. W. Austin, G. H. Brewer, Swarts, Hallowell, Foss, Bowen, F. J. Reynolds and W. G. Taylor. The second division, exercising from three till four, is composed of Jones, Dickinson, Crocker, E. R. Thayer, J. A. Gallivan, Stetson, Gilson, S. Gleason.
Of these men, four are trying for pitcher's place-Snow, Austin, Palmer and Dickinson. They are practising constantly under the watchful eye of Mr. Winslow, but have not as yet got a good control of the ball; although some of their curves are promising, they do not seem to be able to make them effective, and hard work will be necessary to remedy this.
Three men are aspirants for catcher's place,- Choate, change catcher for St. Mark's last year, Jones and Ingersoll. Of these three, Choate at present is doing the best work, but is very slow about returning the ball. Jones is also showing up well in practice.
As Capt. Fargo will probably be unable to play, he will not occupy first base as was expected. The only candidate for this position at present is Foss who played first base on the Exeter nine last year. The other men trying for the in-field are Gallivan, Thayer, Stetson, Brewer, Taylor, Reynolds, and Gleason. These men have been improving since the beginning of the year, but the majority of them throw badly; it is true the light in the cage makes it difficult to throw well, but some of the throwing is inexcusable. Another very common fault is the general failure to keep the feet together while catching.
For the out-field, Crocker, who played right field on the Adams Academy last year, Gibson, centre field on the "Gennery" nine, Hollowell, and Swarts are the only applicants at present. When the nine is finally selected, many of those now trying for other positions will try for the out-field.
On the whole, there is no reason why the freshmen should not have a good nine; the class is large, and has many good men in it, but the base-ball material seems as yet raw and undeveloped. There are no players as yet of great note in the class, as these were among the foot ball men, but with the departure of Hurd, and the disabling of Fargo, the class is left with almost untried men to form its nine. However, with good, hard, steady work, there is no reason why '88 should not have a nine able to defeat Yale next May; and the more they follow Mr. Winslow's advice, and the harder, and more faithfully they work, so much the more credit they will reflect on their class, and on the college.