US 1772116 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
5; 1930. SNODGRASS BASEBALL GAME APPARATUS 4 Sheets-Sheet Filed March 10. 1927 INVENTOR L E. SNODGRASS.
Aug. 5, 1930.
L. E. SNODGRASS BASEBALL GAME APPARATUS Filed March 10. 1927 lllllllllfllfllIf!Ifflllllllliiiilil!Illlllllll!!! [III] II/ III II/II 4 Sheets-Sheet VIIIIIII III! I 4 INVENTOP. L. E. SNODGRASS.
ATTORNEY Aug. 5, 1930. 1.. 1-:. SNODGRASS BASEBALL GAME APPARATUS I 4 Sheets-Sheet Filed March 10, 1927 lNVE/VTOP. LE. SNQDGRASS.
ATTORNE X' Aug. 5, 1930. E. SNODGRASS 1,772,116
BASEBALL GAME APPARATUS Filed March 1.0, 1927 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 Patented Aug. 5, 1930 PATENT ()FFICE LESLIE E. SNODGRASS, OF DAYTON, OHIO BASEBALL-GAME APPARATUS Application filed March 10, 1927. Serial No. 174,163.
This invention relates to game apparatus and more particularly to an apparatus for playing the game of baseball.
One object of the invention is to provide an apparatus with which opposing operators or players may play a game of baseball in substantial accordance with baseball rules.
A further object of the invention is to protion to another station selected by the oper-' 2o ator.
A further object of the invention is to provide such an apparatus which will be simple in its construction and operation and in the manipulation of which ahigh degree of skill may he acquired by the operators.
Other objects of the invention will appear as the apparatus is described in detail.
In the accompanying drawings Fig. 1 is a plan view of a game board embodying my invention; Fig. 2 is a longitudinal section taken on the line 22 of Fig. 1; Fig. 3 is a transverse section taken on the line 3-3 of Fig. 1; Fig. i is a transverse section taken on the line 4- 1 of Fig. 1 Fig. 5 is a section taken as on the line 5-5 of Fig. 1; Fig. 6 is a section talzen'on the line 6-5 of Fig. 1; Fig. 7 is a horizontal sectional view showing in plan a portion of the mechanism for controlling the base runners; Fig. 8 is an elevation of said mechanism looking at the inner side thereof; Fig. 9 is a sectional detail view of one players station and its ball throwing device; Fig. 10 is a sectional detail view of one of the devices for controlling the players station i and ball throwing devices; Fig. 11 is a section take through the operating mechanism for the base runners, on the line 1111 of Fig-7; 12 is a top plan view of a portion of one of the chains showing the socket; Fi g. 13 is a 5 side elevation of said chain showing a figure in position in the socket; Fig. 1 1 is a detail view of the bell mechanism; Fig. 15 is a top plan view of the bat operating mechanism; Fig. 16 is an elevation of the bat operating mechanism, looking from the right on Fig. 15; and Fig. 17 is a front elevation of the bat operating mechanism.
In these drawings I have illustrated one embodiment of my invention but it will be understood that this has been chosen for the purpose of illustration only and that the apparatus may take'various forms without departing from the spirit of the invention. I
In that particular embodiment of the invention here shown the apparatus comprises a game board or table which may be of any suitable character and may be supported in any suitable manner. As here shown, this game board comprises a shallow receptacle 1 having a top wall 2 arranged in the upper portion thereof and spaced a short distance from the upper edges of the side walls8 so that the side walls will extend above the top or playing surface of the board and will constitute flanges or guards which serve toretain the ball on the board. The board may be of any suitable shape and, as here shown, is substantially octagonal inshape. to accommodate it generally to the shape of a baseball field and is provided at opposite ends with extensions 4 and 5. This board constitutes a playing field and upon it are arrangedYa plurality of players stations, these stations preferably corresponding in number and location to the number of players and the positions occupied thereby in a baseball game. Associated with eachplayers station is a ball throwing device, underthe control of one of the operators which may be manipulated by the operator to throw the ball to any oneof the other stations which he may select. Arranged adjacent to the home base, or fplatej is a bat under the control of the other operator and which may be caused to strike at and to hit a ball thrown from the pitchers station. Also under the control of the last mentioned operator are suitable devices for ma nipulating figures representing base runners and causing these base runners to move from'base to base as the game progresses and i as opportunity offers. These base runners may be independently moved either in the same direction or in opposite directions. With this apparatus it is therefore possible for the one operator to cause a ball to be pitched to the batter, for the batter to hit the ball and the base runner, representing the batter, to move toward first base. A ball which has been hit will approach and enter some one of the players stations in the field and the throwing device of that station may be manipulated to throw the ball to one of the base stationsto intercept the runner or to such other point as may seem desirable. The flexibility of the apparatus is such that practically all of the plays which can be made on a regular ball diamond may be made on this game board. s
In the apparatus the several players stations are represented as a whole by the reference numeral 6. These stations are nine in number and are arranged in the positions usually occupied by the corresponding players on a ball field. Each station is of such a character that when a ball enters its territory it will be guided to the station which has means for receiving the ball and then throwing the same. Preferably each station comprises a depression or'cavity in the top wall 01' supporting-surface of the board, as
shown at 7 in Fig. 9. Arranged adjacent to these depressions are deflectors arranged to intercept a ball passing near'the station and toguide the same into the depression. The infielder stations, that is, first, second and third base, and short stop, are eachprovided with an elevated deflector or bunker 8 which extends from the station proper" across a part of the field usually covered by that player. The deflectors do not cover the V entire infield because in a game played with this apparatus the ball will frequently or usually roll on the surface of the table and the deflectors for the several infield stations are spaced apart so as to allow for the passage of the ball between the same to the outfield stations. Adjacent to the outfield stations the supporting surface of the board is sloped toward the stations, as shown at 9,'and beyond each station is arranged a deflector or backstop 10 to prevent the ball passing be yond the station. Consequently when a ball is hit or thrown into the field it will usually be directed into one of the depressions or cavities representing a players station. Should the ball not enter any one of these stations it will strike the guard rail 3 at the outer edge of the board and be returned.
onto the board. 7 7
Associated with each of the stations 6 is a ball throwing device by means of which the operator may remove the ballfrom the station and deliver the same to another players station. to be selected by him. As here shown, this ball throwing device comprises an arm 11 pivotally mounted at its outer end and hav- 7 ing its inner end slightly cupped and arranged at the deepest portion of the depression 7 of the station so that the ball entering the station would move by gravity into the cup shaped portion of the throwing arm. Any suitable means may be provided for manipulating the throwing arm and for adjusting the same to cause the ball to be thrown in the desired direction. In the present instance, the throwing arm is pivotally mounted on a rotatable block 18, the upper surface of which is shaped and arranged to form the lower portion of the cavity 7 of the station. This rotatable member is here shown as having in its lower surface a recess or hearing 14 into which extends a stud 15 car- 'ried by a supporting member or bracket 16 mounted on the game board beneath the sup- Y porting surface thereof. By rotating the arm supporting member 13 the pivoted end of the arm may be caused to extend toward any part of the board and when the arm is moved about the axis of that pivot the ball will be thrown in the direction in which the pivoted end of the arm extends. In the present construction the throwing movement is imparted to the by a slidable stem or plunger 17 mounted in the stud 15' of the bracket 16 and having its upper end arranged to engage the underside of the throwing arm. The lower end of the stem 17 rests upon one end'of a lever 18 which is pivotally mounted between its ends on a lug 19 carried by or arranged acent to the bracket 16. The other end of the lever 18 extends upwardly, as shown at 20, and is acted upon by a spring 21 which tends to hold the lever in its normal position, in which position the actuating stem 17 will be retracted and the ball throwing device will be in its normal position. The movement of the lever 18 bythe spring 21 islimi ed by a stop 22 with which the lever contacts. nected with the upwardly extending portion st the lever 18 is 'a cable or rod 23 which extends lengthwise of the board and is connected at its other end withthe upwardlyextending portion 2 1 of a lever 25 which is pivotally mounted on a lug 26 arranged in the extension 5 of the board. Any suitable tating the arm supporting member 18 so as to control the direction of the throw may be of any suitable character but I prefer that it should be operated by'the same. device by Con- IJI
about the axis of the arm connected by a rod l2 with finger 3 means of which the throwing arm is actuated, thus enabling the operator to adjust the throwing arm and then actuate the same by different movements of a single controlling device. I have therefore mounted the plunger 29 for rotating as well as for reciprocating movement and have operatively connected the same with the rotatable supporting member 13 for the throwing arm. As here shown, a sleeve 31 is rotatably mounted upon the up per end of the tubular guide 28 and is splined to the plunger 29, as shown at 32, so that the sleeve will be caused to rotate with the plunger 29, but the plunger will be capable of reciprocatory movement in the sleeve. Carried by the sleeve is a sprocket wheel 33 and a sprocket chain 34 passes about the sprocket wheel 33 and about a corresponding sprocket wheel 85 on the rotatable member 13, thus causing the rotatable member 13 to be rotated in the same direction and to the same extent that the controlling member or plunger 29 is rotated. Preferably'the knob or operating handle 30 is provided with a pointer 68 to indicate the direction in which the throwing arm extends and to guide the operator in the proper positioning of that aria I have not, in the present instance, provided the board with dials to cooperate with the pointers 68, as a higher skill may be developed without the use of dials. It will be understood that each of the nine players stations corresponds in construction to that above described and is provided with an operating mechanism similar to that above described. The controlling devices forthe several stations, that is, the plungers 29, are located in the extension 5 of the board which lies justbeyond the center field position and from this position the operator may control the movements of the ball over the field.
Arranged adjacent to the catchers is a bat 36 which is here shown ar alongside the catchers station and p mounted in the inner end of an arm 0 which in turn is pivotally mounted at its outer end on the board. An arm 38 is connected with the bat 36 and is acted upon by a spring to hold the same normally in its position. The bat is connected by i member or cord 40 with a bell crank l ver 41 which is pivotally mounted for mo ncr 1 1 31 and w on.
slidably mounted on an arm l4. which is r idly secured to and may, if desired, formed integral'with the arm 37. The arm 44 is shown as having an upwardly ing end 4-5 and by grasping the part i the arm and the finger piece 43 the bat mav be moved forcibly forwarl. After the bal has been struck by the bat the arm is i be actuated to throw the bat back away fro i the catchers station where it will not in fere with a ball thrown to the catcher.
l ately above the sockets 49 so that the The apparatus includes one or more figures, preferably four, representing base runners and means are provided whereby the operator for the batting team may individually manipulate these base runners so as to cause them to move from base to base either in unison or separately and to permit the base runners to be moved ineither direction, thereby enabling the operator representing the batting team to advance his runners as the conditions of the game may justify, exactly as would be done on aball field.
The mechanism for controlling the base runners may take various forms but, as here shown, it comprises four endless conveyors, such as sprocket chains as, which extend about guides at the four corners of the diamond, as shown in Figsfl and 7. These sprocket chains or endless conveyors are arranged one above the other and at each corner of the diamond are four separately rotatable guides or sprocket wheels with which the respective chains engage. These sprocket wheels mounted on a common axis and, as shown in 7, are carried by a single vertical stud or shaft 48. Thus'it'will be seen that each chain or conveyor may be moved in either direction independently of the other chains. Each chain is provided with means for carrying a figure representing the base runner and, in the present instance, 1 each chain has secured to one side thereof pertured lug :9 constituting a socket to receive one end of the figure. These sockets are arranged one above the other because the base runners never pass one another and therefore there will be no interference between base runners in separate sockets." The upper surface or top wall of the game board is provided with a slot-e2;- tending along the edges'of and definin diamond, this slot being arranged 'r edimay extend through and be moved along the same. The several chains may be actuated either in unison or individually in any suitable manner and, in the presentinstance, l have provided a crank or operating han'l 51 at one side of the game board. and co a nected with this crank is a shaft 52 wh' extends inwardly and is provided at its ner end with a beveled pinion V meshes with a beveled gear mounted for rotation about'a vertical axis rigidly secured thereto a spur gear cured to the spurgear 55 and arranged in superimposed order above the same are four gears 56, rigidly connected one to the other and with the spur gear 55. Meshing with the spur a5 is a second spur gear 57 which also has secured thereto four gears if desired, the series of gears 56 and the serie. of gears 58 may each be in the form'of single elongated gear, as shown in and 11. It will be apparent therefore -that lee when the shaft 52 is rotated the two series of gears 56 and 58 will be rotated in oppo site directions. interposed between the two series of gears 56 and 58 and one set of guides or sprocket chains 47, preferably that set adjacent to the home base, are means for connecting said guides with either the corresponding gear 56 or corresponding gear 58. As here shown, the guides 47 are in the form of spur gears, which also function as sprocket wheels, and mounted for movement about the stud 48 on which the gears 4c? are mounts:
are four arms 59 on the inner end of each of which is rotatably mounted a gear 60. Each gear 60 is normally in mesh with one of the gears 47 and is normally out of mesh with the corresponding gears of the series and 58 but is movable into mesh with either of the last mentioned gears at the will of the operator. As here shown, each arm 59 is provided with a handle 61 by means of which it may be manipulated to connec the gear ll" of a selected chain with either the or the'gear 57 according as to whether the chain is to be moved in one direction or the other,
Thus it will be seen that by manipulating one or more of the handles 61 the corresponding chains will be connected with the driving mechanism and the rotation of the shaft will cause the base runners connected those chains to move about the diamond. The base runners will move in the same direction or in dilierent directions according to the connection between the respective chains and thedriving shaft. Thus when two men are on bases it may be desirable to advance one runner but to return the other runner to his base.
lVhen the ball is hit squarely into the cavity of one of the players stations this is counted a fly-out on the assumptionthat the fielder caught a fly ball. If desired, a signal may be provided to indicate whensuch a play is made, and, as shown in Figs. 1, 9 and 14:, a pin 62 is mounted in a wall of the cavity in such a position that it will be engaged by a ball dir ctly entering the same. A lever or tapper arm 63 is arranged to be actuated by said pin and carries on' its end a tapper 64 to engage a bell 65, a spring 66 serving to retract that tapper. The board may also be provided with slots 70 through which foul balls maypass to the space beneath the top wall of the board, and with other slots 71 for fair balls which do not enter any fielders stat on and which are to be considered as home runs. The slots 70 and 71 communicate with the runways 69 within the board, and are discharged at the fielding operators en' of the board, so that the ball is returned to this operator and again placed in play by him.
The construction and operation of the apparatus will be readily understood from the foregoing description and it will be apparent that the game may beplayed substantially in accordance with the standard baseball rules. The ball employed may be of any suitable weight and the height of the bat with relation to the surface of the board will in a measure determine whether or not the ball hit by the bat will be rolled over the board or lifted above the surface, but preferably'the in the pitchers station and the fielding oper ator will so manipulate the ball throwing device of that station as to throw the ball toward'the catchers station, the board being provided with a home base 67 in the usual location. In the arrangement here shown,
the batting mechanism has been positioned to locate the bat adjacent to the home plate or base, and the batting operator manipulates the bat to strike the ball and if the ball'is not across the plate he may allow it to pass. the batter does not strike at the ball and it enters the catchers station it may be considered a strike, otherwise a ball. If the batter strikes the ball and it travels across the field within the foul lines it will eventualenter one of the players stations. Before the b: l is pitched the batting player has v ns and as soon as the ball is hit he manipulates that mechanism to advance the runner toward first base. Assuming that the ball moves toward the short stop station the fielding operator observes the station toward which it is moving and adjusts the throwing device of that station for a throw to first base and as soon as the ball enters the station he manipulates this controlling device to throw the ball. If the ball enters the players station at first base before the runn r reaches first base the runner is out. if there are two runners on bases the time required for the batting operarorto manipulate these runners is correspondingly greater and the fielding operator has more time within which to move his ball from station to s ation, in an effort to put out one of the miners. Should there be a runner on base ,nd the batter should strike a ball squarely 0 one of the stations this would be a flyout the runner having left his base must be returned thereto. From the illus-,
fractions which have been givenit will be apnt that substantially be made on a ball field can-be 'madeon game While l have shown and described one embodiment of my lnventlonl WlSll it to'be unbase runner in a socket on one ofthe i all the plays thatboard and as the plays to be made c e determined by the players according to derstood that I do not desire to be limited to the details thereof as various modifications may occur to a person skilled in the Having now fully described my invention, what I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent, is: V
1. In a ball game apparatus, a board having a plurality of stations, a ball throwing device associated with each station, means under the control of an operator for independ ently actuating the respective ball throwing devices, a bat, means under the control of another operator for manipulating said bat, separate means for movably supper-tin a pinrality oi base runners, an actuating device under the control of the last mentioned operator, and means to operatively connect said actuating device with selected runner supporting devices to independently control the movement of said plurality of base runners.
2. In a ball game apparatus, a batting .iechanism comprising a pivoted bat supporting structure, a bat pivotally mounted on said structure at a point remote from the axis of said structure, means for holding said bat normally in a retracted position, and an actuating device carried by said supporting structure, and operatively connected with said bat.
3. In a ball game apparatus, a batting mechanism comprising an arm mounted for pivotal movement, a bat pivotally mounted on said arm, a spring to hold said bat normally in a retracted position, a second arm connected with the first mentioned arm and movable therewith about its axis, an actuating device mounted on the last mentioned arm, and means for connecting said actuating device with said bat.
4. In a ball game apparatus, a board having thereon a plurality of bases, slots extend ing from base to base and connected one with the other, a plurality of guides arranged beneath each of said bases,-endless carriers or;-
tending about th respective guides, each of said carriers having means to support a base runner in said slot, an actuating mechaiin for said carriers, and means under the control of the operator to connect one or more oi said carriers with said operating mechanism.
5. In a ball game apparatus, a board llaV- ing thereon a plurality of bases, slot-s extending from base to base and connected one with the other, a plurality of guides arranged beneath each of said bases, endless carriers e2;-
' tending about the TGSPB'CLIVQ guides, each of said carriers having means to support a base runner in a slot, driving mechanism comprising members movable in opposite directions, and means for connecting said carriers with either member of said driving mechanism.
6. In a ball game apparatus, a board havingthereon a plurality of bases, slots extending from base to base and connected one with the other, a plurality of guides arranged bedirections, one set of guides for said carriers comprising gears, intermediate gears meshing with the gears of the respective guides, and means under the control of the operator for separately moving said intermediate gears to connect the same with one or the other of the first mentioned gears.
7. In a ball game apparatus, a board having a plurality of stations each representing a player and also having means for guiding toward any one of said stations a ball entering the territory associated with that station, signalling devices at the respective stations comprising means arranged to be engaged by a ball entering a station directly and from the front to actuate the signal, a ball throwing device mounted adjacent to each station, and means under the control of an operator for independently actuating the ball throwing devices.
8. In a ball game apparatus, a board having a players station comprising a cavlty' to receive a ball, a ball throwing device associated with said station, means under the control ofan operator for actuating said throwing device, a signal, and actuating means for said signal arranged to be engaged by a ball directly entering said cavity.
9. In a ball game apparatus, a board having a plurality or" bases, separate carriers for a plurality of base runners, each of said carriers being movable to each of said bases, a sin le operating device for the several carriers, and selective means forcausing said carriers to be actuated by said operating device.
10. In a ball game apparatus, a board having a plurality of bases, slots extending from base to base and connected one to the other, a plurality of carriers arranged beneath the supporting surface of said board and each having means for supporting a base runner in said slot and to move said base runner from base to base, operating device for the several carriers, and separately controlled means for connecting the respective carriers with said operating device.
11. In a ball game apparatus, a board having a pitchers station and a catchers station, means under the control of an operator for throwing the ball from the pitchers station toward said catchers station, a bat supporting structure pivotally mounted on said board adjacent to said catchers station, a bat pivotally mounted on said supporting structure and movable therewith into and out of batting position, and means for actuating said bat.
12. In a ball game apparatus, a board having a pitchers station and a catchers station,
meansunder the control of an operator for throwing a ball from the pitchers station toward the catchers station, a bat supporting structure mounted in a fixed location adja-,
the bottom of said depression and having its free end arranged at substantially the lowest portion of said depression and adapted to receive a ball entering said depression, a vertically movable plunger arranged to engage said throwing arm beneath the ball receiving part thereof, a lever to impart upward movement to said plunger, and means for actuating said lever.
14. In a ball game apparatus, a board having a depression to receive a ball, a rotatable member arranged to form a part of said depression, a throwing device pivotally mounted. on said rotatable member on an axis above the bottom of said depression and having a part to extend beneath the ball in said depression, a single controlling device mounted at a point remote from said depression for causing said supporting member to be rotated and for imparting movement to said throwing device. I
15. In a ball game apparatus, a board having a depression to receive a ball, a rotatable member forming the bottom wall of said depression, a throwing arm pivotally mounted on said rotatable member at a point spaced from the axis thereof and above the bottom thereof and having its free end extending across the axis of said member beneath, and forming a part of the ballreceiving depression, a stem slidably mounted at the axis of said rotatable member and arranged to engage said throwing arm, an actuating device for said stern, means for imparting rotatory movement to said rotatable member, and a single device mounted at a point remote from said depression and having both rotatory and reciprocatory movement to first operate said rotatable member and to then impart operative movement to said arm.
16. In a ball game apparatus, a board having a depression therein to constitute a players station, an arm pivotally mounted on and spaced laterally from and above the lowest part of said depression and below the upper surface of said board, said arm having its free end arranged at substantially the lowest part of said depression and adapted to receive a ball entering said depression, and means for moving said arm about said axis to lift the ball from said depression and throw the same across the board.
17. I11 a ball game apparatus, a board having a depression, a throwing arm pivotally mounted at one end on an axisspaced laterally from and above the lowest vpart of said depression and below the upper surface of said board, said arm having near its free end a portion arranged at substantially the lowest part of said depression and adapted to receive a ball entering said depression, means for adjusting said arm to move said axis to different radial positions with relation to said depression, and means for moving said arm about said axis to lift the ball and throw the same in a selected direction across the board.
In testimony whereof, I aflix my signature hereto.
LESLIE E. SNODGRASS.