Pitcher, Baseball Player
1860 – 1953
Who was Abner Powell?
Abner Charles Powell was a Major league baseball player who was a member of the Washington Nationals of the Union Association in 1884. He later played for the Baltimore Orioles and the Cincinnati Red Stockings in 1886. He also managed and owned several teams.
Powell was more famous, however, for innovations that changed baseball. In 1887, Powell came up the idea of using an infield tarpaulin so that fields could be ready immediately after rain storms. He also introduced Ladies Day, with the first scheduled recurring game on April 29 that same year. The idea was to create an environment in the stands free of unsavory characters and conduct, as well as to make baseball a family oriented event. This practice is still in place today. His most important innovation, however, was the introduction of the rain check, which added a perforated stub to tickets so that fans could attend a make-up game if the scheduled game was cancelled due to rain.
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