Frankie Frisch, the Fordham Flash

On Nov. 3, 1859, when Fordham was still known as St. John’s College, nine of its students took to the field for a new game that was gaining in popularity across the country. Evolving from an earlier game called rounders, the new game was called baseball. The Nov. 3 game, consisting of only six innings, was reportedly the first college baseball game with nine players per team.

The St. John’s College team, called the Rose Hills, defeated St. Francis Xavier College 33 to 11, and went on to amass an impressive record of victories. Today, Fordham baseball has won 4,000-plus games, more than any other Division I team. Its alumni include Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Frankie Frisch, the Fordham Flash; Esteban Bellán, the first Latin American to play professional baseball in the United States; and Vin Scully, the legendary broadcaster known as the Voice of the Dodgers.

Fordham honored Scully in 2000 with an honorary doctorate (and a special Fordham uniform).
Esteban Bellán

Chris Gosier is research news director for Fordham Now. He can be reached at (646) 312-8267 or [email protected].