Keeping the book: Dodgers fans keep art of scorekeeping alive

first_imgOne of her favorite scorekeeping books was in 2009, when she snuck into Dodger Stadium and took a picture of her two dogs, Bailey and Sweet Pea, with the “Think Blue” sign in the back.This season, she’s scored 60 baseball games and flips through the pages like it’s a spiral notebook from a semester’s worth of note taking in college.She has the score sheet from when Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw got his 300th strikeout. There was a game that ended on a balk. Lussier, who works as an information technology specialist for the California State University system, said she enjoys being able to look back at a score sheet and remember the game. Sort of like instant replay with a pencil and paper.The downside, she said, is she can sometimes miss an exciting moment because her head is buried in the notebook and not looking at the field.“You have to make choices sometimes,” she said. “You find a balance. Maybe you don’t record every strike and ball and you see more of the game.”She said, however, when Kershaw pitches, she thinks it’s possible he could throw a perfect game.“In that case, I want to have a perfect score sheet,” she said.Pamela Wilson agreed and said she’s missed some exciting plays while keeping score. She said, however, the score sheet makes her feel comfortable. Like it’s part of the game experience.Proulx said she probably has about 500 score sheets from games at home. Lussier said she may have close to double that. Proulx said she also won’t go to technology to keep score.Swapping out paper and a pencil for a smartphone app would be like pinch-hitting a rookie for a Hall-of-Fame-bound veteran.“The app has no character,” she said. “It has to be paper.”When they settled in their seats for the start of the game — a sluggish affair that was 0-0 after the third inning — the scorekeepers dutifully charted pitch counts and noted strikeouts.During David Wright’s at-bat against the Dodgers’ Kershaw in the first inning, the Mets third baseman fouled off six pitches and forced the starter to throw 12 of his 22 pitches that inning.Proulx had to erase a few that she thought were strikes. She pressed hard on the lead to count the pitches. She said she sometimes presses so hard, she breaks the lead.“When I was a kid, I tended to break the crayons, too,” she said.Proulx said she gets great satisfaction out recording history. She just hopes this year will be one where she is charting pitches during a World Series. She’s a former schoolteacher and now teaches martial arts in Claremont. She loves baseball and is hoping to pass along the love to her two grandchildren, ages 6 and 2, though she doesn’t take them to Dodgers games when she keeps score because, well, she sort of really gets into it.“It’s important to give a lot of yourself to others, but to do that well, you have to do something for yourself that brings you joy,” she said. “For me, it’s keeping score during a baseball game.”The focus is intense. And she’s not alone.In the top deck during Friday’s playoff game between the Dodgers and the New York Mets, there were almost a dozen people with their scorekeeping binders dotting the rows of light-blue seats. Each had their own style, but they all bonded in this old-school fraternity of baseball tradition.Jeanine Lussier custom-made her own scoring sheets and, as word got around, others asked if she could make some for them. She said she currently makes about four or five scoring books — complete with a custom photo on the front. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img Before she heads to Dodger Stadium, Holly Proulx goes through her equipment checklist. There’s the scoring book. A pencil — with 0.9 thickness lead. Two erasers. Headphones and radio.Oh, and Billy Proulx, her husband.“First time we both went to a Dodger game in 1980, we both kept score,” he said. “After awhile, I figured there was no reason for both of us to do it, so I became her spotter.”That means he has the binoculars slung around his neck while she make notes about the game started.last_img read more