Havertown Historian Tells the Philly Baseball Story of Us

Matt Albertson with his wife, Jess, at a Phillies game
Image via Jess Albertson
Matt Albertson with his wife, Jess, at a Phillies game

If you want to know what a Philadelphia sports fan was like 128 years ago, ask Matt Albertson, writes Dave Uram for KYW Newsradio.

“What I’ve come up with is they’re no different than the fan today,” Albertson said. “They’re passionate, they enjoy situational hitting, they enjoy power hitting, they enjoy fine defense and they can be obnoxious.”

Albertson is a 34-year-old historian from Havertown with a Villanova University master’s degree.

Fans got into fights in the 1880s and 90s, including one situation where a shortstop threw a ball into the stands in 1893, hitting a fan in the head.

The fans wanted the player arrested. A police officer, worried about a fan fight breaking out, ended up arresting the shortstop.

Albertson has spent his days learning how baseball evolved and about Philadelphia’s long history of baseball.

He’s co-chair of the Society for American Baseball Research’s (SABR) Philadelphia chapter, also known as the Connie Mack-Dick Allen Chapter.

“I love baseball. I love history, so it just seemed like a good marriage of the two,” said Albertson, who also holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Bloomsburg University.

Read more about Matt Albertson and his baseball historical research at KYW Newsradio.

Learn how the Phillies became the dominant Philadelphia baseball team.

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