Fellow-Players: As I look around this table I see honest, manly faces, strong limbs, and genial companions, which do my heart good, especially as I fail to see a single "muff " among you.

Everything, it is said, has its uses; and we who know the arduous, active life of a professional base-ball player are willing to accord to him the righteous award of skill, energy and endurance. He may not move senates by his eloquence, nor determine intricate points of international law, but he understands the physical requirements of a first-class base-ball player and how to gain them by careful training and temperate habits. He sets a good example for professional men by striving to excel in his calling, lest he should be defeated in the very first contest and render future games extremely doubtful in point of victory. As a pitcher, he graduates his muscular power to the proper momentum, so as not to under or over-pitch, economizes his strength, and becomes as vigilant as a detective on a doubtful scent. If he is a batter, he must exercise the same sort of endurance, energy and vigilance, always being sure to knock the ball so far that he can run all the bases and reach home before the fielders can recover it. With all this training, this professional and physical development, come robust health and the acquirement of faculties that he can exercise to the best advantage in other kinds of business. Nor would I withhold all due honor to fielders, whose usefulness in our favorite game should not be underrated. Like the rank and file of a fighting army, they may not make much individual display, but in the result their activity and vigilance greatly adds to the renown of the pitcher and batter. Gentlemen, as one of yourselves, proud of our organization, and desiring nothing so much as our success, trusting in you all as abundantly able to crown yourselves with glory, I unite with you in the earnest effort to succeed.