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Covering high school bowling? Know this style rule about Baker format games

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Robert Carter, Dec 12, 2018.

  1. Robert Carter

    Robert Carter New Member

    Now that many high schools have bowling as a varsity sport, please take note of this style rule. The game format in which each bowler on a five-person team bowls a pair of frames each is called "Baker format," capitalized as shown. The name comes from the format's inventor, Frank Baker, who was an exec with the American Bowling Congress many moons ago.

    I've seen a number of stories lately which use lower case on the name. It doesn't irritate me as much as it makes me hungry.
  2. TheSportsPredictor

    TheSportsPredictor Well-Known Member

  3. HanSenSE

    HanSenSE Well-Known Member

    Web-by! Web-by! Web-by!
  4. billchristine

    billchristine New Member

    In the 1960s I wrote a story about a one-armed bowler for the Baltimore News American. The art department didn't know the subject and got a hold of the accompanying photo. "There must be a shadow" the guy with the air brush said. "This guy looks like he has only one arm. I'll fill in the other one."

    First edition: a story about a one-armed bowler with a pix of a guy with both arms.
  5. Twirling Time

    Twirling Time Well-Known Member

    Scoring bowling is kind of like knotting a necktie for me ... something I have to look up from time to time. Not quite chiseled in my cerebellum yet.
  6. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    When I worked at a tiny daily in E. Bumfuck, we got a call from a lady who bowled at the local center owned by a former PBA pro. She won her league and got a plaque, except the plate fell off and underneath it was another plate recognizing the PBA pro's second-place finish at the 1977 Pensacola Open or some such -- the guy was such a cheap bastard that he didn't pay for brand-new plaques, he just repurposed his own old ones. The lady was not happy, our editor was delighted and I wrote it for 1A (small-town news!), with quotes from the pro saying he really didn't know what he did wrong and that people shouldn't be so sensitive.
    Hermes, HanSenSE and ICanRowCanoe? like this.
  7. JRoyal

    JRoyal Well-Known Member

    If in your story you find yourself needing to use the term "Baker format," and your story is not exclusively some kind of primer on bowling, then you need to rethink your story. Unless you live in a community where you can assume that most readers will understand what Baker format means without an explanation.
  8. Robert Carter

    Robert Carter New Member

    I usually gave a quick description of the Baker format at the beginning of each season as part of a description in how team-vs.-team high school bowling matches are played in Alabama. "Teams bowl one 'traditional' game for each of five members, followed by three Baker format games where five bowlers each bowl two frames per game, and substitution is permitted during and between games. The winning is decided by total pinfall." (That scoring has actually changed since the first year of varsity bowling.)

    It's also hard as heck to shoot photos, because lighting at bowling centers usually isn't the best. The first time I shot a match, the proprietor let me sit on top of the ball return channel cover a lane over. Uncomfortable, but it worked.

    Haven't covered prep bowling in three years now.
    flexmaster33 likes this.
  9. Hermes

    Hermes Well-Known Member

    Between the story of the one-armed bowler and the sloppy seconds trophy tale, this is oddly one of my favorite threads we've had in a long time. Both made me laugh really hard.

    I was missing out on the most entertaining sport of all with my dry recounts of scores from local high school bowling, apparently.
  10. billchristine

    billchristine New Member

    An eon ago, we ran high three-game series and high single game for every league that called in. I drew the short straw and took the scores on the phone.
    One night in a mixed doubles league, the high man was Harry Dick and the high woman was Betty Glasscock. I thought the caller was an impostor but I called the lanes later and they verifed the names.
  11. flexmaster33

    flexmaster33 Well-Known Member

    And thank you for taking the time to cover bowling.

    I've got a school with a team that comes and goes, but covering the sport is fun.
    Robert Carter likes this.
  12. inthesuburbs

    inthesuburbs Member

    "Covering high school bowling"
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