This particular search hit seems to come up at least once a week...
So I figured it was time for it to be an official "Googlemania" post... where I try to fulfill a search hit request that was never really addressed here at W&C (this is post that this particular search hit is going to). And heck, every so often, I should do one that does not involve a visual with someone without a shirt on!
So in scoring a baseball game, why is a strikeout in baseball referred to as a K?
In 1861, Henry Chadwick invented a scoring system which used a series of letter symbols. He selected "K" for "struck out". He explained that "K" was the prominent letter in the word "strike" and it would be easy to remember. The reason a strikeout isn't a "T" is because "struck" was the preferred term of the day.
Also, a "S" was already used for a sacrifice... and "SO" for a
shout-out shut-out. Stories have circulated that M.J. Kelly of the New York Herald was the first to use "K" for a strikeout and that it was because it was his last initial. Actually, Mr. Chadwick was the first baseball editor for the New York Herald and Kelly learned it from him.
But what about forward and backward Ks?
The forward ("as is") K, is used for a batter swinging on the 3rd strike.
The backwards K for a called third strike is a more recent scoring devise. The backward K signifies the batter was caught looking - the K is drawn as if looking back to see the ball go into the catcher's mitt.
Hope that helps!