Crooked Number (1978)

‘A four-run lead was ever so much nicer than a one-run lead. It was a great feeling to see that crooked number go up there on the scoreboard, believe me.’” Rick Wise of the Indians quoted by Bob Nold, “Wise’s Luck Finally Turns as Tribe Wins,” Akron Beacon Journal, May 31, 1978, pF1

Previous earliest use (Dickson Baseball Dictionary, 3rd edition, 2009):
“All this profligate hitting and high scoring [in the 1993 World Series] (what Tony La Russa calls ‘crooked numbers’) by the two teams” (Roger Angell, The New Yorker, Nov. 22, 1993, p. 92).