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In Inventing Baseball Heroes, Amber Roessner examines "herocrafting" in sports journalism through an incisive analysis of the work surrounding two of baseball's most enduring personalities -- Detroit Tigers outfielder Ty Cobb and New York Giants pitcher Christy Mathewson. While other scholars have demonstrated that the mythmakers of the Golden Age of Sports Writing (1920--1930) manufactured heroes out of baseball players for the mainstream media, Roessner probes further, with a penetrating look at how sportswriters compromised emerging professional standards of journalism as they crafted heroic tales that sought to teach American boys how to be successful players in the game of life.
Cobb and Mathewson, respectively stereotyped as the game's sinner and saint, helped shape their public images in the mainstream press through their relationship with four of the most prominent sports journalists of the time: Grantland Rice, F. C. Lane, Ring Lardner, and John N. Wheeler. Roessner traces the interactions between the athletes and the reporters, delving into newsgathering strategies as well as rapport-building techniques, and ultimately revealing an inherent tension in objective sports reporting in the era.
Inventing Baseball Heroes will be of interest to scholars of American history, sports history, cultural studies, and communication. Its interdisciplinary approach provides a broad understanding of the role sports journalists played in the production of American heroes.
Imagining a year in which the Phillies never lose a single game, this idealistic resource identifies the most memorable victory in the team's history on every single day of the baseball calendar season, from late March to late October. Ranging from games with incredible historical significance and individual achievement to those with high drama and high stakes, the book envisions the impossible: a blemish-free Phillies season. Evocative photos, original quotes, thorough research, and engaging prose and analysis add another dimension.
To everyone who truly loves the game, Mickey Mantle epitomizes the golden age of baseball, when the mighty New York Yankees indisputably ruled, appearing in an unprecedented twelve World Series in fourteen years! In this intimate memoir, Mantle recounts the joys and trials of his rise from rural Oklahoma youngster to the pinnacle of baseball greatness.
In "All My Octobers," the one and only Mick relives every one of his World Series appearances -- from the 1951 battle when he played alongside an aging Joe DiMaggio to his three-home-run performance in the 1964 showdown. In addition to the on-field heroics, Mantle talks candidly about the injuries, the alcohol, the parties and celebrations, and the terrible toll they can take on a young athlete's life. But most of all, it is a remembrance of October greatness, of postseason pyrotechnics . . . and a loving appreciation of a team of titans that achieved something marvelous and unequaled to this day.
An important and forgotten chapter in sports and African American history. Here is the first in-depth account of the birth of black baseball and its dramatic passage from grass-roots venture to commercial enterprise. In the late nineteenth century resourceful black businessmen founded ball teams that became the Negro Leagues. Racial bias aside, they faced vast odds, from the need to court white sponsors to negotiating ball parks. With no blacks in cities, they barnstormed small towns to attract fans, employing all manner of gimmickry to rouse attention. Drawing on major newspapers and obscure African-American journals, the author explores the diverse forces that shaped minority baseball. He looks unflinchingly at prejudice in amateur and pro circles and constant inadequate press coverage. He assesses the impact of urbanization, migration, and the rise of northern ghettoes, and he applauds those bold innovators who forged black baseball into a parallel club that appealed to whites yet nurtured a uniquely African American playing style. This was black baseball's finest hour: at once a source of great ethnic pride and a hardwon pathway for integration into the mainstream.
In a rare memoir about the Negro Leagues and its celebrated players, Frazier "Slow" Robinson offers an inspiring and often entertaining view of the black baseball diamond through a catcher's mask. In 1939, at the age of 29--after playing professional baseball for twelve years--Frazier Robinson caught the legendary Satchel Paige in barnstorming games from New Orleans to Walla Walla. Robinson played several more seasons in the Negro Leagues before finishing his career in Canada. While his career was a solid one, it was less spectacular than that of his friend and Hall-of-Famer, Satchel Paige, and so more typical of the experience of most Negro Leaguers. Richly embroidered with the threads of black society and of life as a black athlete in a racially divided nation, Robinson recounts his long career with the skill and ease of a natural storyteller. He covers, in remarkable detail, the personal perspective of the men, the teams, and the times that shaped this uniquely American subculture. From playing catcher for obscure industrial teams to barnstorming with Satchel Paige, he chronologically traces his nationwide path through the 1920s, '30s, '40s, and early '50s. The Foreword by John "Buck" O'Neil and Introduction by Gerald Early place Robinson squarely in the world of sports, African American culture, and American history.
Buck O'Neil once described him as "Ty Cobb, Babe Ruth, and Tris Speaker rolled into one." Among experts he is regarded as the best player in Negro Leagues history. During his prime he became a legend in Cuba and one of black America's most popular figures. Yet even among serious sports fans, Oscar Charleston is virtually unknown today. In a long career spanning from 1915 to 1954, Charleston played against, managed, befriended, and occasionally fought men such as Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Lefty Grove, Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson, Jesse Owens, Roy Campanella, and Branch Rickey. He displayed tremendous power, speed, and defensive instincts along with a fierce intelligence and commitment to his craft. Charleston's competitive fire sometimes brought him trouble, but more often it led to victories, championships, and profound respect. While Charleston never played in the Major Leagues, he was a trailblazer who became the first black man to work as a scout for a Major League team when Branch Rickey hired him to evaluate players for the Dodgers in the 1940s. From the mid-1920s on, he was a player-manager for several clubs. In 1932 he joined the Pittsburgh Crawfords and would manage the club many consider the finest Negro League team of all time, featuring five future Hall of Famers, including himself, Cool Papa Bell, Josh Gibson, Judy Johnson, and Satchel Paige. Charleston's combined record as a player, manager, and scout makes him the most accomplished figure in black baseball history. His mastery of the quintessentially American sport under the conditions of segregation revealed what was possible for black achievement, bringing hope to millions. Oscar Charleston introduces readers to one of America's greatest and most fascinating athletes.
This is the untold story of black semi-professional baseball in the Lone Star State. While baseball may have long been considered an all-American sport in which a melting pot could celebrate ethnic heroes like Joe DiMaggio, Lou Gehrig, Hank Greenberg, Connie Mack, and Stan Musial, racial segregation excluded blacks from an otherwise democratic picture. Such was certainly the case in Texas, where, in the state's first professional matchup soon after the Civil War, the R. E. Lees faced the Stonewalls-and African Americans, not surprisingly, played no part. Drawing upon oral histories and mining such rare sources as rosters and box scores from black newspapers, Rob Fink situates Texas' African American teams and players against the rise and decline of professional Negro Leagues. From the 1880s Galveston Flyaways through Dallas shortstop Ernie Banks' signing with the Chicago Cubs in 1953, ""Playing in Shadows"" brings to light an important but little-studied inning in American sport.
IN THE GRAND TRADITION OF "EIGHT MEN OUT" . . .
Did the Chicago Cubs throw the World Series in 1918--and get away with it?
Who were the players involved--and why did they do it?
Were gambling and corruption more widespread across the leagues than previously believed?
Were the players and teams "cursed" by their actions?
Finally, is it time to rewrite baseball history?
With exclusive access to surprising new evidence, Sporting News reporter Sean Deveney details a scandal at the core of baseball's greatest folklore--in a golden era as exciting and controversial as our sports world today. This inside look at the pivotal year of 1918 proves that baseball has always been a game overrun with colorful characters, intense human drama, and explosive controversy.
""The Original Curse" is not just about baseball. It is a
sweeping portrait of America at war in 1918. . . . In the end, the
proper question is not, 'How could a player from that era fix the
World Series?' It's, 'How could he not?'"
"Sean Deveney plays connect-the-dots in this intriguing account
of a possible conspiracy to throw the 1918 World Series. Thoroughly
researched and well written, "The Original Curse" is a must-read
for baseball fans and anyone who loves a good mystery. Is Max Flack
the Shoeless Joe of the 1918 Cubs? Deveney lays out the case and
let's readers decide if the fix was in."
"This book gives the reader a fun and honest look at baseball as
it used to be-- the good guys, the gamblers, the cheaters, the
drunks, the inept leaders. But, more than that, it puts those
characters into the context of Chicago, Boston and America at the
time of World War I, and you wind up with a unique way to explain
the motivations of those characters."
"Deveney's painstaking study of the 1918 World Series between
the Cubs and Red Sox argues that the Black Sox scandal was not an
aberration and might have had an antecedent. Deveney's scholarship
does not detract from his ability to spin a good tale: his tendency
to imagine players' conversations will remind readers of Leigh
Montville's "The Big Bam: The Life and Times of Babe Ruth."... A
welcome companion to Susan Dellinger's "Red Legs and Black Sox: Edd
Roush and the Untold Story of the 1919 World Series," Deveney's
book contributes greatly to our understanding of this decisive
period in baseball and American morals."
From the perspective of 2007, the unintentional irony of Chance's boast is manifest-- these days, the question is when will the Cubs ever win a game they have to have. In October 1908, though, no one would have laughed: The Cubs were, without doubt, baseball's greatest team-- the first dynasty of the 20th century. Crazy '08 recounts the 1908 season-- the year when Peerless Leader Frank Chance's men went toe to toe to toe with John McGraw and Christy Mathewson's New York Giants and Honus Wagner's Pittsburgh Pirates in the greatest pennant race the National League has ever seen. The American League has its own three-cornered pennant fight, and players like Cy Young, Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, and the egregiously crooked Hal Chase ensured that the junior circuit had its moments. But it was the National League's-- and the Cubs'-- year. Crazy '08, however, is not just the exciting story of a great season. It is also about the forces that created modern baseball, and the America that produced it. In 1908, crooked pols run Chicago's First Ward, and gambling magnates control the Yankees. Fans regularly invade the field to do handstands or argue with the umps; others shoot guns from rickety grandstands prone to burning. There are anarchists on the loose and racial killings in the town that made Lincoln. On the flimsiest of pretexts, General Abner Doubleday becomes a symbol of Americanism, and baseball's own anthem, Take Me Out to the Ballgame, is a hit. Picaresque and dramatic, 1908 is a season in which so many weird and wonderful things happen that it is somehow unsurprising that a hairpiece, a swarm of gnats, a sudden bout of lumbago, and a disasterdown in the mines all play a role in its outcome. And sometimes the events are not so wonderful at all. There are several deaths by baseball, and the shadow of corruption creeps closer to the heart of baseball-- the honesty of the game itself. Simply put, 1908 is the year that baseball grew up. Oh, and it was the last time the Cubs won the World Series. Destined to be as memorable as the season it documents, Crazy '08 sets a new standard for what a book about baseball can be.
The latest collection of littleknown baseball stories from the acclaimed author of Tales from the Dugout.
Mike Shannon, top-selling author of the critically acclaimed baseball classics Tales from the Dugout and Tales from the Ballpark, returns for a third success to deliver a brand-new collection of more than 100 true stories and never-beforetold anecdotes that come straight from the insiders circle. Entertaining and masterfully told, More Tales from the Dugout brings together delightful stories from the great and the not-so-great, both on and off the field, including baseball personalities from the past and present such as:
At turns hilarious and heartwarming, this compilation is sure to join Shannons previous books as a baseball classic.
So You Think You're a Kansas City Royals Fan? will test and expand your knowledge of one of Major League Baseball's most successful expansion franchises. Rather than merely posing questions and providing answers, you'll get details behind each stories that bring to life the history of the Kansas City Royals. This book, part of a new series, is divided into four parts, with progressively more difficult questions in each new section. The first three-inning section contains the most basic questions. Next come the middle innings, then the late innings, and finally the Hall of Fame. Also, you'll learn more about the great players and names in Royals history both past and present, from George Brett to Eric Hosmer, Amos Otis and Willie Wilson to Lorenzo Cain, Dan Quisenberry, Jeff Montgomery, Frank White, Mike Sweeney, Mike Moustakas, Bret Saberhagen, Paul Splittorff, Dennis Leonard, Whitey Herzog, Dick Howser, Ned Yost, Denny Matthews, Alex Gordon, and so many more even Bo Jackson, of course. The many questions this book answers include: Who was the first player inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame with the Royals listed on his plaque? What special first in World Series history was the 2015 match-up between the Mets and Royals? Which two Royals players worked on crews that helped build Royals Stadium? Who was the first hitter to record a multi home run game for the Royals? This book makes the perfect gift for any fan of the 2015 World Champion Royals!
From the team's inception in 1903, the New York Yankees were a floundering group that played as second-class citizens to the New York Giants. With four winning seasons to date, the team was purchased in 1915 by Jacob Ruppert and his partner, Cap "Til" Huston. Three years later, when Ruppert hired Miller Huggins as manager, the unlikely partnership of the two figures began, one that set into motion the Yankees' run as the dominant baseball franchise of the 1920s and the rest of the twentieth century, capturing six American League pennants with Huggins at the helm and four more during Ruppert's lifetime. The Yankees' success was driven by Ruppert's executive style and enduring financial commitment, combined with Huggins's philosophy of continual improvement and personnel development. While Ruppert and Huggins had more than a little help from one of baseball's greats, Babe Ruth, their close relationship has been overlooked in the Yankees' rise to dominance. Though both were small of stature, the two men nonetheless became giants of the game with unassailable mutual trust and loyalty. The Colonel and Hug tells the story of how these two men transformed the Yankees. It also tells the larger story about baseball primarily in the tumultuous period from 1918 to 1929-with the end of the Deadball Era and the rise of the Lively Ball Era, a gambling scandal, and the collapse of baseball's governing structure-and the significant role the Yankees played in it all. While the hitting of Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig won many games for New York, Ruppert and Huggins institutionalized winning for the Yankees.
The flagship publication of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR), the Baseball Research Journal is an interdisciplinary peer-reviewed publication presenting the best in SABR member research on baseball. History, biography, economics, physics, psychology, game theory, sociology and culture, records, and many other disciplines are represented to expand our knowledge of baseball as it is, was, and could be played.
In the Jim Crow South, is an inspiring story of 'Jackie Robinson in reverse'. At the outset of summer break in 1959, Texas Tech senior Jerry Craft had no more enticing options than to stay home and help on the family ranch-so the telephoned offer to play for a semipro baseball club he'd never heard of came as a welcome surprise. But Craft was in for an even bigger surprise when he reported for tryout and discovered he'd been recruited for the West Texas Colored League. Wichita Falls/Graham Stars manager Carl Sedberry persuaded Craft to put aside his misgivings and pitch for the Stars. Despite the derision of black teammates, fans, and opponents, and his own trepidation, 'that white boy' took the mound to close a rousing victory in his first game. At home and on the road in segregated Texas, Craft saw discrimination firsthand and from every side. Yet out of his two seasons with the Stars comes an unlikely story of respect, character, humor, and ultimately friendship as the teammates pulled together to succeed in a game they loved.
Big names have always dominated baseball, and one of the biggest in recent history is Roger Clemens - the Rocket. As a baseball great, he has shown what it means to succeed, both on the field and off, in his near quarter century of major-league service. "The Rocket: Baseball Legend Roger Clemens" journeys from Clemens' humble and sometimes difficult childhood through his illustrious career in Boston, Toronto, New York, and Houston. Clemens rose through the ranks, setting a new example of devoted work ethic and responsibility to team and fan alike. Through it all he remained a dedicated family man, not a trait usually associated with the free-for-all image of a major-league baseball player. Joseph Janczak traces Clemens' career from his high school days; through his University of Texas collegiate baseball (where he was given the pre-Rocket nickname of "Goose"); and on to his minor-league and major-league career. Baseball's image when Clemens first started in the halcyon days of the mid-1980s quickly dissolved into that of a sport saddled with crises and scandals, such as gambling, steroids, strikes, and fan distrust. But Clemens rose above it all and has set an example for the fans, who he says are the reason for his hard work on the mound each game. "The Rocket" includes thoughts from teammates, opponents, and Clemens himself on his legendary career. Janczak also discusses the ongoing steroid controversy and the Rocket's philanthropic endeavors to the community. Written for baseball fans of all ages and all levels of knowledge of the game, "The Rocket" shows why baseball is America's pastime and why some stars still deserve to be idolized.
Foreword by Doris Kearns Goodwin The longtime Commissioner of Major League Baseball provides an unprecedented look inside professional baseball today, focusing on how he helped bring the game into the modern age and revealing his interactions with players, managers, fellow owners, and fans nationwide. More than a century old, the game of baseball is resistant to change--owners, managers, players, and fans all hate it. Yet, now more than ever, baseball needs to evolve--to compete with other professional sports, stay relevant, and remain America's Pastime it must adapt. Perhaps no one knows this better than Bud Selig who, as the head of MLB for more than twenty years, ushered in some of the most important, and controversial, changes in the game's history--modernizing a sport that had remained unchanged since the 1960s. In this enlightening and surprising book, Selig goes inside the most difficult decisions and moments of his career, looking at how he worked to balance baseball's storied history with the pressures of the twenty-first century to ensure its future. Part baseball story, part business saga, and part memoir, For the Good of the Game chronicles Selig's career, takes fans inside locker rooms and board rooms, and offers an intimate, fascinating account of the frequently messy process involved in transforming an American institution. Featuring an all-star lineup of the biggest names from the last forty years of baseball, Selig recalls the vital games, private moments, and tense conversations he's shared with Hall of Fame players and managers and the contentious calls he's made. He also speaks candidly about hot-button issues the steroid scandal that threatened to destroy the game, telling his side of the story in full and for the first time. As he looks back and forward, Selig outlines the stakes for baseball's continued transformation--and why the changes he helped usher in must only be the beginning. Illustrated with sixteen pages of photographs.
Having already penned "Getting in the Game," his inside scoop on the mayhem within baseball's winter meetings, Josh Lewin once again gives baseball fans a window into the big leagues. By interviewing big league ballplayers about their first day in the majors, Lewin creates fascinating mini-biographies of the players, highlighting the personalities hidden behind the on-field accomplishments. He lets the players recount their own memories of how they made it to the big leagues.In "You Never Forget Your First," Lewin shares the stories of players great and less so. Tony Gwynn recalls singling in his first at bat and finding Pete Rose waiting for him at first base with a wink and a warning: "Don't break my record all at once, kid." Bob Brenly heard of his call-up on the car radio while on a family trip to the Grand Canyon. He then stood helplessly in the middle of the Arizona desert after his transmission gave out, trying to convince passersby he was a ballplayer heading to the big leagues and needed a lift to the airport. Duane Kuiper witnessed a fight both on the field and in his own clubhouse his first day in Cleveland. Greg Maddux recalls being stuck at the Chicago River drawbridge, convinced he'd never make it to Wrigley Field in time for his debut.Lewin interviews modern star players such as A-Rod, Barry Bonds, and Manny Ramirez, as well as Hall of Famers such as Jim Palmer, Don Sutton, and George Brett. More than 100 popular baseball players are profiled, complete with the box scores of their big league debuts.
"A comprehensive guide to baseball fundamentals that helps players and coaches build winning teams together"
Watching major-league baseball today, many fans wonder what happened to the fundamentals of the game when they see a highly paid outfielder miss the cutoff man or a multimillion-dollar pitcher fail to lay down a bunt. What's missing are the basics--and that's precisely the content of this classic bestseller.
Updated and revised to address today's baseball rules and trends, "Basic Baseball Strategy "helps you, whether you're a beginning coach, a player from a youth or advanced league to master the fundamentals of the game--from the hit-and-run to the squeeze play, from when to steal to when to sacrifice. Former collegiate coach S. H. "Chuck" Freeman explains not only how to execute baseball's most basic plays but also why and when to do so.
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