Raceball: How the Major Leagues Colonized the Black and Latin Game

Rob Ruck, Beacon, $25.95 (288p) ISBN 978-0-8070-4805-4
Ruck (The Tropic of Baseball) states the cold, hard facts of the Major Leagues' racist history, its vast economic benefits from the demolition of the once-proud Negro Leagues, and the current Latin player influx in his new book. Ruck, a professor at the University of Pittsburgh, explores how baseball fever spread through Cuba, the Dominican Republic, and other Latin countries. He traces the forgotten link between the great Negro baseball stars, including Satchel Paige and Josh Gibson, and their Caribbean counterparts touring outside the U.S. before appreciative fans in the 1940s. Neither the Negro nor Latin player desired playing stateside because of the rigid Jim Crow laws, until the end of WWII, when America broke the color barrier with Jackie Robinson's entry to the big leagues. Ruck's gutsy account of this major sport with a tarnished past is thought provoking, arguing that "the integration of Black America has cost the price of its soul plus a crucial part of its social cohesion." (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/17/2011
Release date: 03/01/2011
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FORMATS
Paperback - 273 pages - 978-0-8070-4807-8
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