Primitive Baseball: The First Quarter-Century of the National Pastime

Harvey Frommer, Author Atheneum Books $0 (143p) ISBN 978-0-689-11567-7
Frommer, author of more than 20 sports books, looks at America's favorite pastime as it became truly national in the period between the 1869 tour of the first professional team, the Cincinnati Red Stockings, and the great Boston Beaneater and Baltimore Oriole teams of the 1890s. He discusses such events as the founding of the National League in 1876, which effectively took control of the game from the players and gave it to the owners, and the establishment of the American League in 1900. He also captures the spirit of the game, rife with gambling, the sale of alcohol at ball parks and the tinkering with such rules as the number of balls required for a walk or the distance of the mound from home plate. There are also observations on playing fields, umpires, equipment, uniforms. (April)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
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