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Bittersweet Goodbye

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Bittersweet Goodbye

The Black Barons, the Grays, and the 1948 Negro League World Series

Authored by Frederick C. Bush
Contributions by Clarence Watkins, Japheth Knopp, Curt Smith, Rob Neyer, John Klima, Leslie Heaphy, Jay Hurd, James Forr, Charles F Faber, Ralph Carhart
Edited by Bill Nowlin
Associate editor Carl Riechers, Len Levin

This book was inspired by the last Negro League World Series ever played and presents biographies of the players on the two contending teams in 1948 - the Birmingham Black Barons and the Homestead Grays - as well as the managers, the owners, and articles on the ballparks the teams called home.

Also included are articles that recap the season's two East-West All-Star Games, the Negro National League and Negro American League playoff series, and the World Series itself. Additional context is provided in essays about the effects of Organized Baseball's integration on the Negro Leagues, the exodus of Negro League players to Canada, and the signing away of top Negro League players, specifically Willie Mays.

The lack of detailed press coverage of the Negro Leagues, the fact that not every player was a star with a lengthy career, and gaps in public records of the era (especially in regard to African Americans) present a situation in which it is not possible to detail the life of every single player as fully as in other SABR publications. In the face of such challenges, the SABR researchers who have contributed player biographies and feature articles to this book have done utmost diligence to uncover every possible nugget of information that is currently available and, in many instances, new discoveries have been made. Many of the players' lives and careers have been presented to a much greater extent than previously. This book represents the collaborative efforts of 49 authors and editors from the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR).

Willie Mays Letter to Jim Zapp

Lloyd Pepper Bassett, Frederick C. Bush
Herman Bell, Margaret M. Gripshover
John Britton, Bill Nowlin
Lorenzo "Piper" Davis (player/manager) Jeb Stewart
Bill Greason, Frederick C. Bush
Wiley Griggs, William Dahlberg
Jay (Jehosie) Heard, J. W. Stewart
Willie Mays, John Saccoman
Jimmie Newberry, Jeb Stewart
Alonzo Perry, Dennis D. Degenhardt
Nat Pollard, Jay Hurd
Bill Powell, Mark Panuthos & Frederick C. Bush
Norman (Bobby) Robinson, Bob LeMoine
Joe Scot,t Charles F. Faber
Ed Steele, Will Osgood
Bob Veale, Joseph Gerard
Samuel Williams, Bob LeMoine
Artie Wilson, Rob Neyer
Jim Zapp, Bill Nowlin
Tom Hayes (Owner) James Forr
Abe Saperstein (Co-Owner, 1939-45) Norm King
Rickwood Field, Clarence Watkins

Ted Alexander, Rob Neyer
Sam Bankhead, Dave Wilkie
Lefty Bell, Frederick C. Bush
Garnett Blair, Bill Nowlin
Bob Boston, Bill Johnson
Clarence Bruce, Frederick C. Bush
Luther Clifford, Richard Bogovich
Luke Easter, Justin Murphy
Clarence Evans, Dennis D. Degenhardt
Wilmer Fields, Frederick C. Bush
Ervin Fowlkes, Dave Forrester
Charles Gary, Chris Rainey
Robert Gaston, Chris Rainey
Cecil Kaiser, Brian Baughan
Larry Kimbrough, Chris Rainey
Buck Leonard, Ralph Berger
Luis Márquez, Amy Essington
Eudie Napier, Tom Hawthorn
Tom Parker, Bill Johnson
Willie (Bill) Pope, Skip Nipper
Willie D. Smith, Alan Cohen
Frank Thompson, Michael Mattsey
Bob Thurman, Rick Swaine
Bob Trice, Jack Morris
R. T. Walker, Irv Goldfarb
John Wright, Niall Adler
Vic Harris (manager) Charlie Fouche
Cum Posey (Owner to 1946 d.) Brian McKenna
Ethel Posey (Co-Owner) Leslie Heaphy
Rufus "Sonny Man" Jackson (Co-Owner) Ralph Carhart
Forbes Field, Curt Smith
Griffith Stadium, John Schleppi

Players Omitted from the Rosters, Frederick C. Bush
The 1948 East-West All-Star Games, Thomas E. Kern
The 1948 Negro American League Playoff Series (Birmingham v. Kansas City Monarchs) Japheth Knopp
The 1948 Negro National League Playoff Series (Homestead v. Baltimore Elite Giants) Steve West
The 1948 Negro Leagues World Series, Richard J. Puerzer
Baseball's Integration Spells the End of the Negro Leagues, Japheth Knopp
The Signing of Willie Mays, John Klima
From the Negro Leagues to the Quebec Provincial League, Jack Anderson
Epilogue: Birmingham, Pittsburgh, and the Negro Leagues Since 1948, Frederick C. Bush
Bibliography for Further Research

Publication Date:
1943816557 / 9781943816552
Page Count:
Binding Type:
US Trade Paper
Trim Size:
8.5" x 11"
Black and White
Related Categories:
Sports & Recreation / Baseball / History

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