Nearly seventy-five years hove passed since America was rocked by the biggest sports scandal of the century--the fixing of the 1919 World Series by the Chicago "Black Sox." Eight ballplayers from one of the greatest teams ever were banished from baseball for all time (despite being found innocent in a court of law)--foremost among them the ...
Nearly seventy-five years hove passed since America was rocked by the biggest sports scandal of the century--the fixing of the 1919 World Series by the Chicago "Black Sox." Eight ballplayers from one of the greatest teams ever were banished from baseball for all time (despite being found innocent in a court of law)--foremost among them the legendary Joseph Jefferson Jackson, "Shoeless Joe, " who maintained his innocence until his death. Now, in Shoeless Joe and Ragtime Baseball, celebrated sports author and historian Harvey Frommer fuses oral history, court testimony, and sparkling narrative to re-create the life and times of the illiterate farm boy who became one of the greatest players in baseball history. To read this riveting story is to rediscover a sport, and a nation, at a crossroads--a time marked by larger-than-life characters, the First World War, and the great pilgrimage from the country to the city. The story of Shoeless Joe is, more than anything, the story of America--and a loss of innocence that would never be recovered. But this is more than an in-depth biography; it is an impassioned but reasoned argument for a re-evaluation of this misunderstood man, and it raises new questions about the entire Black Sox scandal. Included for the first time ever is Jackson's sworn grand jury testimony, complete and untouched. Did Shoeless Joe help to throw the World Series? Did he deserve eternal banishment from the game he loved so much? Or was he framed by the manipulative owners of the time, sacrificed by baseball's power structure to preserve the illusion of innocence in the game? Find out in Shoeless Joe and Ragtime Baseball.
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Publishers Weekly, 1992-05-11 Frommer's 30th book is a distinctly minor effort. It tells the tale of the illiterate South Carolina boy who had what Ty Cobb described as the most natural swing in baseball and who was banished from the game following the Black Sox scandal of 1919. But Frommer adds little to what is already known. He makes clear, as have other authors, that Joe Jackson was almost certainly not one of the Chicago players who conspired with gamblers to lose the World Series, although he was approached by those who had and did not report the contacts. Frommer does a fine job of pointing up the dissension between the cliques on the team and makes a plea for Jackson's admission to the Hall of Fame. The book includes a valuable appendix presenting Jackson's testimony before a Chicago grand jury, which reinforces the contention that the player was indeed a tragic victim. Photos not seen by PW. (July)
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