The Biographical Dictionary of Baseball
1 volume: Photos
This book about America’s national past time has an unusual premise. The personalities appearing in the book were selected for their contributions to the development of baseball, not necessarily for their outstanding play on the field. The short biographies include members of the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, people who were involved in some of the game’s most memorable moments both good and bad including Cal Abrams (infamous 9th inning out for the 1950 Dodgers), Billy North (fighting) and Reggie Jackson (Mr. October). Also included are innovators of the game like Doc Crandall the first successful relief pitcher, Larry MacPhail-owner and introducer of night baseball and the first telecast of a game, record holders such as Pud Galvin-first 300 game winner and Pete Rose the record holder for most hits in a career. It also covers colorful characters including Andrew Freedman an eccentric early owner of the Giants, scouts and owners (ex. Jim Gallagher-Cubs, M. Donald Grant-first chairman of the Mets). There are no citations of sources and the entries vary from very short to quite lengthy, depending upon the authors view of the person’s importance to the game. The style of writing is lively and entertaining and each entry contains many interesting tidbits of information on people like Franklin P. Adams, a newspaperman who wrote the poem immortalizing Cubs infielders Tinker, Evers and Chance and Jack Norworth, the composer of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game”.