Some subjects, no matter how much time passes, will always be allowed to produce new information. The Black Sox scandal almost a century later is still raising questions among fans and historians alike. Now we have another book out on the market that helps put to rest some of the questions and clarify some of the finer points of the scandal.
Happy Felsch, was the veteran Center Fielder on that ill fated 1919 Chicago White Sox team. A man who was no stranger to battles with owner Charles Comisky and his penny pinching ways, Felsch was looking to get what he deserved financially from the game. Historians have been unsure if his participation was voluntary or out of fear of reprisal by local gamblers. Either way he was implicated in the throwing of the World Series.
Felsch was always the most vocal of the participants after the scandal broke and open to talking about it. Rathkamp’s book looks at a few of the interviews that Happy Felsch gave with some writers in subsequent years and attempts to connect the dots of the Black Sox scandal. It is a valiant attempt at something that has been attempted many times before.
What this book does is offer another point of view from one of those involved. We have several books on Shoeless Joe Jackson, Buck Weaver and those that analyze the course of events and the entire World Series, but not much more. For me it was nice to get a different perspective from a new player in this scandal. Through these interviews that occurred more than 50 years ago now, Felsch gives snippets of his view of the events and what transpired and to some degree why he was innocent.
Now here is my problem with the entire Black Sox scandal. We are at this point, working with documented history from almost a century ago. We are interpreting conversations and interviews that no one who walks this earth at this point were a part of and are putting our own spin on these events. Our spin being influenced by our current views and not those of a century ago. So are we really interpreting their comments as they intended? For that I am not so sure. But it takes each reader to interpret what this book offers to the end subject on their own. I myself like this book on its own, because it offers a new perspective on the subject, but I am starting to wonder when have we maxed out and learned all we will be able to about the Black Sox scandal?
If you are a fan of this era or the scandal itself, check the book out, I don’t think you will be disappointed.
You can get this book from the nice folks at McFarland
It is amazing the skills baseball has beyond the diamond. It has the ability to transcend generations, bring families and friends together in any given space or time and it has the ability to bring different cultures together. By coming together they speak their one common language……Baseball.
Brent Loehr has written a pretty unique book here. It takes a look at his travels to countries all around the world spreading international good will. That good will is wrapped in a neat little package called baseball. It is a fun look at citizens in places as far away as Africa, who live an entirely different lifestyle than we are accustom to and how they react to baseball coming into their lives.
It shows the power that can be generated from something as simple as a baseball. It allows different cultures to come together and for short times be one. It allows for all difference to be put aside and partake in something that creates immense joy and passion for those involved. This book is not what you would expect from a baseball book. It takes the game of baseball out of the context we are all accustomed to and shows what it is truly capable in other parts of the world.
All fans should check this one out. It definitely takes us out of the world we are all accustomed to and shows the readers the ability of baseball to bring the world together as one.
You can get this book from the nice folks at Summer Game Books