A Game of Brawl: The Orioles, the Beaneaters, and the Battle for the 1897 Pennant

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University of Nebraska Press, 2007 - History - 295 pages
2 Reviews
Not only was it probably the most cutthroat pennant race in baseball history; it was also a struggle to define how baseball would be played. This book re-creates the rowdy, season-long 1897 battle between the Baltimore Orioles and the Boston Beaneaters. The Orioles had acquired a reputation as the dirtiest team in baseball. Future Hall of Famers John McGraw, Wee Willie Keeler, and “Foxy” Ned Hanlon were proven winners—but their nasty tactics met with widespread disapproval among fans. So it was that their pennant race with the comparatively saintly Beaneaters took on a decidedly moralistic air.
  Bill Felber brings to life the most intensely watched team sporting event in the country’s history to that time. His book captures the drama of the final week, as the race came down to a three-game series. And finally, it conveys the madness of the third and decisive game, when thirty thousand fans literally knocked down the gates and walls of a facility designed to hold ten thousand to watch the Beaneaters grind out a win and bring down baseball’s first and most notorious evil empire.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Big_Bang_Gorilla - LibraryThing

Being an account of one of the first pennant races. This book gets bonus props for illuminating the 1890's, baseball's most forgotten decade. The nature of the "pennant race" genre, though, mandates a ... Read full review

Review: A Game of Brawl: The Orioles, the Beaneaters, and the Battle for the 1897 Pennant

User Review  - Dan Lee - Goodreads

It was okay. A bit dry, not unlike reading a collection of newspaper articles instead of a coherent story. What it does, it does very well. It's just that I think Felber missed a great opportunity to tell a story instead of listing facts. Read full review

Contents

Baseballs Original Evil Empire
1
The Royal Rooters
26
Spring Thunderbolts
47
Copyright

11 other sections not shown

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About the author (2007)

Bill Felber recently retired as the executive editor of the Manhattan Mercury. He is the author of The Book on the Book: An Inquiry into Which Strategies in the Modern Game Actually Work.

 

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