The Little White Book of Baseball Law

Front Cover
American Bar Association, 2009 - Law - 239 pages
The game of baseball has often resulted in brawls, both on the field and in the courtroom, and from the 1890's on, much of what baseball is today has been shaped by the law. In eighteen chapters, this eye-opening book discusses cases that involved rules of the game, new stadium construction, ownership of baseball memorabilia, injured spectators, television contracts, and much more.

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The Little White Book of Baseball Law is well worth the price. The authors, John H. Minan and Kevin Cole, have blended 248 pages of fascinating legal disputes from baseball's history with an examination of some of the more arcane rules in baseball. This lawyer/reader, as an 11 year old Cleveland Indians fan, without a television, began my love of baseball around the time I "heard" Willie Mays' famous over the head catch in the 1954 World Series. The Little White Book of Baseball Law more than satisfied my 55 year quest to understand everything worthy that America's pastime could brings to our culture.
The depth and breadth of The Little White Book of Baseball Law is commendable. The eighteen chapter subjects range from Sammy Sosa's corked bat incident in 2003, to the perjury allegations against Barry Bonds derived from his Grand Jury testimony. There is an explanation of when, why, and if, Media corporations televising Major League Baseball can preempt Major League Baseball games.
Virtually every page has a tidbit of information that even the most dedicated fan will appreciate. Perhaps the most interesting literary device in the Book is the "Umpire's Ruling" segment that follows each chapter explaining a pertinent legal issue of the game in concise lay person's terms. What happens when a pitched ball is stuck in the catcher's mask? What are the rules for "balks"? When is a catch a legal "catch"? Who is liable for injuries on and off the field, and on the way to the hospital? What are the merits of metal bats versus wooden bats? The reader will discover that a ball hit by a metal bat will travel at a speed of more than 100 miles per hour (mph) over 40% of time and arrive at the pitchers mound in less than .4 of a second, a shade faster than the average ball hit by a wooden bat, therefore reducing the reaction time of a pitcher finishing up his pitch.
The most interesting chapter for me was the concise explanation of the positive impact of Curt Flood's unsuccessful legal battle on the reserve clause in the Federal Courts, which ultimately became the catalyst for the "Curt Flood Act" in which Congress included major league baseball players' "employment" contracts within the protections of the antitrust laws, but did not provide minor league players with the same protection in order to preserve the Minor League farm system. As Tip O'Neil once said "Everything is political". Apparently, even in Baseball. This is a good read!
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Selected pages


Ticket Seller Scalps Police
Fantasy Baseball and Reality
The Player in the Iron Mask
MLBs Historical Antitrust Exemption
The Supreme Court Balks at Changing the Antitrust Exemption
Hey Beerman
Former MLB Players Argue Reverse Discrimination
To Breach or Not to Breach That Is the Question
Pitcher Safety and Metal Bats
The Beanball Brushback or Chin Music
Stockpiling Trademarks and the Hall of Shame
Umps Reverse Their Employment Call
The World Series of Payroll Tax Litigation
Fan Cries Foul

Ballpark Legal Warfare
Up for Grabs?
Stadium Liability for Spectator Injuries
Liability for Negligent Medical Assistance to Injured Spectators
About the Authors

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