The black sox and the 1919 world series

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the black sox and the 1919 world series

The Betrayal: How the 1919 Black Sox Scandal Changed Baseball by Charles Fountain

In the most famous scandal of sports history, eight Chicago White Sox players?including Shoeless Joe Jackson?agreed to throw the 1919 World Series to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for the promise of $20,000 each from gamblers reportedly working for New York mobster Arnold Rothstein. Heavily favored, Chicago lost the Series five games to three. Although rumors of a fix flew while the series was being played, they were largely disregarded by players and the public at large. It wasnt until a year later that a general investigation into baseball gambling reopened the case, an a nationwide scandal emerged.

In this book, Charles Fountain offers a full and engaging history of one of baseballs true moments of crisis and hand-wringing, and shows how the scandal changed the way American baseball was both managed and perceived. After an extensive investigation and a trial that became a national morality play, the jury returned not-guilty verdicts for all of the White Sox players in August of 1921. The following day, Judge Kennesaw Mountain Landis, baseballs new commissioner, regardless of the verdicts of juries, banned the eight players for life. And thus the Black Sox entered into American mythology. Guilty or innocent? Guilty and innocent? The country wasnt sure in 1921, and as Fountain shows, we still arent sure today. But we are continually pulled to the story, because so much of modern sport, and our attitude towards it, springs from the scandal.

Fountain traces the Black Sox story from its roots in the gambling culture that pervaded the game in the years surrounding World War I, through the confusing events of the 1919 World Series itself, to the noisy aftermath and trial, and illuminates the moment as baseballs tipping point. Despite the clumsy unfolding of the scandal and trial and the callous treatment of the players involved, the Black Sox saga was a cleansing moment for the sport. It launched the age of the baseball commissioner, as baseball owners hired Landis and surrendered to him the control of their game. Fountain shows how sweeping changes in 1920s triggered by the scandal moved baseball away from its association with gamblers and fixers, and details how Americans attitude toward the pastime shifted as they entered into The Golden Age of Sport.

Situating the Black Sox events in the context of later scandals, including those involving Reds manager and player Pete Rose, and the ongoing use of steroids in the game up through the present, Fountain illuminates Americas near century-long fascination with the story, and its continuing relevance today.
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Top 5 Reasons You Can't Blame the 1919 White Sox

BLACK SOX SCANDAL

Over the decades, major-league baseball has produced a host of memorable teams, but only one infamous one — the Chicago White Sox. Almost a century after the fact, the exact details of the affair known in sports lore as the Black Sox Scandal remain murky and subject to debate. But one central and indisputable truth endures: Talented members of that White Sox club conspired with professional gamblers to rig the outcome of the World Series. Another certainty attends the punishment imposed in the matter. The permanent banishment from the game of those players implicated in the conspiracy, while perhaps an excessive sanction in certain cases, achieved an overarching objective. Game-fixing virtually disappeared from the major-league landscape after that penalty was imposed on the Black Sox.

Suspicions of a conspiracy were aired immediately after the World Series ended, principally by Hugh Fullerton and other sportswriters, but controversy over the allegations had died down by the beginning of the season. Then, in September, a grand jury was called to investigate various allegations of gamblers invading baseball. On Sept. Gandil was already on suspension in a salary dispute. The indicted players stood trial in the summer of but on August 3 were acquitted on insufficient evidence—largely because key evidence, including the original confessions of the players, had disappeared from the grand jury files.

The Black Sox Scandal was a Major League Baseball match fixing incident in which eight members of the Chicago White Sox were accused of intentionally losing the World Series against the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for money from a gambling syndicate led by Arnold Rothstein. The fallout from the scandal resulted in the appointment of Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis as the first Commissioner of Baseball , granting him absolute control over the sport in order to restore its integrity. Despite acquittals in a public trial in , Judge Landis permanently banned all eight men from professional baseball. The punishment was eventually defined to also include banishment from post-career honors such as consideration for the Baseball Hall of Fame. Despite requests for reinstatement in the decades that followed particularly in the case of Shoeless Joe Jackson , the ban remains in force.

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Although most World Series have been of the best-of-seven format, the World Series was a best-of-nine series along with , , and Baseball decided to try the best-of-nine format partly to increase popularity of the sport and partly to generate more revenue., Accounts differ, but the scheme may have first materialized a few weeks before the World Series, when White Sox first baseman C. Gamblers had long been greasing the palms of disgruntled ballplayers in exchange for inside tips, but attempting to rig an entire World Series was a rare and perhaps even unprecedented proposition.

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3 thoughts on “The Betrayal: How the 1919 Black Sox Scandal Changed Baseball by Charles Fountain

  1. Although the Black Sox scandal has been portrayed as a unique event, baseball history indicates that throwing games likely happened a lot more than once.

  2. The Black Sox Scandal was a Major League Baseball match fixing incident in which eight members of the Chicago White Sox were accused of intentionally losing the World Series against the.

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