How Baseball Happened: Outrageous Lies Exposed! The True Story Revealed

Godine Publishers

How Baseball Happened: Outrageous Lies Exposed! The True Story Revealed

By Thomas W. Gilbert

The fascinating, true, origin story of baseball—how America’s first great sport developed and how it conquered a nation. Baseball’s true founders don’t have plaques in Cooperstown. The founders were the hundreds of uncredited amateurs—ordinary people—who played without gloves, face-masks or performance incentives in the middle decades of the 19th century. Unlike today’s pro athletes, they lived full lives outside of sports. They worked, built businesses and fought in the Civil War.

The wrongness of baseball history can be staggering. You may have heard that Abner Doubleday or Alexander Cartwright invented baseball. Neither did. You may have been told that a club called the Knickerbockers played the first baseball game in 1846. They didn’t. You have read that baseball’s color line was uncrossed and unchallenged until Jackie Robinson in 1947. Nope. You have been told that the clean, corporate 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings were baseball’s first professional club. Not true. They weren’t the first professionals; they weren’t all that clean, either. You may have heard Cooperstown, Hoboken, or New York City called the birthplace of baseball, but not Brooklyn. Yet Brooklyn was the home of baseball’s first fans, the first ballpark, the first statistics—and modern pitching.

Winner of the Casey Award: Best Baseball Book of the Year.

Softcover, 6" X 9", 384 pages.