History of Major League Baseball

Document Type:Essay

Subject Area:English

Document 1

In 1907 former major league player, A. J Spalding creates a special commission that would invest the Doubleday Origin story. The commission used flimsy evidence termed as the “claims of one man Engineer Abner Graves” to help them come up with the origin story. However, there is another theory that associates the invention of basketball with games that are perceived to have resembled a baseball that was played in America back in the 18th Century. These games included cricket and rounders, a children’s game brought o England by the earliest colonialists. However, its formal organization started in 1845 under the leadership of its president Dr. Daniel Lucius. The club’s committee decided to revise its bylaws and hence led to the establishment of a set of twenty rules that would govern the club.

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The efforts of Alexander Cartwright were significant in the establishment of those rules. These rules, which are currently being implemented in the game up to date, included; the use of a diamond-shaped field, the introduction of foul lines, three strikes and out for batter, making the balk illegal and that runners must be tagged or thrown out. Player was not well paid. Players who raised complained about salaries were blacklisted and left out of the league. This culminated to the emergence of gambling in the game. One of the documented cases is the involvement of four Louisville Grays members who decided to throw away games on purpose and were financed by gamblers to do so. When asked the reason for involvement in such malpractices, they said that their owners had not paid them.

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More and more players moved from the National League to American League, including Cy Young, the Winningest pitcher of all time. This made the owners of the National League submit. The leagues came together in 1903 to form the National Baseball Commission that would govern the game. The commission was composed of presidents from each league and a permanent chairman. In 1903, the game’s World Series was played. The league initiated several demands which included: payment of uniforms by owners, painting green the outfield fences to enhance the balls vision by batters and raising of salaries. Players were well remunerated having the highest paid baseball player, Ty Cobb; salary increased from $12, 000 to $20,000. However, the league died after two seasons culminating to ignorance of players by their managers.

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The owners of the league reverted salaries players to Pre-Federal league levels and even lowered them further. This led to the initiation of various scandals in the game that included gambling cases such as the Black Sox gambling Scandal. Teams started shifting their locations and changed their names. The Browns abandoned St Louis for Baltimore and changed to Orioles. The Boston Braves moved to Milwaukee while Philadelphia A’s shifted to Kansas City. The 1950s also saw the beginning of the migration of major baseball teams to the West. In 1957 O’Malley convinced New York Giant’ owner, Horace Stoneham, to move the team to San Francisco. Baseball has become a goldmine for many players due to the huge salaries they receive.

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