Eddie Cicotte: The Life and Career of the Banned Black Sox Pitcher

McFarland. Sept. 2020. 186p. ISBN 9781476680194. $35. SPORTS
Numerous accounts of the details of the infamous Black Sox Scandal that rocked Major League Baseball in 1919-20 exist in the collective memory of the United States, largely derived from popular works such as Eight Men Out or Field of Dreams. In this unique biography, author and sportswriter Fleitz (Rowdy Patsy Tebeau and the Cleveland Spiders) brings to life one of the most influential figures in the scandal: pitcher Eddie Cicotte (1884-1969). In addition to describing Cicotte as one of the perpetrators of the most unpardonable act in baseball history, Fleitz’s extensive research and well-written description humanizes and evokes sympathy for him in a way that has rarely been seen. Additionally, the account illuminates much of the motivation behind other influential figures in the scandal, and leaves it to the reader to determine the morality or immorality of each.
VERDICT This highly readable work, loaded with numbers and statistics, is a must read for any baseball fan, and belongs in most public libraries. It also will find a place in academic collections that support the study of early 20th-century American culture., Delhi

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