Red Sox Baseball in the Days of Ike and Elvis: The Red Sox of the 1950s

Red Sox Baseball in the Days of Ike and Elvis: The Red Sox of the 1950s

by Mark Armour, Maurice Bouchard
     
 

The Red Sox spent most of the 1950s far out of pennant contention, winning just enough games to keep their fans’ hopes up for the next season. But there can be little doubt that the club was filled with absorbing and fascinating people, and stories that still resonate in New England and beyond. From Harry Agganis and Jimmy Piersall to Jackie Jensen and Pumpsie… See more details below

Overview

The Red Sox spent most of the 1950s far out of pennant contention, winning just enough games to keep their fans’ hopes up for the next season. But there can be little doubt that the club was filled with absorbing and fascinating people, and stories that still resonate in New England and beyond. From Harry Agganis and Jimmy Piersall to Jackie Jensen and Pumpsie Green, the names and stories have been the subjects of books and movies. Dominating it all, of course, was Ted Williams, the great star and personality. In this book, members of SABR present biographies of all of these men and many others, 46 in all, along with a season-by-season recap. 
 
Americans in the 1950s found new ways of enjoying themselves, from the rapid proliferation of television sets into every home, to the dawn of a new age of popular music, rock and roll, symbolized by a charismatic crooner named Elvis Presley. Baseball’s place in American culture was still paramount, though the competition was gaining.
 
In Boston, the baseball landscape changed dramatically in 1953 when the Braves moved to Milwaukee. Despite having the city to themselves, the Red Sox steadily lost attendance throughout the decade, due mainly to a series of teams that failed to contend. But because of television, fans of the region were able to “watch” Red Sox baseball for the first time without setting foot in Fenway Park. With its lagging fortunes of the team on the field, the club retained its hold on the hearts of the region throughout this period.
 
The 1950s Red Sox were teeming with huge stories. You might know about Ted Williams, of course, but consider his teammates: Harry Agganis, a legendary local athlete whose tragic death is remembered by millions in the region; or Jimmy Piersall, whose illness and breakdown led to a book and two movies; or Jackie Jensen, a famous collegiate football star who forged a great career with the Red Sox. The Red Sox are famous for failing to integrate until 1959, the last team to do so. Depicted here are the people mostly blamed for this oversight (Tom Yawkey, Joe Cronin, and Mike Higgins), as well as the man who finally broke the color line (Pumpsie Green). 
 
Thanks to the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR), you can read the stories of 46 of these men, including all of of the aforementioned and one of the greatest announcers ever, Curt Gowdy. But along with many of the people you might remember, there are still plenty of lesser-known players that you can discover for the first time. All of these men made it the major leagues and played well enough to stick around for at least a few years. We think all of them are worth learning about, and hope you enjoy doing so.

Table of Contents
Preface
The Decade in Review by Bill Nowlin

PITCHERS
Frank Baumann by Paul Geisler
Tom Brewer by Tom Larwin
Jerry Casale by Tom Larwin
Ike Delock by Ray Birch
Mike Fornieles by Thomas Ayers
Tom Hurd by Jim Elfers
Russ Kemmerer by John Green
Leo Kiely by Greg Erion
Ellis Kinder by Mark Armour
Mickey McDermott by John Vorperian
Willard Nixon by Wynn Montgomery
Mel Parnell by Bill Nowlin
Dave Sisler by Rick Huhn
Frank Sullivan by Herb Crehan

CATCHERS
Pete Daley by John Green
Haywood Sullivan by Mathew Sisson
Sammy White by Herb Crehan

FIRST BASEMEN
Harry Agganis by Mark Brown
Walt Dropo by Bill Nowlin
Dick Gernert by Don Hyslop
Mickey Vernon by Rich Westcott
Norm Zauchin by Bill Nowlin

SECOND BASEMEN
Billy Goodman by Ron Anderson
Pumpsie Green by Bill Nowlin
Pete Runnels by Hugh Poland

THIRD BASEMEN
Ted Lepcio by Tom Harkins
Frank Malzone by Bill Nowlin

SHORTSTOPS
Milt Bolling by Jeremiah Woolsey
Don Buddin by Bill Nowlin
Billy Consolo by Joanne Hulbert
Billy Klaus by Charlie Bevis

LEFT FIELDERS
Gene Stephens by Todd Newville
Ted Williams by Bill Nowlin

CENTER FIELDERS
Marty Keough by Bill Nowlin
Jimmy Piersall by Mark Armour

RIGHT FIELDERS
Jackie Jensen by Mark Armour
Faye Throneberry by Russell Wolinsky
Clyde Vollmer by Chip Greene
Al Zarilla by Maurice Bouchard

TEAM OWNER
Tom Yawkey by Mark Armour

GENERAL MANAGER
Joe Cronin by Mark Armour

MANAGERS
Steve O’Neill by Adam Ulrey
Lou Boudreau by Ralph Berger
Mike Higgins by Mark Armour
Billy Jurges by Paul Geisler

BROADCASTER
Curt Gowdy by Matt Bohn

Epilogue
Sources
List of Contributors

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
2940015589665
Publisher:
Society for American Baseball Research (SABR)
Publication date:
09/22/2012
Series:
SABR Digital Library , #6
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
376
Sales rank:
784,251
File size:
12 MB
Note:
This product may take a few minutes to download.

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