Wrigley Field's Last World Series: The Wartime Chicago Cubs and the Pennant of 1945

Overview

On the eve of World War II, baseball truly was America's national pastime. Little could anyone predict the changes and sacrifices that would be imposed on the sport during the early 1940s. As the war was coming to an end in 1945 and a jubilant mood was overtaking the country, baseball was back in full swing and the Chicago Cubs were on top of their game. How did the Cubs clinch the pennant in 1945 and go to the World Series? Simply, they fielded, hit, and pitched better than any other team in the league. How did ...
See more details below
Paperback (New Edition)
$15.46
BN.com price
(Save 8%)$16.95 List Price
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (8) from $1.99   
  • New (3) from $13.72   
  • Used (5) from $1.99   
Sending request ...

Overview

On the eve of World War II, baseball truly was America's national pastime. Little could anyone predict the changes and sacrifices that would be imposed on the sport during the early 1940s. As the war was coming to an end in 1945 and a jubilant mood was overtaking the country, baseball was back in full swing and the Chicago Cubs were on top of their game. How did the Cubs clinch the pennant in 1945 and go to the World Series? Simply, they fielded, hit, and pitched better than any other team in the league. How did they then lose the championship to the Detroit Tigers, a team with one of the most mediocre records in pennant history? And why haven't they been back since? Billington's fast-paced narrative of this historic season includes an inning-by-inning account of critical games, highlights of winning streaks and road trips, and a discussion of how and why the team ultimately unravels. Incorporating statistical analysis, descriptions of key teams, and player biographies, Billington paints an evolving and exciting portrait of the 1945 Cubs and the wider national baseball scene of a war-torn era.

I don't care who wins, as long as it's the Cubs!—legendary announcer, Bert Wilson, WIND 

On the eve of World War II, baseball truly was America's national pastime. Little could anyone predict the changes and sacrifices that would be imposed on the sport during the early 1940s. As the war was coming to an end in 1945 and a jubilant mood was overtaking the country, baseball was back in full swing and the Chicago Cubs were on top of their game.

How did the Cubs clinch the pennant in 1945 and go to the World Series? Simply, they fielded, hit, and pitched better than any other team in the league. How did they then lose the championship to the Detroit Tigers, a team with one of the most mediocre records in pennant history? And why haven't they been back since?

One thing is clear: 1945, the last time the Cubs went to the World Series, was a turning point in the team's fortune. For in the first half of the twentieth century, few teams were as good as Chicago; in the second half, few teams were as bad.

Between 1900 and 1945 the Chicago Cubs won the National League pennant ten times and had more first division finishes than any other team in the league and only one last-place finish. Between 1946 and 1990, the Chicago Cubs finished in the National League basement nine times, and went 20 consecutive seasons in the second division between 1947 and 1966.

Charles N. Billington's fast-paced narrative of this historic season includes an inning-by-inning account of critical games, highlights of winning streaks and road trips, and a discussion of how and why the team ultimately unravels. Incorporating statistical analysis, descriptions of key teams, and player biographies, Billington paints an evolving and exciting portrait of the 1945 Cubs and the wider national baseball scene of a war-torn era.

 

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Billington makes an astute observation that '45 was the dividing line between the successful Cubs of the early 20th century and the crappy Cubs my father and I have been saddled with. . . . A wealth of information is provided about the effect of WWII on the team and the interesting circumstances around Spring Training of that year. . . . It makes me wish that I could have a whole bookshelf of books, each putting the magnifying glass on a particular year. Peanuts Lowry and Bill "Swish" Nicholson would be proud of this book. Recommended very highly, especially to those with an interest in the World War II era [of baseball]…."—View From the Bleachers

 "Required reading for baseball history buffs."—Sportsology.Net

A page-turner.”—Sports Fan Magazine

"Every 'real' Cub Fan ought to go out to Amazon today and plunk down the eleven and change [$16.95] that this large soft-cover goes for, to see for themselves the kind of clutch performance a real pennant winner requires."—Rob Letterly, Goat Riders of the Apocalpyse

"Wrigley Field's Last World Series . . . is Charles N. Billington's account of the ball club that brought the World Series to the 'friendly confines' of Wrigley Field . . . This book is a well researched review of the Cubs' playing ability, as well as how owner, chewing gum mogul Phillip K. Wrigley handled the team, including the sale of World Series tickets to loyal and dedicated fans! . . . No matter who one roots this baseball season, Wrigley Field's Last World Series makes a great read! . . . [I]t's a book that will give an urge to 'Root, Root, Root for the Cubbies.' And if they don't win, then it's not a shame . . . (to use a WWII-era phrase) it's SNAFU!"—Rich Borowy, Accessibly Live Off-line

"Required reading for baseball history buffs."—Harvey Frommer, Sportsology.net

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781893121454
  • Publisher: Lake Claremont Press
  • Publication date: 5/28/2005
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 321
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Charles N. Billington is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with 30 years of experience in mental health. He has worked as an administrator, psychotherapist, and consultant, most recently specializing in work with the elderly. A three-sport athlete in high school who played baseball at the collegiate level, he combined his background in sports and his interest in history with his work with senior citizens to write about Wrigley Field's last World Series, World War II–era baseball, and the 1945 Cubs. The fascinating recollections of two elderly baseball players who came to Mr. Billington for assistance and became the inspiration for Wrigley Field's Last World Series. Charles grew up in the Chicago area and lives in the northern suburbs. His hobbies include boating, playing the piano, and playing outfield in the Chicago North Men's Senior Baseball League.

Charles N. Billington is a licensed clinical social worker with 30 years of experience in mental health. After graduating from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, he received his master's degree from the University of Illinois in Chicago. He has worked as an administrator, psychotherapist, and consultant. Most recently he has worked with the senior citizens.

A three-sport athlete in high school who played baseball at the collegiate level, he combined his background in sports and his interest in history with his work with seniors to write about the Chicago Cubs' last World Series. The fascinating recollections of two elderly baseball players who came to him for assistance became the inspiration for the work.

Charles grew up in the Chicago area and lives in the north suburbs with his wife of 25 years and two children. His hobbies include boating, playing the piano, and playing outfield in the Chicago North Men's Senior Baseball League.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)