For the Good of the Country
World War II Baseball in the Major and Minor Leagues
About the Book
Like virtually every other aspect of American life, baseball was affected by World War II. Many of its players left the playing field for the battlefield, but the game continued, played by those who stayed behind. Wartime baseball entertained a nation in desperate need of a diversion and a morale boost in a time of crisis.
This book studies baseball during World War II, with both a statistical analysis of the game and stories of its players—those who went to war and those who did not. It provides recaps for each season between 1942 and 1945, and season-by-season recaps and highlights for each team. Starting lineups of the war years are compared to the starting lineups of 1941 (the last year of peacetime baseball) to show how dramatically the war changed the game. A list of players who went to war is provided, along with a list of players who replaced them on the roster if they were starters or starting pitchers. Brief statistical sketches of players who went to the war discuss their play before and after and how they were replaced. Other lists include wartime players who lost their starting jobs in 1946; minor league players who died in the war; and Negro League players who were drafted.
About the Author(s)
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Bibliographic Info: photos, appendix, notes, index
Copyright Date: 2002
Table of Contents
1 1942 9
2 1943 53
3 1944 141
4 1945 220
5 The Aftermath 280
6 Negro League Players Who Served in World War II 296
7 Minor League Players Who Perished in World War II 309
8 The War’s Effect on Hall of Fame Careers 312
9 A Sabermetric Look at the War Years 321
10 Great Military Teams of World War II & 331
Book Reviews & Awards
“thorough in coverage of the seasons, meticulous in tracking the players who left the game to serve…an excellent record”—The Diamond Angle; “an excellent reference of this period…rare and detailed information…this succinct, informative book is a must for anyone interested in baseball during World War II”—Nine; “an exhaustively researched, detailed compilation of wide-ranging information, primarily statistical, about major league players during World War II…baseball enthusiasts interested in the on-field performances of Major League Baseball during World War II will find Finoli’s definitive work to be of great interest and value”—Journal of Sport History; “wartime baseball entertained a nation in desperate need of a diversion and a morale boost in a time of crisis”—Legends of Sports Newsletter; “an in-depth look at professional baseball of that era”—Pittsburgh Magazine.