Rumors of Baseball’s Demise

How the Balance of Competition Swung and the Critics Missed


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SKU: 9780786422517 Categories: ,

About the Book

Is it bedtime for America’s pastime? In recent years, action on and off the diamond has left some fans predicting baseball’s imminent death—or claiming to have already attended the funeral. This book refutes those claims with an in-depth look at baseball then and now.
Comparing the baseball of the 1950s to the game of today, this author examines the widespread dissatisfaction with major league baseball, considers how modern teams differ from those of the past, and reflects on whether professional baseball remains a truly competitive sport. Excessive salaries, player movement and the evolution of the draft are all up for discussion, as is the Wild Card playoff format and how it has affected the overall competition. Tables show statistics on salaries, league attendance and the correlation between winning percentages and payroll. Appendices offer details on market size and attendance regressions. The facts and figures add up to a win for the long-lasting appeal of baseball.

About the Author(s)

Robert Cull, a senior economist in the Development Research Group of the World Bank, has been published in numerous journals. He lives in Alexandria, Virginia.

Bibliographic Details

Robert Cull
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 247
Bibliographic Info: 15 photos, tables, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2006
pISBN: 978-0-7864-2251-7
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      viii

Preface      1

Introduction      5

1. Parity and Payrolls      13

2. Player Movement      42

3. Player Development: The Evolution of the Draft      77

4. Pitching Quality on Championship Teams      106

5. Pitching Variability      127

6. The Wild Card      152

7. Conclusions      202

Epilogue      215

Appendix A. Market Size Population of Metropolitan Statistical Areas      217

Appendix B. Major League Attendance Regressions, 1945–1996      219

Notes      223

Bibliography      231

Index      233

Book Reviews & Awards

“a win”—Sports Collectors Digest.