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A Well-Paid Slave: Curt Flood's Fight for Free Agency in Professional Sports

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A Well-Paid Slave: Curt Flood's Fight for Free Agency in Professional Sports Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

After the 1969 season, the St. Louis Cardinals traded their star center fielder, Curt Flood, to the Philadelphia Phillies, setting off a chain of events that would change professional sports forever. At the time there were no free agents, no no-trade clauses. When a player was traded, he had to report to his new team or retire. Unwilling to leave St. Louis and influenced by the civil rights movement, Flood chose to sue Major League Baseball for his freedom. His case reached the Supreme Court, where Flood ultimately lost. But by challenging the system, he created an atmosphere in which, just three years later, free agency became a reality. Floods decision cost him his career, but as this dramatic chronicle makes clear, his influence on sports history puts him in a league with Jackie Robinson and Muhammad Ali.

Review:

"Snyder, a lawyer and baseball writer, gives an account of St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Curt Flood's failed though influential suit against Major League Baseball, offering both a sturdy revision of Flood's biography and a polemical defense of the pro-player fight of which Flood was a part. Benefiting from a lawyer's pen, the intricacies of the terms 'reserve clause' (which bound players 'to their teams for life') and 'baseball's anti-trust exemption' are quickly and clearly explained, as the world of 1960s Major League Baseball is brought to life. Before 'free agency,' players had few rights; after the 1969 season Flood fought being traded to Philadelphia, taking his battle to the Supreme Court. While the narrative drags at points, the stories of those central to Flood's case (like Marvin Miller, director of the Player's Association, and Arthur Goldberg, Flood's chief lawyer) are vividly rendered. Most compelling, however, is the portrait of Flood's humble upbringing (in working-class Oakland) and the racism he experienced during his early years on the field ('name-calling, segregated facilities, and second-class citizenship'). This account both serves to explain why Flood was 'serious about sacrificing his playing career to sue baseball' and helps reposition Flood as a successor to Jackie Robinson's 'lifelong battle against injustice.'" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Surely none of Major League Baseball's franchise owners wish it was 1970, when the sport's contracts still bound players to their teams in perpetuity. That year, the African-American outfielder Curt Flood filed suit to challenge the paragraph known as the reserve clause, rather than let himself be traded from the St. Louis Cardinals to the Philadelphia Phillies as what Brad Snyder calls 'chattel property'... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review)

Synopsis:

The author of "Beyond the Shadow of the Senators" explores the life of all-star center fielder Curt Flood and the landmark Supreme Court case that changed professional sports forever.

About the Author

Brad Snyder’s writing has appeared in numerous publications, including The Baltimore Sun, The Washington Post, and the St. Petersburg Times. His previous book, Beyond the Shadow of the Senators, won the Robert Peterson Recognition Award from the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) and was a finalist for SABR’s Seymour Medal, Spitball Magazine’s Casey Award, and Elysian Fields Quarterly’s Dave Moore Award. He is a graduate of Duke University and Yale Law School.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780670037940
Subtitle:
Curt Flood's Fight for Free Agency in Professional Sports
Publisher:
Plume
Author:
Snyder, Brad
Subject:
United states
Subject:
Baseball players
Subject:
Baseball - History
Edition Description:
Paperback / softback
Publication Date:
20070925
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Illustrations:
16-page b/w photo insert
Pages:
480
Dimensions:
8.4 x 5.56 x 1.1 in 0.98 lb
Age Level:
from 18

Related Subjects

Sports and Outdoors » Sports and Fitness » Baseball » Biographies
Sports and Outdoors » Sports and Fitness » Baseball » General

A Well-Paid Slave: Curt Flood's Fight for Free Agency in Professional Sports
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Product details 480 pages Viking Books - English 9780670037940 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Snyder, a lawyer and baseball writer, gives an account of St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Curt Flood's failed though influential suit against Major League Baseball, offering both a sturdy revision of Flood's biography and a polemical defense of the pro-player fight of which Flood was a part. Benefiting from a lawyer's pen, the intricacies of the terms 'reserve clause' (which bound players 'to their teams for life') and 'baseball's anti-trust exemption' are quickly and clearly explained, as the world of 1960s Major League Baseball is brought to life. Before 'free agency,' players had few rights; after the 1969 season Flood fought being traded to Philadelphia, taking his battle to the Supreme Court. While the narrative drags at points, the stories of those central to Flood's case (like Marvin Miller, director of the Player's Association, and Arthur Goldberg, Flood's chief lawyer) are vividly rendered. Most compelling, however, is the portrait of Flood's humble upbringing (in working-class Oakland) and the racism he experienced during his early years on the field ('name-calling, segregated facilities, and second-class citizenship'). This account both serves to explain why Flood was 'serious about sacrificing his playing career to sue baseball' and helps reposition Flood as a successor to Jackie Robinson's 'lifelong battle against injustice.'" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by , The author of "Beyond the Shadow of the Senators" explores the life of all-star center fielder Curt Flood and the landmark Supreme Court case that changed professional sports forever.

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