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    Contributors | September 15, 2015

    Mary Karr: IMG Memoir Tutorials with Mary Karr, Lena Dunham, and Gary Shteyngart

    Editor's note: It's been 20 years since the groundbreaking memoir The Liars' Club sent Mary Karr into the literary spotlight with its phenomenal... Continue »
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Baseball on Trial: The Origin of Baseball's Antitrust Exemption


Baseball on Trial: The Origin of Baseball's Antitrust Exemption Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The controversial 1922 Federal Baseball Supreme Court ruling held that the "business of base ball" was not subject to the Sherman Antitrust Act because it did not constitute interstate commerce. In Baseball on Trial, legal scholar Nathaniel Grow defies conventional wisdom to explain why the unanimous Supreme Court opinion authored by Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, which gave rise to Major League Baseball's exemption from antitrust law, was correct given the circumstances of the time.


Currently a billion dollar enterprise, professional baseball teams crisscross the country while the games are broadcast via radio, television, and internet coast to coast. The sheer scope of this activity would seem to embody the phrase "interstate commerce." Yet baseball is the only professional sport--indeed the sole industry--in the United States that currently benefits from a judicially constructed antitrust immunity. How could this be?


Drawing upon recently released documents from the National Baseball Hall of Fame, Grow analyzes how the Supreme Court reached this seemingly peculiar result by tracing the Federal Baseball litigation from its roots in 1914 to its resolution in 1922, in the process uncovering significant new details about the proceedings. Grow observes that while interstate commerce was measured at the time by the exchange of tangible goods, baseball teams in the 1910s merely provided live entertainment to their fans, while radio was a fledgling technology that had little impact on the sport. The book ultimately concludes that, despite the frequent criticism of the opinion, the Supreme Court's decision was consistent with the conditions and legal climate of the early twentieth century.

About the Author

Nathaniel Grow is an assistant professor of legal studies at the University of Georgia's Terry College of Business.

Product Details

Grow, Nathaniel
University of Illinois Press
Law-Legal Guides and Reference
Antitrust DONTUSE <div>The first comprehensive account of the 1922 Supreme Court decision that gave rise to professional baseballand#8217;s antitrust exemption</div>
Edition Description:
1st Edition
Publication Date:
26 black and white photographs
9 x 6 in

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Law » General
History and Social Science » Law » Legal Guides and Reference
History and Social Science » World History » General
Sports and Outdoors » Sports and Fitness » Baseball » General

Baseball on Trial: The Origin of Baseball's Antitrust Exemption New Hardcover
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Product details 296 pages University of Illinois Press - English 9780252038198 Reviews:
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