Some of the names, such as “Shoeless” Joe Jackson and Arnold “Chick” Gandil are easily identifiable when it comes to the Chicago Black Sox scandal, but there are so many more characters involved–which is examined in the new book, The Betrayal: The 1919 World Series and the Birth of Modern Baseball by Charles Fountain.
Showing documentation on game fixing all the way back to the Civil War and using more recently discovered papers on the scandal, Fountain shows how and why this sort of event was bound to happen even if it hadn’t been the Black Sox.
Who was “Operative #11, the feud between American League President Byron “Ban” Johnson and White Sox owner Charles Comiskey. Hall of Famer Christy Mathewson taking notes in the press box during the World Series on alert for any suspicious play–these parts and several more to the story are all examined by Fountain.
If you enjoyed Field of Dreams or Eight Men Out, chances are you will find The Betrayal to be a very fascinating read. Fountain was a recent guest and discussed not just The Betrayal, but the chances of Shoeless Joe being allowed into the Hall of Fame–and what might be applied to the Pete Rose situation.