GET THAT NIGGER OFF THE FIELD! by

GET THAT NIGGER OFF THE FIELD!

By
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KIRKUS REVIEW

An amusing, nostalgia-ridden hodgepodge of blacks in baseball, organized and other, laced with the author's love for them dating from the days he sat in Yankee Stadium and wondered why the NY Black Yankees could not play alongside the NY (white) Yankees. Actually, black and white teams did play, but only against one another in exhibition games (usually to the defeat of the whites), until that historic day in 1947 when Jackie Robinson walked out on opening day in a Dodger uniform. The Henry Aarons, Willie Mays, Maury Wills, Bob Gibsons, Don Newcombes, Richie Allens, Lou Brocks and Reggie Allens have been busting records ever since. But the most enjoyable part of this book belongs, with the author's heart, to the halcyon days before television and the airplane (only two of the original major league teams were west of the Mississippi), when barnstorming teams of the Negro leagues like the Homestead Grays and the Kansas City Monarchs might play three different games, in three different towns, on the same day. Statistics (mostly of black-against-white playing) close the book, as is fitting for this most number-minded of sports, but since officials never attended those games where Josh Gibson hit his 500-foot home runs, or Satchel Paige struck out over twenty men, their feats must belong to that never-never land between history and myth--where, after all, the true baseball fan finds his home.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1976
Publisher: Delacorte