Thursday, August 13, 2009

Baseball's Star Power


Todd Uncommon said...

The only reason that eras earlier than 1950 are not winning is that anyone that would likely vote for that era is already dead.

Baseball meant a whole lot more to more people back then. Why?

- Players made less money, so they were more like "normal people" economically;
- Many of the players were from rough, blue collar or skilled labor backgrounds, again more like normal folks;
- Media was more local and personal than centralized and omnipresent;
- Football didn't start to eclipse baseball in the "it matters" department until after the advent of the Super Bowl;
- Far fewer competitors for a lot less leisure time;
- Prices to attend games were targeted to the low budgets of blue-collar workers, making them even more accessible.

Those that remember the 1950s and early 1960s experienced the last days of when baseball was all that really mattered in terms of national sport, but I think that guys like Mathewson, Waddell, Wagner, and Shoeless Joe meant more to more people in their eras.

When a kid would exclaim "Say it ain't so, Joe", it was actually meaningful and not yet a hopeless and cynical cliche'.

Andrew said...

Really? I'd think that Depression and Post War era would have the most star power just because you have names like Ruth's home run record and DiMaggio's consecutive hit record out there all of the time. I guess nowadays it all depends on what ESPN wants to highlight.

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