Joe Cronin


Joe Cronin

A Life in Baseball

Mark Armour

432 pages
35 photographs


April 2010


$40.00 Add to Cart

April 2014


$26.95 Add to Cart
eBook (EPUB)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

April 2010


$26.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

From the sandlots of San Francisco to the power centers of baseball, this book tells the story of Joe Cronin, one of twentieth-century baseball’s major players, both on the field and off.
For most of his playing career, Cronin (1906–84) was the best shortstop in baseball. Elected to the Hall of Fame in 1956, he was a manager by the age of twenty-six and a general manager at forty-one. He was the youngest player-manager ever to play in the World Series, and he managed the Red Sox longer than any other man in history. As president of the American League, he oversaw two expansions, four franchise shifts, and the revolutionary and controversial introduction of the designated-hitter rule, which he wrote himself.
This book follows Cronin from his humble beginnings to his position as one of the most powerful figures in baseball. Mark Armour explores Cronin’s time as a player as well as his role in some of the game’s fiercest controversies, from the creation of the All-Star Game to the issue of integration. Bringing to life one of baseball’s definitive characters, this book supplies a crucial and fascinating chapter in the history of America’s pastime.

Author Bio

Mark Armour is the editor The Great Eight: The 1975 Cincinnati Reds (Nebraska, 2014) and a coeditor of Pitching, Defense, and Three-Run Homers: The 1970 Baltimore Orioles (Nebraska, 2012).


"This is a rich account of one of the 20th century's great player-managers, his rise from modest beginnings all the way to Cooperstown, and presidency of the American League."—Margaret Heilbrun and Gilles Renaud, Library Journal

"Mark Armour has produced a grand and deep biography of one of the sport's central figures. I approached it with very high expectations, and came away fully satisfied."—Steve Treder, Hardball Times

"Well written and well worth owning."—

"Cronin emerges as a larger-than-life figure, and Armour's biography is a fitting tribute."—D. R. Danbom, Time Out for Entertainment

"This readable, well-documented biography of Cronin, who became an elder statesman of the national pastime, is candid, honest, and reverential."—S. Gittleman, Choice

"In writing this biography, Mark Armour has done a great service not only to those interested in Joe Cronin, but also to future researchers interested in any of the multitude of facets of baseball that Joe Cronin impacted."—Richard Puerzer, NINE

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations



1. San Francisco

2. Pittsburgh and Other Places

3. Washington

4. Player-Manager

5. Rich Kid

6. Comeback

7. Winding Down

8. War

9. Bench Manager

10. General Manager

11. Opportunity Lost

12. Youth Movement

13. Power and Glory

14. Mr. President

15. New Order

16. Unrest

17. At Rest




Finalist for the 2011 Seymour Medal, sponsored by the Society for American Baseball Research

Also of Interest