The National Pastime, 2018


The National Pastime, 2018

Steel City Stories

Edited by Cecilia M. Tan

128 pages


July 2018


$14.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

The National Pastime is the annual review of baseball historical research and regional topics published by the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR). Each year the publication focuses on the history of baseball in a different region or city, following the annual SABR convention from one major league territory to another.

The 2018 volume focuses on Pittsburgh, home to some truly significant episodes in baseball history, being not only the home to the great Negro Leagues teams the Homestead Grays and Pittsburgh Crawfords, but to a major league team who came by their name honestly--no pun intended--for what others called the "piratical" practice of poaching players. 

The articles in the volume are arranged chronologically, starting from the opening of Forbes Field in 1909 and carrying through to a story of the annual fan gathering each October at the section of Forbes Field wall that still stands today. Fane re-live the magic of Game Seven of the 1960 Wold Series on the very spot where Bill Mazeroski's home run flew over the wall. 

The articles feature not only the hall-of-fame players Honus Wagner, Josh Gibson, Roberto Clemente, and Willie Stargell, but some lesser remembered figures like Guy Bush, Roy Face, Sam Bankhead, and Carlos Bernier. The tales of Honus Wagner running for sheriff, Moses YellowHorse learning bad habits from Rabbit Maranville, and Pirates player Mudcat Grant's quest to sing the National Anthem are told alongside articles detailing Pittsburgh-related baseball litigation, Pirates appearances in the movies, and amateur baseball contests that produced several major leaguers. 

Table of Contents

  1. Forbes Field: Ahead of Its Time in 1909 by Robert C. Trumpbour 
  2. Honus Wagner: Baseball's Prototypical Five-Tooler? by Herm Krabbenhoft
  3. Honus Wagner, Spring Fever, and Two Three Stooges by Rob Edelman
  4. Honus Wagner’s Short Stint as Pirates Skipper in a Forgettable Final Season  by Gregory H. Wolf
  5. Wagner for Sheriff: Honus Runs into the Coolidge Tax Cut by Mark Souder
  6. Moses YellowHorse, Pittsburgh Pirate by George Skornickel
  7. A Dark, Rainy Game Seven: The Pirates Defeat the Big Train in the 1925 World Series by Gary Sarnoff
  8. The 1927 Pittsburgh Pirates: More Than the Murderers’ Row Opponent by Gordon J. Gattie
  9. Guy Bush: That Guy From Pittsburgh by Matthew M. Clifford
  10. The 1931 Homestead Grays : The Greatest Baseball Team of All Time by Charlie Fouché
  11. The Greatest Outfield? by Ted Knorr
  12. From Bat to Baton: Josh Gibson, the Pittsburgh Opera, and The Summer King  by David Krell
  13. Why Isn’t Sam Bankhead in the Baseball Hall of Fame? by Richard “Pete” Peterson
  14. A View from the Bench: Baseball Litigation and the Steel City by John Racanelli
  15. From Sandlot to Center Stage: Pittsburgh Youth All-Star Games 1944–59 by Alan Cohen
  16. Turning the Pirates’ Ship by Francis Kinlaw
  17. Ralph Kiner and Branch Rickey: Not a Happy Marriage by John J. Burbridge, Jr.
  18. The Pittsburgh Pirates Go to the Movies by Ron Backer 
  19. Roy Face’s Incredible 1959 Season by Ed Edmonds
  20. Cubs: Pirates Biggest Rivals? by William E. McMahon
  21. Carlos Bernier and Roberto Clemente :Historical Links in Pittsburgh and Puerto Rico by Thomas E. Van Hyning
  22. Roberto Clemente and The Odd Couple Two Different Stories by Rob Edelman
  23. Land of the Free, Home of the Brave: Mudcat Grant’s Odyssey to Sing the National Anthem by Dan VanDeMortel
  24. 1971: Willie Stargell’s Pivotal Season by Blake W. Sherry
  25. The Annual Forbes Field Celebration: Pirates Fans Relive Mazeroski’s Moment by Richard J. Puerzer  

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