"The Hustler's Handbook" (probably written in about 1963) that covers it in some detail based on some old notebooks or journals of a White Sox front office person (Harry Grabiner, I think) from that time which had only recently been discovered. The whole book is worth reading anyway if you like Bill Veeck and/or just baseball in general but it also might have some otherwise obscure info you wouldn't see elsewhere.
It's obviously not focused exclusively on the Black Sox, but it does cover the machinations in detail. And the rest of Rothstein's story is worth reading about.
I don't think you'll find a better book on the Black Sox.
The movie is my favorite baseball movie ever, because it followed the book, and was about as accurate as the movies get on such things, right down to the details.
One of many, many examples: in the opening scene, Eddie Collins is at bat, and takes a called second strike. Whereupon he takes a wad of gum stuck to the button of his cap and puts it in his mouth and chews it. I read a book about baseball superstitions as a kid and that was Collins's. I thought immediately, hey, thins might be really good! It's the little things . . .
And they had Joe Jackson hitting lefthanded. It bugged the crap out of me in Field of Dreams that they had him hitting from the wrong side of the plate. You might as well have had Babe Ruth hitting righthanded. OK, that book and movie were fiction, of course, but still.
the only thing that bothered me was the antics on the field. Perhaps the book explains some of this (I will order a copy today).
Did Buck Weaver really slam his glove down (how many times?) when his teammates screwed up?
Did a player, Gandel?, almost walk to third so the Reds could get a force?
Was that all just Hollywood icing?
Those were actually a couple of the things I'd love to read more about. At one point in Cicotte's last game they show Weaver getting physical with him. As you say, it is the best baseball movie out there (IMO) so I don't want to automatically discount their telling of it.
By the way, the Gandil play at 3rd may well be shown here at the 1:25 mark:
it sure does look like he really lollygagged into 3rd and the 3B had to hustle to get back to third for the force.
thanks for posting that. I've never looked for footage of the games.
When he's 15 or 20 feet from the base he's running straight up and down. Like a relaxed jog.
although it will be close. If Billy Martin was his manager...
thanks for posting
so I didn't include the shove of Cicotte by Weaver
Hard to believe that happened without a huge headline the next day and/or a gazillion questions for Weaver, Cicotte and Gleason after the game.
did the tax returns for Ray Schalk's widow. And for Ray himself before he died about 10 years earlier. I remember asking my boss, one of the partners, if he had met him, and he said yes, quite a few times.
Obviously I was fascinated and one of the things that came up in the conversation was how angry Schalk was and continued to be about being sold out by his teammates in the World Series - and that Schalk didn't like to talk about it.
Note that in the film, Schalk, the catcher, was depicted at being royally pissed off at what was going on in the field.
Ray looked like he was itchin' for fight with one of the 8
wrong when Cicotte and Williams threw different pitches than the ones he called for.
Perhaps the description of "historical novel" is closer than fiction. Plus, while I love the Lardner/Fullerton characters in the movie, that was contrived. And yes, Field of Dreams drives me nuts with Liotta batting right. Can't believe they did that. Should have just avoided him batting if they wanted RL to have the part.
Specifically on Joe Jackson. No, DB Sweeney didn't not bat righthanded in Eight Men Out. He's confusing his movies. And I got proof below. Sure looks lefthanded to me. Also, he swings a black bat. Jackson called his bat "Black Betsy". The black was from (ew, gross!) tobacco juice. (Players back then would use 3 or 4 bats in an entire season; everyone swung a heavy bat)
Otherwise, though, very good article.
And you're right about the fictionalization in the book. It's been so long since I read it (decades) I forgot about that. But he did get the documented facts right.
For reference, Ray Liotta in Field of Dreams:
the way Jackson did. Sweeney has said the filmmakers had considered doing what Gary Cooper did as Lou Gehrig in "Pride of the Yankees" -- have him wear a mirror-image uniform, shoot him running the bases clockwise, then simply reverse the negative -- but they couldn't afford to do so."
I was an ENT surgery resident working at the VA Hospital in Indianapolis at the time they filmed a lot of the baseball scenes at Bush Stadium, which was three blocks from the hospital. Our ENT Clinic secretary had several days off so that she could be a member of the crowd dressed in period costume. It only paid $20/day so they had to move the few live extras around the stadium to be in the background for action scenes. For the rest of the seats, they used cardboard cutouts.
Also, Ring Lardner was born in Niles, MI and his first job as a journalist was with the South Bend Times as a reporter covering baseball and Niles news. Writer/director John Sayles plays Lardner in the movie, and the two look remarkably alike.