What If histories stir the imagination, leaving people wondering how their lives could have been
different if alternative decisions had been made. History and sports fans alike will find the What If of the major leagues being integrated long before Jackie Robinson a fascinating option to consider. And, how would twenty-one stars of the black ball era (Negro Leagues and independent black teams) like to be honored? At 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 21, Bob May will discuss his acclaimed book, The Best Season, the First Ninety Games.
Honoring Black Ball players through highly sophisticated game simulation and prodigious research, Bob’s book gives startling statistics on how baseball could have been different had black players been allowed to participate in major league baseball during its segregated era.
Through sophisticated simulated baseball board games, here the skills of the batter are pitted against the skills of the pitcher. Twenty to twenty-five percent of the game action is determined by fielding (error and range ratings), ball park factors, and wild plays.
“The purpose of this book is to honor these twenty-one players from the Negro Leagues on the field,” Bob notes. “They were all so passionate about playing baseball. It is important to me to have people read the book, not buy the book. Share the book. Donate it to your local library. Talk about it! I also believe the book honors ALL who have played Black Ball.”
Joining Bob is an eye-witness to Negro League baseball, Bill Blair, who pitched from 1946 to 1951 for the Cincinnati Clowns and Cincinnati Crescents, playing against players such as Cool Papa Bell, Satchel Paige and Hilton Smith. After retiring from baseball, he became a fixture in Dallas, running a local newspaper Elite News.
Learn more about this fascinating chapter of baseball’s past and how its history could have been different.
If you know a friend or family member who was in the Negro League Baseball, bring us your story!
Call 214-509-4911 for more information.