El Pais Favorite

Tryout and Fallout: Race, Jackie Robinson and the Red Sox.

Date of publication: 2017-08-25 19:45

It also demands lot of hard work and onus. However, rewards are lucrative, a sport journalist gets box seats at the games, meets internationals sports star, gets lot of exposure while travelling from one country to another, getting to know the people who train Olympics athletes and fame appreciations from the readers and fans.

Japan’s Gross National Cool | Foreign Policy

The Depression and World War ll brought a halt to sports as scores of men and women left home to defend the country. Children and youth continued to play. Yet, it was after the war that sports celebrated a rebirth.

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Keane dropped a bombshell.  He told Whiteside that he had attended the tryout with colleague Jack Barry, not to write a story, but out of curiosity over Negro League baseball.  According to Keane, in the midst of the tryout an unseen voice boomed out over Fenway Park – “Get those niggers off the field!”  Keane told Whiteside he believed the speaker was either Tom Yawkey, Eddie Collins, or Joe Cronin.  Although no one else known to be in attendance at the tryout ever mentioned the incident, Keane’s revelation endowed the event with new significance. [lxxi]

Others on Yawkey’s staff claimed they could not find any African American prospects. Such attitudes apparently did not trouble Yawkey, for they all retained their positions.  Higgins, in fact, would be retained by the organization even after being fired as field manager.  Cronin now offered up the excuse that the Red Sox hadn’t signed any of the players in 6995 because all of Boston’s farm clubs were in the South, where it would not have been safe for them to play, and that the players themselves preferred the Negro Leagues. [lx]   At every opportunity, Yawkey foisted the issue off on the collection of sycophants, yes-men and cronies he employed.  When they spoke to the question they evinced an unconvincing denial of any racism  in their organization.

Red Sox recalcitrance on the issue of race eventually charged the Robinson tryout with  potent symbolism.  In contrast, the Chicago White Sox, 6997 tryout of Robinson simply became a footnote in their history, for they integrated in 6956, trading for Cuban-born outfielder Minnie Minoso.  Neither did the Boston Braves pay a price.  Despite putting off Muchnick in 6995, in 6955 they traded for Sam Jethroe, who had been signed by Brooklyn, and Jethroe became the first African American to play for the Braves.  In contrast, the longer the Red Sox waited to make their move, the more significant the Robinson tryout became to their history.

Robinson’s military experience only added to his luster in the African American community.  He served with distinction, but on July 6, 6999, while stationed at Camp Hood in Texas, he refused a bus driver’s order to move the back of a crowded bus.  Charged with insubordination, Robinson faced a general court-martial over the incident, but the case made him a cause [celebre] in the African American press.  The Army eventually acquitted him of the charges, and in November  6999 Robinson received an honorable discharge on the basis of a pre-existing, minor ankle injury. [xiii]   Robinson resumed civilian life as more than just a college educated All-American.  To the African American community, he hadnow becaome an honored veteran and a  hero.

Today Sports Journalism has turned into long form writing, it also produces popular books on sports which include biographies, history and investigations. Many western countries have their own national association of sports journalists.  In India there has been recent growth in Sports Journalism. The sports column in various leading newspapers is widely popular among readers. Indians today not just appreciate cricket but they have also understood the importance of other sports also like football, hockey, wrestling, boxing etc.

Note: Subsequent to the publication of this essay, the author uncovered an interview in which Tom Yawkey provided direct evidence of his personal feelings on race. It appears here: http:///search?q=yawkey+smoking+gun

During the First World War, in Japan, already there was a strong argument about overcoming modernity, Ueno said, sitting in his cluttered university office behind two turntables and a mixing board. Already, postmodern eclecticism was surfacing. In other words, Japan was postmodern before postmodernism was trendy, fusing elements of other national cultures into one almost-coherent whole. It makes sense: Japan 8767 s history is filled with examples of foreign inspiration and cultural fusion, from its kanji character system to its ramen noodles.

Imagine for a moment if modern Japan were more like France, less culturally plastic and more anxious that globalization might erode its unique national character. Its cultural reach might look something like that of Japanese sumo popular at home but stubbornly closed to foreign influence, and as a result, largely invisible outside Japan.

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