Baseball Once Was The King Of American Sports

Baseball is just another sport these days.


In the good old summer time baseball, not just major league baseball, was the king of sports. Sure, there was an occasional sports event that would grab some attention here and there, such as tennis’s Wimbledon tournament in England, but between Memorial Day and the end of the Indianapolis 500 until September, it was baseball, baseball and baseball in the sports world. The National Football League held two-month long training camps and featured six pre-season games but that was not much competition.

The Fourth of July meant doubleheaders. Two games for the price of one. The 1950s was the so-called golden age of baseball but most of that had to do with the New York Yankees winning led by Mickey Mantle, the New York Giants had Willie Mays and the Brooklyn Dodgers, always seemingly also-rans to the Yankees had the Duke of Flatbush, Duke Snider. But baseball began changing in the 1950s. Baseball became a big business with cities bidding for teams. In 1953, Lou Perini took his Boston Braves to Milwaukee after the city gave away the store at the new taxpayers funded stadium and that partnership altered baseball and sports. Perini’s move got Brooklyn Dodgers owner Walter O’Malley thinking about sports financing and how he needed a new stadium financially to compete with Perini in Milwaukee. O’Malley would get his deal in Los Angeles in 1957. There are still high school baseball games, minor league baseball still draws crowds but there are far fewer teams than there were after World War II. The father-son family bonding at ballpark, a baseball staple has decreased because the ticket prices are high. Major League Baseball is fine with the family can watch the game on TV if they cannot afford the price of tickets. Of course, most of the nostalgic look at baseball is an illusion. It was always a business.


Baseball is not that important anymore