Baseball has played a significant role in shaping America over the years. From its origins in the US people have flocked to baseball as a source of camaraderie and entertainment. Baseball holds a special place in American history. This article will talk about how baseball has shaped aspects of American history.
Baseball began to take off when Babe Ruth was introduced to the game. In the 1920s baseball gained enormous popularity with players such as Babe Ruth on the New York Yankees. The Yankees at the time had an elite roster and took the World Series multiple times in the 1920s. At the end of the first World War, Americans needed something to remind themselves of what it is to be American. Baseball was their answer. After WWI people flocked to baseball stadiums to support their home teams. In 1919, The White Sox attendance rate skyrocketed reaching over 3.5 million more attendees than the previous year. That same year is when one of the biggest scandals in baseball history took place. Eight players from The Chicago White Sox team were accused of throwing the World Series due to wagers on the games. This caused the baseball leagues to acquire their first commissioner of baseball. The commissioner’s name was Kenesaw Mountain Landis. Landis was a progressive republican judge and made it his mission to clean up baseball to be a more family oriented sport. Soon, gambling and alcohol were not allowed in the stadiums.
Jackie Robinson was the first African American man to play baseball in the major leagues. This was a huge step in American history. Robinson started playing major league baseball around the same time that desegregation was an extremely controversial subject. Robinson was a subject of extreme criticism from people all over the country, and he endured it with strength. The very next year, President Truman desegregated the military. Seven years after Robinson started playing major league baseball the Supreme Court issued all public schools to be desegregated.
The turn of the century brought on new problems for the game of baseball. Steroids among players was a common trend that ended in fans questioning the authenticity of the game. The 2000s are infamously known as the steroid era. Fans of the game were disappointed in the drug standard in baseball and said that players should be stripped of their winnings if found that they were using performance-enhancing drugs.