Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Negro League World Series

The 2013 World Series is scheduled to begin on October 23.  Will it be another series between the Boston Red Sox and the St. Louis Cardinals, there have been three (1946, 1967, and 2004)?  The Cardinals and the Detroit Tigers have also played three previous World Series (1934, 1968, and 2006).  In the eighteen World Series they have played, the Los Angeles (Brooklyn) Dodgers (Robins) have never had the Red Sox or Tigers as an opponent.  We will know next week if the League Championship Series results will produce a new World Series match up or if history will repeat itself.
Negro League baseball also had a World Series.  During the black ball era, there were eleven Negro League World Series held.  The first was in 1924.  The Kansas City Monarchs of the Negro National League (NNL) defeated the Hilldale Daisies of the Eastern Colored League (ECL) five games to four.  Hilldale got its revenge the next year by defeating the Monarchs five games to one.  The Negro League World Series games were played not just in the cities of participating teams, but also in other cities with large African-American populations.  This was to give more fans opportunity to see the games and maximize attendance; and ticket revenues.  After the 1927 season due to the economic instability of Negro teams that caused both leagues to disband, the Negro League World Series was discontinued.    

However; when some degree of economic growth returned to Negro League baseball in the late 1930’s, its World Series began again in 1942.  The Kansas City Monarchs of the Negro American League (NAL) defeated the Homestead Grays (NNL) in four straight games.  When racial barriers were broken down to allow African-Americans to play Major League baseball in 1947, the end of Negro League baseball became inevitable.  Overall Negro League game attendance dramatically dropped and teams went out of business. The last Negro League World Series was held in 1948; the Homestead Grays (NNL) beat the Birmingham Black Barons (NAL) four games to one.

What is your 2013 World Series prediction?

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