Bush League, Big City

The Brooklyn Cyclones, Staten Island Yankees, and the New York-Penn League

Michael Sokolow
eISBN-13: 9781438493053

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Bush League, Big City tells the interwoven stories of two low-level minor league baseball teams brought to New York City in the late 1990s. It also illuminates the history of the New York-Penn League, America’s oldest and longest-running minor league, from its inception in 1939 until its abrupt contraction by Major League Baseball in 2020. With an eye for details and firsthand accounts by many of the baseball people involved, Michael Sokolow tells the story of two franchises that went in very different directions, as the Cyclones achieved astronomical success while Staten Island’s ‘Baby Bombers’ sank under the weight of debt and recriminations. Along the way, the book visits small communities in upstate New York, New England, and Canada, introduces the multimillionaires who came to dominate small-time baseball ownership, and tells the tale of two of the most expensive minor-league baseball stadiums ever built. It also sheds light on the complex, behind-the-scenes influence of New York City politics, as the indomitable will of Mayor Rudy Giuliani reshaped the geography of both the city and professional baseball. Bush League, Big City is a compelling examination of both the power and limits of nostalgia in a sport that is increasingly focused on the bottom line.

ISBNs 1438493053, 9781438492636, 9781438493053
Language English