Cover image for Crossing the line : black major leaguers, 1947-1959
Crossing the line : black major leaguers, 1947-1959
Moffi, Larry.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Jefferson, N.C. : McFarland, [1994]

Physical Description:
xi, 241 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GV865.A1 M64 1994 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

On Order



On April 15, 1947, Jackie Robinson opened the season at first base for the Brooklyn Dodgers, going 0 for 3 with a sacrifice and integrating major league baseball. Though stars such as Willie Mays and Hank Aaron quickly made their marks, it was not until 1959 that the Boston Red Sox called up a light-hitting infielder named Pumpsie Green, thus to become the last team to break baseball's color barrier.From 1947 through 1959, over 100 African American players made it to the major leagues. Each of these players is profiled in this comprehensive reference work--their playing careers and the on- and off-field difficulties they encountered in integrating the game. Some were stars, most (such as Green, Billy Bruton, and Harry Simpson) were average players, but all were pioneers in the sport. For each, career statistics and a capsule biography are provided.

Reviews 2

Library Journal Review

There were many players in the late 1940s and 1950s who were genuine stars but somehow fell short of enshrinement in the Baseball Hall of Fame. This Side of Cooperstown sports some fine interviews with such luminaries as Carl Erskine, Del Crandell, Vic Powers, and others who provide insight into the game and the period. Some of the true heroes of the time were, of course, black Major Leaguers who often endured abuse and ill will. Crossing the Line, which is organized like a reference book, offers profiles of black players of the period. Although both titles appeal to a limited audience‘diehard fans of the 1950s and baseball researchers‘comprehensive collections should consider. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

Moffi and Kronstadt, of unknown backgrounds and expertise, prepared this catalog of the known black major leaguers (American and other) active between 1947 and 1959. Their intention was to give readers a sense of the progress made by this group, and they organized their brief biographies according to the player's rookie season. In 1947 there were five American rookies, two in 1948, four in 1949, one in 1950, and eight in 1951; thereafter, there were at least seven and a high of 16 in 1959. The individual narratives are not very informative or extensively researched; their major league statistics are available from The Baseball Encyclopedia (9th ed., CH, Sep'93). The book's one saving grace is that there is at least a brief biography of each individual, some of whom are very obscure. Far greater insight into their collective experience can be found in Jules Tygiel, Baseball's Great Experiment: Jackie Robinson and His Legacy (CH, Dec'83). Slim bibliography; no illustrations. General. S. A. Riess; Northeastern Illinois University