- 230 Pages
- Released: October 14, 2005
- Originally Released: 2005
- Publisher: McFarland & Company
Description by OLDIES.com:
One of the oldest and most celebrated franchises in baseball history, the Cincinnati Reds have left an indelible mark on the national pastime. Perhaps the most compelling but overlooked period in Reds history is the 1940 championship season, during which the team won 100 games and earned the world title while overcoming an in-season tragedy faced by no other team in baseball history. Four attempted suicides, three of which were successful, by individuals connected to the team dealt a tragic and unprecedented setback to what was ultimately a successful season.
This book addresses both the 1940 Cincinnati Reds as a collective group and, to a greater degree, the individual players who comprised that championship squad. The book begins with the story of Willard Hershberger, the 1940 reserve catcher for the Reds and the only player ever to commit suicide during a major league season. Later chapters tell the stories of Bill McKechnie and Warren Giles, the managers who together led the Reds to victory over the Detroit Tigers in 1940, and the stories of the players on the pennant-winning team: Frank McCormick, Lonnie Frey, Billy Myers, Billy Werber, Eddie Joost, Paul Derringer, William "Bucky" Walters, Johnny Vander Meer, Gene Thompson, Jim Turner, Joseph Beggs, Jimmy Ripple, and Ernie Lombardi. The crucial games, important performances, and personal tragedies of the 1940 season, culminating in the drama of a seven-game World Series, are chronicled in this book.