2020 Larry Ritter Book Award nominees announced

Each year, SABR’s Deadball Era Committee presents the Larry Ritter Book Award to recognize the best new baseball book primarily set in the Deadball Era that was published during the previous calendar year. The Ritter Award is presented during the Deadball Committee’s meeting at the annual SABR convention.

Here is the list of Ritter Award nominees for 2020:

  • Oscar Charleston: The Life and Legend of Baseball’s Forgotten Player, by Jeremy Beer (University of Nebraska Press)
  • The Last At-Bat of Shoeless Joe: A Novel, by Granville Wyche Burgess (Chickadee Prince Books)
  • James T. Farrell and Baseball: Dreams and Realism on Chicago’s South Side, by Charles DeMotte (University of Nebraska Press)
  • The 1919 Black Sox Scandal, by Dan Helpingstine (Arcadia Publishing)
  • Baseball Gods in Scandal: Ty Cobb, Tris Speaker, and the Dutch Leonard Affair, by Ian S. Kahanowitz (Summer Game Books)
  • Reflections on the 1919 Black Sox: Time To Take Another Look, by Gary L. Livicari (independently published)
  • Baseball Epic: Famous and Forgotten Lives of the Dead Ball Era, by Jason Novak (Coffee House Press)
  • Shoeless Joe and the Baseball Scandal of 1919, by Robert Sterling (independently published)

First presented in 2002, the Larry Ritter Award is the centerpiece of the Deadball Era Committee’s endeavors and is bestowed annually upon the best work set primarily in the Deadball Era published during the preceding year. The award is named in honor of late SABR member Lawrence S. Ritter, author of The Glory of Their Times, the work that revived interest in the Deadball Era and often cited as the greatest baseball book ever written.

The task of reviewing this year’s nominees is assigned to an awards committee chaired by Doug Skipper, with John McMurray, Mark Dugo, David Fleitz, Craig Lammers, Mark Pattison, and Ben Klein as the other judges. The nominees’ list will be pared down to four finalists in early March, with the 2020 Larry Ritter Award to be publicly announced the following month.

For a list of past Ritter Award winners, click here.

Originally published: February 12, 2020. Last Updated: February 12, 2020.