Corbett: Connie Mack’s less than graceful exit

From SABR member Warren Corbett at The Hardball Times on February 20, 2014:

The Yankees made them do it. That’s the time-honored explanation for the American League’s decision to move the Philadelphia Athletics to Kansas City in 1954. After strong-arming the rest of the league to install a friendly, compliant owner in Kansas City, the Yankees looted the Athletics franchise, acquiring such key players as Roger Maris, Ralph Terry and Clete Boyer in return for nobody in particular.

That conventional wisdom has been disputed recently by historian Bill Deane, who argues in his book, Baseball Myths, that the A’s actually got the better of their many deals with the Yankees. Now newly discovered evidence blows away the conspiracy theory surrounding the franchise move.

The American League had cured its biggest and longest-running financial headache with the transfer of the St. Louis Browns to Baltimore in 1954. Just a few months later it faced an equally vexing, and even more agonizing, problem: the imminent failure of its Philadelphia club, owned by Connie Mack, one of the league’s founders, who was revered as the Grand Old Man of Baseball.

Read the full article here:

Originally published: February 20, 2014. Last Updated: February 20, 2014.