ESPN launches “1927: The Diary of Myles Thomas” historical fiction project

By Douglas Alden

It’s been almost a year since John Thorn, Steve Wulf, and I had the honor of presenting our vision for “1927: The Diary of Myles Thomas” at the SABR 45 convention in Chicago — finally, this week our project launched on

“1927: The Diary of Myles Thomas” is a novel written in the form of a diary by a pitcher who really did play for the legendary ’27 Yankees team, which starred Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig and the rest of Murderers’ Row. Almost all of the action in the diary takes place off the field—in speakeasies, brothels and gambling dens, in Harlem night clubs and rent parties, and on the Long Island estates of Wall Street and entertainment tycoons.

Set in the height of the Roaring Twenties, it chronicles the adventures of white and black baseball immortals, Jazz pioneers, Prohibition entertainers, bootleggers, gamblers and swindlers—all part of Myles’s exploration of youth, greatness, morality, sex, race, and the meaning of heroes. Most of all, it’s a deeply intimate journey through the worlds of Baseball, Jazz and Prohibition—three worlds that really did come together in 1927.

In addition to the Myles Thomas diary, the project also includes wonderful letters written by Steve Wulf, under the name of Ford Frick, who was a Yankees beat writer that season (as well as Babe Ruth’s ghostwriter), and historical essays about baseball in the Roaring Twenties by John Thorn.

Visit to check out the full project.

SABR has been a big part of our project, especially the SABR BioProject, which has been a tremendous source for our research. We hope to continue our conversation with SABR members over the course of the summer. In fact, we’re hosting the project on a platform ( that easily enables online conversations. Additionally, we also have set up an ESPN 1927 Google Group exclusively for SABR members to contribute to the conversation. If you’d like to sign up, please contact Jacob Pomrenke.

Finally, our team is in a permanent state of research — so if there are any new facts, stories, or discoveries, including images of ephemera of the Yankees of that era that you would like to share with us, please don’t hesitate to send it to us at or ping our Facebook page.

DOUGLAS ALDEN is the Creator and Executive Producer of ESPN’s real-time historical fiction project “1927: The Diary of Myles Thomas.”

Originally published: April 14, 2016. Last Updated: April 14, 2016.