Haase: Women’s baseball trailblazers celebrate 75 years of the AAGPBL

From Nicole Haase at SB Nation on May 30, 2018:

When 16-year-old Shirley Burkovich joined the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, she thought she would play baseball for the rest of her life.

The league was in its fifth year of existence and Burkovich was a wide-eyed, if naive, teenager who had been offered the job of her dreams. The AAGPBL, founded in 1943, was still near its prime; based on ticket sales and attendance, 1948 was the height of the league’s popularity and success.

“When I went into the league, I thought that was going to be my career,” Burkovich says. “I planned on playing forever. I had no plans to do anything else. I made no arrangements for attending college to get a degree to do anything else.”

Three years later, she was working for the phone company.

Burkovich joined the league midway through its 12-year run. Sources estimate that 450 to 500 women played on teams based in 14 different cities over the league’s lifetime. But its decline was quick and sharp.

Read the full article here: https://www.sbnation.com/2018/5/30/17407798/women-baseball-trailblazers-reflect-aagpbl-75th-anniversary

Originally published: May 30, 2018. Last Updated: May 30, 2018.