Woodson: New book chronicles Appalachian League history

From Brian Woodson at the Bluefield Daily Telegraph on June 21, 2015, with mention of SABR member Allen LaMountain:

After nearly 60 consecutive seasons of baseball, it was about time for a history of the Appalachian League to be written.

Allen LaMountain has done just that, and he learned plenty along the way.

“I didn’t know the Yankees and the Cubs actually had teams down here and the Senators had teams down there,” LaMountain said. “There was a lot of things in going through the towns and finding out about some of the players and just some of the major league teams that have had affiliations with the Appalachian League that is pretty amazing.”

A sports reporter for the Elizabethton Star in Northeast Tennessee, LaMountain’s ideas for a book came from several directions, but it was spurred along while speaking with Bluefield Baseball Club President George McGonagle about the history of the league.

“We were talking about a lot of the people that came through Bluefield and made it to the major leagues,” said LaMountain, who credited McGonagle with supporting the project, and even providing photos, although trademark restrictions kept them out of his book. “It just started to dawn on me that people should be interested in knowing these people, who they are and what their careers ended up being like. It just kind of grew from there.”

His project began in 2012. It became reality last year with the release of “Appalachian League Baseball: Where Rookies Rise”, a 313-page book that details much of the history of the league, including its teams, players and managers during the modern era that started in 1957.

Read the full article here: http://www.bdtonline.com/sports/in-pages-book-chronicles-appy-league-s-history/article_a9c72c74-17cc-11e5-8db3-1b364d91c521.html

Originally published: June 22, 2015. Last Updated: June 22, 2015.