The End of Baseball

It’s April. Is your favorite Major League Baseball team already out of contention for the Pennant? Relax. Peter Schilling’s novel The End of Baseball may be entertainment for those fanatics with a long summer ahead.

The End of Baseball covers the complete season of the 1944 Philadelphia Athletics in the race for the pennant. But Schilling’s novel is much more important than following a baseball race; it’s about equality for the human race. The story’s exposition follows the eccentric Bill Veeck as he purchases the worst franchise in the Majors and tries to make contenders out of them. Veeck’s plan to accomplish this lies in replacing his Caucasian players with some of the greatest Negro League players — this, of course, in the segregated professional baseball era.

If you’re interested in following a maverick owner and a team for the ages, The End of Baseball may score a base hit, but it’s the way Schilling treats humility in this story that scores a grand slam.