Baseball’s Greatest Teams, by Tom Meany
Five out of five stars
Published in 1949, this book essentially covers the first half century of major league baseball. There are sixteen teams in the list and the first thing the reader notices is the unusual grouping of the decades of the selected teams.
Three of the teams were from the years 1900-1909, five of the teams from the years 1910-1919, six from the years 1920-1929, none from the years 1930-1939 and two from the years 1940-1949. The earliest team listed was the 1908 Cubs and the last was the 1942 Cardinals. The statistics of the members of each of the featured teams for those years are given in an appendix.
The point that could easily trigger a great deal of debate aside, the descriptions of the teams are essays that will thrill the hearts of people that love reading about the history of baseball. The writing is that of a person that knows the subtle machinations of the game at the major league level in general as well as these teams in particular.
Somewhat dated in terms of the approach to reporting about baseball, this is still a book that the modern reader can enjoy. It is a great book to read and ponder during the cold winter months when you are looking forward to the start of a new season and a warmer sun.