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  • Writer's pictureFred

The Woke Mob got Ty Cobb

Updated: Jun 3


"For generations of baseball aficionados, especially African Americans, it’s somewhat breathtaking to wake up in a world where (Josh) Gibson, whose untimely death at 35 from a stroke was also attributed by friends and colleagues to a heart broken from being prohibited by racism from showing what he could do in the big leagues, could now be officially considered The Best Ever To Play The Game." - CNN


What brought that quote on? Major League Baseball is now recognizing Negro League statistics, elevating Gibson's official batting average above Ty Cobb's.


There's a lot to digest from CNN in just one paragraph.

  1. According to CNN, Josh Gibson died of Racism.

  2. According to CNN, Josh Gibson is the best Baseball Player in History.

  3. According to CNN, Black Americans have been waiting for this day for nearly a century.


Now let's rebut some of that.

  1. Now some people HAVE died from racism, like people killed by the Klan. Gibson's stroke was caused by racism? That is a stretch.

  2. When I grew up I learned that Babe Ruth was the greatest player of all time. Not for me, though, I always thought it was Ty Cobb. That guy attacked baseball like a fighter, not a baseball player. Ty Cobb scrapped and clawed for every base he ever took.

  3. Black Americans don't care about baseball.


According to Statista, Black Americans' favorite sports are as followed:

37% Football

29% Basketball

23% None

5% Baseball

4% Soccer


For those bad at math, that's only 1 in 20 Black Americans that consider baseball their National Pastime.


50 year old Fred doesn't care about Ty Cobb, but 10 year old Fred is pissed. That kid loved baseball. Yes, Young Fred knew Ty Cobb fought Blacks, but Cobb mostly fought Whites....and even the handicapped!


According to disabled (White) fan, Claude Lucker. "He struck me with his fists on the forehead and over the left eye and knocked me down," Lucker said. "Then he jumped on me and spiked me in the left leg, and kicked me in the side, after which he booted me behind the left ear. I was down and Cobb was kicking me when someone in the crowd shouted, 'Don't kick him. He has no hands.' Cobb answered, 'I don't care if he has no feet!'"


Ty Cobb was a son-of-a-bitch who even fought many of his own (White) teammates, but I didn't think of him as racist, I continue to think of him as someone who hated everyone. You'd be surprised at how many people I know, today, with that attitude.


Apparently CNN was waiting for my rebuttal article. "Cobb’s partisans, as usual, will tirelessly defend their man’s preeminence. One could imagine Cobb’s ghost being incensed, given his reputation for having a ferocious temper and a bigoted attitude towards Black people, though the more extreme examples of his alleged racism have been challenged by contemporary historians to the extent that one now wonders whether Cobb would have been, in the end, as awed by Gibson’s prodigious gifts as those who saw them displayed."


I was going to go on a long rant defending Ty Cobb, but Cobb has been dead longer than I've been alive. I have nothing new to bring to the table.


I stopped loving baseball when the Cleveland Indians were in 1st place and the 1994 World Series was cancelled. You say I had Indians Fever in 1995? In 1995 I moved to Minnesota and my heart would belong to a hockey team.


I stopped liking baseball when Major League Baseball claimed the scalp of Chief Wahoo in 2021.


Because Guardians Baseball is only on an obscure pay cable channel in Cleveland, I had only watched a handful of local baseball games on television over the last decade. Since 2014, I have watched more Cleveland Gladiators Arena Football than Cleveland Guardians Baseball. In my hometown, it's not easy to watch baseball on TV, it just isn't.



 


In 2024, race shouldn't sell any sport, the sport should sell itself, but people forget, Cleveland had a fairly successful Negro League team, the Cleveland Buckeyes.




The largest population demographic of Cleveland is Black at 48%. The Cleveland Buckeyes should have been a natural choice for Cleveland Baseball's nickname when the team got rid of the Indians.


Yet they weren't.


Renaming the baseball team "The Buckeyes" wouldn't have sold any extra tickets in this era. I have been a Sports Talk addict in Cleveland my entire life and people rarely, if ever, bring up the Negro Leagues. Part of that is because those baseball records were wildly erratic from the 1870's through World War II. "Recent investigations into Negro League statistics, using box scores from newspapers from across the United States, have led to the estimate that, although as many as two-thirds of Negro league team games were played against inferior competition (as traveling exhibition games)."


Why is Major League Baseball so keen on elevating Josh Gibson based on statistics that don't exist? Because they are tired of being associated with Jerk Ty Cobb. They aren't trying to market teams like the Buckeyes to an Urban Center's population base, they are capitulating to political winds of the day.


Ty Cobb's personality shouldn't matter, history is history. But MLB is struggling with explaining their sport based on current left-wing social mores.


Editor's Note: Young Fred wants an addendum.


You think I don't like Negro Leaguers?


Here's the catch, you know who I thought was the best pitcher of all time? Satchel Paige.


Forget Cy Young and all those other pitchers who racked up wins in the Dead Ball Era. You could have drawn an X on a board and Paige would have hit that mark with pinpoint accuracy. And that board would have been broken. Some have speculated that if Paige had joined Major League Baseball when he turned 17, he would have had a thousand wins when he eventually left the St. Louis Browns at the age of 46.


You say that's impractical? 29 years in the bigs, 30 wins a season, Paige would have broken Cy Young's record by 300+ wins.


According to Major League Baseball itself, Satchel Paige was the first to throw a baseball 100 m.p.h. According to Satchel Paige himself, who kept stats on his own performances, he won "roughly" 2,000 games that he started. That included the Negro Leagues, Barnstorming, Major League Baseball, Mexican Leagues, and Cuban Leagues.


Satchel Paige lived and died by the fastball. Though his arsenal of pitches were given clever names like "bee ball, woobly ball, nothin' ball, and the bat dodger" those variations of the fastball carried Paige throughout his career.

In 1931, Paige played at least part of the year with the Cleveland Cubs. According to Case Western University, "The CLEVELAND CUBS were a Negro League baseball team in Cleveland in 1931 and 1932. Even though they were hampered by disarray in the Negro Leagues and the crumbling economy, the Cubs managed the best record for a pre-World War II Cleveland Negro League team at 29 wins and 24 losses in 1931.....The Cleveland Cubs of 1932 opened the season in the Southern League and were different than the 1931 group...Even though Satchel Paige was gone, the 1932 squad boasted future Hall of Fame outfielder Cristobal Torriente, in the twilight of his career. The team failed at the end of the 1932 season and their record was unclear."


Case Western is one of best universities in the country, how is the record of the 1932 Cleveland Cubs "unclear." No one from Case Western walked down the street and checked the archives of the Cleveland Gazette or the Cleveland Press?


Which circles us back to Josh Gibson. Which games gave him his new average? According to 1932's stats, neither Paige nor Gibson played baseball, which is historically wrong.


So CNN is gloating that Gibson is the best ever, based on incomplete and random Negro League Stats? Doesn't anyone else see the problem with those optics?


Why isn't the Cy Young Award being renamed the Satchel Paige Award today? Because Major League Baseball is subtly shifting the sands of their foundations. But they don't want you to see the gaping holes in their processes.


Which games count and which games don't in the early 20th Century? MLB doesn't have to explain their methodology. Whether MLB likes, or dislikes, a player should be irrelevant.


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