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Team ChemistryThe History of Drugs and Alcohol in Major League Baseball$
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Nathan Michael Corzine

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780252039799

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252039799.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use.date: 17 May 2021

Pitching around the Problem

Pitching around the Problem

(p.79) 4 Pitching around the Problem
Team Chemistry

Nathan Michael Corzine

University of Illinois Press

This chapter examines how the perceived problem of drug use in Major League Baseball (MLB) was addressed by Commissioner Bowie Kuhn. Ball Four, an account of Jim Bouton's 1969 campaign with the expansion Seattle Pilots, featured what was then startling insight into baseball's sophomoric, often crude, seemingly contradictory culture of boyish immaturity masked by excessive masculine posturing. Drugs featured prominently in Bouton's story. Kuhn was the antithesis of Bouton: he was staid and conservative, in contrast to Bouton who was liberal and irreverent. Bouton challenged the myths of MLB. Kuhn believed that the game, much less its sacrosanct myths, was and should remain changeless. This chapter first considers the congressional hearings that were conducted in the early 1970s to investigate the improper use and abuse of drugs by athletes before discussing how Kuhn confronted the drug abuse crisis within the league, including the cocaine crisis.

Keywords:   drug use, Major League Baseball, Bowie Kuhn, Ball Four, Jim Bouton, congressional hearings, drug abuse, cocaine

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