Baseball's Great Experiment

byJules Tygiel. Oxford, $16.95. The acceptance of blacks as players in majorleague baseball was belated and accompanied by a disgusting amount of obstruction and complaint. Once begun, however, the process of integration was quite rapid and ultimately successful, largely through the backstage canniness of Branch Rickey, then president of the Brooklyn Dodgers, and the character of Jackie Robinson, who, as the first black player to take the field, endured limelight, inconvenience, abuse, and threats—and still played superb ball. Mr. Tygiel has an interesting story to tell, and does it with awesome thoroughness. No fly ball or cracked bat goes unreported.