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History of Free Agency: I need help with my thesis.
Posted: 29 June 2010 10:35 PM   [ Ignore ]

So I’m a 4th year University student trying to finish up my Economics degree, but before I can do that, I need to write an Honours Thesis and since baseball is just about the only practical application of my education that I’m actually interested in, I figure I might as well write a long Essay about it. I’m thinking of writing about the history of free agency in baseball, and how it has affected the economic landscape of the game over the years, etc…

So what I need from you guys are some good resources to get information on the history of free agency, the reserve clause, player salaries, Curt Flood’s whole deal, etc…

So does anyone know of any good books/websites/journals where I can start collecting references and data on the subject? Or perhaps even somewhere where I can find team payroll histories and any other micro- or macro- related data on the game.  I would be grateful for any help you guys can give me.

Posted: 30 June 2010 01:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]

Here’s a good starting point.  Take a look at the links and recommended reading for some good references.

Among the links there, these two will probably be of the most interest:
1) The USA Today salary database (dating back to 1988)
2) The Biz of Baseball site, particularly the Trade, Arb, Salary info and Resources section (including CBAs and summaries).

Posted: 30 June 2010 02:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]

Read The Lords of the Realm.  It’s a thorough history of baseball’s labor struggles, although the edition I own ends with the 1994 strike.

Posted: 10 July 2010 04:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]

Read the court cases, especially the original 1922 Federal League case and the last Supreme Court pronouncement in the Flood Case.  There are also lower court cases and state cases, which as I remember are discussed in Flood.  Read Seymour’s work as to this issue for some historical perspective—check his sources.