SYS: Baseball and American Society

Written Assignments Guide

Describe each internet source or Rader section in a paragraph (5 sentences maximum).
Note any weaknesses you find in it.
Answer the question given for each source. A couple of paragraphs will do.

Assignment #1. due February 7. Do any 4 of the following:

Origins of Baseball: What does this show about the problems researching early baseball?

Massachusetts Game: Could this version have caught on?

1864 Rules: Could this version have caught on?

New England Baseball Handout: What do the park locations tell you about the city?

Boston Baseball Dynasties: What made these teams successful? Do these apply today?

Rader: Who does Rader think was most important in establishing baseball? Do you agree with him?

Rader: Why were white baseball players opposed to black players?

Assignment #2. due March 6. Do any 4 of the following:

Boston Pilgrims: What does this show about the problems researching early baseball?

Fenway Park: What makes it a classic ballpark?

Broadcasting: Can a re-created game capture the essence of one?

Negro Leagues: Evaluate their success.

Rader: How and when did baseball come of age?

Rader: List Rader's explanations for the hitting explosion in the 1920s. Which reason do you see as the most important? Why?

Rader: According to Rader, are baseball dynasties good or bad for baseball? Do you agree?

Assignment #3. due April 3. Answer any 4.

Markets: Why is baseball in the largest markets of any sport? Does it matter?

Moneyball: Why would this book get a lot of criticism?

James Primer: Argue with any two of his theories.

Sabermetric Manifesto: Define and describe sabermetrics. Does it work?

Casey at the Bat: Can you come up with a better ending? Should you?

Updike Essay: What does this tell you about Ted Williams?

The Interregnum: Is being a Red Sox fan a good or a bad thing?

General Directions

Proofread. I will penalize spelling, formatting, or grammatical errors. Each question must be done in your own words. Changing one or two words in a sentence is not enough to make your writing original work. Do not quote directly from the sources unless unavoidable. You can find a style guide online here.

Ask for help. I will look over your rough drafts if you want. You only get one shot at each paper so do them right.

Type your papers. Do not use a plastic cover or title page. Staple each paper.

The due date for the assignment is the last day to turn them in without penalty, not the first day or the only day. The late penalty is 20 points per class session, regardless of reason.

Do not wait until the last minute to do these. If you cannot be in class, leave it in my mailbox in Tillinghast 233 by 11am on the due date. It is late after that. Do not leave them in my office or in someone else's mailbox. My mailbox is the one with my name on it. Do not email or fax papers to me.