Our book of the week begins with a special introduction by Alan Dershowitz himself:
I played a small, behind-the-scenes, role in the Curt Flood case, which led to the demise of baseball’s “reserve clause” system that denied players the right to negotiate with other teams as “free agents.” Flood hired former Justice Arthur Goldberg to argue his case, and I had been one of Justice Goldberg’s law clerks. Goldberg considered his Supreme Court clerks as “clerks for life”— a legal variation on the “reserve clause”— and so he asked me to consult with him on the case, knowing that I was a baseball maven and fanatical fan. Just a few years earlier I had watched Flood lead the Cardinals to a dramatic 7 game victory over my beloved Red Sox in the 1967 World Series. We lost the initial battle but won the war, as this book aptly demonstrates.
Goldberg was attracted to the Flood case less by the legal issues as by the moral and emotional ones. “This is a case of modern day slavery” he told me. When I reminded the former justice that Flood was a fairly high priced slave, earning close to $100,000 per year, and that he had the option of being “emancipated” by simply retiring, as Jackie Robinson had done when the Dodgers tried to trade him to the Giants, Goldberg replied, “Nevertheless, he’s ‘owned’ by the Cardinals, who—without his consent had traded him ‘like a common slave’ to the Phillies.” Nor was Flood, like Robinson, at the end of his career. Flood was 31, in the prime of his ability. He was Black, the owners where white and this was at the height of the civil rights movement…
You can read the rest of the exciting introduction by purchasing this beautiful edition on our website. Don’t hesitate to add this book to your personal collection today!