It is America's pastime, and in the framework of its system of rules, leadership, and dreams broken and realized every time 18 sets of cleats take the field, baseball is a reflection of the world around it. This was absolutely true in the 1970s, when baseball transformed from a gentleman's sport into a wild pageantry of players with moustaches, big hair, and crazy off-field antics.
Epstein talks about those players and how baseball was forever changed in the '70s, when players for the first time embraced the notions of free agency, free love and drug use. The World Series came into its own during this decade, and baseball became a big deal.
This is a fun romp through baseball and what was happening in the world back in the 1970s. Black power, the sexual revolution, President Nixon, urban decay and the mainstreaming of the drug culture are all discussed here. It is a witty and absorbing look at a time long gone but brought back to life in these pages.