Over their first four decades in the American League, the Cleveland Indians were known more for great players than consistently great play. Its rosters filled with all-time greats like Cy Young, Nap Lajoie, Elmer Flick, Tris Speaker, and the ill-fated Addie Joss and Ray Chapman, Cleveland often found itself in the thick of the race but, with 1920 the lone exception, seemed always to finish a game or two back in the final standings.
In the 10 years that followed the end of World War II, however, the franchise turned the corner. Led by owner (and world-class showman) Bill Veeck, the boy-manager Lou Boudreau, ace Bob Feller, and the barrier-busting Larry Doby, Cleveland charged up the standings, finishing in the first division every season but one and winning it all in 1948.
This meticulously researched history covers the Indians' first six decades, from their minor league origins at the end of the 19th century to the dismantling of the 1954 World Series club.
Of Tribes and Tribulations
McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
The Early Decades of the Cleveland Indians