Curt Flood and the landmark Supreme Court case that changed professional sports forever Upon being traded to the Philadelphia Phillies in 1969, Curt Flood, an All-Star center fielder for the St. Louis Cardinals, wanted nothing more than to stay with St. Louis. But his only options were to report to Philadelphia or retire. Instead, Flood sued Major League Baseball for his freedom, hoping to invalidate the reserve clause in his contract, which bound a player to his team for life. Flood took his lawsuit all the way to the Supreme Court, and though he ultimately lost, his decision to sue cost him his career and a chance at the Hall of Fame. But Flood's place in baseball history, like that of Jackie Robinson's, extends far beyond his accomplishments on the ballfield. Just three years later, the era of free agency that all professional athletes enjoy today became a reality. In A Well-Paid Slave, the first extended treatment of Flood and his lawsuit, Brad Snyder examines this long-misunderstood case and its impact on professional sports. He reveals the twisted logic and behind-the-scenes vote switching behind the court's decision and explains Flood's decision to sue in the context of his experiences during the civil rights movement. Astutely and dramatically told, A Well-Paid Slave will appeal broadly to fans of sports history, legal affairs, and American culture.
Every professional athlete who ever took their $200,000 Maybach off the dealership curb at 120mph would do well to spend some time with Curt Flood - familiarizing themselves with the man who single-handedly made their bling, their "ride" and their brain dead self-involvement not only possible but, with a nod to the school of unintended consequences, the mother's milk of SportsCenter, MTV and countless police blotters. Unfortunately, the only thing you might … more
It has been so many years since the events depicted in "A Well Paid Slave" took place that I had largely forgotten a good deal of the story. In fact, I am ashamed to admit that I was unaware or had completely forgotten that Curt Flood passed away more than a decade ago. The story of Curt Flood was one that desperately needed to be told. I certainly needed to be reminded of the tremendous sacrifices that this man made when he gave up literally everything to challenge baseball's sacrosanct … more