“Say it ain’t so Joe” has become part of the American lexicon. Joe Jackson was a member of the 1919 Chicago White Sox that were charged with throwing the World Series. Legend has it that as Jackson was leaving the courthouse during the trial, a young boy begged of him, “Say it ain’t so, Joe,” and that Jackson did not respond. Myth or fact, it is a quote that lives on.

On this day, September 18th, in 1919, eight Chicago White Sox teammates agreed to throw the 1919 World Series.  The event is known as the Black Sox Scandal and was a scheme devised by players Arnold Gandil, Eddic Cicotte, Claude Williams, Oscar Felsch, Charles Risberg, Joe Jackson, Fred McMullin and Buck Weaver.  Professional gambler Joseph Sullivan and New York gangster Arnold Rothstein were also involved in the fix.  The players were promised $100,000 to fix the series and the Cincinnati Reds won the best of nine series 5 games to 3.

For their involvement in the fix, all eight players were banned from organized baseball for life.  Fred McMullin, Buck Weaver and possibly Joe Jackson may not have been directly involved in the fix, but were reprimanded for having information about the event and failing to report it.

Lucky for us we get all kinds of donations from this wonderful community. Last week someone donated the film Eight Men Out that chronicles the story of the 1919 Chicago White Sox. It is based on the book by Eliot Asinof. You should definitely check this out. There is also a book, Shoeless Joe, written by W.P. Kinsella. Now is definitely the right time of year to watch or read a story about baseball It is almost time for “The Fall Classic” AKA The World Series.

Posted by Estel [who is going to the Giants game on Sunday]