The book focuses on the 1883 American Association season. St. Louis finished second that year.Does the book spend a lot of time on the great 1880s American Association Browns? I don't want to waste a lot of time reading about the horrible Browns teams of the early National League, that is a bit depressing. There was the season or two that the Robeson's added their best Spiders to our team when they bought it and changed the name to the Perfectos. The next year we became the Cardinals, based off the colors not the bird, but when the AL formed many of those great players went to other teams and we sucked again for a couple decades. I don't waste a lot of time reading about those depressing years either.
St. Louis never really had much money to be able to compete with the Cubs and Giants in buying up the best players, and that is what led Branch Rickey to convince new owner (at that time in the 1920s) Sam Breadon that they should invest their money by buying up a minor league system of their own - to avoid having to bid against the deep pockets of New York and Chicago. From that period on, the Cardinals have had a competitive team with the big boys, and that is where I spend my time reading and studying our history. I do like to read up on the raucous bunch back in the 1880s AA, too. We had some excellent stars back then: Silver King, Tip O'Neill, Bob Caruthers, Arlie Latham, Curt Welch, Charlie Comiskey, Tony Mullane, Jumbo McGinnis, Fred Lewis and Dave Foutz among them. However, I don't like to spend a lot of time dwelling on those dark and lean years during the 1890s, and from 1901 through to the early 1920s.
I guess that is what it feels like to be a Cubs fan! No hope, one miserable summer after another. That is terrible, I shouldn't have said that. But, my Cubs-fan cousin did like to ride me about that 17-run Cubbie win over the Birds the other day, so. . .