David Vaught publishes scholarly biography of Hall of Fame Baseball Pitcher
David Vaught has published his fourth research monograph, Spitter: Baseball’s Notorious Gaylord Perry (Texas A&M University Press). Check out the blurbs on the Press website! Written for both scholarly and general audiences, Spitter is the first full-length biography of Hall of Fame pitcher Gaylord Perry—the notorious spitballer. It examines his rich and revealing life experience from his innovative ascent from rural poverty to baseball stardom to his subsequent descent to failure on the farm in the agricultural crisis of the 1980s. The book explores, among many themes, the last generation to come of age in the segregated South, the last generation of sharecroppers, race relations in baseball after Jackie Robinson, the ethics of cheating in the sport, and, more broadly, links between southern rural culture and American popular culture in the second half of the twentieth century. The book stems from his 2011 article in the Journal of Southern History.