The Rise of the Midwest League and the Decline of the Three-I League by Tim Rask: a short review

This is a review of Tim Rask’s short (12 page) article, which is available online.

Tim’s article examines how minor league baseball’s formerly-thriving Three-I League failed after a long, successful run. He attributes the failure to a number of causes, but identifies the main agent to be C.C. “Dutch” Hoffman, president of the Midwest League. Rask’s research, based largely on Iowa newspaper accounts, shows that Hoffman was able to consistently win territorial skirmishes with the older, faster league; he worked out a better strategy for franchise recruitment, and made better tactical use of baseball’s territorial rules.

A fine piece of research. Most minor leagues failed in the 1950s; we need more people examining why specific leagues succeeded.