Press Releases for Howard W. Rosenberg Books
"Cap Anson 2" Released
April 17, 2004

Debut of Definitive Book on Baseball and Theatrical Profession up to 1900: Cap Anson 2: The Theatrical and Kingly Mike Kelly: U.S. Team Sport's First Media Sensation and Baseball's Original Casey at the Bat

Tile Books announces the U.S. and Canadian availability of the hardcover Cap Anson 2: The Theatrical and Kingly Mike Kelly: U.S. Team Sport's First Media Sensation and Baseball's Original Casey at the Bat. Kelly was one of the most colorful athletes in U.S. team sport – and few people know much about him. More familiar may be the notion that baseball and the theater might have something in common. This, his definitive biography, shows how close those ties were in baseball's first professional decades. Kelly is a perfect fit because he performed on stage and had an amusing way of carrying himself on and off the field.

Also detailed are baseball-related activities of actors and musicians most closely identified with the sport up to 1900. Names that may be more recognizable than others include De Wolf Hopper, the original stage performer of "Casey at the Bat;" John Philip Sousa; and Maurice Barrymore, great-grandfather of modern-day actress Drew Barrymore.

Written by the definitive biographer of Cap Anson, Cap Anson 2 also presents the stage career of Anson and other on- and off-the-field activities of his that can be related to Kelly's. Anson was the lone player up to 1900 to attain to 3,000 hits.

In January 2004, on the heels of a new Pete Rose book, My Prison Without Bars, Cap Anson 2 received prominent mention in national news media because it presents a close look at betting on regular-season baseball up to 1900 by players, managers and owners. Unlike the era in which Rose played, betting on one's team was then okay so long as you always bet on your team to win.

The imagery of a slugger at the bat in "Casey at the Bat" by the poem's author, Ernest L. Thayer, may have been based on his reporting on Kelly in December 1887, when he covered baseball for the San Francisco Examiner. Beyond his resemblance to "Casey," some cities should find Kelly of special interest. They include: Boston (where he had his greatest fame and still has a large population with Irish roots); Chicago (where he played more seasons than anywhere and where Anson played); New York (for ties between baseball and the theater, and Kelly's last big league season); San Francisco and Stockton, Calif., and Worcester, Mass. (for origins of "Casey at the Bat"); Allentown, Pa. (the final year of Kelly's life); Troy, N.Y., Paterson, N.J., Hyde Park, N.Y., and South Hingham, Mass. (where he lived); and Cincinnati (where he played three seasons).

Howard W. Rosenberg, a native of Roslyn, N.Y., is writing a series of topical and biographical books on nineteenth-century baseball, with Cap Anson the organizing feature. He is a 1987 graduate of Cornell University, and has worked in Washington, D.C., as a wire service reporter for Jewish newspapers and as editor of policy reports at a Native American think tank. He lives in Arlington, Va.

Book specifications:
Hardcover ISBN 0-9725574-1-5 $29.00
x (10 introductory pages), 436 regularly numbered pages
7 x 10 inches
Publication Date: April 2004
115 drawings, index, full endnotes, one appendix
Section and Chapter Titles:
Reverse Discriminators: The Modern Sports Media
Casey and Kelly
"The Only" and "King"
Humble Beginnings
Anson and Kelly: Playing, Hunting and Trap Shooting
Anson and Kelly: Acting
De Wolf Hopper, Digby Bell and Other Actor Fans
Backing up Big Injun Anson (1884-86)
$10,000 Beauty
Boston, the Athens of America (1887)
An Alleged Account of his Life (1888)
Kelly’s Bar and the 1888-89 World Tour
Imitating the Mushy-Mouthed Actors (1889)
Cottage Kelly (1890)
Only Two of Us Left, Me and Edwin Booth (1891)
Give Boston Writers the Laugh and Quit the Town (1892)
With Billy Jerome and Johnny Ward (1893)
With Mark Murphy and Albert L. Johnson (1894)
Moments with Anson
Drinking and Other Habits
Appendix: Betting on Baseball
Kelly's Statistics
Kelly and Conant

Author's contact information:
Howard W. Rosenberg
1111 Arlington Boulevard
Number 235 West
Arlington, Virginia 22209
(703) 841-9523 (telephone) (e-mail)