Play ball

Trutor-loservilleAtlanta was the first southern city with professional teams in the four major sports of baseball, football, basketball, and hockey. The pursuit, arrival, and response to professional sports in Georgia’s capital city is the focus of Loserville: How Professional Sports Remade Atlanta—and How Atlanta Remade Professional Sports (University of Nebraska Press, 2022), a new book by Boston College alumnus Clayton Trutor. According to the publisher: “The excitement surrounding the arrival of four professional franchises in Atlanta in a six-year period soon gave way to widespread frustration and, eventually, widespread apathy toward its home teams. All four of Atlanta’s franchises struggled in the standings and struggled to draw fans to their games.” Loserville also scrutinizes the origins of the primary model for acquiring professional sports franchises: offers of municipal financing for new stadiums. Other Sunbelt cities like San Diego, Phoenix, and Tampa adopted Atlanta’s approach, with mixed results—both in terms of on-field success and financial stability. Trutor earned a Ph.D. in history from Boston College. He writes about college football and basketball for SB Nation and is an instructor at Norwich University in Vermont.

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