Wisconsin Historical Society Press
Milwaukee Braves: Heroes and Heartbreak
By William Povletich
240 pages, 220 b/w photos and illus., 8 x 9"Buy
During their 13 years in Wisconsin, the Milwaukee Braves never endured a losing season, won two National League pennants, and in 1957 brought Milwaukee its only World Series championship. With a lineup featuring future Hall of Famers Henry Aaron, Warren Spahn, Eddie Matthews, Red Schoendienst, and Phil Niekro, the team immediately brought Milwaukee "Big League" credentials, won the hearts of fans, and shattered attendance records. The Braves' success in Milwaukee prompted baseball to redefine itself as a big business - resulting in franchises relocating west, multi-league expansion, and teams leveraging cities for civically funded stadiums. But the Braves' instant success and accolades made their rapid fall from grace after winning the 1957 world championship all the more stunning, as declining attendance led the team to Atlanta in one of the ugliest divorces between a city and baseball franchise in sports history.
Based on the author's extensive research and interviews with former players and team staff, "Milwaukee Braves: Heroes and Heartbreak" chronicles the team's phenomenal successes, devastating letdowns, and legendary moments. Featuring more than 100 captivating photos, many published here for the first time, "Milwaukee Braves" preserves the Braves' legacy for the team's many fans and introduces new generations to a fascinating chapter in sports history.
Fans of of "Milwaukee Braves: Heroes and Heartbreak" will also enjoy the 60-minute Milwaukee Public Television documentary produced by William Povletich, "A Braves New World."
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2009 ForeWord Reviews' Book of the Year Award
Bronze in the Sports Category
2009 Midwest Independent Publishers Association Midwest Book Awards
Winner in the Recreation/Travel/Sports Category
Finalist in the Interior Layout Category
Finalist in the Three-Color Cover Category
2010 Chicago Book Clinic and Media Show
Winner in the General Trade/Non-Fiction/1 Color and 2 Color Internals Category
2010 National Indie Excellence Awards
Winner in the Sports Category
2010 Next Generation Indie Book Awards
Winner in the Regional Nonfiction Category
Finalist in the Cover Design Nonfiction Category
2010 USA National Best Book Awards
Finalist in the Sports: General Category
Mitch Teich of Milwaukee Public Radio's "Lake Effect" program interviewed author Bill Povletich. This program originally aired on Thursday, June 4, 2009.
"William Povletich treats us to a joyous journey through time. This is a rich treasury of photos and stories that will surely please any Milwaukee Braves fan." —Tom Stanton, author of "Hank Aaron and the Home Run That Changed America"
"Povletich masterfully recounts one of the most important periods in baseball history. By exploring both the 'what' and the 'why' of baseball's westward expansion, this is truly a must-read for educated baseball fans and historians alike. I came away from 'Milwaukee Braves' with not only an understanding of what made Milwaukee a sports mecca in the 1950s, but also a deep appreciation of how the business of baseball affects everything about the game today." —Doug Russell, SportsRadio host, 1250AM WSSP, Milwaukee
"William Povletich's unprecedented offering details a unique love affair between a region and a team. Beyond the heroes, and the magical moments that occurred on the field, the book also captures the behind-the-scenes events that catapulted baseball into big business." —Rick Schabowski, president of the Ken Keltner Badger State Chapter of SABR (Society of American Baseball Research)
"Chronicles a return to the Milwaukee and Wisconsin that time has all but forgot. It was a time when County Stadium was the place to be, a time when many of the ballplayers stayed year-round and worked in public relations for Miller or Blatz during the off-season, a time when players never had to pay for a meal and always got a free car to drive. It was all Braves, all the time. The Milwaukee Braves are long gone. So are high-kicking pitchers like Warren Spahn, double headers, streetcars to the stadium. But the Milwaukee Braves are a reminder of what we were. ... Fortunately for avid baseball fans, this book brings the Milwaukee Braves back to life." —Bud Lea, former sports editor, "Milwaukee Sentinel"
"Thanks to William Povletich, the Milwaukee Braves are no longer before my time, no longer just the team before the Brewers or merely a line in the Baseball Encyclopedia attached to the year 1957 as World Series winner. ... This book is a timeless reminder of those 13 great years the Braves spent in Milwaukee." —John Anderson, ESPN SportsCenter