The 1919 World Series will always be associated with the gambling scandal that finally forced major league baseball to come to grips with the issue. Details of the Black Sox Scandal need not be repeated here. The draconian official response by newly named baseball commissioner Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis to the 1919 World Series fix and other gambling incidents was, in part, due to the lip service paid to the issue during previous years. Baseball's zero tolerance policy toward gambling, unique in professional sports, was a result of the ineffectiveness of antigambling rhetoric and unofficial tolerance of betting on games during the first two decades of the twentieth century. Judge Landis's harsh policy saved the integrity of baseball and the future of the sport.
Viewed in a modern context, the investigation of the attempted bribe of umpires in 1908 to fix the Cubs-Giants play-off game was a farce. It was a successful cover-up. The 1908 bribery scandal and the investigation sent a clear message that preserving the status quo was more important than getting to the truth or confronting the gambling issue.
The 1908 season was a success both on and off the field. Baseball officialdom had been campaigning for years to boost the sport as the national pastime, and the 1908 results showed that the effort was work