Few business enterprises receive the public attention accorded baseball. Newspapers large and small invariably report the details of every game or development in the sport. Radio and television bring the games to thousands of homes. Every player trade is given coast-to-coast coverage; the sore arm or lacerated finger of a star player becomes an object of national concern. These aspects of the game are matters of common knowledge.

In contrast to this is the general lack of familiarity with “baseball law,” i.e., the self-imposed body of rules regulating baseball’s activity. “Baseball law” is composed of (1) the Agreement of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues, adopted in 1901 “to perpetuate baseball as the national game of America and to surround it with such safeguards as will warrant absolute public confidence in its integrity and methods,” (2) the Major League Agreement, (3) the Major-Minor League Agreement, and (4) rules promulgated under these agreements.

Self-discipline and strict adherence to its own rules have limited the vulnerability of organized baseball to the suits of disgruntled players or of outside forces. However, in the past five years this tranquility has been severely challenged as illegal under the Sherman Antitrust Act and the Clayton Act.