How World War II Spurred a Decade of Women’s Pro Baseball

When the United States entered World War II, Franklin D. Roosevelt made it clear that he believed Major League Baseball should continue. But as thousands of minor league players and more than 500 major league players, including Joe DiMaggio, left their teams to serve in the military, Chicago Cubs owner Philip K. Wrigley expressed concern over the future of the game. To ensure that baseball (and the income it made from it) would continue, the gum mogul founded what became the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League in 1943.

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