Cactus League: Spring Training (Images Of America)
Publish Date: 2012-02-27
Author: Susie Steckner;The Mesa Historical Museum
Arizonas baseball roots run long and deep, but the star of the show is the Cactus League. The states spring training history is filled with social, political, and cultural intrigue, not to mention a roster of baseball greats. Early on, fans watched Joe DiMaggio, Ted Williams, Willie Mays, and the American Leagues first black player, Larry Doby. Beyond the field, baseball became part of the states social fabric, as players and fans alike flocked to watering holes, hotels, parades, and a desert resort famous for its mineral baths. History also saw a political battle to save the Cactus League and fend off Floridas attempts to dominate spring training. Today, the Cactus League is a 15-team powerhouse that holds court in Arizona each spring.