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National Public Radio interviewed Professor Paul Finkelman, an expert on legal issues surrounding baseball, on U.S. Circuit Judge Sonia Sotomayor's role in resolving a seven-month Major League Baseball strike in 1994, when she made national headlines as "the woman who saved baseball."
President Obama has nominated the Judge for the U.S. Supreme Court.
"It was terrible," said Finkelman, Albany Law's President William McKinley Distinguished Professor of Law and Public Policy. "It almost destroyed baseball. If you are a baseball fan, a summer without baseball is a year without a summer."
Judge Sotomayor, who was relatively new to the U.S. District Court in New York after representing corporations in the private sector, sided with the players when ruling on the case, thereby forcing the players and team owners to resume negotiations and accelerating the return of baseball.
"I think actually this case is very important for understanding her judicial philosophy," Professor Finkelman concluded in the NPR interview.
Professor Finkelman, who has authored more than 100 scholarly articles and more than 20 books, was also a key witness in the suit over who owned Barry Bonds' 73rd home run ball. He is also a widely quoted scholar in the fields of the law of slavery and constitutional law.