Flood, Curt

Flood, (Curtis Charles) Curt

(1938–  ) baseball player; born in Houston, Texas. An outfielder for 15 years (1956–71), mostly with the St. Louis Cardinals, in 1969 he unsuccessfully brought legal action against baseball's reserve clause, which binds a player to a team through a self-renewing contract. Although the Supreme Court upheld the lower courts' rulings favoring organized baseball, Flood's suit eventually led to the establishment of free agency for all players in 1976. Frustrated by the publicity his suit created, Flood retired from baseball in 1971 and went to Majorca, an island off Spain, and ran a bar. He returned to California in 1976 and worked for several years as a sportscaster but never truly profited or recovered from his revolutionary action.