The old Faustian legend about the man who sells his soul to the Devil in order to regain youth and good looks received a clever updating in this whimsical musical, which took the tale and squarely set it against the background of America's favorite pastime, baseball. As reconceived by Douglas Wallop and George Abbott, Damn Yankees, based on Mr. Wallop's novel "The Year the Yankees Lost the Pennant," transplanted Faust into middle-America and gave him the name Joe Boyd. After he makes a pact with the Devil, a businessman more prosaically named Mr. Applegate, Boyd becomes "Shoeless" Joe Hardy, a hard-hitter, who takes the Washington Senators, his favorite team (and perpetual losers), all the way to the finals of the American League game, where they face those "damn Yankees." But this being a musical, set in America, there is a happy ending to the story: in spite of Mr. Applegate, and his assistant, the sultry Lola, Joe Hardy invokes the "escape clause" he and the Devil had agreed on initially, and at the last minute, just before curtain time, returns to his loving wife as Joe Boyd, serene in the knowledge that it was he who helped the Senators win the Pennant.
1994 Broadway revival
Damn Yankees the Musical Songs with Lyrics