Bits and pieces

July 10, 2012

* John Rocker‘s memoir is not exactly new but it’s still getting some buzz. Whether or not it’s good is besides the point. I think a lot of people want to know if he’s as big a train wreck as he came off in that Sports Illustrated piece in 1999.

* Dennis Anderson sent me this back in April, but it fell through the cracks. Nevertheless, here’s a piece about Jim Carrothers, a professor at Kansas University who incorporates baseball in his curriculum. This is where I hope my forthcoming book comes in handy for profs who want a handy volume of baseball titles for their individual disciplines.

* Sports Illustrated published this itemabout Andy Starsburg’s Baseball Fantography: A Celebration in Snapshots and Stories from the Fans (the Bookshelf beat them to the punch months ago). I hope SI will do something similar for my forthcoming book.

At this point it is incumbent upon me to offer an apology of sorts. One of the things I’m learning as a author is that if your name isn’t Stephen King or John Grisham (I keep telling my wife that her visions of King-like sales figures are probably misguided), you have to do whatever you can to spread the word and not rely solely on the publisher to take care of everything, especially in these difficult times for the industry. My personality is such that I will most likely not be as obnoxious as the media figure at a recent multi-day event who seemingly could not utter a sentence without mentioning the project they had just completed (“There’s a part in my …”; “As I say in …”, etc.) . It won’t be easy.

* Tim Wendell, author of Summer of ’68, wrote this commentary piece about the need for All-Stars to :begin bonding with their communities again.”

* This is a combination review/author profile on Bill Brown, a broadcaster for the Houston Astros, and his new book My Baseball Journey—a Sportscaster’s Story.

* The North Carolina-based  Salisbury Post published this piece by a representative of the Rowan Public Library about some suggested baseball reading. I’m sure many of the titles would be available at any well-stocked library in your area as well.

* Whenever a major event — the All-Star Game, Hall of Fame inductions, World Series, etc.  — highlights the great players in the national pastime, we are often reminded — appropriately so — of the non-stars who were also a part of the proceedings, and how many were unfairly treated by management. Ergo this piece about Doug Gladstone and his book A Bitter Cup of Coffee: How MLB & The Players Association Threw 874 Retirees A Curve.

* Last week I wrote a piece about authors who were donating part of their summer sales to charities. Here’s a profile on James Bailey (The Greatest Show on Dirt) from the Penfield Post in Canandaigua, NY.

* Last month, The New York Times‘ “Big City Book Club” considered Mark Harris’ Bang the Drum Slowly. Sorry I missed that; guess I should read more than just the sports pages. Anyway, you can still get the gist of the discussion here.

* Here’s a profile on Josh Pahigian, who, with Kevin O’Connell, recently released an updated edition of The Ultimate Baseball Road Trip. Here’s a look back at my interview with him four years ago.

* This praise for the June issue of The Sporting News — devoted to the history of baseball through the publication’s pages — seems great, but where can one get a copy these days?


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