Bits and pieces, Feb. 7

February 7, 2014

bbicon“Roy Berger, a baseball aficionado since his childhood days growing up in New York, has written a humorous and popular first person look at the world of fantasy baseball camps, The Most Wonderful Week of the Year.” Now I realize this piece comes from a marketing company, but I’m still looking forward to reading it to see how his experience compares with mine from my trip to Yankees FC in 2009. More information about Berger’s book can be found here.

bbiconNovelist Wiley Cash has just released This Dark Road to Mercy, “a painful look at one case involving the life of a promising [baseball] athlete who tried an alternate route that did not work out well.”

bbiconAlso on the fiction front, Caryn Rose, the writer and editor of, has published her second novel, A Whole New Ball Game, “the story of a 20-something woman who finds comfort and solace in baseball as her carefully ordered world starts to unravel.”

bbiconThe New York Times‘ Charles Isherwood wrote this review of Bronx Bombers, a play about, well, you know.

From the review:

Yankee lovers may not find this sudden lurch into fantasy particularly worrisome. They will enjoy watching these fabled greats impersonated by a skilled cast of actors, with Mr. Dawes’s showboating Mantle, teasing his teammate DiMaggio for his sleek suit and terse style, and Mr. Wilson’s Ruth, full of barroom boisterousness, hogging much of the spotlight. But the play doesn’t negotiate the move from the real world to the dream world very smoothly. (A sentimental coda to the play returns us to reality, in time for the farewell game at the old Yankee Stadium.)…

Fans of rival teams like the Red Sox or the Mets (I confess!) infiltrating the audience might take a more jaundiced view of the players’ nonchalance. It figures, they might sourly observe, that a Yankee would expect to exist on some heightened plane, one that confers instant immortality.

Sorry, but Peter Scolari as Yogi Berra? Nope, not buyin’ it. In the video below he kind of looks like he’s trying to mimic a monkey.

Another review from NBCNewYork. The NY Daily News critic gave it three out of five stars, while the NY Post‘s headline reads “‘Bronx Bombers’ play fails to hit it out of the park.” Variety‘s review thinks it might be a “challenge to market on Broadway.” Of course, believes everything about the game is good.

Much more here, at the play’s official website.

(I hear the audience laughing at things that should not be funny here.)

bbiconHere’s an unusual item: The Best Season: The First Ninety Games — Honoring Black Ball Through Baseball game Simulation, by Bob May, a gentleman from Rockwell, Texas.

From the article: “here are many historical books published about the Negro League and its players and their play against the Major League. But these are based on post season barn storming teams and their exploits are anecdotal. The difference in Bob’s book is the in-season battles for first place, a look at how they would have fared against each other based on their individual statistics.”

bbiconIf you’re in Chicago in a couple of weeks, John Rosengren, author of Hank Greenberg: The Hero of Heroes, will discuss the life of one of the most exciting figures in baseball history and America’s first Jewish sports star, as part of St. Xavier University’s 2014 John T. Farrell Sr. Forum.

“Speaking of Greenberg” is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 18, in the Butler Reception Room, located in the Warde Academic Center, 3700 W. 103rd St. The event is free and open to the public.

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