NOTE: I have been posting these things long enough now that a few have commented that the introductory section isn’t necessary anymore. But I’m leaving it in because, to paraphrase Joe DiMaggio when asked why he played so hard all the time, there may be people who’ve never read the best-seller entries before. So on with the show…
Caveat 1: Print editions only (at least for now); because I’m old school.
Caveat 2: Since the rankings are updated every hour, these lists might not longer be 100 percent accurate by the time you read them. But it’ll be close enough for government work.
Caveat 3: Sometimes they’ll try to pull one over on you and include a book within a category that doesn’t belong. I’m using my discretion to eliminate such titles from my list. For example, for some reason a recent listing included Tarnished Heels: How Unethical Actions and Deliberate Deceit at the University of North Carolina Ended the “The Carolina Way,” which, far as I can tell, is not at all about baseball, at least not in the main.
- The Arm: Inside the Billion-Dollar Mystery of the Most Valuable Commodity in Sports, by Jeff Passan
- The Only Rule Is It Has to Work: Our Wild Experiment Building a New Kind of Baseball Team, by Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller. (A review from The Hardball Times. Lindbergh was also the featured speaker at a recent author event at the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse. You can hear him on the store’s podcast here:
- I’m Fascinated by Sacrifice Flies: Inside the Game We All Love, by Tim Kurkjian (Here’s my review on Bookreporter.com and the “Bookshelf Conversation” with the author.)
- The Big Hurt’s Guide to BBQ and Grilling: Recipes from My Backyard to Yours, by Frank Thomas *
- Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game, by Michael Lewis
- Game 7, 1986: Failure and Triumph in the Biggest Game of My Life, by Ron Darling with Daniel Paisner
- The Matheny Manifesto: A Young Manager’s Old-School Views on Success in Sports and Life, by Matheny with Jerry Jenkins
- Ty Cobb: A Terrible Beauty, by Charles Leerhsen (paperback edition)
- The Greatest Baseball Stories Ever Told: Thirty Unforgettable Tales from the Diamond, by Jeff Silverman
- Jim Palmer: Nine Innings to Success: A Hall of Famer’s Approach to Achieving Excellence, by Jim Palmer with Alan Maimon. Palmer was also at Bergino, so you can here that program here:
* Indicates debut on the BBS list. Baseball and BBQ: a perfect pair.
NY Times: Three baseball titles are included in the most recent Times‘ sports list: The Only Rule and Sacrifice Flies make the top 10 (four and six, respectively) with Bret Boone’s Home Games at #15. That one surprises me, all due respect to Mr. Boone and co-author Kevin Cook. While I find the story of the three generations of Boone players mildly interesting, it seems like a lightweight compared with something like Leahy’s Last Innocents. One man’s opinion.
Not on either the Amazon or Times‘ lists? 501 Baseball Books Fans Must Read before They Die. Today: 722,348; last week: 384,321. Remember Dad on his special day!
If you have read 501, thanks, hope you enjoyed it, and please consider writing a review for the Amazon page; it’s never too late. There haven’t been any in awhile. Doesn’t have to be long (or even complimentary, if you didn’t like it), but anything would be appreciated. And thanks to those who have.