From the category archives:

trivia

Twice this week, the national pastime was part of the unofficial national quiz show. On Wednesday, the topic was teams that had never won the World Series (although perhaps it was teams that had never been in the Series; I should have kept track). One of the answers was wrong at the time of airing, […]

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I tuned into the Yankee game on Friday just as Alex Rodriguez was coming to bat, looking for his 3,000th hit. Timing is everything: ARod launched a home run for the milestone. It was the third time a player hit a home run for the magic number, including former teammate Derek Jeter. The difference is […]

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Just finished thumbing through A History of Baseball in 100 Objects, the latest baseball release by Josh Leventhal, author of several other well-produced baseball titles. The objects included herein represent the game since before its “formal” recognized inception in the mid 1800s (and please don’t write about the exact DOB of the game). But the […]

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Enough is enough?

February 17, 2015 · 0 comments

So now the NY Yankees are getting set to retire another number: Andy Pettitte’s 46. This has led to a couple of speculative ponderings. One, should they reward an admitted PED user? And, when is this retirement stuff going to stop?  

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* Josh Wilker’s forthcoming book, Benchwarmer: An Anxious Dad’s Almanac of Fatherhood and Other Failures gets a thumbs up from Kirkus. Upshot: “This almanac of fatherhood (and other failures) is honest, relatable and humorous—an indispensable read for fathers (and sons) whose joy in life comes not from winning the big game but being alive to […]

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Boy, these things really do come in threes, don’t they? Charlie Williams is the answer to a trivia question: Who was traded for Willie Mays? The 67-year-old pitcher died on Tuesday. No obituary, so far, from the NY papers, but I think (hope) it’s only a matter of time. Williams was actually born in Flushing […]

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The “personal edition.” I had two reviews appear last week: The Closer, by Mariano Rivera with Wayne Coffey on Bookreporter.com The Cubs Quotient: How the Chicago Cubs Changed the World, by Scott Rowan in ForeWord Magazine.

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The Passover holidays have played havoc with my schedule, so there’s a lot to catch up on. First off, can you remember those Bicentennial Minutes that CBS used to broadcast in the months leading up to the big celebration? Well, Dan Epstein, author of the new Stars and Strikes: Baseball and America in the Bicentennial […]

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Over the years, I’ve expressed disappointment in the changing times, when magazines about the fantasy baseball outnumber those about the “regular” game. Fantasy Sports is a multi-billion dollar business. With so much at stake, there have to be rules and governing bodies, otherwise there’s chaos. From time to time, I try to get with the […]

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This it the time of year when the baseball media offer their considered opinions on their favorite prospects. Sometimes they’re spot on, other times, not so much. So I thought, why not apply this to the upcoming “rookie crop” of baseball books? That is, titles that are making their debuts in 2014 — no reprints/reissues […]

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The beverage, not the drug. Honestly, get your mind out of the gutter. From Mark Aubrey, my “proofreader,” comes this item on eBay: “1967 Coke Cap RARE PASSOVER variation Willie Stargell Pittsburgh Pirates HOFer” Asking price: $75. When I was a kid growing up in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn, there was a kosher […]

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Sometimes I wish publishers would be a little more detail-oriented when sending review copies. Most recently I have received three copies of Ben Bradlee Jr.’s The Kid: The Immortal Life of Ted Williams, and two of Steve Rushin’s The 34-Ton Bat. So in an effort to share the wealth (and not clutter up the house […]

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Steve Rushin was a guest on Milwaukee’s WUWM to discuss his new book,  The 34-Ton Bat: The Story of Baseball as Told Through Bobble Heads, Cracker Jacks, Jock Straps, Eye Black, and 375 Other Strange and Unforgettable Objects. You can read about and listen to his appearance here. Missed this one from Nov. 29: On […]

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Can I get a ruling?

November 20, 2013 · 2 comments

Don’t know if it’s the recent attention paid to poor umpiring or the call for expanded use of video replays, but several books published over the past year or so take up the topic of rules interpretation. These books point out that the official rule book is kind of dry; the “fun” part comes in […]

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Brought to you by the folks at Mental Floss, the magazine that gave me my first national exposure and cover story (right). Have these World Series matchups ever happened? (Not to brag but I aced it.) The Baseball Card Brand Quiz (a lot tougher; ugh, I only scored 64%, which was slightly higher than the […]

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Review: The 34-Ton Bat

October 21, 2013 · 0 comments

The Killeen (TX) Daily Herald posted this review of Steve Rushin’s new title, The 34-Ton Bat: The Story of Baseball as Told Through Bobbleheads, Cracker Jacks, Jockstraps, Eye Black, and 375 Other Strange and Unforgettable Objects. (Is it just me or are these subtitles getting longer and longer?) I’ve started reading this one and am […]

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Missed it by that much

October 15, 2013 · 1 comment

Took a perfect game into the ninth inning, but lost it with one out. Retired 22 questions in a row before erring on the next to last one in this (Boston-based) Christian Science Monitor quiz about the Red Sox.  

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Actually, I found this on the top shelf of the linen closest but the principle is the same. This comes from the era when Trivial Pursuit was a big hit: Typical card: (Note the typo in the last question. See? It’s not just me.) Reminds me of a fold-out I recently tossed out (believe it […]

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Bits and pieces, Feb. 4

February 4, 2013 · 0 comments

Value Over Replacement Grit offers a baseball-themed crossword puzzle. At the risk of appearing sexist, I must say this is the first time I’ve encountered a woman who collects baseball cards with such a passion as Cee Angi, who wrote this mournful “Requiem for the 00s: The Decline of Topps Baseball Cards,”  in which she […]

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Literary birthday greetings: 1919 – Jackie Robinson, infielder; All-Star, Hall of Famer Since I addressed this last year — and there are soooo many books about Robinson — I just thought I’d link to that entry for everyone’s convenience. 1931 – Hank Aguirre, pitcher; All-Star 1931 – Ernie Banks, infielder; All-Star, Hall of Famer 1947 […]

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