From the category archives:

History

There are a few really good books that track the history of baseball in a day-by-day format. Obviously, some are better than others. My go-to is The Baseball Timeline: The Day-By-Day History of Baseball, from Valley Forge to the Present Day by Burt Solomon, originally published as a paperback by Avon in 1997.  It was […]

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First of all, congratulations to John M. of Hillsborough, NJ, winner of last week’s book, Down to the Last Pitch: How the 1991 Minnesota Twins and Atlanta Braves Gave Us the Best World Series of All Time, by Tim Wendel. Thank you all for your comments. This week’s offering is the brand-spankin’ new copy of […]

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A Celebration of Baseball’s Greats In Stories and Images, The Complete Roster of Inductees, by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Little, Brown and Company, 648 pages. $35. In a sense, it’s not fair to judge a book like this. After all, who has more resources about the history of the game and […]

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Lou Gehrig. Jackie Robinson. Two of the game’s most iconic players, celebrated for their courage under extreme conditions. Both the subjects of outstanding biographies by Jonathan Eig, and both of which appear in 501 Baseball Books Fans Must Read before They Die Eig has worked as a reporter for The Wall Street Journal, Chicago magazine, […]

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In advance of my Bookshelf Conversation with Jonathan Eig which I will post tomorrow, here’s a blast from the past. Climax! was one of those live-performance anthology television series in the 1950s sponsored by a major corporation, in this case Chrysler. This 1956 episode, The Lou Gehrig Story, starred Wendell Corey as Gehrig, character actor […]

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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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The top-ten baseball books as per Amazon.com. Caveat 1: Print editions only (at least for now); I’m old fashioned that way. Caveat 2: Since the rankings are updated every hour, these lists might not longer be 100 percent accurate by the time you read it. But it’ll be close enough for government work. Caveat 3: […]

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A chance to look over the overlooked. * Not exactly “Throwback Thursday,” but this piece on the Peoria Journal Star website is an appreciation for The Bronx Zoo, published by relief pitcher Sparky Lyle (then with the NY Yankees) and Peter Golenbock. * And another one from PJS about Double Play, a memoir written by […]

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The top-ten baseball books as per Amazon.com. Caveat 1: Print editions only (at least for now); I’m old fashioned that way. Caveat 2: Since the rankings are updated every hour, these lists might not longer be 100 percent accurate by the time you read it. But it’ll be close enough for government work. Caveat 3: […]

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Forty years. It’s been four decades — the amount of time the Children of Israel were wandering through the desert — sine Hank Aaron broke Babe Ruth’s all-time home run record. And there are more than a few fans who believe he still holds that record, Barry Bonds be damned. As Aaron was approaching the […]

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First of all, congratulations to Bob W. of Chantilly, VA, winner of last week’s book, Long Shot, by Mike Piazza and Lonnie Wheeler. Thank you all for your comments. This week’s offering is the brand-spankin’ new Stars and Strikes: Baseball and American in the Bicentennial Summer of ’76 by Dan Epstein. A reminder about the […]

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As of the end of the 2013 season, Jewish athletes had accounted for about 170 of nearly 19,000 Major Leaguers. So you wouldn’t expect the new “Chasing Dreams: Baseball & Becoming American” exhibit at the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia to have the breadth of material one would see in Cooperstown. Nevertheless, […]

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The latest Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me ran the gamut from all-Jewish (Peter Sagal) to half-Jewish (“Not My Job” guest Amy Schumer to not-Jewish-at-all-but-thought-to-be baseball barnstorming team House of David. Here’s the relevant portion of the transcript. PETER SAGAL: Amy Schumer, it is a real pleasure to talk to you. And we have invited you […]

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Once again, Tom Hoffarth, media columnist for the Los Angeles Daily News, is doing his 30 baseball books in 30 days feature. First up: Mover and Shaker: Walter O’Malley, the Dodgers, and Baseball’s Westward Expansion by my old SABR pal, Andy McCue.

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Looks like Paul Dickson and Bill Mead (who turns 80 today; Happy Birthday, sir!) will have to update their old title.

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Yesterday, I posted a question to the Baseball Books group on Facebook. If you could have dinner with any four authors who have written about baseball — not strictly baseball authors — at the same table, who would they be? My choices: Roger Angell, David Halberstam, Lawrence Ritter, and Bernard Malamud. Of course, four is […]

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Seems most of the buzz lately is about Kostya Kennedy’s Pete Rose: An American Dilemma, John Rosengrens’s Marichal-Roseboro book, The Fight of Their Lives, and Jonah Keri’s Up, Up, and Away, the new history about  the Montreal Expos. Rosengren From Mike Bauman/MLB.com: “Book tells of redemption for Marichal, Roseboro“ This one from Allen Barra will […]

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As of this writing, according to Amazon.com’s rankings, these are the top baseball best-sellers. Still fiddling with the format of the list, whether to have just paper versions, or separate paper and kindle editions, or just have 2014 titles… Any thoughts? (and this counts towards the book giveaway contest, too): Where Nobody Knows Your Name: […]

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First of all, congratulations to Keith S. of Columbia, Tennessee, winner of last week’s book, They Called Me God: The Best Umpire Who Ever Lived, by Doug Harvey and Peter Golenbock.  Thank you all for your comments. This week’s offering is A Game of Brawl: The Orioles, the Beaneaters & the Battle for the 1897 […]

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All of these came in this week from my “alma mater,” the University of Nebraska Press. So many books, so little time.    

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