Those who tried but didn’t quite squeeze themselves into the 30 baseball books in 30 days of April list:
A couple of reprints that are worth locating:
== “Carew,” by Rod Carew with Ira Berkow, originally published in 1979 when he was with the Minnesota Twins, reissued by the University of Minnesota Press, with a new forward by the Angels’ Torii Hunter and a new afterword by Carew that covers his retirement from the Angels, induction into the Hall of Fame, his years as the Angels’ hitting instructor, and the tragic loss of his daughter Michelle to leukemia (linked here):
Consider the first couple of sentences:
“At about 7 o’clock in the evening on October 1, 1945, my parents, Olga and Eric Carw, boarded a Panama Railroad train and found seats in the car marked COLORED … They were traveling from their home in Gatun, the Canal Zone, to Gorgas Hospital about 40 miles away … My mother was expecting.”
Playing off that theme of going back to the “good old days” of baseball, this is an other prime example of what publishers think those who still read books will want in their hands …
As well as:
== “Out Of My League: The Classic Hilarious Account of an Amateur’s Ordeal in Professional Baseball” by George Plimpton, another reprint from the 1961 classic that Plimpton says was his first participatory sports book, prior to “Paper Lion.” Lyons Press has this reissue (linked here).
== “Men At Work: The Craft of Baseball” by George F. Will (linked here), originally published in 1990, now with a new paperback version with a new introduction.
== “Hub Fans Bid Kid Adieu: John Updike on Ted Williams,” by by John Updike (linked here), just 64 pages, prepared by Updike as a 50-year commemorative edition only a few months before his recent death. From 1960, as it first appeared in New Yorker magazine (and here’s the text, at this link)
== “Great Baseball Feats, Facts & Firsts (2010 Edition),” by David Nemec and Scott Flatow
== “On a Clear Day They Could See Seventh Place: Baseball’s Worst Teams,” by George Robinson and Charles Salzberg
== “Cooperstown Confidential: Heroes, Rogues, and the Inside Story of the Baseball Hall of Fame,” by Zev Chafets and Allen Barra (from hardback in June, 2009)
== “The Complete Game: Reflections on Baseball and the Art of Pitching” by Ron Darling, which came out last fall (linked here).
== “The Road to Omaha: Hits, Hopes, and History at the College World Series,” by Ryan McGee.
== “The End of Baseball: A Novel,” by Peter Schilling (originally published in 2008)
Some that we ended up passing on for one reason (time, couldn’t find it, too lame) or another:
== “365 Oddball Days in Dodgers History” by John Snyder (linked here) is a spinoff from our review of the “Dodger Journal” a year ago (linked here), except this is far more confusing. In the intro, it makes note of one of the craziest events in Dodgers history: July 4, 1934, when Casey Stengel came out to the mound to take Walter Beck out of the game. The Brooklyn pitcher, who only faced eight batters … well, we won’t give away the punch line as to how he got his nickname, “Boom Boom.” So now we’re interested, and we go to the July 4 entry.
Which tells us instead of the day that the Dodgers traded Paul Konerko for relief pitcher Jeff Shaw in the middle of a game in 1998 (we remember that one — very odd — a move by then-GM Tommy Lasorda that would blow up in his face in later years). More bizarre was how Shaw made his debut in a Dodger uniform at the All Star Game three days later, on July 7.
So why couldn’t that item be moved to July 7? Because on that day, Snyder decided to detail some absurd story about how the Dodgers and Cleveland Indians were picked by MLB in 1952 to help end communism (again, we won’t spoil it be detailing it).
For those with ADD, this may make more sense.
By the way, Snyder also has a new 448-page book called “Angels Journal: Year by Year and Day by Day with the Los Angeles Angels Since 1961” (linked here) — much like the prior reference to “Dodger Journal,” and he’s also done one for the Red Sox, Indians, Cubs, White Sox and Cardinals.
== “Sixty Feet, Six Inches” by Bob Gibson and Reggie Jackson, issued last fall. Listening to Reggie talk about himself … just can’t stomach that. Sorry Bob.There may be some value here to this — again, two non-steroid guys talking about the game they played, kind of the anti-Bonds and anti-Clemens of their day.
== “30 Life Lessons My Boys Learned from Baseball,” by Andy Norwood (linked here). Only 30?
== “Lady in the Locker Room: Madcap Memoirs of the Early L.A. Dodgers,” by Flo Thomasian Snyder (linked here)
== “Kiss ‘Em Goodbye: An ESPN Treasury of Failed, Forgotten and Departed Teams,” by Dennis Purdy (linked here). Of the 86 teams he brings back to life in this verison of “CSI: Sports,” 47 are baseball franchises. Fom a Southern California perspective, we appreciate the mentions of the Vernon Tigers, the Los Angeles Angels (of the PCL, back at Wrigley Field, before the big league’s L.A. Angels) and the Hollywood Stars. Purdy, by the way, also did the 2006 “Team-By-Team Encycolpedia of Major League Baseball” (linked here)
== “You’re the Umpire: 139 Scenarios to Test Your Baseball Knowledge,” by Wayne Stewart (linked here)
== “A Bitter Cup of Coffee: How MLB and the Players Association Threw 874 Retirees a Curve,” by Douglas Gladstone (linked here): Gladstone examines the plight of 874 MLB players who very briefly played between 1947 and 1979. Since 1980, players have needed one day of service credit for health benefits and 43 days of service credit to be eligible for a retirement allowance, but those former ballplayers were not included retroactively and therefore receive no pensions.
== “Joe Cronin: A Life in Baseball,” by Mark Armour (a review on Seamheads.com)
== “Baseball’s Longest Games: A Comprehensive Worldwide Record Book,” by Philip J. Lowry (linked here)
== “Silver Seasons and a New Frontier: The Story of the Rochester Red Wings,” by Jim Mandelaro and Scott Pitoniak (linked here)
== “Wilber ‘Bullet’ Rogan and the Kansas City Monarchs,” by Phil S. Dixon (linked here)
== “Pie Traynor: A Baseball Biography,” by James Forr and David Proctor (linked here)
== “Traded: Inside the Most Lopsided Trades in Baseball History,” by Doug Decatur (linked here)
== “The 300 Club: Have We Seen the Last of Baseball’s 300-Game Winners?” by Dan Schlossberg and Wayne Hagin (linked here)
== “Baseball’s Greatest Series: Yankees, Mariners, and the 1995 Matchup That Changed History,” by Chris Donnelly
== “The Funniest Baseball Book Ever: The National Pastime’s Greatest Quips, Quotations, Characters, Nicknames, and Pranks,” by Peter Handrinos
== “Abner Doubleday: A Civil War Biography,” by Thomas Barthel
== “The Imperfect Diamond: A History of Baseball’s Labor Wars,” by Lee Lowenfish and Robert W. Creamer
== “The Steve Dahl Scrapbook,” by Steve Dahl
== “The Whistling Irishman: Danny Murtaugh Remembered,” by Colleen Hroncich (linked here)
== “1972 Detroit Tigers: Billy Martin and the Half-Game Champs,” by Todd Masters
== “Edd Roush: A Biography of the Cincinnati Reds Star,” by Mitchell Conrad Stinson
== “Rick Ferrell, Knuckleball Catcher: A Hall of Famer’s Life Behind the Plate and in the Front Office,” by Kerrie Ferrell
== “Baseball’s Top 100: The Game’s Greatest Records,” by Kerry Banks
== “The Game from Where I Stand: A Ballplayer’s Inside View,” by Doug Glanville (linked here)
And those we can’t wait to pick up once they’re released in the coming days, weeks and months:
== “The Last Hero: A Life of Henry Aaron,” by Howard Bryant (linked here)
== “Blockade Billy,” a novel by Stephen King (linked here). The synopsis: “Even the most die-hard baseball fans don’t know the true story of William “Blockade Billy” Blakely. He may have been the greatest player the game has ever seen, but today no one remembers his name. He was the first–and only–player to have his existence completely removed from the record books. Even his team is long forgotten, barely a footnote in the game’s history.”
== “Are We Winning?: Fathers and Sons in the New Golden Age of Baseball,” by Will Leitch (linked here)
== “Batting Stance Guy: A Love Letter to Baseball,” by Gar Ryness and Caleb Dewart (linked here)
== “She Loved Baseball: The Effa Manley Story,” by Audrey Vernick and Don Tate
== “Nailed: The Improbable Rise and Spectacular Fall of Lenny Dykstra,” by Chris Frankie
== “Rickwood Field: A Century in America’s Oldest Ballpark,” by Allen Barra
== “Curveball: The Remarkable Story of Toni Stone the First Woman to Play Professional Baseball in the Negro League,” by Martha Ackmann
== “Final Innings: A Documentary History of Baseball, 1972-2008,” by Dean A. Sullivan
== “Steinbrenner: The Last Lion of Baseball,” by Bill Madden (linked here)
== “The Pittsburgh Cocaine Seven: How a Ragtag Group of Fans Took the Fall for Major League Baseball,” by Aaron Skirboll (linked here)
== “The Great Match and Our Base Ball Club: Two Novels from the Early Days of Baseball (McFarland Historical Baseball Library),” by John Trowbridge, Noah Brooks, Trey Strecker, and Geri Strecker
== “I Will Never Forget: Interviews With 39 Former Negro League Players,” by Brent P. Kelley (originally in hardback in 2003), and “The Negro Leagues Revisited: Conversations With 66 More Baseball Heroes,” by Kelly
== “Frontiers in Major League Baseball: Nonparametric Analysis of Performance Using Data Envelopment Analysis (Sports Economics, Management and Policy),” by John Ruggiero
== “Charlie Finley: The Outrageous Story of Baseball’s Super Showman,” by G. Michael Green and Roger D. Launius
== “Big Hair and Plastic Grass: A Funky Ride Through Baseball and America in the Swinging ’70s,” by Dan Epstein
== “The Baseball Maniac’s Almanac: The Absolutely, Positively, and Without Question Greatest Book of Facts, Figures, and Astonishing Lists Ever Compiled!” by Bert Randolph Sugar
== “Carl Hubbell: A Biography of the Screwball King,” by Lowell L. Blaisdell
== “Dixie Walker of the Dodgers: Alabama Fire Ant,” by Maury Allen and Susan Walker
== “Field of Screams: Creepy Tales from the Baseball Diamond, the Locker Room, and Beyond,” by Mickey Bradley and Dan Gordon