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The Chicago Cubs: Story of a Curse
by Rich Cohen

Language

English

Pages

289

Publication Date

October 03, 2017

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p><b>A captivating blend of reportage and memoir exploring the history of the Chicago Cubs</b></p><p>When Rich Cohen was eight years old, his father took him to see a Cubs game. On the way out of the park, his father asked him to make a promise. “Promise me you will never be a Cubs fan. The Cubs do not win,” he explained, “and because of that, a Cubs fan will have a diminished life determined by low expectations. That team will screw up your life.” As a result, Cohen became not just a Cubs fan but one of the biggest Cubs fans in the world. In this book, he captures the story of the team, its players and crazy days. Billy Sunday and Ernie Banks, Three Finger Brown and Ryne Sandberg, Bill Buckner, the Bartman Ball, Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo—the early dominance followed by a 107 year trek across the wilderness. It’s all here—not just what happened, but what it felt like and what it meant. He searches for the cause of the famous curse. Was it the billy goat, kicked out of Wrigley Field in Game 5 of the 1945 World Series, or does it go back further, to the very origins of the franchise? Driven mad with futility, he went on the road with the team in search of answers, interviewed great players present and past, researched in libraries but also in the bleachers, double-fisted, a frosty malt in each hand, demanding answers. He came to see the curse as a burden but also as a blessing. Cubs fans are unique, emissaries from a higher realm, warning of hubris and vanity. The blue cap with the red C said, “My Kingdom is not of this world.” He interviewed the architects of the 2016 Cubs, the team that broke the curse. Here’s what he asked: How the hell did you do it? He was at (almost) every game of the 2016 playoff run—a run that culminated in (maybe) the single greatest baseball game ever played. He was excited but also terrified. Losing is easy. What would it mean to win? Wearing a Yankees hat meant corporate excellence. Wearing a Mets hat meant miracles. But wearing a Cubs hat meant loving the game on its most humdrum afternoon—September 13, 1979, say, 14 games out of first place, Larry Bittner driving in Ivan DeJesus. Would we lose that? Would being a Cubs become ordinary? A mix of memoir, reporting, history and baseball theology, this book, forty years in the making, has never been written because it never could be—only with the 2016 World Series can the true arc of the story finally be understood.</p>
The Year of the Pitcher: Bob Gibson, Denny McLain, and the End of...
by Sridhar Pappu

Language

English

Pages

400

Publication Date

October 03, 2017

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<DIV><B><I>The Year of the Pitcher</I> is the story of the remarkable 1968 baseball season, which culminated in one of the greatest World Series contests ever, with the Detroit Tigers coming back from a 3–1 deficit to beat the Cardinals in Game Seven of the World Series.</B><BR /><BR /> In 1968, two remarkable pitchers would dominate the game as well as the broadsheets. One was black, the other white. Bob Gibson, together with the St. Louis Cardinals, embodied an entire generation's hope for integration at a heated moment in American history. Denny McLain, his adversary, was a crass self-promoter who eschewed the team charter and his Detroit Tigers teammates to zip cross-country in his own plane. For one season, the nation watched as these two men and their teams swept their respective league championships to meet at the World Series. Gibson set a major league record that year with a 1.12 ERA. McLain won more than 30 games in 1968, a feat not achieved since 1934 and untouched since. Together, the two have come to stand as iconic symbols, giving the fans “The Year of the Pitcher” and changing the game. Evoking a nostalgic season and its incredible characters, this is the story of one of the great rivalries in sports and an indelible portrait of the national pastime during a turbulent year—and the two men who electrified fans from all walks of life.</DIV>
Teammate: My Journey in Baseball and a World Series for the Ages
by David Ross

Language

English

Pages

272

Publication Date

May 09, 2017

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b><i>NEW YORK TIMES</i> BESTSELLER<br /><i>USA TODAY</i> BESTSELLER<br /><br />Packed with "compelling inside stories" (<i>Chicago Tribune</i>), <i>Teammate</i> is the inspiring memoir from "Grandpa Rossy," the veteran catcher who became the heart and soul of the 2016 Chicago Cubs championship team.</b><br /><br />In 2016 the Cubs snapped a 108-year curse, winning the World Series in a history-making, seven-game series against the Cleveland Indians. Of the many storylines to Chicago's fairytale season, one stood out: the late-career renaissance of David Ross, the 39-year-old catcher who had played back-up for 13 of his 15 pro seasons.<br /><br />Beyond Ross's remarkably strong play, he became the ultimate positive force in the Cubs locker room, mentoring and motivating his fellow players, some of them nearly twenty years his junior. Thanks to Cubs Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo, "Grandpa Rossy" became a social media sensation. No one, however, could have predicted that Ross's home run in his final career at bat would help seal the Cubs championship. <br /><br />Now, in <i>Teammate</i>, Ross shares the inspiring story of his life in baseball, framed by the events of that unforgettable November night.
Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game
by Michael Lewis

Language

English

Pages

337

Publication Date

March 17, 2004

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p>"This delightfully written, lesson-laden book deserves a place of its own in the Baseball Hall of Fame." —<em>Forbes</em></p><br /><em>Moneyball</em> is a quest for the secret of success in baseball. In a narrative full of fabulous characters and brilliant excursions into the unexpected, Michael Lewis follows the low-budget Oakland A's, visionary general manager Billy Beane, and the strange brotherhood of amateur baseball theorists. They are all in search of new baseball knowledge—insights that will give the little guy who is willing to discard old wisdom the edge over big money.
Electric October: Seven World Series Games, Six Lives, Five Minut...
by Kevin Cook

Language

English

Pages

292

Publication Date

August 15, 2017

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p><b>The story of six ordinary ballplayers whose paths crossed in the 1947 World Series--and the ways that epic October changed their lives</b></p><p>The 1947 World Series was “the most exciting ever” in the words of Joe DiMaggio, with a decade’s worth of drama packed into seven games between the mighty New York Yankees and underdog Brooklyn Dodgers. It was Jackie Robinson’s first Series, a postwar spectacle featuring Frank Sinatra, Ernest Hemingway and President Harry Truman in supporting roles. It was also the first televised World Series – sportswriters called it “Electric October.”</p><p>But for all the star power on display, the outcome hinged on role players: Bill Bevens, a journeyman who knocked on the door of pitching immortality; Al Gionfriddo and Cookie Lavagetto, bench players at the center of the Series’ iconic moments; Snuffy Stirnweiss, a wartime batting champion who never got any respect; and managers Bucky Harris and Burt Shotton, each an unlikely choice to run his team. Six men found themselves plucked from obscurity to shine on the sport’s greatest stage. But their fame was fleeting; three would never play another big-league game, and all six would be forgotten. </p><p>Kevin Cook brings the ’47 Series back to life, introducing us to men whose past offered no hint they were destined for extraordinary things. For some, the Series was a memory to hold onto. For others, it would haunt them to the end of their days. And for us, Cook offers new insights—some heartbreaking, some uplifting—into what fame and glory truly mean.</p>
Ball Four (RosettaBooks Sports Classics)
by Jim Bouton

Language

English

Pages

496

Publication Date

March 20, 2012

Product Description
Customer Reviews
Ball Four: The Final Pitch is the original book plus all the updates, unlike the 20th Anniversary Edition paperback. <br /><br />When Ball Four was published in 1970, it created a firestorm. Bouton was called a Judas, a Benedict Arnold and a “social leper” for having violated the “sanctity of the clubhouse.” Baseball commissioner Bowie Kuhn tried to force Bouton to sign a statement saying the book wasn’t true. Ballplayers, most of whom hadn’t read it, denounced the book. It was even banned by a few libraries.<br /><br />Almost everyone else, however, loved Ball Four. Fans liked discovering that athletes were real people--often wildly funny people. Many readers said it gave them strength to get through a difficult period in their lives. Serious critics called it an important document.<br /><br />David Halberstam, who won a Pulitzer for his reporting on Vietnam, wrote a piece in Harper’s that said of Bouton: “He has written… a book deep in the American vein, so deep in fact that it is by no means a sports book.”<br /><br />In 1999 Ball Four was selected by the New York Public Library as one of the “Books of the Century.” And Time magazine chose it as one of the “100 Greatest Non-Fiction” books.<br /><br />Besides changing the image of athletes, the book played a role in the economic revolution in pro sports. In 1975, Ball Four was accepted as legal evidence against the owners at the arbitration hearing, which lead to free agency in baseball and, by extension, to other sports.<br /><br />Today Ball Four has taken on another role--as a time capsule of life in the sixties. “It is not just a diary of Bouton's 1969 season with the Seattle Pilots and Houston Astros,” says sportswriter Jim Caple. “It's a vibrant, funny, telling history of an era that seems even further away than four decades. To call it simply a “tell all book” is like describing The Grapes of Wrath as a book about harvesting peaches in California.”<br /><br />This ebook version of Ball Four includes the first edition, the 1980, 1990 and 2000 updates, and 138 photos.<br /><br />ABOUT THE AUTHOR<br /><br />Jim Bouton was born in Newark, NJ, in 1939. He grew up in Rochelle Park, a blue-collar town that was too small for Little League. The result was that kids learned to play baseball without uniforms, parents, coaches, or umpires.<br /><br />In high school, his nickname was “warm up Bouton” because he never got into the games. Advised that becoming a major league pitcher was “unrealistic,” Bouton wrote his Careers Week report on the life of a forest ranger. He got a C on his report and an A on the cover--a nice drawing of a squirrel in a tree.<br /><br />Bouton was an All-Star pitcher and won 20 games for the Yankees in 1963. The next year he won 18 games and beat the Cardinals twice in the World Series. Eventually a sore arm got him sold to the Seattle Pilots--for a bag of batting practice balls. That’s when he began taking notes for his diary Ball Four, published in 1970.<br /><br />In the 1970s he was a top-rated TV sportscaster in New York City, acted in a Robert Altman film called The Long Goodbye, and made a brief comeback with the Atlanta Braves.<br /><br />In 2003 Bouton wrote and self-published Foul Ball, a diary of his battle to save a historic ballpark in Pittsfied, MA. Bouton says he only writes when he’s bursting to say something. “Ball Four was a book I wanted to write,” he says. “Foul Ball was a book I had to write.<br /><br />Today Bouton lives in a forest in western Massachusetts.
The Cooperstown Casebook: Who's in the Baseball Hall of Fame, Who...
by Jay Jaffe

Language

English

Pages

465

Publication Date

July 25, 2017

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p>The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, tucked away in upstate New York in a small town called Cooperstown, is far from any major media market or big league stadium. Yet no sports hall of fame’s membership is so hallowed, nor its qualifications so debated, nor its voting process so dissected. </p><p> Since its founding in 1936, the Hall of Fame’s standards for election have been nebulous, and its selection processes arcane, resulting in confusion among voters, not to mention mistakes in who has been recognized and who has been bypassed. Numerous so-called “greats” have been inducted despite having not been so great, while popular but controversial players such as all-time home run leader Barry Bonds and all-time hits leader Pete Rose are on the outside looking in.</p><p> Now, in <i>The Cooperstown Casebook</i>, Jay Jaffe shows us how to use his revolutionary ranking system to ensure the right players are recognized. The foundation of Jaffe’s approach is his JAWS system, an acronym for the Jaffe WAR Score, which he developed over a decade ago. Through JAWS, each candidate can be objectively compared on the basis of career and peak value to the players at his position who are already in the Hall of Fame. Because of its utility, JAWS has gained an increasing amount of exposure in recent years. Through his analysis, Jaffe shows why the Hall of Fame still matters and how it can remain relevant in the 21st century.</p>
The Cubs Way: The Zen of Building the Best Team in Baseball and B...
by Tom Verducci

Language

English

Pages

396

Publication Date

March 28, 2017

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b><b><i>The New York Times</i> Bestseller</b><br /><br />With inside access and reporting,<i> Sports Illustrated</i> senior baseball writer and FOX Sports analyst Tom Verducci reveals how Theo Epstein and Joe Maddon built, led, and inspired the Chicago Cubs team that broke the longest championship drought in sports, chronicling their epic journey to become World Series champions.<br /><br /> </b>It took 108 years, but it really happened. The Chicago Cubs are once again World Series champions. <br /><br /> How did a team composed of unknown, young players and supposedly washed-up veterans come together to break the Curse of the Billy Goat? Tom Verducci, twice named National Sportswriter of the Year and co-writer of The Yankee Years with Joe Torre, will have full access to team president Theo Epstein, manager Joe Maddon, and the players to tell the story of the Cubs' transformation from perennial underachievers to the best team in baseball. <br /><br /> Beginning with Epstein's first year with the team in 2011, Verducci will show how Epstein went beyond "Moneyball" thinking to turn around the franchise. Leading the organization with a manual called "The Cubs Way," he focused on the mental side of the game as much as the physical, emphasizing chemistry as well as statistics. <br /><br /> To accomplish his goal, Epstein needed manager Joe Maddon, an eccentric innovator, as his counterweight on the Cubs' bench.  A man who encourages themed road trips and late-arrival game days to loosen up his team, Maddon mixed New Age thinking with Old School leadership to help his players find their edge.  <br /><br /> <i>The Cubs Way</i> takes readers behind the scenes, chronicling how key players like Rizzo, Russell, Lester, and Arrieta were deftly brought into the organization by Epstein and coached by Maddon to outperform expectations. Together, Epstein and Maddon proved that clubhouse culture is as important as on-base-percentage, and that intangible components like personality, vibe, and positive energy are necessary for a team to perform to their fullest potential. <br /><br /> Verducci chronicles the playoff run that culminated in an instant classic Game Seven. He takes a broader look at the history of baseball in Chicago and the almost supernatural element to the team's repeated loses that kept fans suffering, but also served to strengthen their loyalty.  <br /><br /> <i>The Cubs Way </i>is a celebration of an iconic team and its journey to a World Championship that fans and readers will cherish for years to come.
Leo Durocher: Baseball's Prodigal Son
by Paul Dickson

Language

English

Pages

334

Publication Date

March 21, 2017

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b>From Paul Dickson, the Casey Award–winning author of <i>Bill Veeck: Baseball's Greatest Maverick</i>, the first full biography of Leo Durocher, one of the most colorful and important figures in baseball history.</b><br /><br />Leo Durocher (1906–1991) was baseball's all-time leading cocky, flamboyant, and galvanizing character, casting a shadow across several eras, from the time of Babe Ruth to the Space Age Astrodome, from Prohibition through the Vietnam War. For more than forty years, he was at the forefront of the game, with a Zelig-like ability to be present as a player or manager for some of the greatest teams and defining baseball moments of the twentieth century. A rugged, combative shortstop and a three-time All-Star, he became a legendary manager, winning three pennants and a World Series in 1954. <br /><br />Durocher performed on three main stages: New York, Chicago, and Hollywood. He entered from the wings, strode to where the lights were brightest, and then took a poke at anyone who tried to upstage him. On occasion he would share the limelight, but only with Hollywood friends such as actor Danny Kaye, tough-guy and sometime roommate George Raft, Frank Sinatra, and his third wife, movie star Laraine Day.<br /><br />As he did with Bill Veeck, Dickson explores Durocher's life and times through primary source materials, interviews with those who knew him, and original newspaper files. A superb addition to baseball literature, <i>Leo Durocher</i> offers fascinating and fresh insights into the racial integration of baseball, Durocher's unprecedented suspension from the game, the two clubhouse revolts staged against him in Brooklyn and Chicago, and Durocher's vibrant life off the field.
Wait Till Next Year: A Memoir
by Doris Kearns Goodwin

Language

English

Pages

274

Publication Date

November 24, 2009

Product Description
Customer Reviews
By the award-winning author of <I>Team of Rivals </I>and <I>The Bully Pulpit</I>, <I>Wait Till Next Year</I> is Doris Kearns Goodwin’s touching memoir of growing up in love with her family and baseball.<BR><BR>Set in the suburbs of New York in the 1950s, <I>Wait Till Next Year</I> re-creates the postwar era, when the corner store was a place to share stories and neighborhoods were equally divided between Dodger, Giant, and Yankee fans. <BR> <BR>We meet the people who most influenced Goodwin’s early life: her mother, who taught her the joy of books but whose debilitating illness left her housebound: and her father, who taught her the joy of baseball and to root for the Dodgers of Jackie Robinson, Roy Campanella, Pee Wee Reese, Duke Snider, and Gil Hodges. Most important, Goodwin describes with eloquence how the Dodgers’ leaving Brooklyn in 1957, and the death of her mother soon after, marked both the end of an era and, for her, the end of childhood.

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