What is your opinion of the A.J. Pierzynski signing?
MJH on accountability
"The Bullpen Gospels" by nomad journeyman reliever Dirk Hayhurst. Really gives you insight into life as a minor-leaguer: how players pass the time on the bus travelling to games, how you have to work in the offseason to compensate for the tiny minor-league salary, the tension during training camp prior to finding out where you've been assigned/whether you've been cut, etc. It's a funny and informative book, and it really helps to humanize prospects versus just viewing them as commodities.
1. Fully endorse the suggestions for Seasons in Hell. Shropshire also wrote a sequel called The Last Real Season about 1975 that has a lot of hilarious Rangers stuff in it.
2. Lords of the Realm by John Heylar. Looks at baseball ownership and their moves from 40s through the Miller era -- and makes it easy to understand how Miller absolutely cleaned their clocks.
3. Ted Williams by Leigh Montville. Best book about the single most compelling player of the 20th century, and I've read everything that's ever been written about Williams. Just a terrific book.
4. For a more recent biography, I strongly suggest Howard Bryant's book on Henry Aaron. Extremely well done.
On the subject of real life portrayals of playing pro ball, Jim Brosnan's The Long Season is excellent. From a sabre cognocenti site (long):
Though fictional and from the pen of a writer, as opposed to a player, Ring Lardner's Alibi Ike is worth picking up.
Alibi Ike is a funny book by Ring Lardner. The ballplayer always has an excuse for his mistakes.A book you might not have heard of that combines courtroom drama with baseball, "A Pitch for Justice." It's about a pitcher who goes to trial after one of his pitches kills an opposing player. I read it in November and enjoyed it.
"Veeck as in Wreck" is a must. Bill Veeck was a wildly underappreciated marketing genius.
Veeck was an interesting character. No doubt about it. Of course, he was the owner who sent up a midget - Eddie Gaedel - to pinchhit for the St. Louis Browns as a publicity stunt back in the early '50s. Veeck as in Wreck is another baseball book on my To Read List."
An easy, fun read was Tim Kurkjian's "Is This a Great Game, or What?" But then again, I like the little fella and share his interest in the absurdities and anomalies of Major League Baseball.
Tim Kurkjian is goofy, but he knows his stuff. He knows how to lighten things up on ESPN and Major League Baseball Network.
Excited to check out these suggestions. Thanks to Frederic Leduc for starting this thing. Where was this thread in October when I needed something to wash away the pain?
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