Cover art for Hello, Friends!

Hello, Friends!

21 ratings

Summary

An honest memoir about life, family, and baseball from the longtime, legendary Toronto Blue Jays radio broadcaster For 36 years, Jerry Howarth ushered in eternal hope each spring and thrived in the drive of each fall as the voice of the Toronto Blue Jays. In 1982, the lifelong avid sports fan joined Tom Cheek as full-time play-by-play radio announcer for the Blue Jays, and for the next 23 years, “Tom and Jerry” were the voices of the franchise.  Jerry became part of the fabric of a nation and a team, covering historic moments like the rise of the Blue Jays through the 1980s that culminated in back-to-back World Series Championships in 1992 and 1993. His Hall of Fame-worthy broadcasting career has been nothing short of legendary. When Jerry retired in February 2018, the tributes poured in and made one thing perfectly clear: Toronto baseball would never be the same.  Howarth brings together thoughts on life, family, work, and baseball. Featuring stories about everyone from Dave Stieb, Jack Morris, Duane Ward, Roberto Alomar, and Joe Carter to John Gibbons, Edwin Encarnacion, Josh Donaldson, and the late Roy Halladay, Hello, Friends! is a must-listen for sports fans everywhere.

©2019 Jerry Howarth (P)2019 ECW Press

Narrator: Jerry Howarth
Length: 11 hrs and 41 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Baseball Codes

The Baseball Codes

3 ratings

Summary

Beanballs, Sign Stealing, and Bench-Clearing Brawls: The Unwritten Rules of America’s Pastime Everyone knows that baseball is a game of intricate regulations, but it turns out to be even more complicated than we realize. What truly governs the Major League game is a set of unwritten rules, some of which are openly discussed (don’t steal a base with a big lead late in the game), and some of which only a minority of players are even aware of (don’t cross between the catcher and the pitcher on the way to the batter’s box). In The Baseball Codes, old-timers and all-time greats share their insights into the game’s most hallowed, and least known, traditions. For the learned and the casual baseball fan alike, the result is illuminating and thoroughly entertaining. At the heart of this book are incredible and often hilarious stories involving national heroes, like Mickey Mantle and Willie Mays, and notorious headhunters, like Bob Gibson and Don Drysdale, in a century-long series of confrontations over respect, honor, and the soul of the game. With The Baseball Codes, we see for the first time the game as it’s actually played, through the eyes of the players on the field. With rollicking stories from the past and new perspectives on baseball’s informal rulebook, The Baseball Codes is a must for every fan.

©2010 Jason Turbow with Michael Duca (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Michael Kramer
Length: 10 hrs and 4 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Old Ball Game

The Old Ball Game

1 rating

Summary

In The Old Ball Game, Frank Deford, NPR sports commentator and Sports Illustrated journalist retells the story of an unusual friendship between two towering figures in baseball history.At the turn of the twentieth century, Christy Mathewson was one of baseball's first superstars. Over six feet tall, clean cut, and college educated, he didn't pitch on the Sabbath and rarely spoke an ill word about anyone. He also had one of the most devastating arms in all of baseball. New York Giants manager John McGraw, by contrast, was ferocious. The pugnacious tough guy was already a star infielder who, with the Baltimore Orioles, helped develop a new, scrappy style of baseball, with plays like the hit-and-run, the Baltimore chop, and the squeeze play. When McGraw joined the Giants in 1902, the Giants were coming off their worst season ever. Yet within three years, Mathewson clinched New York City's first World Series for McGraw's team by throwing three straight shutouts in only six days, an incredible feat that is invariably called the greatest World Series performance ever. Because of their wonderful odd-couple association, baseball had its first superstar, the Giants ascended into legend, and baseball as a national pastime bloomed.

©2005 Frank Deford (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Frank Deford
Author: Frank Deford
Length: 7 hrs and 20 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for They Said It Couldn't Be Done

They Said It Couldn't Be Done

Summary

“One of sports’ most storied championship teams gets its proper due” (Tom Verducci) in this definitive history of the 1969 Miracle Mets from the New York Times best-selling author of The Boys of Winter. “If you want to know what it was like to live and witness a baseball miracle in tumultuous times, this book is for you.” (Ron Darling, former New York Mets All-Star and best-selling author of Game 7, 1986)  The story of the 1969 New York Mets’ season has long since entered sports lore as one of the most remarkable of all time. But beyond the “miracle” is a compelling narrative of an unlikely collection of players and the hallowed manager who inspired them to greatness. For the 50th anniversary, renowned sports journalist Wayne Coffey brings to life a moment when a championship could descend on a city like magic, and when a baseball legend was authored one inning at a time. Future Hall of Fame ace Tom Seaver snagged the biggest headlines, but the enduring richness of the story lies in the core of a team comprised of untested youngsters, lightly regarded veterans, and four Southern-born African-American stalwarts who came of age in the shadow of Jackie Robinson.  Most of the Mets regulars were improbable candidates for baseball stardom. The number-two starting pitcher, Jerry Koosman, grew up on a Minnesota farm, never played high-school ball, and was only discovered because of a tip from a Mets usher. Outfielder Ron Swoboda was known for long home runs and piles of strikeouts, until he turned into a glove wizard when it mattered most.  All of these men were galvanized by their manager: the sainted former Brooklyn Dodger Gil Hodges, whose fundamental belief in the power of every man on the roster, no matter his stats, helped backup players like Al Weis and J.C. Martin become October heroes. As the Mets powered through the season to reach a World Series against the best-in-a-generation Baltimore Orioles, Hodges's steady hand guided a team that had very recently been the league laughingstock to an improbable, electrifying shot at sports immortality.  “A must-read for not just for Mets fans, but allbaseball fans who will appreciate what indeed was the most astounding season in baseball history.” (Ken Rosenthal, two-time Sports Emmy winner for Outstanding Sports Reporter)

©2019 Wayne Coffey (P)2019 Random House Audio

Narrator: Gary Cohen
Author: Wayne Coffey
Length: 9 hrs and 21 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Mint Condition

Mint Condition

1 rating

Summary

When award-winning journalist Dave Jamieson's parents sold his childhood home a few years ago, he rediscovered a prized boyhood possession: his baseball card collection. Now was the time to cash in on the investments of his youth. But all the card shops had closed, and cards were selling for next to nothing online. What had happened? In Mint Condition, his fascinating, eye-opening, endlessly entertaining book, Jamieson finds the answer by tracing the complete story of this beloved piece of American childhood. Picture cards had long been used for advertising, but after the Civil War, tobacco companies started slipping them into cigarette packs as collector's items. Before long the cards were wagging the cigarettes. In the 1930s cards helped gum and candy makers survive the Great Depression. In the 1960s royalties from cards helped transform the baseball players' association into one of the country's most powerful unions, dramatically altering the game. In the '80s and '90s, cards went through a spectacular bubble, becoming a billion-dollar-a-year industry before all but disappearing, surviving today as the rarified preserve of adult collectors. Mint Condition is charming original history brimming with colorful characters, sure to delight baseball fans and collectors.

©2010 Dave Jamieson. The author would like to thank The Topps Company, Inc., and The Upper Deck Company, LLC for permission to reproduce their card images. Recorded by arrangement with Grove Atlantic, Inc. (P)2014 Audible Inc.

Narrator: Kevin Young
Length: 9 hrs and 27 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Inside Baseball

Inside Baseball

Summary

No sport has inspired better writing than baseball, and no one writes baseball better than Tom Verducci. As Sports Illustrated’s lead baseball writer since 1993, Verducci has witnessed the achievements of the game’s greatest heroes and told their inspiring stories with unmatched passion and sophistication. He has enriched SIs readers with an insider’s perspective on the game, examining subtle shifts in the ever-changing balance between pitchers and hitters, between slumps and streaks, between sacred records and the athletes trying to break them. Despite his deep affection for baseball, however, Verducci has never shied away from the hard truth about the game: His landmark piece about steroids, for instance, changed the baseball landscape forever. These 25 pieces span the generations from Sandy Koufax to Roger Clemens, from Ted Williams to Barry Bonds. They chronicle the important trends in the game and celebrate baseball’s brightest stars and most breathtaking performances. They are the best work of a writer at the top of his game.

©2006 Time Home Entertainment Inc. (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Ax Norman
Author: Tom Verducci
Length: 9 hrs and 34 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Seasons in Hell

Seasons in Hell

Summary

You think your team is bad? In this landmark work on one of the most tortured franchises in baseball, one reporter discovers that nine innings can feel like an eternity. In early 1973, gonzo sportswriter Mike Shropshire agreed to cover the Texas Rangers for the Fort-Worth Star-Telegram, not realizing that the Rangers were arguably the worst team in baseball history. Seasons in Hell is a riotous, candid, irreverent behind-the-scenes account in the tradition of The Bronx Zoo and Ball Four, following the Texas Rangers from Whitey Herzog's reign in 1973 through Billy Martin's tumultuous tenure. Offering wonderful perspectives on dozens of unique (and likely never-to-be-seen-again) baseball personalities, Seasons in Hell recounts some of the most extreme characters ever to play the game and brings to life the no-holds-barred culture of major league baseball in the mid-'70s.

©1996 Mike Shrophire (P)2014 Audible Inc.

Narrator: Peter Powlus
Length: 7 hrs and 28 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for How Baseball Happened

How Baseball Happened

Summary

The fascinating, true origin story of baseball - how America’s first great sport developed and how it conquered a nation. Baseball’s true founders don’t have plaques in Cooperstown. The founders were the hundreds of uncredited amateurs - ordinary people - who played without gloves, facemasks, or performance incentives in the middle decades of the 19th century. Unlike today’s pro athletes, they lived full lives outside of sports. They worked, built businesses, and fought against the South in the Civil War. But that’s not the way the story has been told. The wrongness of baseball history can be staggering. You may have heard that Abner Doubleday or Alexander Cartwright invented baseball. Neither did. You may have been told that a club called the Knickerbockers played the first baseball game in 1846. They didn’t. You have read that baseball’s color line was uncrossed and unchallenged until Jackie Robinson in 1947. Nope. You may have heard Cooperstown, Hoboken, or New York City called the birthplace of baseball, but not Brooklyn. Yet Brooklyn was the home of baseball’s first fans, the first ballpark, the first statistics - and modern pitching. Baseball was originally supposed to be played, not watched. This changed when crowds began to show up at games in Brooklyn in the late 1850s. We fans weren’t invited to the party; we crashed it. Professionalism wasn’t part of the plan either, but when an 1858 Brooklyn versus New York City series accidentally proved that people would pay to see a game, the writing was on the outfield wall. When the first professional league was formed in 1871, baseball was already a fully formed modern sport with championships, media coverage, and famous stars. Professional baseball invented an organization, but not the sport itself. Baseball’s amazing amateurs had already done that. Thomas W. Gilbert’s history is for baseball fans and anyone fascinating by origin stories and American culture.

©2020 Thomas W. Gilbert (P)2020 Blackstone Publishing

Narrator: George Newbern
Length: 10 hrs and 38 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The New York Yankees of the 1950s: Mantle, Stengel, Berra, and a Decade of Dominance

The New York Yankees of the 1950s: Mantle, Stengel, Berra, and a Decade of Dominance

Summary

The 1950s marked a transformative period in postwar American history. In baseball, one dynasty was the story during the decade. The New York Yankees played in eight World Series from 1950 to 1959, winning six of them. Yankees icon Joe DiMaggio retired following the 1951 season, but a new superstar, Mickey Mantle, took over in Yankee Stadium’s center field in 1952. Mantle, the powerful switch-hitter who blasted tape-measure home runs, often tortured by leg ailments, was the number one box office draw in baseball. He was the American League’s most valuable player in 1956 and 1957, putting together a triple crown season in 1956.  Mantle came into baseball when TV was just beginning to stir, and with the Yankees reaching the World Series and appearing on national TV seemingly every season, he became the face of the game during the decade. Mantle joined with his pals, pitcher Whitey Ford and infielder Billy Martin, to form a hard-partying trio that would be a joy and a pain to management. The author of several books on the Yankees, David Fischer will bring expertise and a knack for great storytelling to the saga of the most dominant decade in the annals of sport, set during a defining moment in US history.

©2019 David Fischer (P)2019 David Fischer

Narrator: Dave Cruse
Length: 8 hrs and 11 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for 42 Today

42 Today

Summary

Explores Jackie Robinson's compelling and complicated legacy Before the United States Supreme Court ruled against segregation in public schools, and before Rosa Parks refused to surrender her bus seat in Montgomery, Alabama, Jackie Robinson walked onto the diamond on April 15, 1947, as first baseman for the Brooklyn Dodgers, making history as the first African American to integrate Major League Baseball in the 20th century. Today a national icon, Robinson was a complicated man who navigated an even more complicated world that both celebrated and despised him.  Many are familiar with Robinson as a baseball hero. Few, however, know of the inner turmoil that came with his historic status. Featuring piercing essays from a range of distinguished sportswriters, cultural critics, and scholars, this book explores Robinson's perspectives and legacies on civil rights, sports, faith, youth, and nonviolence, while providing rare glimpses into the struggles and strength of one of the nation's most athletically gifted and politically significant citizens. Featuring a foreword by celebrated directors and producers Ken Burns, Sarah Burns, and David McMahon, this volume recasts Jackie Robinson's legacy and establishes how he set a precedent for future civil rights activism, from Black Lives Matter to Colin Kaepernick.

©2021 New York University (P)2021 Tantor

Available on Audible
Cover art for Billy Ball

Billy Ball

Summary

In the early 1970s, the Oakland Athletics became only the second team in Major League Baseball history to win three consecutive World Series championships. But as the decade came to a close, the A's were in free fall, having lost 108 games in 1979 while drawing just 307,000 fans. Free agency had decimated the A's, and the team's owner, Charlie Finley, was looking for a buyer. First, though, he had to bring fans back to the Oakland Coliseum. Enter Billy Martin. Dale Tafoya describes what, at the time, seemed like a match made in baseball heaven. The A's needed a leader to reignite interest in the team. Martin needed a job after his second stint as manager of the New York Yankees came to an abrupt end. Based largely on interviews with former players, team executives, and journalists, Billy Ball captures Martin's homecoming to the Bay area, his immediate embrace by Oakland fans, and the A's return to playoff baseball. In Oakland, Martin's aggressive style of play came to be known as Billy Ball. A's fans and the media loved it. But, in life and in baseball, all good things must come to an end. Tafoya chronicles Martin's clash with the new A's management and the siren song of the Yankees that lured the manager back to New York in 1983. Still, as the book makes clear, the magical turnaround of the A's has never been forgotten in Oakland.

©2020 Dale Tafoya (P)2020 Tantor

Narrator: Barry Abrams
Author: Dale Tafoya
Length: 8 hrs and 14 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for One Nation Under Baseball: How the 1960s Collided with the National Pastime

One Nation Under Baseball: How the 1960s Collided with the National Pastime

Summary

One Nation Under Baseball highlights the intersection between American society and America’s pastime during the 1960s, when the hallmarks of the sport - fairness, competition, and mythology - came under scrutiny. John Florio and Ouisie Shapiro examine the events of the era that reshaped the game: the Koufax and Drysdale million-dollar holdout, the encroachment of television on newspaper coverage, the changing perception of ballplayers from mythic figures to overgrown boys, the arrival of the everyman Mets and their free-spirited fans, and the lawsuit brought against team owners by Curt Flood.

One Nation Under Baseball brings to life the seminal figures of the era - including Bob Gibson, Marvin Miller, Tom Seaver, and Dick Young - richly portraying their roles during a decade of flux and uncertainty.

The book is published by University of Nebraska Press.

©2017 John Florio and Ouisie Shapiro (P)2018 Redwood Audiobooks

Available on Audible
Cover art for October 1964

October 1964

1 rating

Summary

The New York Times best-seller. David Halberstam, an avid sports writer with an investigative reporter’s tenacity, superbly details the end of the 15-year reign of the New York Yankees in October 1964. That October found the Yankees going head-to-head with the St. Louis Cardinals for the World Series pennant.  Expertly weaving the narrative threads of both teams’ seasons, Halberstam brings the major personalities on the field - from switch-hitter Mickey Mantle to pitcher Bob Gibson - to life. Using the teams’ subcultures, Halberstam also analyzes the cultural shifts of the '60s. The result is a unique blend of sports writing and cultural history as engrossing as it is insightful.  "Compelling.... 1964 is a chronicle of the end of a great dynasty and of a game, like the country, on the cusp of enormous change." (Newsweek) "Wonderful.... Memorable.... Halberstam describes the final game of the 1964 series accurately and so dramatically, I almost thought I had forgotten the ending." (The Washington Post Book World)

©1994 The Amateurs Limited (P)2018 Random House Audio

Length: 13 hrs and 54 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Pittsburgh Cocaine Seven

The Pittsburgh Cocaine Seven

1 rating

Summary

Eerily prescient of times to come, this expos examines drug use in Major League Baseball (MLB)during the mid-1980s and one of the biggest drug trials in baseball history. Through a series of exclusive interviews with FBI agents, U.S. attorneys, defense lawyers, journalists, former baseball executives, physicians, and the dealers themselves, the narrative provides a behind-the-scenes look into how the players managed their habits, the effect of the drugs on their athletic performance, and the ruses the players concocted to keep their drug consumption from becoming public knowledge. Among the all-stars implicated as cocaine users were Joaquin Andujar, Dusty Baker, Dale Berra, Keith Hernandez, Lee Mazzilli, John Milner, Dave Parker, and Lonnie Smith, while Willie Mays and Willie Stargell were fingered as amphetamine users. In addition to identifying the players involved, this account reveals how the hapless group of mostly diehard Pittsburgh Pirates fans got into cocaine and connected with the players as well as the often comic deals” that eventually got them busted. Then MLB Commissioner Peter Ueberroth'sfailure to implement a strict drug policy in the aftermath of the trial is also discussed, along with the role this inaction played in enabling the steroid era.

©2010 Aaron Skirboll (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: DeMario Clarke
Length: 8 hrs and 6 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Let's Play Two

Let's Play Two

1 rating

Summary

The definitive and revealing biography of Chicago Cubs legend Ernie Banks, one of America's most iconic, beloved, and misunderstood baseball players, by acclaimed journalist Ron Rapoport. Ernie Banks, the first-ballot Hall of Famer and All-Century Team shortstop, played in 14 All-Star Games, won two MVPs, and twice led the Major Leagues in home runs and runs batted in. He outslugged Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, and Mickey Mantle when they were in their prime, but while they made repeated World Series appearances in the 1950s and 60s, Banks spent his entire career with the woebegone Chicago Cubs, who didn't win a pennant in his adult lifetime. Today, Banks is remembered best for his signature phrase, "Let's play two", which has entered the American lexicon and exemplifies the enthusiasm that endeared him to fans everywhere. But Banks' public display of good cheer was a mask that hid a deeply conflicted, melancholy, and often quite lonely man. Despite the poverty and racism he endured as a young man, he was among the star players of baseball's early days of integration who were reluctant to speak out about civil rights. Being known as one of the greatest players never to reach the World Series also took its toll. At one point, Banks even saw a psychiatrist to see if that would help. It didn't. Yet Banks smiled through it all, enduring the scorn of Cubs manager Leo Durocher as an aging superstar and never uttering a single complaint. Let's Play Two is based on numerous conversations with Banks and on interviews with more than 100 of his family members, teammates, friends, and associates as well as oral histories, court records, and thousands of other documents and sources. Together, they explain how Banks was so different from the caricature he created for the public. The audiobook tells of Banks' early life in segregated Dallas, his years in the Negro Leagues, and his difficult life after retirement; and it features compelling portraits of Buck O'Neil, Philip K. Wrigley, the Bleacher Bums, the doomed pennant race of 1969, and much more from a long-lost baseball era.

©2019 Ron Rapoport (P)2019 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Charley Steiner
Author: Ron Rapoport
Length: 15 hrs and 31 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Tom Seaver

Tom Seaver

Summary

An authoritative biography of Hall of Fame pitching legend Tom Seaver, still the greatest player ever to wear a Mets jersey, by a journalist who knew him well. He was called Tom Terrific for a reason. Tom Seaver was one of the most talented and popular players in the history of baseball. He is one of only two pitchers with 300 wins, 3,000 strikeouts, and an ERA under 3.00. He was a three-time Cy Young award winner, 12-time All Star, and was elected to baseball’s Hall of Fame with the highest percentage ever at the time. Popular among players and fans, Seaver was fiercely competitive but always put team success ahead of personal glory.  Born in Fresno, California, Seaver signed with the New York Mets in 1967, leading them to their stunning 1969 World Series victory. After a legendarily lopsided trade, he joined the Cincinnati Reds, then later played for the White Sox and the Red Sox before ending his career following the 1986 season. After his playing days, Seaver retired back to California to establish a successful vineyard. Then in 2013, a recurrence of Lyme disease severely affected his memory, which Madden was the first to report. In 2019 Seaver’s family announced that he had been diagnosed with dementia and was withdrawing from public life.  Madden began following Seaver’s career in the 1980s. Seaver came to trust Madden so completely that, eager to return to New York from Chicago, he asked Madden to explore a possible trade to the Yankees, which never materialized. Drawing in part on their long relationship, Madden offers a deeply personal and fascinating portrait of one of the greatest and most admired players of all time.

©2021 Bill Madden. All rights reserved. (P)2021 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.

Narrator: David Marantz
Author: Bill Madden
Length: 9 hrs and 15 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for 1954: The Year Willie Mays and the First Generation of Black Superstars Changed Major League Baseball Forever

1954: The Year Willie Mays and the First Generation of Black Superstars Changed Major League Baseball Forever

Summary

Jackie Robinson heroically broke the color barrier in 1947. But how—and, in practice, when—did the integration of the sport actually occur? Bill Madden shows that baseball’s famous black experiment” did not truly succeed until the coming of age of Willie Mays and the emergence of some star players—Larry Doby, Hank Aaron, and Ernie Banks—in 1954. And as a relevant backdrop off the field, it was in May of that year that the US Supreme Court unanimously ruled, in the case of Brown v. Board of Education, that segregation be outlawed in America’s public schools. Featuring original interviews with key players and weaving together the narrative of one of baseball’s greatest seasons with the racially charged events of that year, 1954 demonstrates how our national pastime—with the notable exception of the Yankees, who represented white supremacy in the game—was actually ahead of the curve in terms of the acceptance of black Americans, while the nation at large continued to struggle with tolerance.

©2014 Bill Madden (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: David Drummond
Author: Bill Madden
Length: 8 hrs and 54 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Game Six

Game Six

1 rating

Summary

Best-selling author Mark Frost takes listeners back to the 1975 World Series in this thrilling account of the greatest baseball game ever played. The Reds and Red Sox endured three soggy days of inactivity to reach game six. But all that downtime could not prepare them for what happened when the skies finally cleared.

©2009 Good Comma Link, Inc. (P)2009 Recorded Books, LLC

Narrator: Andrew Garman
Author: Mark Frost
Length: 13 hrs and 56 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Big Fella

The Big Fella

1 rating

Summary

From Jane Leavy, the award-winning, New York Times best-selling author of The Last Boy and Sandy Koufax, comes the definitive biography of Babe Ruth - the man Roger Angell dubbed "the model for modern celebrity." He lived in the present tense - in the camera’s lens. There was no frame he couldn’t or wouldn’t fill. He swung the heaviest bat, earned the most money, and incurred the biggest fines. Like all the new-fangled gadgets then flooding the marketplace - radios, automatic clothes washers, Brownie cameras, microphones, and loudspeakers - Babe Ruth "made impossible events happen". Aided by his crucial partnership with Christy Walsh - business manager, spin doctor, damage control wizard, and surrogate father, all stuffed into one tightly buttoned double-breasted suit - Ruth drafted the blueprint for modern athletic stardom. His was a life of journeys and itineraries - from uncouth to couth, spartan to spendthrift, abandoned to abandon; from Baltimore to Boston to New York, and back to Boston at the end of his career for a finale with the only team that would have him. There were road trips and hunting trips; grand tours of foreign capitals and post-season promotional tours, not to mention those 714 trips around the bases. After hitting his 60th home run in September 1927 - a total that would not be exceeded until 1961, when Roger Maris did it with the aid of the extended modern season - he embarked on the mother of all barnstorming tours, a three-week victory lap across America, accompanied by Yankee teammate Lou Gehrig. Walsh called the tour a "Symphony of Swat." The Omaha World Herald called it "the biggest show since Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey, and seven other associated circuses offered their entire performance under one tent." In The Big Fella, acclaimed biographer Jane Leavy recreates that 21-day circus and in so doing captures the romp and the pathos that defined Ruth’s life and times.  Drawing from more than 250 interviews, a trove of previously untapped documents, and Ruth family records, Leavy breaks through the mythology that has obscured the legend and delivers the man.

©2018 Jane Leavy (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers

Author: Jane Leavy
Length: 22 hrs and 46 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Steinbrenner

Steinbrenner

Summary

No owner has changed the landscape of sports more than New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner. From the moment he bought the team in 1973 for $10 million, Steinbrenner's monomaniacal pursuit was to restore the most fabled franchise in baseball history to its former glory. Today the New York Yankees are worth more than $1 billion and are once again world champions. Award-winning sportswriter Bill Madden traces Steinbrenner from his early days in Cleveland through his years as a shipping magnate, a Nixon fund-raiser, and a champion horse breeder to the fateful moment when he bought the Yankees, even though his father disparaged George's desire to own a professional sports team as a "hobby". Over the next four decades, Steinbrenner's tumultuous reign included his epic battles with Billy Martin, Reggie Jackson, Dave Winfield, even beloved Yankee captain Derek Jeter. His ruthless and free-spending tactics made him a lightning rod for controversy, but they also paid off: Steinbrenner's Yankees have won seven championships and remain the gold standard in all sports. In the last few years, with his health declining, the Boss ceded control of the team to his sons, but not before lording over the team's historic transition from the House That Ruth Built to the House That George Built. Throughout his three decades of covering the Yankees, Bill Madden has cultivated hundreds of sources at every level in the organization, from the many managers and front-office personnel Steinbrenner has fired to the bat boys who are ever present in the locker room. All of them have colorful stories about the man with whom they have enjoyed a love-hate relationship, but it is the Boss himself whose voice rises above the rest. And when Steinbrenner decided to give his final print interview, he spoke to Madden to set the record straight on his extraordinary life and career.

©2010 Bill Madden (P)2010 HarperCollins Publishers

Narrator: Kerin McCue
Author: Bill Madden
Length: 18 hrs and 37 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ball Four

Ball Four

37 ratings

Summary

Ball Four: The Final Pitch is the original book plus all the updates, unlike the 20th Anniversary Edition paperback. 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. 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. 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.” 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. 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. Today Ball Four has taken on another role--as a time capsule of life in the 60s. "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."

©1970, 1981, 1990 Jim Bouton (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Jim Bouton
Author: Jim Bouton
Length: 18 hrs and 39 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Last Ride of the Iron Horse

Last Ride of the Iron Horse

Summary

Last Ride of the Iron Horse tells the tale of Lou Gehrig's final year in the Yankee lineup, as he dealt with early effects of the deadly disease ALS. For much of the 1938 season, Gehrig - dubbed the Iron Horse for his strength and reliability - struggled with slumps and a mystifying loss of power. Fans booed, and sportswriters called for him to be benched. Then, as the Yankees battled for the pennant in August, Lou began pounding home runs like his old self - a turnaround that in retrospect looks truly miraculous. It may have been a rare case of temporary ALS reversal. Using rare film footage, radio broadcasts, newspapers and interviews, author Dan Joseph chronicles Gehrig's roller coaster of a year. The story begins in Hollywood, where the handsome "Larrupin' Lou" films a Western that would be his only movie. As the year unfolds, he holds out for baseball’s highest salary, battles injuries that would sideline a lesser man, wins his sixth World Series ring, and enters the political arena for the first time, denouncing the rising threat of Nazism. Joseph also answers questions that have long intrigued Gehrig's admirers: When did he sense something was wrong with his body? What were the first signs? How did he adjust? And did he still help the Yankees win the championship, even as his skills declined? The year 1938 would be Gehrig's last hurrah. With his strength fading, he ended his renowned consecutive games streak the following May. A few weeks later, doctors at the Mayo Clinic diagnosed him with ALS. On July 4, the Yankees retired his number in a ceremony at Yankee Stadium. All along, Gehrig showed remarkable courage and grace, never more so than when he told the stadium crowd, "I might have been given a bad break, but I've got an awful lot to live for."

©2019 Sunbury Press, Inc. (P)2021 Beacon Audiobooks

Narrator: Doug Greene
Author: Dan Joseph
Length: 6 hrs and 9 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Progress of the Seasons

The Progress of the Seasons

Summary

This is a book about baseball, our national pastime. The centerpiece is a team that hasn't won the championship for more than eighty years. The Boston Red Sox, however, are only part of the story. The rest turns on thoughts about family and continuity and, of course, the progress of the seasons; something, you'll learn, any reasonably intelligent man or woman is supposed to know about. The Progress of the Seasons confirms what admirers of the author's sparkling accurate prose already know: Higgins is to writing what Ted Williams was to baseball, an all-star. Beginning in 1946, the then eight-year-old author, accompanied by father and grandfather, takes the long train ride out to Fenway Park to find some truth in immortals like Doerr, DiMaggio, York, and Williams (imagine the records Ted Williams would have engraved if he hadn't left the field for World War II and Korea), and, later, Yastremski, Marty Barrett, and many more. Beyond the games, there's a magical moment when George Higgins calls on his own mythic Emily to check the all-time lineup with his deceased forebears. By then you've come to know what the author's values have in common with those in Our Town and why certain professional athletes achieve immortality and others don't. And to think, as Johnny Pesky reminds us, "It's such a simple game...and it's so hard to play."

©1989 George V. Higgins (P)1997 Blackstone Audiobooks

Narrator: Ian Esmo
Length: 7 hrs and 10 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Swing Kings

Swing Kings

2 ratings

Summary

"This is the best baseball book I’ve read in years. Swing Kings is a love letter to small people with big ideas." (Sam Walker, author of The Captain Class) From the Wall Street Journal’s national baseball writer, the captivating story of the home run boom, following a group of players who rose from obscurity to stardom and the rogue swing coaches who helped them usher the game into a new age. We are in a historic era for the home run. The 2019 season saw the most homers ever, obliterating a record set just two years before. It is a shift that has transformed the way the game is played, contributing to more strikeouts, longer games, and what feels like the logical conclusion of the analytics era. In Swing Kings, Wall Street Journal national baseball writer Jared Diamond reveals that the secret behind this unprecedented shift isn’t steroids or the stitching of the baseballs, it’s the most elemental explanation of all: the swing. In this lively narrative romp, he tracks a group of baseball’s biggest stars - including Aaron Judge, J. D. Martinez, and Justin Turner - who remade their swings under the tutelage of a band of renegade coaches, and remade the game in the process. These coaches, many of them baseball washouts who have reinvented themselves as swing gurus, for years were one of the game’s best-kept secrets. Among their ranks are a swimming pool contractor, the owner of a billiards hall, and an ex-hippie whose swing insights draw from surfing and the technique of Japanese samurai. Now, as Diamond artfully charts, this motley cast has moved from the baseball margins to its center of power. They are changing the way hitting is taught to players of all ages, and major league clubs are scrambling for their services, hiring them in record numbers as coaches and consultants. And Diamond himself, whose baseball career ended in high school, enlists the tutelage of each swing coach he profiles, with an aim toward starring in the annual Boston-New York media game at Yankee Stadium. Swing Kings is both a rollicking history of baseball’s recent past and a deeply reported, character-driven account of a battle between opponents as old as time: old and new, change and stasis, the establishment and those who break from it. Jared Diamond has written a masterful chronicle of America’s pastime at the crossroads.

©2020 Jared Diamond (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers

Narrator: Joe Farinacci
Length: 10 hrs and 8 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Science of Hitting

The Science of Hitting

1 rating

Summary

Now on audio for the first time ever! Ted Williams was arguably the greatest pure hitter who ever lived. A lifelong student of hitting, he sought advice from every great hitter - and pitcher - he met. Drawing on that advice, as well as his own legendary life in baseball, Williams produced the all-time batting classic, The Science of Hitting. Using its detailed and concise coaching, players of all skill levels will learn how to improve their fundamentals and gain keen insights into the finer points of hitting, including: How to think like a pitcher and guess the pitch The three cardinal rules for developing a smooth line-driving swing The secrets of hip and wrist action Pitch selection Bunting Hitting the opposite way The Science of Hitting is a must-have for all baseball players looking to improve their turn at bat and for all coaches and parents teaching the sport. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©1971 Ted Williams and John Underwood (P)2020 Simon & Schuster Audio

Length: 2 hrs and 41 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Yankee Years

The Yankee Years

Summary

Twelve straight playoff appearances. Six American League pennants. Four World Series titles. This is the definitive story of a dynasty: the Yankee years. When Joe Torre took over as manager of the New York Yankees in 1996, the most storied franchise in sports had not won a World Series title in 18 years. The famously tough and mercurial owner, George Steinbrenner, had fired 17 managers during that span. Torre's appointment was greeted with Bronx cheers from the notoriously brutal New York media, who cited his record as the player and manager who had been in the most Major League games without appearing in a World Series. Twelve tumultuous and triumphant years later, Torre left the team as the most beloved and successful manager in the game. In an era of multimillionaire free agents, fractured clubhouses, revenue-sharing, and off-the-field scandals, Torre forged a team ethos that united his players and made the Yankees, once again, the greatest team in sports. He won over the media with his honesty and class, and was beloved by the fans.

©2009 Joe Torre (P)2009 Random House Audio

Narrator: Tom Verducci
Length: 8 hrs and 48 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Extra 2%

The Extra 2%

2 ratings

Summary

What happens when three financial-industry whiz kids and certified baseball nuts take over an ailing Major League franchise and implement the same strategies that fueled their success on Wall Street? In the case of the 2008 Tampa Bay Rays, an American League championship happens - the culmination of one of the greatest turnarounds in baseball history.

In The Extra 2%, financial journalist and sportswriter Jonah Keri chronicles the remarkable story of one team's Cinderella journey from divisional doormat to World Series contender. By quantifying the game's intangibles, they were able to deliver to Tampa Bay an American League pennant. This is an informative and entertaining case study for any organization that wants to go from worst to first.

©2011 Jonah Keri (P)2011 Dreamscape Media, LLC

Narrator: Lloyd James
Author: Jonah Keri
Length: 9 hrs and 43 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ballpark

Ballpark

1 rating

Summary

From the earliest corrals of the mid-1800s (Union Grounds in Brooklyn was a "saloon in the open air"), to the much mourned parks of the early 1900s (Detroit's Tiger Stadium, Cincinnati's Palace of the Fans), to the stadiums we fill today, Paul Goldberger makes clear the inextricable bond between the American city and America's favorite pastime. In the changing locations and architecture of our ballparks, Goldberger reveals the manifestations of a changing society: the earliest ballparks evoked the Victorian age in their accommodations - bleachers for the riffraff, grandstands for the middle-class; the "concrete donuts" of the 1950s and '60s made plain television's grip on the public's attention; and more recent ballparks, like Baltimore's Camden Yards, signal a new way forward for stadium design and for baseball's role in urban development. Throughout, Goldberger shows us the way in which baseball's history is concurrent with our cultural history: the rise of urban parks and public transportation; the development of new building materials and engineering and design skills. And how the site details and the requirements of the game-the diamond, the outfields, the walls, the grandstands-shaped our most beloved ballparks. A fascinating, exuberant ode to the Edens at the heart of our cities - where dreams are as limitless as the outfields.

©2019 Paul Goldberger (P)2019 Tantor

Length: 11 hrs and 26 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Alou: My Baseball Journey

Alou: My Baseball Journey

1 rating

Summary

Growing up in a tiny shack in the Dominican Republic, Felipe Alou never dreamed he would be the first man to go from his country to play and manage in Major League Baseball and also the first to play in the World Series. Today, the Dominican Republic produces more Major League players than any country outside the United States.

In this extraordinary autobiography, Alou tells of his real dream: to become a doctor. An uncle was funding his university education when an improbable turn of events intervened at the 1955 Pan American Games. There as a track and field athlete, Alou was pressed into service on the baseball field to replace a player sent home for disciplinary reasons. A scout noticed Alou and offered him two hundred pesos to sign a pro contract. Battling racism in the United States and political turmoil in his home country, Alou persevered, paving the way for younger brothers Matty and Jesús and scores of other Dominicans, including his son Moisés. A fourth Alou brother, Juan, might have joined the historic trio if not for the improbable direction his own life took.

Alou played 17 years in the Major Leagues, accumulating more than 2,000 hits and 200 home runs, and then managed another 14 - four with the San Francisco Giants and 10 with the Montreal Expos - where he became the winningest manager in franchise history.

The book is published by University of Nebraska Press. The audiobook will be published by University Press Audiobooks.

©2018 Felipe Alou and Peter Kerasotis; foreword copyright Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska (P)2018 Redwood Audiobooks

Available on Audible
Cover art for They Bled Blue

They Bled Blue

Summary

They Bled Blue is the rollicking yarn of the Los Angeles Dodgers' crazy 1981 season, a watershed campaign that cemented the team's place and reputation as fitting thoroughly within the surrounding LA culture. That it culminated in an unlikely World Series win - during a split season demarcated by a strike, no less - is not even the most interesting thing about this team.  The Dodgers were led by the garrulous Tommy Lasorda, whose office hosted a regular stream of Hollywood royalty. They had Steve Garvey, the first baseman with the movie-star good looks. Garvey was teamed with Ron Cey, Davey Lopes, and Bill Russell in the most durable infield in major league history, with 1981 presenting their final chance to win a championship as a unit. The difference maker was an entirely unexpected 20-year-old nearly straight out of Mexico, with a wild delivery and a screwball as his flippin' out pitch. Fernando Valenzuela didn't speak much English, but his baseball ability broke down cultural barriers and helped fill Dodger Stadium to the brim with a Southern California Latino population that had been thirsting for just such a success story.

©2019 Jason Turbow (P)2019 HighBridge Company

Narrator: Jason Turbow
Author: Jason Turbow
Length: 10 hrs and 3 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Satchel

Satchel

1 rating

Summary

Here is the definitive biography of Satchel Paige, an all-American story of struggle and triumph about the greatest pitcher to ever throw a baseball. In his hometown streets of Mobile, Alabama, Satchel Paige fired rocks with enough power and precision to bring down a bird or a rival gang member. In the Negro Leagues he fine-tuned a pitch so fast that catchers complained it set their mitts on fire. After a young Joe DiMaggio managed a scratch a single off of him, a Yankees scout wired his bosses, "DiMaggio all we hoped he'd be. Hit Satch one for four." But racial discrimination kept the Yankees and every other big-league team from signing Paige until he was 42, when he was voted Rookie of the Year. While many dismissed him as a Stepin Fetchit, if not an Uncle Tom, this book makes clear that Paige was something else entirely, a quiet subversive, defying both Uncle Tom and Jim Crow. He pitched so spectacularly that white writers and fans turned out to watch black baseball. He drew the spotlight first to himself, then to his all-black Kansas City Monarchs, and inevitably to the Monarch's rookie second baseman Jackie Robinson. In the process, Satchel, even more than Jackie, opened the door for African Americans to the national pastime and forever changed his sport and this nation.

©2009 Larry Tye (P)2009 Random House

Narrator: Dominic Hoffman
Author: Larry Tye
Length: 13 hrs and 37 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Up from Adams Street

Up from Adams Street

Summary

Up from Adams Street recounts a boy's coming of age in a whistle-stop town in Illinois. He is the favorite, of whom much is expected, naive to a fault, decked out in high school football gear, dreaming of glory, all 120 pounds of him, perched on the roof of a freight car hurtling toward a bridge over the Mississippi, and into jail for a night. He falls for a girl, becomes the inevitable star-crossed lover, and discovers that the life he wants to live is the life he's living. Isn't it?

©2019 Larry Crane (P)2021 Larry Crane

Narrator: Maxwell Zener
Author: Larry Crane
Length: 9 hrs and 9 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ty Cobb

Ty Cobb

5 ratings

Summary

Finally - a fascinating and authoritative biography of perhaps the most controversial player in baseball history, Ty Cobb.

Ty Cobb is baseball royalty, maybe even the greatest player who ever lived. His lifetime batting average is still the highest of all time, and when he retired in 1928, after twenty-one years with the Detroit Tigers and two with the Philadelphia Athletics, he held more than ninety records. But the numbers don't tell half of Cobb's tale. The Georgia Peach was by far the most thrilling player of the era: "Ty Cobb could cause more excitement with a base on balls than Babe Ruth could with a grand slam," one columnist wrote. When the Hall of Fame began in 1936, he was the first player voted in.

But Cobb was also one of the game's most controversial characters. He got in a lot of fights, on and off the field, and was often accused of being overly aggressive. In his day, even his supporters acknowledged that he was a fierce and fiery competitor. Because his philosophy was to "create a mental hazard for the other man," he had his enemies, but he was also widely admired. After his death in 1961, however, something strange happened: his reputation morphed into that of a monster - a virulent racist who also hated children and women, and was in turn hated by his peers.

How did this happen? Who is the real Ty Cobb? Setting the record straight, Charles Leerhsen pushed aside the myths, traveled to Georgia and Detroit, and re-traced Cobb's journey, from the shy son of a professor and state senator who was progressive on race for his time, to America's first true sports celebrity. In the process, he tells of a life overflowing with incident and a man who cut his own path through his times - a man we thought we knew but really didn't.

©2015 Charles Leerhsen (P)2015 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

Length: 15 hrs and 33 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Big Sexy

Big Sexy

1 rating

Summary

From picking coffee in the Dominican Republic to reaching icon status as a Major League pitcher in America, here is the story of baseball's most colorful player told in his own words Bartolo Colón - also known as Big Sexy - is a baseball icon and one of the most beloved players to ever play the game. In a career spanning 21 years, Colón has won the Cy Young Award and won more games than any other Latin American-born pitcher. But more importantly, Big Sexy has captured the hearts of fans of the game as well as the stars he has played against. Colón plays the game the way it was meant to be. In Big Sexy: In His Own Words, Bartolo Colón opens up as never before. The result is a touching and deeply personal story of a truly unique baseball life.

©2020 Bartolo Colón (P)2020 Blackstone Publishing

Length: 2 hrs and 48 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Big Hair and Plastic Grass

Big Hair and Plastic Grass

3 ratings

Summary

The Bronx Is Burning meets Chuck Klosterman in this wild pop-culture history of baseball's most colorful and controversial decade.  The Major Leagues witnessed more dramatic stories and changes in the 70s than in any other era. The American popular culture and counterculture collided head-on with the national pastime, rocking the once-conservative sport to its very foundations. Outspoken players embraced free agency, openly advocated drug use, and even swapped wives. Controversial owners such as Charlie Finley, Bill Veeck, and Ted Turner introduced Astroturf, prime-time World Series, garish polyester uniforms, and outlandish promotions such as Disco Demolition Night. Hank Aaron and Lou Brock set new heights in power and speed, Reggie Jackson and Carlton Fisk emerged as October heroes, and All-Star characters like Mark "The Bird" Fidrych became pop icons.  For the millions of fans who grew up during this time, and especially those who cared just as much about Oscar Gamble's afro as they did about his average, Big Hair and Plastic Grass serves up a delicious trip down memory lane.

©2019 Dan Epstein (P)2019 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Dan Epstein
Author: Dan Epstein
Length: 12 hrs and 54 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Fall from Grace

Fall from Grace

1 rating

Summary

Considered by Ty Cobb as the "finest natural hitter in the history of the game," "Shoeless Joe" Jackson is ranked with the greatest players to ever step onto a baseball diamond. With a career .356 batting average - which is still ranked third all-time - the man from Pickens County, South Carolina, was on his way to becoming one of the greatest players in the sport's history. That is until the "Black Sox" scandal of 1919, which shook baseball to its core. While many have sympathized with Jackson's ban from baseball (even though he hit .375 during the 1919 World Series), not much is truly known about this quiet slugger. Whether he participated in the throwing of the World Series or not, he is still considered one of the game's best, and many have fought for his induction into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. From the author of Turning the Black Sox White (on Charles Comiskey) and War on the Basepaths (on Ty Cobb), Shoeless Joe tells the story of the incredible life of Joseph Jefferson Jackson. From a mill boy to a baseball icon, author Tim Hornbaker breaks down the rise and fall of "Shoeless Joe," giving an inside look during baseball's Deadball Era, including Jackson's personal point of view of the "Black Sox" scandal, which has never been covered before.

©2016 Tim Hornbaker (P)2017 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

Length: 10 hrs
Available on Audible
Cover art for Dynastic, Bombastic, Fantastic

Dynastic, Bombastic, Fantastic

1 rating

Summary

The Oakland A's of the early 1970s were the most transformative team in baseball history. Never before had an entire organization so collectively traumatized baseball's establishment with its outlandish behavior and business decisions - or with its indisputable winning record: five straight division titles and three straight championships. The high drama that played out on the field was exceeded only by the drama in the clubhouse and front office. But those A's, with their garish uniforms and outlandish facial hair, redefined soon virtually every aspect of the game for coming generations. Under the visionary leadership of Charles O. Finley, the team assembled such luminary figures as Reggie Jackson, Catfish Hunter, Rollie Fingers, and Vida Blue. Finley acted as his own general manager and, with an insatiable need for control, dictated everything from the playlist of the ballpark organist to the menu for the media lounge. The advent of free agency spelled the end of Finley's reign; within two years his dynasty was lost. A sprawling, brawling history of one of the game's most unforgettable teams, Dynastic, Bombastic, Fantastic is a paean to a turbulent yet magical time.

©2017 Jason Turbow (P)2017 HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books

Narrator: Jason Turbow
Author: Jason Turbow
Length: 11 hrs and 25 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Kid

The Kid

Summary

At long last, the epic biography Ted Williams deserves - and that his fans have been waiting for. Williams was the best hitter in baseball history. His batting average of .406 in 1941 has not been topped since, and no player who has hit more than 500 home runs has a higher career batting average. Those totals would have been even higher if Williams had not left baseball for nearly five years in the prime of his career to serve as a Marine pilot in WWII and Korea. He hit home runs farther than any player before him - and traveled a long way himself, as Ben Bradlee, Jr.'s grand biography reveals. Born in 1918 in San Diego, Ted would spend most of his life disguising his Mexican heritage. During his 22 years with the Boston Red Sox, Williams electrified crowds across America - and shocked them, too: His notorious clashes with the press and fans threatened his reputation. Yet while he was a God in the batter's box, he was profoundly human once he stepped away from the plate. His ferocity came to define his troubled domestic life. While baseball might have been straightforward for Ted Williams, life was not. The Kid is biography of the highest literary order, a thrilling and honest account of a legend in all his glory and human complexity. In his final at-bat, Williams hit a home run. Bradlee's marvelous book clears the fences, too. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.

©2013 Ben Bradlee Jr. (P)2013 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Dave Mallow
Length: 35 hrs and 14 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Bullpen Gospels

The Bullpen Gospels

7 ratings

Summary

Upon its release, The Bullpen Gospels was a direct hit to the New York Times best seller list. With comparisons to Jim Boutons’s Ball Four, The Bullpen Gospels is slated to be a classic of the genre. From the humble heights of a Class-A pitcher’s mound to the deflating lows of sleeping on his gun-toting grandmother’s air mattress, veteran reliever Dirk Hayhurst steps out of the bullpen to deliver the best pitch of his career—a raw and unflinching account of his life in the minors. Whether training tarantulas to protect his room from thieving employees in a backwater hotel or absorbing the gentle mockery of some not-quite-starstruck schoolchildren, Hayhurst reveals a side of baseball—and life—rarely seen on ESPN.

©2010 Dirk Hayhurst (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Ray Porter
Length: 10 hrs and 25 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Forgotten League

The Forgotten League

Summary

The greatest baseball players...you've never heard of! Rube Foster, Cool Papa Bell, Monte Irvin, Buck Leonard...they are some of the greatest players to ever play the game. So, why have so few people heard of them? Because they never played in the MLB; they were the heroes of a baseball league often forgotten: the Negro League. This book traces the history of the league from the early days of professional Black baseball and the formation of leagues to post-integration decline. HistoryCaps is an imprint of BookCaps Study Guides. With each book, a brief period of history is recapped. We publish a wide array of topics (from baseball and music to science and philosophy), so check our growing catalog regularly to see our newest books.

©2021 Golgotha Press (P)2021 Golgotha Press

Narrator: Jason Sullivan
Author: Frank Foster
Length: 1 hr and 33 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Opening Day

Opening Day

Summary

April 15, 1947, marked the most important opening day in baseball history. When Jackie Robinson stepped onto the diamond that afternoon at Ebbets Field, he became the first Black man to break into major-league baseball. World War II had just ended. Democracy had triumphed. Now Americans were beginning to press for justice on the home front, and Robinson had a chance to lead the way.   He was an unlikely hero. He had little experience in organized baseball. His swing was far from graceful. And he was assigned to play first base, a position he had never tried before that season. But the biggest concern was his temper. Robinson was an angry man who played an aggressive style of ball. In order to succeed, he would have to control himself in the face of what promised to be a brutal assault by opponents of integration. Drawing on interviews with surviving players, sportswriters, and eyewitnesses, as well as newly discovered material from archives around the country, Jonathan Eig presents a fresh portrait of a ferocious competitor who embodied integration's promise and helped launch the modern civil-rights era. Full of new details and thrilling action, Opening Day brings to life baseball's ultimate story.

©2007 Jonathan Eig (P)2007 Tantor Media Inc.

Narrator: Richard Allen
Author: Jonathan Eig
Length: 12 hrs and 1 min
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ballplayer

Ballplayer

7 ratings

Summary

Atlanta Braves third baseman Chipper Jones - one of the greatest switch-hitters in baseball history - shares his remarkable story while capturing the magic nostalgia that sets baseball apart from every other sport. Before Chipper Jones became an eight-time All-Star who amassed Hall of Fame-worthy statistics during a 19-year career with the Atlanta Braves, he was just a country kid from small-town Pierson, Florida. A kid who grew up playing baseball in the backyard with his dad, dreaming that one day he'd be a major league ballplayer. With his trademark candor and astonishing recall, Chipper Jones tells the story of his rise to the MLB ranks and what it took to stay with one organization his entire career in an era of booming free agency. His journey begins with learning the art of switch-hitting and takes off after the Braves made him the number one overall pick in the 1990 draft, setting him on course to become the linchpin of their lineup at the height of their 14-straight division-title run. Ballplayer takes listeners into the clubhouse of the Braves' extraordinary dynasty, from the climax of the World Series championship in 1995 to the last-gasp division win by the 2005 "Baby Braves", all the while sharing pitch-by-pitch dissections of clashes at the plate with some of the all-time great starters, such as Clemens and Johnson, as well as closers such as Wagner and Papelbon. He delves into his relationships with Bobby Cox and his famous Braves brothers - Maddux, Glavine, Smoltz, among them - and opponents from Cal Ripken Jr. to Barry Bonds. The National League MVP also opens up about his overnight rise to superstardom and the personal pitfalls that came with fame; his spirited rivalry with the New York Mets; his reflections on baseball in the modern era - outrageous money, steroids, and all; and his special last season in 2012. Ballplayer immerses us in the best of baseball, as if we're sitting next to Chipper in the dugout on an endless spring day.

©2017 Chipper Jones (P)2017 Penguin Audio

Available on Audible
Cover art for Smart Baseball

Smart Baseball

5 ratings

Summary

Predictably Irrational meets Moneyball in ESPN veteran writer and statistical analyst Keith Law's iconoclastic look at the numbers game of baseball, proving why some of the most trusted stats are surprisingly wrong, explaining what numbers actually work, and exploring what the rise of Big Data means for the future of the sport. For decades, statistics such as batting average, saves recorded, and pitching won-lost records have been used to measure individual players' and teams' potential and success. But in the past 15 years, a revolutionary new standard of measurement - sabermetrics - has been embraced by front offices in Major League Baseball and among fantasy baseball enthusiasts. But while sabermetrics is recognized as being smarter and more accurate, traditionalists, including journalists, fans, and managers, stubbornly believe that the old way - a combination of outdated numbers and gut instinct - is still the best way. Baseball, they argue, should be run by people, not by numbers. In this informative and provocative book, the renowned ESPN analyst and senior baseball writer demolishes a century's worth of accepted wisdom, making the definitive case against the long-established view. Armed with concrete examples from different eras of baseball history, logic, a little math, and lively commentary, he shows how the allegiance to these numbers - dating back to the beginning of the professional game - is firmly rooted not in accuracy or success but in baseball's irrational adherence to tradition. While Law gores sacred cows, from clutch performers to RBIs to the infamous save rule, he also demystifies sabermetrics, explaining what these "new" numbers really are and why they're vital. He also considers the game's future, examining how teams are using data, from PhDs to sophisticated statistical databases, to build future rosters - changes that will transform baseball and all of professional sports. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2017 Meadow Party LLC (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

Author: Keith Law
Length: 9 hrs and 52 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Big Data Baseball

Big Data Baseball

3 ratings

Summary

Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle was old school and stubborn. But after 20 straight losing seasons and his job on the line, he was ready to try anything. So when he met with GM Neal Huntington in October 2012, they decided to discard everything they knew about the game and instead take on drastic "big data" strategies. Going well beyond the number-crunching of Moneyball, which used statistics found on the back of baseball cards to identify market inefficiencies, the data the Pirates employed was not easily observable. They collected millions of data points on pitches and balls in play, creating a tome of reports that revealed key insights for how to win more games without spending a dime. They discovered that most batters struggled to hit two-seam fastballs, that an aggressive defensive shift on the field could turn more batted balls into outs, and that a catcher's most valuable skill was hidden. Hurdle and Huntington got to work trying to convince the entire Pirates organization and disgruntled fans to embrace these unconventional yet groundbreaking methods. All this led to the end of the longest consecutive run of losing seasons in North American pro sports history. The Pirates' 2013 season is the perfect lens for examining baseball's burgeoning big-data movement. Using flawless reporting, award-winning journalist Travis Sawchik takes you behind the scenes to reveal a game-changing audiobook of miracles and math.

©2015 Travis Sawchik (P)2015 Macmillan Audio

Narrator: Peter Larkin
Length: 8 hrs and 30 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Full Count

Full Count

1 rating

Summary

Met and Yankee All-Star Pitcher David Cone shares lessons from the World Series and beyond in this essential memoir for baseball fans everywhere.  "There was a sense about him and an aura about him. Even when he was in trouble, he carried himself like a pitcher who said, 'I'm the man out here.' And he usually was." (Andy Pettitte on David Cone) To any baseball fan, David Cone was a bold and brilliant pitcher. During his 17-year career, he became a master of the mechanics and mental toughness a pitcher needs to succeed in the major leagues. A five-time All-Star and five-time World champion now gives his full count - balls and strikes, errors and outs - of his colorful life in baseball. From the pitchers he studied to the hitters who infuriated him, Full Count takes listeners inside the mind of a thoughtful pitcher, detailing Cone's passion, composure, and strategies. The audiobook is also filled with never-before-told stories from the memorable teams Cone played on - ranging from the infamous late '80s Mets to the Yankee dynasty of the '90s. Along the way, Full Count offers the lessons baseball taught Cone - from his mistakes as a young and naive pitcher to outwitting the best hitters in the world - one pitch at a time.

©2019 David Cone and Jack Curry (P)2019 Hachette Audio

Narrator: David Cone
Length: 12 hrs and 31 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Lou Gehrig

Lou Gehrig

Summary

"A compelling rumination by a baseball icon and a tragic hero." (Sports Illustrated) The lost memoir from baseball icon Lou Gehrig - a sensational discovery, published for the first time as a book and audiobook. "I guess every youngster who ever tossed a ball or swung a bat has dreams of some day breaking into big league baseball. I know I did...." So begins Lou Gehrig: The Lost Memoir. At the age of 24, Gehrig sat down to write the remarkable story of his life and career. He was one of the most famous athletes in the country, in the midst of a record-breaking season with the legendary 1927 World Series-winning Yankees. In an effort to grow Gehrig’s star, pioneering sports agent Christy Walsh arranged for this tale of baseball greatness to syndicate in several newspapers. Until now, those columns were lost to history. Lou comes alive in his inspiring memoir. It is a heartfelt rags-to-riches tale about a poor kid from New York who became one of the most celebrated ballplayers of all time. Fourteen years after he wrote his account, Lou would tragically die from ALS, a neuromuscular disorder now known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. His poignant autobiography is followed by an insightful biographical essay by Alan D. Gaff, the historian who uncovered this treasure. Here is Lou - Hall of Famer, all-star, and MVP - back at bat.    

©2020 Alan Gaff (P)2020 Simon & Schuster Audio

Author: Alan Gaff
Length: 5 hrs and 35 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Captain

The Captain

4 ratings

Summary

Every spring, Little Leaguers across the country mimic his stance and squabble over the right to wear his number, 2, the next number to be retired by the world’s most famous ball team. Derek Jeter is their hero. He walks in the footsteps of Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, and Mantle, and someday his shadow will loom just as large. Yet he has never been the best player in baseball. In fact, he hasn’t always been the best player on his team. But his intangible grace and Jordanesque ability to play big in the biggest of postseason moments make him the face of the modern Yankee dynasty, and of America’s game. In The Captain, best-selling author Ian O’Connor draws on extensive reporting and unique access to Jeter that has spanned some 15 years to reveal how a biracial kid from Michigan became New York’s most beloved sports figure and the enduring symbol of the steroid-free athlete. O’Connor takes us behind the scenes of a legendary baseball life and career, from Jeter’s early struggles in the minor leagues, when homesickness and errors in the field threatened a stillborn career, to his heady days as a Yankee superstar and prince of the city who squired some of the world’s most beautiful women, to his tense battles with former best friend A-Rod. We also witness Jeter struggling to come to terms with his declining skills and the declining favor of the only organization he ever wanted to play for, leading to a contentious contract negotiation with the Yankees that left people wondering if Jeter might end his career in a uniform without pinstripes. Derek Jeter’s march toward the Hall of Fame has been dignified and certain, but behind that leadership and hero’s grace there are hidden struggles and complexities that have never been explored, until now. As Jeter closes in on 3,000 hits, a number no Yankee has ever touched, The Captain offers an incisive, exhilarating, and revealing new look at one of the game’s greatest players in the gloaming of his career.

©2011 Ian O'Connor (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Nick Pollifrone
Author: Ian O'Connor
Length: 14 hrs and 2 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Last Hero

The Last Hero

1 rating

Summary

In the 34 years since his retirement, Henry Aaron's reputation has only grown in magnitude: he broke existing records (rbis, total bases, extra-base hits) and set new ones (hitting at least 30 home runs per season 15 times, becoming the first player in history to hammer 500 home runs and 3,000 hits). But his influence extends beyond statistics, and at long last here is the first definitive biography of one of baseball's immortal figures. Based on meticulous research and interviews with former teammates, family members, two former presidents, and Aaron himself, The Last Hero chronicles Aaron's childhood in segregated Alabama, his brief stardom in the Negro Leagues, his complicated relationship with celebrity, and his historic rivalry with Willie Mays, all culminating in the defining event of his life: his shattering of Babe Ruths all-time home-run record. Bryant also examines Aaron's more complex second act: his quest to become an important voice beyond the ball field when his playing days had ended, his rediscovery by a public disillusioned with todays tainted heroes, and his disappointment that his career home-run record was finally broken by Barry Bonds during the steroid era, baseball's greatest scandal. Bryant reveals how Aaron navigated the upheavals of his time, fighting against racism while at the same time benefiting from racial progress and how he achieved his goal of continuing Jackie Robinsons mission to obtain full equality for African-Americans, both in baseball and society, while he lived uncomfortably in the public spotlight. Eloquently written, detailed and penetrating, this is a revelatory portrait of a complicated, private man who through sports became an enduring American icon.

©2010 Howard Bryant (P)2010 Random House

Narrator: Dominic Hoffman
Length: 9 hrs and 32 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Bouton

Bouton

3 ratings

Summary

From the day he first stepped into the Yankee clubhouse, Jim Bouton (1939-2019) was the sports world's deceptive revolutionary. Underneath the crew cut and behind the all-American boy-next-door good looks lurked a maverick with a signature style. Whether it was his frank talk about player salaries and mistreatment by management, his passionate advocacy of progressive politics, or his efforts to convince the United States to boycott the 1968 Olympics, Bouton confronted the conservative sports world and compelled it to catch up with a rapidly changing American society. Bouton defied tremendous odds to make the majors, won two games for the Yankees in the 1964 World Series, and staged an improbable comeback with the Braves as a 39-year-old. But it was his fateful 1969 season with the Seattle Pilots and his resulting insider's account, Ball Four, that did nothing less than reintroduce America to its national pastime in a lasting, profound way. In Bouton: The Life of a Baseball Original, Mitchell Nathanson gives listeners a look at Bouton's remarkable life. Based on wide-ranging interviews Nathanson conducted with Bouton, family, friends, and others, he provides an intimate, inside account of Bouton's life.

©2020 Mitchell Nathanson (P)2020 Tantor

Narrator: Barry Abrams
Length: 13 hrs and 55 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Wax Pack

The Wax Pack

3 ratings

Summary

Is there life after baseball? Starting from this simple question, The Wax Pack ends up with something much bigger and unexpected - a meditation on the loss of innocence and the gift of impermanence, for both Brad Balukjian and the former ballplayers he tracked down.  To get a truly random sample of players, Balukjian followed this wildly absurd but fun-as-hell premise: he took a single pack of baseball cards from 1986 (the first year he collected cards), opened it, chewed the nearly 30-year-old gum inside, gagged, and then embarked on a quest to find all the players in the pack. Absurd, maybe, but true. He took this trip solo in the summer of 2015, spanning 11,341 miles through 30 states in 48 days. Balukjian actively engaged with his subjects - taking a hitting lesson from Rance Mulliniks, watching kung fu movies with Garry Templeton, and going to the zoo with Don Carman. In the process of finding all the players but one, he discovered an astonishing range of experiences and untold stories in their post-baseball lives, and he realized that we all have more in common with ballplayers than we think.  While crisscrossing the country, Balukjian retraced his own past, reconnecting with lost loves and coming to terms with his lifelong battle with obsessive-compulsive disorder.

©2020 Brad Balukjian (P)2020 Tantor

Narrator: Brad Balukjian
Length: 9 hrs and 57 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Luckiest Man

Luckiest Man

3 ratings

Summary

Lou Gehrig was the Iron Horse, baseball's strongest and most determined superstar, struck down in his prime by a disease that now bears his name. But who was Lou Gehrig, really?

Lou Gehrig is regarded as the greatest first baseman in baseball history. A muscular but clumsy athlete who grew up in New York City, he idolized his hardworking mother and remained devoted to her all his life. Shy and socially awkward, Gehrig was a misfit on a Yankee team that included drinkers and hell-raisers, most notably Babe Ruth.

Gehrig and Ruth formed the greatest slugging tandem in baseball history. They were the heart of the first great Yankee dynasty. After Ruth's retirement, Gehrig and a young Joe DiMaggio would begin a new era of Yankee dominance. But Luckiest Man reveals that Gehrig was afflicted with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) much sooner than anyone believes, as early as the spring of 1938. Despite the illness, he didn't miss a game that year, keeping intact his astonishing consecutive-games streak, which stood for more than half a century.

In Luckiest Man, Jonathan Eig brings to life a figure whose shyness and insecurity obscured his greatness during his lifetime. Gehrig emerges as more human and more heroic than ever.

©2005 Jonathan Eig (P)2010 Simon and Schuster Audio

Available on Audible
Cover art for Talking on Air

Talking on Air

Summary

Talking on Air: A Broadcaster's Life in Sports highlights the 40-year career of Ken Coleman. The audiobook details a broadcasting life seen not only from inside the booth, but also from inside the minds and throughout the experiences of many of sports' greatest names.

©2000 Ken Coleman and Dan Valenti (P)2014 Audible Inc.

Narrator: Steve Carlson
Length: 8 hrs and 13 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Doc, Donnie, the Kid, and Billy Brawl

Doc, Donnie, the Kid, and Billy Brawl

1 rating

Summary

Never before had both the Yankees and the Mets been in contention for the playoffs so late in the same season. For months New York fans dreamed of the first Subway Series in nearly 30 years, and the Mets and the Yankees vied for their hearts. Despite their nearly identical records, the two teams were drastically different in performance and clubhouse atmosphere. The Mets were a team filled with hard-nosed players who won over New York with their dirty uniforms, curtain calls, after-hours activities, and because, well, they weren't the Yankees. Meanwhile the Yankees featured some of the game's greatest talent. But the Yankees' abundance of talent was easily overshadowed by their dominating owner, George Steinbrenner, whose daily intrusiveness made the 1985 Yankees appear more like a soap opera than a baseball team. While the drama inside the Mets' clubhouse only made the team more endearing to fans, the drama inside the Yankees' clubhouse had the opposite effect. The result was the most attention-grabbing and exciting season New York would see in generations.

©2019 the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska (P)2019 Tantor

Narrator: Kyle Tait
Length: 11 hrs and 6 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Teammates

The Teammates

Summary

More than six years after his death, David Halberstam remains one of this country's most respected journalists and revered authorities on American life and history in the years since WWII. A Pulitzer Prize winner for his groundbreaking reporting on the Vietnam War, Halberstam wrote more than 20 books, almost all of them best sellers. His work has stood the test of time and has become the standard by which all journalists measure themselves. The Teammates is the profoundly moving story of four great baseball players who have made the passage from sports icons - when they were young and seemingly indestructible - to men dealing with the vulnerabilities of growing older. At the core of the audiobook is the friendship of these four very different men - Boston Red Sox teammates Bobby Doerr, Dominic DiMaggio, Johnny Pesky, and Ted Williams - who remained close for more than 60 years. The book starts out in early October 2001, when Dominic DiMaggio and Johnny Pesky begin a 1,300-mile trip by car to visit their beloved friend, Ted Williams, whom they know is dying. Bobby Doerr, the fourth member of this close group - "my guys", Williams used to call them - is unable to join them. This is a book - filled with historical details and first-hand accounts - about baseball and about something more: the richness of friendship.

©2015 David Halberstam (P)2015 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Tate Donovan
Length: 4 hrs and 47 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Curveball

Curveball

1 rating

Summary

The painfully honest and personal story of one of baseball’s most intriguing players. In Curveball, Zito shares his story with honesty and transparency. The ups and the downs. The wins and losses. By sharing his experiences as a man who had everything except happiness, Zito offers listeners a path through adversity and toward a life defined by true success. Despite achieving the kind of fame and fortune that most people only dream about, Barry Zito was plagued by both internal forces and external circumstances that robbed him of any sense of peace - until he finally found a purpose worth living for. Barry explores the twists and turns of his own journey, including: his dad’s constant push and pursuit for excellence, which translated into a toxic father-son relationship, how achieving superstardom in the Major Leagues created crippling fear, the personal destruction brought on by fame and fortune, and the disastrous seasons with the San Francisco Giants, including being benched for the 2010 playoffs and World Series. Zito comes face-to-face with the destructiveness of his own ego - his need to be viewed as the best. He also comes face-to-face with God and with the truth that he was loved no matter what he achieved.  Photos of Zito throughout his career are available in the audiobook companion PDF download. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2019 Barry Zito (P)2019 Thomas Nelson

Narrator: Barry Zito
Length: 7 hrs and 5 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Red Sox Nation

Red Sox Nation

Summary

For baseball enthusiasts everywhere, the names of the greatest Boston Red Sox are synonymous with the game itself: Ted Williams, Babe Ruth, Jimmie Foxx, Lefty Grove, Dom DiMaggio, Carl Yastrzemski, Johnny Damon, and so many more. And no other franchise can claim as many moments that have become indelible parts of baseball’s history: Williams’ last at-bat, Carlton Fisk’s Game 6 home run, Bill Buckner’s fatal error. Red Sox Nation is the finest, most comprehensive history of this storied franchise, told from the point of view of the people who lived it. From every disappointment to each triumph, culminating with the 2004 World Championship, Red Sox Nation takes you into the dugout and onto the field to relive each moment.

©1992, 1997, 2005 Peter Golenbock (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Peter Golenbock
Length: 21 hrs and 24 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Chumps to Champs

Chumps to Champs

1 rating

Summary

The untold story of the time when the New York Yankees were a laughingstock - and how out of that abyss emerged the modern Yankees dynasty, one of the greatest in all of sports The New York Yankees have won 27 world championships and 40 American League pennants, both world records. They have 26 members in the Hall of Fame. Their pinstripe swag is a symbol of "making it" worn across the globe. Yet some 25 years ago, from 1989 to 1992, the Yankees were a pitiful team at the bottom of the standings, sitting on a 14-year World Series drought and a 35 percent drop in attendance. To make the statistics worse, their mercurial, bombastic owner was banned from baseball.  But out of these ashes emerged the modern Yankees dynasty, a juggernaut built on the sly, a brilliant mix of personalities, talent, and ambition. In Chumps to Champs, Pennington reveals a grand tale of revival. Listeners encounter larger-than-life characters like George Steinbrenner and unexplored figures like award-winning manager Buck Showalter, Don Mattingly, and the crafty architect of it all - general manager Gene Michael, who assembled the team's future stars - Rivera, Jeter, Williams, O'Neill, and Pettitte.  Drawing on unique access, Pennington tells a wild and raucous tale.

©2019 Bill Pennington (P)2019 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Length: 13 hrs and 33 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Man in the Crowd

The Man in the Crowd

Summary

The celebrated author of The Game They Played offers a must-have memoir for Yankees fans. For Stanley Cohen, baseball is the prism through which he views the events of the last 70 years. In The Man in the Crowd, Cohen chronicles America’s changing mood and lifestyle from the years of World War II through the silent generation of the 50s, the revolutionary turmoil of the 60s through the social decay of the 70s, the excess of the 80s through the technological transformation of the 90s, up through the sobering uncertainty of the post-9/11 present day. His narrative spans four generations as he recounts in sparkling prose how, for his immigrant father, sports was a means of assimilation into life in the New World; the warmth of watching his son and, later, his grandson both fall heir to his devotion; and how the game of baseball has provided his life with its truest sense of continuity.

©1981 Stanley Cohen. New material copyright © 2012 Stanley Cohen (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Daniel Wallace
Length: 10 hrs and 20 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Year of the Pitcher

The Year of the Pitcher

1 rating

Summary

The Year of the Pitcher 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.   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.

©2017 Sridhar Pappu (P)2018 Tantor

Narrator: Leon Nixon
Length: 12 hrs and 56 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Buzz Saw

Buzz Saw

2 ratings

Summary

The remarkable story of the 2019 World Series champion Washington Nationals told by the Washington Post writer who followed the team most closely. By May 2019, the Washington Nationals - owners of baseball’s oldest roster - had one of the worst records in the majors and just a 1.5 percent chance of winning the World Series. Yet by blending an old-school brand of baseball with modern analytics, they managed to sneak into the playoffs and put together the most unlikely postseason run in baseball history. Not only did they beat the Houston Astros, the team with the best regular-season record, to claim the franchise’s first championship - they won all four games in Houston, making them the first club to ever win four road games in a World Series. "You have a great year, and you can run into a buzz saw," Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg told Washington Post beat writer Jesse Dougherty after the team advanced to the World Series. "Maybe this year we’re the buzz saw." Dougherty followed the Nationals more closely than any other writer in America, and in Buzz Saw he recounts the dramatic year in vivid detail, taking listeners inside the dugout, the clubhouse, the front office, and ultimately the championship parade. Yet he does something more than provide a riveting retelling of the season: He makes the case that while there is indisputable value to Moneyball-style metrics, baseball isn’t just a numbers game. Intangibles like team chemistry, veteran experience, and childlike joy are equally essential to winning. Certainly, no team seemed to have more fun than the Nationals, who adopted the kids’ song "Baby Shark" as their anthem and regularly broke into dugout dance parties. Buzz Saw is just as lively and rollicking - a fitting tribute to one of the most exciting, inspiring teams to ever take the field.

©2020 Jesse Dougherty (P)2020 Simon & Schuster Audio

Length: 9 hrs and 41 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Play Hungry

Play Hungry

1 rating

Summary

A New York Times best seller The inside story of how Pete Rose became one of the greatest and most controversial players in the history of baseball. Pete Rose was a legend on the field. As baseball’s hit king, he shattered records that were thought to be unbreakable. And during the 1970s, he was the leader of the Big Red Machine, the Cincinnati Reds team that dominated the game. But he’s also the greatest player who may never enter the Hall of Fame because of his lifetime ban from the sport. Perhaps no other ballplayer’s story is so representative of the triumphs and tragedies of our national pastime.  In Play Hungry, Rose tells us the story of how, through hard work and sheer will, he became one of the unlikeliest stars of the game. Guided by the dad he idolized, a local sports hero, Pete learned to play hard and always focus on winning. But even with his dad’s guidance, Pete was cut from his team as a teenager - he wasn’t a natural. Rose was determined, though, and never would be satisfied with anything less than success. His relentless hustle and headfirst style would help him overcome his limitations, leading him to one of the most exciting and brash careers in the history of the sport. Play Hungry is Pete Rose’s love letter to the game and an unvarnished story of life on the diamond. One of the icons of a golden age in baseball, he describes just what it was like to hit (or try to hit) a Bob Gibson fastball or a Gaylord Perry spitball, what happened in that infamous collision at home plate during the 1970 All-Star Game, and what it felt like to topple Ty Cobb’s hit record. And he speaks to how he let down his fans, his teammates, and the memory of his dad when he gambled on baseball, breaking the rules of a sport that he loved more than anything else.  Told with candor and wry humor - including tales he’s never told before - Rose’s memoir is his final word on the glories and controversies of his life and, ultimately, a master class in how to succeed when the odds are stacked against you.

©2019 Pete Rose (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Deakins
Author: Pete Rose
Length: 7 hrs and 30 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Ultimate New York Yankees Trivia Book

The Ultimate New York Yankees Trivia Book

Summary

Calling all New York Yankees fans! The Ultimate New York Yankees Trivia Book is a staple for anyone who loves baseball, sports trivia, and the Bronx Bombers. You will be tested on your knowledge of mind-blowing facts from the early days when Babe Ruth, Joe DiMaggio, and Lou Gehrig owned New York, as well as the current era of Bronx baseball led by the likes of Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton. In this audio, you will find answers to over 350 trivia questions as well as hundreds of interesting facts, including: How many times was Billy Martin hired and fired as Yankees manager? (More times than you’d think.) In Derek Jeter’s junior high yearbook, students were asked to write what they planned to be doing in 10 years. Jeter answered, “Playing shortstop for the New York Yankees.” In a high school football game, former Yankee Johnny Damon suffered his first sports concussion at the hands of which NFL star? Back in 1998, former Yankee Alex Rodriguez was asked by a reporter who his dream date would be with. His answer? Jennifer Lopez. And 22 years later, J-Lo and A-Rod are currently engaged to be married. Who threw the Yankees’ very first no-hitter in 1917? Whether you’re a lifelong Yanks fan or are simply looking to hit one out of the park on MLB Trivia Night at your local bar, The Ultimate New York Yankees Trivia Book is a grand slam.

©2020 HRP House (P)2021 HRP House

Narrator: Scott Miller
Author: Ray Walker
Length: 4 hrs and 23 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Phenomenon

The Phenomenon

1 rating

Summary

Rick Ankiel had the talent to be one of the best pitchers ever. Then, one day, he lost it. The Phenomenon is the story of how St. Louis Cardinals prodigy Rick Ankiel lost his once-in-a-generation ability to pitch - due not to an injury or a bolt of lightning but to a mysterious anxiety condition widely known as "the Yips". It came without warning in the middle of a playoff game, with millions of people watching. And it has never gone away. Yet the true test of Ankiel's character came not on the mound but in the long days and nights that followed, as he searched for a way to get back in the game. For four and a half years, he fought the Yips with every arrow in his quiver: psychotherapy, medication, deep-breathing exercises, self-help books, and, eventually, vodka. And then, after reconsidering his whole life at the age of 25, Ankiel made an amazing turnaround, returning to the Major Leagues as a hitter and playing seven successful seasons. This book is an incredible story about a universal experience - pressure - and what happened when a person on the brink had to make a choice about who he was going to be.

©2017 Rick Ankiel (P)2017 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Rick Ankiel
Author: Rick Ankiel
Length: 6 hrs and 28 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Homegrown

Homegrown

2 ratings

Summary

The captivating inside story of the historic 2018 Boston Red Sox, as told through the assembly and ascendancy of their talented young core - the culmination of nearly a decade of reporting from one of the most respected baseball writers in the country. The 2018 season was a coronation for the Boston Red Sox. The best team in Major League Baseball - indeed, one of the best teams ever - the Sox won 108 regular season games and then romped through the postseason, going 11-3 against the three next-strongest teams baseball had to offer. As Boston Globe baseball reporter Alex Speier reveals, the Sox’ success wasn’t a fluke - nor was it guaranteed. It was the result of careful, patient planning and shrewd decision-making that allowed Boston to develop a golden generation of prospects - and then build upon that talented core to assemble a juggernaut. Speier has covered the key players - Mookie Betts, Andrew Benintendi, Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers, Jackie Bradley Jr., and many others - since the beginning of their professional careers, as they rose through the minor leagues and ultimately became the heart of this historic championship squad. Drawing upon hundreds of interviews and years of reporting, Homegrown is the definitive look at the construction of an extraordinary team. It is a story that offers startling insights for baseball fans of any team, and anyone looking for the secret to building a successful organization. Why do many highly touted prospects fail, while others rise out of obscurity to become transcendent? How can franchises help their young talent, in whom they’ve often invested tens of millions of dollars, reach their full potential? And how can management balance long-term aims with the constant pressure to win now? Part insider’s account of one of the greatest baseball teams ever, part meditation on how to build a winner, Homegrown offers an illuminating look into how the best of the best are built. 

©2019 Alex Speier (P)2019 HarperAudio

Narrator: George Newbern
Author: Alex Speier
Length: 10 hrs and 34 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Dalko

Dalko

Summary

Gripping and tragic, Dalko is the definitive story of Steve “White Lightning” Dalkowski, baseball’s fastest pitcher ever. Dalko explores one man’s unmatched talent on the mound and the forces that kept ultimate greatness always just beyond his reach. For the first time, Dalko: The Untold Story of Baseball’s Fastest Pitcher unites all of the eyewitness accounts from the coaches, analysts, teammates, and professionals who witnessed the game’s fastest pitcher in action. In doing so, it puts listeners on the fields and at the plate to hear the buzzing fastball of a pitcher fighting to achieve his major league ambitions. Just three days after his high school graduation in 1957, Steve Dalkowski signed into the Baltimore Orioles system. Poised for greatness, he might have risen to be one of the stars in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Instead, he spent his entire career toiling away in the minor leagues. An inspiration for the character Nuke LaLoosh in the classic baseball film Bull Durham, Dalko’s life and story were as fast and wild as the pitches he threw. The late Orioles manager Earl Weaver, who saw baseball greats Nolan Ryan and Sandy Koufax pitch, said: “Dalko threw harder than all of ‘em.” Cal Ripken Sr., Dalkowski’s catcher for several years, said the same. Bull Durham screenwriter Ron Shelton, who played with Dalkowski in the minor leagues, said: “They called him “Dalko”, and guys liked to hang with him and women wanted to take care of him, and if he walked in a room in those days, he was probably drunk.” This force on the field that could break chicken wire backstops and wooden fences with his heat but racked up almost as many walks as strikeouts in his career, spent years of drinking all night and showing up on the field the next day, just in time to show his wild heat again.

©2020 Influence Publishers (P)2020 Influence Publishers

Narrator: Michael Beck
Length: 8 hrs and 47 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Sandy Koufax

Sandy Koufax

1 rating

Summary

No immortal in the history of baseball retired so young, so well, or so completely as Sandy Koufax. After compiling a remarkable record from 1962 to 1966 that saw him lead the National League in ERA all five years, win three Cy Young awards, and pitch four no-hitters including a perfect game, Koufax essentially disappeared. Save for his induction into the Hall of Fame and occasional appearances at the Dodgers training camp, Koufax has remained unavailable, unassailable, and unsullied, in the process becoming much more than just the best pitcher of his generation. He is the Jewish boy from Brooklyn, who refused to pitch the opening game of the 1965 World Series on Yom Kippur, defining himself as a man who placed faith over fame. This act made him the standard to which Jewish parents still hold their children. Except for his autobiography (published in 1966), Koufax has resolutely avoided talking about himself. But through sheer doggedness that even Koufax came to marvel at, Jane Leavy was able to gain his trust to the point where they talked regularly over the three years Leavy reported her book. With Koufax's blessing, Leavy interviewed nearly every one of his former teammates, opponents, and friends, and emerged with a portrait of the artist that is as thorough and stylish as was his command on the pitching mound.

©2002 Jane Leavy (P)2003 HarperCollins

Narrator: Charley Steiner
Author: Jane Leavy
Length: 9 hrs and 53 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Last Hero

The Last Hero

4 ratings

Summary

In the 34 years since his retirement, Henry Aaron's reputation has only grown in magnitude: he broke existing records (rbis, total bases, extra-base hits) and set new ones (hitting at least 30 home runs per season15 times, becoming the first player in history to hammer 500 home runs and 3000 hits). But his influence extends beyond statistics, and at long last here is the first definitive biography of one of baseball's immortal figures. Based on meticulous research and interviews with former teammates, family, two former presidents, and Aaron himself, The Last Hero chronicles Aaron's childhood in segregated Alabama, his brief stardom in the Negro Leagues, his complicated relationship with celebrity, and his historic rivalry with Willie Mays - all culminating in the defining event of his life: his shattering of Babe Ruth's all-time home-run record. Bryant also examines Aaron's more complex second act: his quest to become an important voice beyond the ball field when his playing days had ended, his rediscovery by a public disillusioned with today's tainted heroes, and his disappointment that his career home-run record was finally broken by Barry Bonds during the steroid era, baseball's greatest scandal. Bryant reveals how Aaron navigated the upheavals of his time fighting against racism while at the same time benefiting from racial progress, and how he achieved his goal of continuing Jackie Robinson's mission to obtain full equality for African-Americans, both in baseball and society, while he lived uncomfortably in the public spotlight. Eloquently written, detailed and penetrating, this is a revelatory portrait of a complicated, private man who through sports became an enduring American icon.

©2010 Howard Bryant (P)2010 Random House

Narrator: Dominic Hoffman
Length: 21 hrs and 49 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Clemente

Clemente

Summary

Anyone who saw Roberto Clemente, as he played with a beautiful fury, will never forget him. He was a work of art in a game too often defined by statistics. During his career with the Pittsburgh Pirates, he won four batting titles and led his team to championships in 1960 and 1971, getting a hit in all 14 World Series games in which he played. His career ended with 3,000 hits, the magical 3,000th coming in his final at-bat, and he and the immortal Lou Gehrig are the only players to have the five-year waiting period waived so they could be enshrined in the Hall of Fame immediately after their deaths. There is delightful baseball here, including thrilling accounts of the two World Series victories of Clemente's underdog Pittsburgh Pirates, but this is far more than just another baseball book. Roberto Clemente was that rare athlete who rose above sports to become a symbol of larger themes. Born near the canebrakes of rural Carolina, Puerto Rico, on August 18, 1934, at a time when there were no blacks or Puerto Ricans playing organized ball in the United States, Clemente went on to become the greatest Latino player in the major leagues. He was, in a sense, the Jackie Robinson of the Spanish-speaking world, a ballplayer of determination, grace, and dignity who paved the way and set the highest standard for waves of Latino players who followed in later generations and who now dominate the game. The Clemente that Maraniss evokes was an idiosyncratic character who, unlike so many modern athletes, insisted that his responsibilities extended beyond the playing field. In his final years, his motto was that if you have a chance to help others and fail to do so, you are wasting your time on this earth.

©2006 David Maraniss (P)2006 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved. Audioworks is an imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division

Narrator: David Maraniss
Length: 5 hrs and 44 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for 24

24

1 rating

Summary

The instant New York Times best seller The legendary Willie Mays shares the inspirations and influences responsible for guiding him on and off the field in this reflective and inspirational memoir. "Even if, like me, you thought you had pretty much read and heard all there was to read and hear about Willie Mays, this warmhearted book will inform and reward you. And besides, what true baseball fan can ever get enough of Willie Mays? Say Hey! Read on and enjoy." (From the Foreword by Bob Costas) "It’s because of giants like Willie that someone like me could even think about running for President." (President Barack Obama) This program includes a bonus conversation between the authors. Widely regarded as the greatest all-around player in baseball history because of his unparalleled hitting, defense and baserunning, the beloved Willie Mays offers people of all ages his lifetime of experience meeting challenges with positivity, integrity and triumph in 24: Life Stories and Lessons from the Say Hey Kid. Presented in 24 chapters to correspond with his universally recognized uniform number, Willie’s memoir provides more than the story of his role in America’s pastime. This is the story of a man who values family and community, engages in charitable causes especially involving children, and follows a philosophy that encourages hope, hard work, and the fulfillment of dreams. "I was very lucky when I was a child. My family took care of me and made sure I was in early at night. I didn’t get in trouble. My father made sure that I didn’t do the wrong thing. I’ve always had a special place in my heart for children and their well-being, and John Shea and I got the idea that we should do something for the kids and the fathers and the mothers, and that’s why this book is being published. We want to reach out to all generations and backgrounds. Hopefully, these stories and lessons will inspire people in a positive way." (Willie Mays) A Macmillan Audio production from St. Martin's Press

©2019 Willie Mays and John Shea (P)2019 Macmillan Audio

Length: 11 hrs and 3 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Alma de campeon

Alma de campeon

Summary

En 2007, Mike Lowell, el jugador de tercera base de los Red Sox, llevó a su equipo a ganar la Serie Mundial por segunda vez en cuatro años. Para lograrlo, tuvo que vencer una multitud de obstáculos.Cómo pudo triunfar es una gran historia de superación, un modelo a seguir ante la adversidad que ha experimentado a lo largo de su vida Mike Lowell, y el éxito al ser unos de los mejores jugadores de beisbol de los últimos tiempos. Este libro resulta ser un relato muy conmovedor y entusiasta, narrándonos cómo pasó su niñez en Puerto Rico, pasando por los altibajos dentro de su carrera en el deporte profesional y hasta la batalla contra el cáncer, lo que lo ha llevado a ser un ser humano excepcional y ejemplo para milliones de personas. Please note: This audiobook is in Spanish.

©2008 Mike Lowell y Rob Bradford Prefacio, Josh Beckett (P)2009 Recorded Books, LLC

Narrator: Frank Rodriguez
Author: Mike Lowell
Length: 7 hrs and 39 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for If These Walls Could Talk

If These Walls Could Talk

Summary

A New York Times Sports and Fitness Best Seller The Boston Red Sox are one of the most iconic teams in Major League Baseball, with nine World Series championships and countless greats who have donned the Sox uniform. In If These Walls Could Talk: Stories from the Boston Red Sox Dugout, Locker Room, and Press Box, former player and longtime broadcaster Jerry Remy provides insight into the team's inner sanctum as only he can. Listeners will gain the perspective of players, coaches, and personnel in moments of greatness as well as defeat, making for a keepsake no fan will want to miss.

©2019 Jerry Remy and Nick Cafardo (P)2019 Tantor

Narrator: Joe Barrett
Length: 6 hrs and 7 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Rothstein

Rothstein

Summary

The model for The Great Gatsby's Meyer Wolfsheim and Nathan Detroit from Guys and Dolls, Arnold Rothstein was an underworld genius, racketeer, rumrunner, and mastermind who, as F. Scott Fitzgerald observed, played "with the faith of 15 million people with the single-mindedness of a burglar blowing a safe." Jazz Age Broadway, with its thugs, speakeasies, showgirls, political movers and shakers, and sports heroes comes to life in this vibrant biography of the man who reigned supreme when the fast buck ruled and violence stalked the streets of Gotham.

©2003 David Pietrusza (P)2003 Blackstone Audiobooks

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Length: 13 hrs and 52 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ahead of the Curve

Ahead of the Curve

3 ratings

Summary

Most people who resist logical thought in baseball preach "tradition" and "respecting the game". But many of baseball's traditions go back to the 19th century, when the pitcher's job was to provide the batter with a ball he could hit and fielders played without gloves. Instead of fearing change, Brian Kenny wants fans to think critically, reject outmoded groupthink, and embrace the changes that have come with the "sabermetric era". In his entertaining and enlightening book, Kenny discusses why the pitching win-loss record, the Triple Crown, fielding errors, and so-called battling titles should be ignored. Kenny also points out how fossilized sportswriters have been electing the wrong MVPs and ignoring legitimate candidates for the Hall of Fame; why managers are hired based on their looks; and how the most important position in baseball may just be "director of decision sciences". Ahead of the Curve debunks the old way of analyzing baseball and ushers in a new era of straightforward logic. Illustrated with unique anecdotes from those who have reshaped the game, it's a must-listen for fans, players, managers, and fantasy enthusiasts.

©2016 Brian Kenny (P)2016 Tantor

Narrator: Brian Kenny
Author: Brian Kenny
Length: 10 hrs and 9 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Glory of Their Times

The Glory of Their Times

2 ratings

Summary

Baseball's Golden Age comes alive through the voices of men who were there. Selected from the original tapes on which Lawrence S. Ritter based his classic book of baseball history, The Glory of Their Times is a collection of wonderful tales that paint a vivid and evocative picture of a lively young America and the giants who starred on her ballfields, legends like Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Honus Wagner, Walter Johnson, and many others. From the wildly hilarious to the achingly poignant, these stories tell it like it really was.

©1998 Lawrence S. Ritter (P)1998 Neal McCabe, Henry W. Thomas, and Lawrence S. Ritter; 1961 -65 National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum Inc. and the University of Notre Dame Library Recording; 16 9

Available on Audible
Cover art for Baseball Forever!

Baseball Forever!

Summary

John Miley has compiled the most comprehensive audio account of baseball history in existence - a vast and wildly entertaining assemblage of game tapes from throughout the sport's history. His archive contains classic moments, like Bill Mazeroski's homer and the Shot Heard 'Round the World, and amazing feats, like Carl Hubbell striking out Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmy Foxx, Al Simmons, and Joe Cronin - in order - in the 1934 All-Star Game. Narrated by Bob Costas, Baseball Forever! brings you highlights from Miley's collection, with numerous clips available for the first time since their original transmission. Best-selling author Jason Turbow (The Baseball Codes) mines the archive with Miley himself, taking us to some of baseball's greatest settings - Yankee Stadium, Ebbetts Field, Fenway Park - while guided by the game's legendary broadcasters, like Mel Allen, Red Barber, Harry Caray, and Vin Scully. Miley and Turbow have carefully selected an abundance of highlights for Baseball Forever! that is sure to inform, entertain, and appeal to anybody nostalgic for baseball’s storied history.

©2013 Jason Turbow. All rights reserved. (P)2013 AudioGO

Narrator: Bob Costas
Length: 4 hrs and 15 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Fair Ball

Fair Ball

1 rating

Summary

From his perspective as a journalist and a true fan, Bob Costas, NBC's award-winning broadcaster, shares his views on the forces that are diminishing the appeal of Major League Baseball and proposes realistic changes that can be made to protect and promote the game's best interests. In this cogent - and provocative - book, Costas examines the growing financial disparities that have resulted in nearly two-thirds of the teams in Major League Baseball having virtually no chance of contending for the World Series. He argues that those who run baseball have missed the crucial difference between mere change and real progress. And he presents a withering critique of the positions of both the owners and players while providing insights on the wild-card system, the designated-hitter rule, and interleague play. Costas answers each problem he cites with an achievable strategy for restoring genuine competition and rescuing fans from the forces that have diluted the sheer joy of the game. Balanced by Costas's unbridled appreciation for what he calls the "moments of authenticity" that can still make baseball inspiring, Fair Ball offers a vision of our national pastime as it can be, a game that retains its traditional appeal while initiating meaningful changes that will allow it to thrive into the next century.

©2000 Bob Costas (P)2000 Random House, Inc.

Narrator: Bob Costas
Author: Bob Costas
Length: 3 hrs and 34 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Fifty-Nine in '84

Fifty-Nine in '84

Summary

In 1884, Providence Grays pitcher Charles "Old Hoss" Radbourn won an astounding 59 games - more than anyone in major-league history ever had before, or has since. He then went on to win all three games of baseball's first World Series. Fifty-nine in '84 tells the dramatic story not only of that amazing feat of grit but also of big-league baseball two decades after the Civil War - a brutal, bloody sport played barehanded, the profession of uneducated, hard-drinking men who thought little of cheating outrageously or maiming an opponent to win. It is the tale, too, of the woman Radbourn loved, Carrie Stanhope, the alluring proprietress of a boarding-house with shady overtones, a married lady who was said to have personally known every man in the National League. Wonderfully entertaining, Fifty-nine in '84 is an indelible portrait of a legendary player and a fascinating, little-known era of the national pastime.

©2010 Edward Achorn (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Ax Norman
Length: 11 hrs and 58 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Bill Veeck

Bill Veeck

2 ratings

Summary

William Louis 'Bill' Veeck, Jr. (1914-1986) is legendary in many ways - baseball impresario and innovator, independent spirit, champion of civil rights in a time of great change. Paul Dickson has written the first full biography of this towering figure, in the process rewriting many aspects of his life and bringing alive the history of America's pastime. In his late 20s, Veeck bought into his first team, the American Association Milwaukee Brewers. After serving and losing a leg in WWII, he bought the Cleveland Indians in 1946, and a year later broke the color barrier in the American League by signing Larry Doby, a few months after Jackie Robinson - showing the deep commitment he held to integration and equal rights. Cleveland won the World Series in 1948, but Veeck sold the team for financial reasons the next year. He bought a majority of the St. Louis Browns in 1951, sold it three years later, then returned in 1959 to buy the other Chicago team, the White Sox, winning the American League pennant his first year. Ill health led him to sell two years later, only to gain ownership again, 1975-1981. Veeck's promotional spirit - the likes of clown prince Max Patkin and midget Eddie Gaedel are inextricably connected with him - and passion endeared him to fans, while his feel for the game led him to propose innovations way ahead of their time, and his deep sense of morality not only integrated the sport but helped usher in the free agency that broke the stranglehold owners had on players. (Veeck was the only owner to testify in support of Curt Flood during his landmark free agency case). Bill Veeck: Baseball's Greatest Maverick is a deeply insightful, powerful biography of a fascinating figure. It will take its place beside the recent bestselling biographies of Satchel Paige and Mickey Mantle, and will be the baseball book of the season in Spring 2012.

©2012 Paul Dickson (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Dan John Miller
Author: Paul Dickson
Length: 14 hrs and 46 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Wit and Wisdom of Yogi Berra

The Wit and Wisdom of Yogi Berra

Summary

In The Wit and Wisdom of Yogi Berra, author Phil Pepe takes Yogi from St. Louis to New York's Yankee Stadium and Shea Stadium, including all the stops along the way - from the days he put soles on women's shoes to his induction into the Baseball's Hall of Fame, when he coined one of his most remembered phrases: "I thank everybody for making this day necessary." Phil Pepe explores Yogi Berra as a boy, player, hero, coach, manager, husband, and father, a buffoon and a human being. He relates all of the Berraisms in an absorbing treatment that is simultaneously comical, thoughtful, and biographical. Who can forget what Yogi said about a popular restaurant: "Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded." Or Yogi's take on Little League Baseball? "I think it's wonderful. It keeps the kids out of the house."

©1974, 1988, 2002 Associated Features, Inc. (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Phil Pepe
Author: Phil Pepe
Length: 4 hrs and 18 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for 42 Faith

42 Faith

1 rating

Summary

Jackie Robinson, Branch Rickey, and the hidden hand of God that changed history Journalist and baseball lover Ed Henry reveals for the first time the backstory of faith that guided Jackie Robinson into not only the baseball record books but the annals of civil rights advancement as well. Through recently discovered sermons, interviews with Robinson's family and friends, and even an unpublished book by the player himself, Henry details a side of Jackie's humanity that few have taken the time to see. Branch Rickey, the famed owner who risked it all by signing Jackie to his first contract, is also shown as a complex individual who wanted nothing more than to make his God-fearing mother proud of him. Few know the level at which Rickey struggled with his decision, moving forward only after a private meeting with a minister he'd just met. It turns out Rickey was not as certain about signing Robinson as historians have always assumed. With many baseball stories to enthrall even the most ardent enthusiast, 42 Faith also digs deep into why Jackie was the man he was and what both drove him and challenged him after his retirement. From his early years before baseball to his time with Rickey and the Dodgers to his failing health in his final years, we see a man of faith that few have recognized. This book will add a whole new dimension to Robinson's already awe-inspiring legacy. Yes, Jackie and Branch are both still heroes long after their deaths. Now we learn more fully than ever before there was an assist from God, too.

©2017 Ed Henry (P)2017 Thomas Nelson

Narrator: Ed Henry
Author: Ed Henry
Length: 9 hrs and 14 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Driving Mr. Yogi

Driving Mr. Yogi

Summary

It happens every spring. Yankees pitching great Ron Guidry arrives at the Tampa airport to pick up Hall of Fame catcher and national treasure Yogi Berra. Guidry drives him to the ballpark. They watch the young players. They talk shop. They eat dinner together and tease each other mercilessly. They trade stories about the greats they have met along the way. And the next day they do the same thing all over again.As every former ballplayer can appreciate, in that routine, every spring, there emerges a certain magic. Driving Mr. Yogia is the story of how a unique friendship between a pitcher and catcher is renewed every year. It began in 1999, when Berra was reunited with the Yankees after a long self- exile, the result of being unceremoniously fired by George Steinbrenner 14 years before. A reconciliation between Berra and the Boss meant that Berra would attend spring training again. Guidry befriended “Mr. Yogi” instantly. After all, Berra had been a mentor in the clubhouse back when Guidry was pitching for the Yankees. Guidry knew the young players would benefit greatly from Mr. Yogi’s encyclopedic knowledge of the game, just as Guidry had during his playing days. So he encouraged him to share his insights. Soon, an offhand batting tip from Mr. Yogi turned Nick Swisher’s season around. Stories about handling a hitter like Ted Williams or catching Don Larsen’s perfect game captured the players’ imagination. And in Yogi, Guidry found not just an elder companion or source of amusement – he found a best friend. By turns tender and laugh-out-loud funny, and teeming with unforgettable baseball yarns that span more than 50 years, Driving Mr. Yogi is a universal story about the importance of wisdom being passed from one generation to the next, as well as a reminder that time is what we make of it and compassion never gets old.

©2012 Harvey Araton (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Peter Berkrot
Length: 7 hrs and 23 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Moneyball

Moneyball

100 ratings

Summary

Moneyball is a quest for something as elusive as the Holy Grail, something that money apparently can't buy: the secret of success in baseball. The logical places to look would be the giant offices of major league teams and the dugouts. But the real jackpot is a cache of numbers collected over the years by a strange brotherhood of amateur baseball enthusiasts: software engineers, statisticians, Wall Street analysts, lawyers, and physics professors. In a narrative full of fabulous characters and brilliant excursions into the unexpected, Lewis shows us how and why the new baseball knowledge works. He also sets up a sly and hilarious morality tale: Big Money, like Goliath, is always supposed to win.... How can we not cheer for David?

©2004 Michael Lewis (P)2012 Audible Ltd

Narrator: Scott Brick
Length: 10 hrs and 26 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Last Natural

The Last Natural

Summary

Before Bryce Harper was the top pick in the Major League Baseball draft, before he signed the sport’s biggest contract ever for a first-year pro, he gambled his future on one make-or-break season. The Las Vegas High School sophomore had already dominated the competition like Mickey Mantle on the playground and appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated, which dubbed him the "most exciting prodigy since LeBron James". Seeking greater tests as a hitter, the precocious phenom got his GED and enrolled at the College of Southern Nevada, where he could face pro prospects in a challenging wooden-bat league that prohibited the hitter-friendly aluminum bats used throughout college ball. Harper shattered the school’s home run record with 31 (the previous mark was 12) and compiled a startling 1.513 OPS while leading his team to the Junior College World Series. For his heroics, the 17-year-old became the only position player from a junior college to win the Golden Spikes Award, given to the nation’s best amateur baseball player. Las Vegas sportswriter Rob Miech was "embedded" with the Southern Nevada Coyotes team and brings us along for the ride - into the dugout and locker room and on team buses and in motel rooms, from the scorched fields to the snow-capped horizons of the Scenic West Athletic Conference - to deliver a warts-and-all account of a boy among men playing like a man among boys. Amid the media circus that descended upon team and town, we read fascinating personal stories including the dynamics between veteran coach Tim Chambers and Harper’s protective father, the camaraderie with - and jealousies of - other players, the fans and autograph seekers (and girls) who all want a piece of the young star, and how Harper is suspended from the World Series after protesting an umpire’s call, and the role his faith plays in his life. The Last Natural shows us a season in the life of baseball’s top rising star, culminating in a dramatic conclusion when Harper is drafted number-one by the Washington Nationals and, after tense negotiations that go up until just seconds before the midnight deadline, signs a $9.9 million contract. Even more than this, Miech’s book is the story of a team and its community, the hopes and aspirations of its players and coaches, and the spirit of pure baseball that lies at the heart of the American dream.

©2012 Rob Miech (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: David Marantz
Author: Rob Miech
Length: 12 hrs and 40 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Iowa Baseball Confederacy

The Iowa Baseball Confederacy

1 rating

Summary

Gideon Clarke is a man on a quest. He is out to prove to the world, as his father tried before him, that the world-champion Chicago Cubs traveled to Onamata, Iowa, in the summer of 1908 for an exhibition game against all-stars from the Iowa Baseball Confederacy, an amateur league. The game, which was to be short, pleasant, and the Cubs thought, one-sided, turned into a titanic battle of over 2,000 innings, played mostly in the pouring rain. This game is not on the record books. No one remembers it or the Confederacy. But Gideon Clarke knows it happened, and he is determined to set the record straight. Like in his previous novel, Shoeless Joe, which was the basis for the movie Field of Dreams, Kinsella creates “a loving mixture of baseball, life and fantasy, in a world where dreams don't have to come true, because they have a validity all their own” (Publishers Weekly).

©1986 W.P. Kinsella (P)2000 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Grover Gardner
Length: 8 hrs and 24 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Dalko

Dalko

Summary

Gripping and tragic, Dalko is the definitive story of Steve “White Lightning” Dalkowski, baseball’s fastest pitcher ever. Dalko explores one man’s unmatched talent on the mound and the forces that kept ultimate greatness always just beyond his reach.  For the first time, Dalko: The Untold Story of Baseball’s Fastest Pitcher unites all of the eyewitness accounts from the coaches, analysts, teammates, and professionals who witnessed the game’s fastest pitcher in action. In doing so, it puts listeners on the fields and at the plate to hear the buzzing fastball of a pitcher fighting to achieve his major league ambitions.  Just three days after his high school graduation in 1957, Steve Dalkowski signed into the Baltimore Orioles system. Poised for greatness, he might have risen to be one of the stars in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Instead, he spent his entire career toiling away in the minor leagues. An inspiration for the character Nuke LaLoosh in the classic baseball film Bull Durham, Dalko’s life and story were as fast and wild as the pitches he threw.  The late Orioles manager Earl Weaver, who saw baseball greats Nolan Ryan and Sandy Koufax pitch, said “Dalko threw harder than all of ‘em.” Cal Ripken Sr., Dalkowski’s catcher for several years, said the same. Bull Durham screenwriter Ron Shelton, who played with Dalkowski in the minor leagues, said “They called him 'Dalko' and guys liked to hang with him and women wanted to take care of him and if he walked in a room in those days he was probably drunk.” This force on the field that could break chicken wire backstops and wooden fences with his heat but racked up almost as many walks as strikeouts in his career, spent years of drinking all night and showing up on the field the next day, just in time to show his wild heat again.  What the Washington Post called “baseball’s greatest what-if story” is one of a superhuman, once-in-a-generation gift, a near-mythical talent that refused to be tamed. Steve Dalkowski will forever be remembered for his remarkable arm. Said Shelton, “In his sport, he had the equivalent of Michaelangelo’s gift but could never finish a painting.” Dalko is the story of the fastest pitching that baseball has ever seen, an explosive but uncontrolled arm.

©2020 Influence Publishers (P)2020 Influence Publishers

Narrator: Michael Beck
Length: 8 hrs and 47 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Last Boy

The Last Boy

Summary

Jane Leavy, the acclaimed author of the New York Times best seller Sandy Koufax: A Lefty's Legacy, returns with a biography of an American original: number 7, Mickey Mantle. Drawing on more than 500 interviews with friends and family, teammates, and opponents, she delivers the definitive account of Mantle's life, mining the mythology of The Mick for the true story of a luminous and illustrious talent with an achingly damaged soul. Meticulously reported and elegantly written, The Last Boy is a baseball tapestry that weaves together episodes from the author's weekend with The Mick in Atlantic City, where she interviewed her hero in 1983, after he was banned from baseball, with reminiscences from friends and family of the boy from Commerce, Oklahoma, who would lead the Yankees to seven world championships, be voted the American League's Most Valuable Player three times, win the Triple Crown in 1956, and duel teammate Roger Maris for Babe Ruth's home run crown in the summer of 1961 - the same boy who would never grow up. As she did so memorably in her biography of Sandy Koufax, Jane Leavy transcends the hyperbole of hero worship to reveal the man behind the coast-to-coast smile, who grappled with a wrenching childhood, crippling injuries, and a genetic predisposition to alcoholism. In The Last Boy she chronicles her search to find out more about the person he was and, given what she discovers, to explain his mystifying hold on a generation of baseball fans, who were seduced by that lopsided, gap-toothed grin. It is an uncommon biography, with literary overtones: not only a portrait of an icon, but an investigation of memory itself. "I believe in memory, not memorabilia," Leavy writes in her preface. But in The Last Boy, she discovers that what we remember of our heroes - and even what they remember of themselves - is only where the story begins.

©2010 Jane Leavy (P)2010 Jane Leavy and HarperCollins Publishers

Author: Jane Leavy
Length: 17 hrs and 3 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Sandy Koufax

Sandy Koufax

1 rating

Summary

No immortal in the history of baseball retired so young, so well, or so completely as Sandy Koufax. After compiling a remarkable record from 1962 to 1966 that saw him lead the National League in ERA all five years, win three Cy Young awards, and pitch four no-hitters including a perfect game, Koufax essentially disappeared. Save for his induction into the Hall of Fame and occasional appearances at the Dodgers training camp, Koufax has remained unavailable, unassailable, and unsullied, in the process becoming much more than just the best pitcher of his generation. He is the Jewish boy from Brooklyn, who refused to pitch the opening game of the 1965 World Series on Yom Kippur, defining himself as a man who placed faith over fame. This act made him the standard to which Jewish parents still hold their children. Except for his autobiography (published in 1966), Koufax has resolutely avoided talking about himself. But through sheer doggedness that even Koufax came to marvel at, Jane Leavy was able to gain his trust to the point where they talked regularly over the three years Leavy reported her book. With Koufax's blessing, Leavy interviewed nearly every one of his former teammates, opponents, and friends, and emerged with a portrait of the artist that is as thorough and stylish as was his command on the pitching mound.

©2002 Jane Leavy (P)2002 HarperCollins

Narrator: Robert Pinsky
Author: Jane Leavy
Length: 6 hrs and 14 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Justin Verlander

Justin Verlander

Summary

Learn the inspiring story of the Houston Astros' star pitcher Justin Verlander! One of the many riveting listens in the Baseball Biography Books series by Clayton Geoffreys. In Justin Verlander: The Inspiring Story of One of Baseball's Greatest Pitchers, you will learn the story of one of baseball's greatest pitchers Justin Verlander. Verlander has spent his baseball career as a member of the Detroit Tigers and Houston Astros. In that time, he has received countless baseball accolades, including but not limited to eight All-Star selections (at the time of this writing), an American League MVP Award, and 2017 World Series Championship. Verlander serves as a role model for baseball fans of all ages in the way he carries himself on and off the field. Pick up this unauthorized baseball biography today to learn the inspiring story behind star baseball pitcher Justin Verlander! This is the perfect baseball chapter book for sports fans of all ages. This baseball book explores what makes Justin Verlander great and what we can learn from his hard work. Here is a preview of what is inside this audiobook on Justin Verlander:  The Early Years (Childhood, High School, and College) The Monarch and the Tigers Rookie of the Year, the First No-Hitter Back to Basics, Contract Extension and a Lower ERA, Power Pitching and Triple Crown Achievement All-Star, Contract Renewal and Strikeout Record, Overcoming Injury Back in the Groove, The Tiger Goes to Texas, Hallmark Season Justin Verlander's Personal Life (Charity Work and More) Verlander's Legacy and Future Be sure to get this Justin Verlander audiobook today.

©2020 Calvintir Books, LLC (P)2020 Calvintir Books, LLC

Narrator: Tim Schmidt
Length: 2 hrs and 22 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for A Season in the Sun

A Season in the Sun

Summary

The story of Mickey Mantle's magnificent 1956 season Mickey Mantle was the ideal batter for the atomic age, capable of hitting a baseball harder and farther than any other player in history. He was also the perfect idol for postwar America, a wholesome hero from the heartland. In A Season in the Sun, acclaimed historians Randy Roberts and Johnny Smith recount the defining moment of Mantle's legendary career: 1956, when he overcame a host of injuries and critics to become the most celebrated athlete of his time. Taking us from the action on the diamond to Mantle's off-the-field exploits, Roberts and Smith depict Mantle not as an ideal role model or a bitter alcoholic but as a complex man whose faults were smoothed over by sportswriters eager to keep the truth about sports heroes at bay. An incisive portrait of an American icon, A Season in the Sun is an essential work for baseball fans and anyone interested in the 1950s. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio. 

©2018 Randy Roberts, Johnny Smith (P)2018 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Pete Larkin
Length: 9 hrs and 29 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Trading Bases

Trading Bases

4 ratings

Summary

An ex-Wall Street trader improved on Moneyball’s famed sabermetrics to place bets that would beat the Vegas odds on Major League Baseball games - with a 41 percent return in his first year. Trading Bases explains how he did it.  After the fall of Lehman Brothers, Joe Peta was out of a job. He found a new one but lost that, too, when an ambulance mowed him down. In search of a way to cheer himself up while he recuperated in a wheelchair, Peta started watching baseball again, as he had growing up. That’s when inspiration hit: Why not apply his outstanding risk-analysis skills to improve on sabermetrics, the method made famous by Moneyball - and beat the only market in town, the Vegas betting line? Why not treat MLB like the S&P 500?  In Trading Bases, Peta shows how to subtract luck - in particular "cluster luck", as he puts it - from a team’s statistics to best predict how it will perform in the next game and over the whole season. His baseball "hedge fund" returned an astounding 41 percent in 2011 - and has never been down more than 5 percent. Peta takes listeners to the ballpark in San Francisco, trading floors and baseball bars in New York, and sports books in Vegas, all while tracing the progress of his wagers.  Often humorous, occasionally touching, and with a wink toward the sheer implausibility of the whole project, Trading Bases is all about the love of critical reasoning, trading cultures, risk management, and baseball. And not necessarily in that order. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2013 Joe Peta (P)2013 Random House Audio

Narrator: Fred Sanders
Author: Joe Peta
Length: 9 hrs and 36 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Leo Durocher

Leo Durocher

1 rating

Summary

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 40 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 20th 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. 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. 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.

©2017 Paul Dickson (P)2017 Tantor

Narrator: Barry Abrams
Author: Paul Dickson
Length: 13 hrs and 47 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Lou

Lou

2 ratings

Summary

In this candid, revealing, and entertaining memoir, the beloved New York Yankee legend looks back over his nearly 50-year career as a player and a manager, sharing insights and stories about some of his most memorable moments and some of the biggest names in Major League Baseball. For nearly five decades, Lou Piniella has been a fixture in Major League Baseball, as an outfielder with the legendary New York Yankees of the 1970s, and as a manager for five teams in both the American and National leagues. With respected veteran sportswriter Bill Madden, Piniella now reflects on his storied career, offering fans a glimpse of life on the field, in the dugout, and inside the clubhouse. Piniella speaks from the heart about his teams and his players, offering a detailed, up-close portrait of the Bronx Zoo's raucous personalities such as Reggie Jackson and Catfish Hunter, as well as his close friendship with Thurman Munson and his unusual relationship with George Steinbrenner. He also delves deep into his post-Yankee experiences, from winning a World Series for the controversial owner of the Cincinnati Reds, Marge Schott, to transforming the perennial cellar-dwelling Seattle Mariners into one of the league's best teams. Some of the game's brightest stars are here: Ken Griffey Jr, Randy Johnson, and Alex Rodriguez, Piniella's supremely talented and controversial protégé. Throughout his time in the majors, Piniella has witnessed MLB grow into a multi-billion-dollar business. Piniella reflects on those changes, voicing his highly critical opinions on a range of controversial subjects, including steroids. Hilarious and uproarious, Lou brings into focus a man whose deeply rooted passion for baseball has defined his life.

©2017 Lou Piniella (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

Narrator: Johnny Heller
Length: 10 hrs and 4 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Kings of Queens

Kings of Queens

Summary

In 1986, the bad guys of baseball won the World Series. Now, Erik Sherman, the New York Times best-selling coauthor of Mookie, profiles key players from that infamous Mets team, revealing never-before-exposed details about their lives after that championship year...as well as a look back at the magical season itself. Darryl Strawberry, Doc Gooden, Keith Hernandez, Lenny Dykstra, Mookie Wilson, Howard Johnson, Doug Sisk, Rafael Santana, Bobby Ojeda, Wally Backman, Kevin Mitchell, Ed Hearn, Danny Heep, and the late Gary Carter were all known for their heroics on the field. For some of them - known as the "Scum Bunch" - their debauchery off the field was even more awe inspiring. But when that golden season ended, so did their aura of invincibility. Some faced battles with addiction, some were traded, and others struggled just to keep their lives together. Through interviews with these legendary players, Erik Sherman offers fans a new perspective on a team that will forever be remembered in sports history.

©2016 Erik Sherman (P)2016 Penguin Audio

Author: Erik Sherman
Length: 9 hrs and 12 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for One for the Record

One for the Record

Summary

The inside story of Hank Aaron's chase for the home run record, with an introduction by Tom Wolfe. In One for the Record, George Plimpton recounts Hank Aaron's thrilling race to become the new home run champion. Amid media frenzy and death threats, Aaron sought to beat Babe Ruth's record. In 1974 he finally succeeded. A fascinating examination of the psychology of baseball players, One for the Record gives an absorbing account of the men on the mound who had to face Aaron. But the audiobook's true genius lies in the portrait of Aaron himself and his discussions of his philosophy on hitting and the game of baseball.

©2016 George Plimpton (P)2016 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Rick Adamson
Length: 3 hrs and 49 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Walter Johnson

Walter Johnson

Summary

To many, Walter Johnson is the greatest pitcher of all time. He was a star second to none from the dawn of the game's modern era through the "Golden Age of Sports" of the Roaring Twenties. The playing career of "The Big Train", as the sportswriters called him, spanned the era of such greats as Cy Young, Babe Ruth, Honus Wagner, Lou Gehrig, and Al Simmons. Johnson knew every President from William Howard Taft to Franklin Roosevelt, and was friends with the likes of Will Rogers and Douglas Fairbanks. But it wasn't Walter Johnson's blazing fastball alone that placed him on a pedestal as high as any in American sports. It was Johnson, above all others, who came to personify "gentlemanly conduct in the heat of battle", as Shirley Povich put it. One of a small number of like-minded stars tempering the game's roughneck reputation in the century's early years, he was still around to help shepherd it through its darkest hour of the "Black Sox" scandal. For several generations, Johnson's presence in the big-league consoled parents all over the country. If the game was good enough for the modest, decent, and honest Kansas farm boy, they figured, it was okay for their sons, too. Throughout a life as full as it gets, and a career as dazzling as any in the history of sports, Walter Johnson remained an unspoiled individual, his name unmarred by any hint of wrongdoing on or off the field. This is the grand story of one of the good guys.

©1995 Henry W. Thomas (P)1997 Blackstone Audiobooks

Narrator: Ian Esmo
Length: 17 hrs and 20 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Playing for Keeps

Playing for Keeps

1 rating

Summary

In the late 1850s organized baseball was a club-based fraternal sport thriving in the cultures of respectable artisans, clerks and shopkeepers, and middle-class sportsmen. Two decades later it had become an entertainment business run by owners and managers, depending on gate receipts and the increasingly disciplined labor of skilled player-employees. Playing for Keeps is an insightful, in-depth account of the game that became America's premier spectator sport for nearly a century. Reconstructing the culture and experience of early baseball through a careful reading of the sporting press, baseball guides, and the correspondence of the player-manager Harry Wright, Warren Goldstein discovers the origins of many modern controversies during the game's earliest decades. The 20th Anniversary Edition of Goldstein's classic includes information about the changes that have occurred in the history of the sport since the 1980s and an account of his experience as a scholarly consultant during the production of Ken Burns's Baseball. The book is published by Cornell University Press.

©1989, Preface 2009 Cornell University (P)2013 Redwood Audiobooks

Length: 7 hrs and 32 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Untold Tales from the Bush Leagues

Untold Tales from the Bush Leagues

Summary

Ever wonder what minor league baseball is really like behind the scenes? Are you a baseball fan that wants to get closer than ever to the action? This book pulls back the curtain to share the true and (until now) untold tales of America's national pastime. Fans of all ages can read some of the most jaw-dropping, eye-opening stories from life in minor league baseball! Join more than 20 professional baseball broadcasters from across the country as they recall nearly 100 unbelievable tales from their years in the bush leagues. The most hilarious, wacky, amazing and surprising stories you'll ever hear - all told by the announcers who watched it happen. Untold Tales from the Bush Leagues includes stories featuring notable baseball stars as well as names you've never heard. Some of the names you'll know include Michael Jordan, Tommy Lasorda, Tony Gwynn, Gary Carter, Josh Hamilton, and many more! You'll be amazed at what really happens behind the scenes in minor league baseball! I mean, really amazed. What do players do on the team bus? How do they occupy time in the clubhouse? What do they say to each other on the field? You'll hear stories about the zaniest things that really happen in minor league baseball, such as....How did one broadcaster call a no-hitter when he never saw even one pitch? What did one player eat off of the infield dirt during a rain delay? What were some of the most hilarious practical jokes players have pulled? How do teams pass the time on long bus rides? Why was one bunch of hungry players walking on a lonely, dark street around midnight? Why was Tony Gwynn intently watching one particular minor league game? What happened when the broadcaster accidentally let the wrong words fly live on the air? What did Tommy Lasorda once do in a fast-food restaurant? How did these teams escape near disaster during late-night bus rides? What special pregame meal did Josh Hamilton enjoy?

©2016 Rick Schultz (P)2017 Rick Schultz

Author: Rick Schultz
Length: 3 hrs and 45 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Future Value

Future Value

Summary

An unprecedented look inside the world of baseball scouting and evaluation from FanGraphs' lead prospect analysts.   For the modern major-league team, player evaluation is a complex, multipronged, high-tech pursuit. But far from becoming obsolete in this environment - as Michael Lewis' Moneyball once forecast - the role of the scout in today's game has evolved and even expanded. Rather than being the antithesis of a data-driven approach, scouting now represents an essential analytical component in a team's arsenal.    Future Value is a thorough dive into the world of the contemporary scout - a world with its own language, methods, metrics, and madness. From rural high schools to elite amateur showcases, from the back fields of spring training to major-league draft rooms, FanGraphs' Eric Longenhagen and Kiley McDaniel break down the key systems and techniques used to assess talent. It's a process that has moved beyond the quintessential stopwatches and radar guns to include statistical models, countless measurable indicators, and a broader international reach.  Practical and probing, discussing wide-ranging topics from tool grades to front-office politics, this is an illuminating exploration of how to watch baseball and see the future.

©2020 Eric Longenhagen and Kailey McDaniel (P)2020 Tantor

Available on Audible
Cover art for Out of My League

Out of My League

Summary

The baseball classic that Ernest Hemingway called "beautifully observed and incredibly conceived", now recorded and including a foreword from Jane Leavy. The first of Plimpton's remarkable forays into participatory journalism, Out of My League chronicles with wit, charm, and grace what happens when a self-professed amateur has the chance to answer every fan's question: could he strike out a major league star? Plimpton's inspired idea - to get on the mound and pitch a few innings to the All-Stars of the American and National Leagues - begins as a fun-filled stunt and comes to a deeply hellish, nearly humiliating end. This honest and hilarious tale features Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Whitey Ford, Ralph Houk, and other baseball greats and is "a baseball book such as no one else ever wrote, and one of the best ever". (New York Herald Tribune)

©2003 George Plimpton (P)2016 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Robert Fass
Length: 4 hrs and 35 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Only Rule Is It Has to Work

The Only Rule Is It Has to Work

6 ratings

Summary

It's the ultimate in fantasy baseball: You get to pick the roster, set the lineup, and decide on strategies - with real players, in a real ballpark, in a real playoff race. That's what baseball analysts Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller got to do when an independent minor-league team in California, the Sonoma Stompers, offered them the chance to run its baseball operations according to the most advanced statistics. We tag along as Lindbergh and Miller apply their number-crunching insights to all aspects of assembling and running a team, following one cardinal rule for judging each innovation they try: It has to work. We meet colorful figures like general manager Theo Fightmaster and boundary-breakers like the first openly gay player in professional baseball. Even José Canseco makes a cameo appearance. Will their knowledge of numbers help Lindbergh and Miller bring the Stompers a championship, or will they fall on their faces? Will the team have a competitive advantage or is the sport's folk wisdom true after all? Will the players attract the attention of big-league scouts, or are they on a fast track to oblivion?

©2016 Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller (P)2016 Tantor

Length: 13 hrs and 20 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Memories of Summer

Memories of Summer

Summary

Acclaimed baseball writer Roger Kahn gives us a memoir of his Brooklyn childhood, a recollection of a life in journalism, and a record of personal acquaintance with the greatest ballplayers of several eras. His father had a passion for the Dodgers; his mother’s passion was for poetry. Somehow, young Roger managed to blend both loves in a career that encompassed writing about sports for the New York Herald Tribune, Sports Illustrated, the Saturday Evening Post, Esquire, and Time. Kahn recalls the great personalities of a golden era - Leo Durocher, Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Jackie Robinson, Red Smith, Dick Young, and many more - and recollects the wittiest lines from 40 years in dugouts, press boxes, and newsrooms. Often hilarious, always precise about action on the field and off, Memories of Summer is an enduring classic about how baseball met literature to the benefit of both.

©1997 Hook Slide, Inc. (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Moseley
Author: Roger Kahn
Length: 10 hrs and 52 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Captain

The Captain

1 rating

Summary

A memoir from one of the most admired players in baseball, the captain of the New York Mets, David Wright David Wright played his entire Major League Baseball career for one team, the team he dreamed of playing for as a kid: the New York Mets.  A quick fan favorite from Virginia who then earned his stripes in New York, Wright came back time and again from injury and demonstrated the power of hard work, total commitment, and an infinite love of the game.   Wright’s stats are one thing. He was a seven-time All-Star, a two-time Gold Glove Award winner, and a two-time Silver Slugger Award winner. He holds many Mets franchise records and was nicknamed "Captain America" after his performance in the 2013 World Baseball Classic. But there is more: The walk-offs. The Barehand. The Subway Series and World Series home runs. And the electricity that swept through Shea Stadium then Citi Field whenever number 5, “the Captain”, was in the game.

©2020 David Wright, Anthony DiComo (P)2020 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Joe Knezevich
Length: 8 hrs and 47 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for After the Miracle

After the Miracle

Summary

The inside account of an iconic team in baseball history: the 1969 New York Mets - a consistently last-place team that turned it all around in just one season - told by ’69 Mets outfielder Art Shamsky, Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Seaver, and other teammates as they reminisce about what happened then and where they are today. The New York Mets franchise began in 1962, and the team finished in last place nearly every year. When the 1969 season began, fans weren’t expecting much from “the Lovable Losers”. But as the season progressed, the Mets inched closer to first place and then eventually clinched the National League pennant. They were underdogs against the formidable Baltimore Orioles but beat them in five games to become world champions. No one had predicted it. In fact, fans could hardly believe it happened. Suddenly they were “the Miracle Mets”.  Playing right field for the ’69 Mets was Art Shamsky, who had stayed in touch with his former teammates over the years. He hoped to get together with star pitcher Tom Seaver (who would win the Cy Young award as the best pitcher in the league in 1969 and go on to become the first Met elected to the Hall of Fame), but Seaver was ailing and could not travel. So, Shamsky organized a visit to Tom Terrific in California, accompanied by the number-two pitcher, Jerry Koosman, outfielder Ron Swoboda, and shortstop Bud Harrelson. Together, they recalled the highlights of that amazing season as they reminisced about what changed the Mets’ fortunes in 1969.  With the help of sportswriter Erik Sherman, Shamsky has written After the Miracle for the 1969 Mets. This is an audiobook that every Mets fan - and every baseball fan - must own.

©2019 Art Shamsky and Erik Sherman (P)2019 Simon & Schuster

Length: 9 hrs and 37 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Tris Speaker: The Rough-and-Tumble Life of a Baseball Legend

Tris Speaker: The Rough-and-Tumble Life of a Baseball Legend

Summary

Tris Speaker: The Rough-and-Tumble Life of a Baseball Legend is the first book to tell the full story of Speaker’s turbulent life and to document in sharp detail the grit and glory of his pivotal role in baseball’s dead-ball era.  Playing for the Boston Red Sox and the Cleveland Indians in the early part of the 20th century, Tris “Spoke” Speaker put up numbers that amaze us even today: his record for career doubles - 792 - may never be approached, let alone broken. Tris Speaker explores the colorful life behind the statistics, introducing listeners to a complex and contradictory Texan whose cowboy mentality never left him as he brawled his way through two decades in the big leagues.  Speaker’s career put him in the company of Ty Cobb and Christy Mathewson, Shoeless Joe Jackson, and Honus Wagner, and in describing it Timothy M. Gay gives a rousing account of some of the best baseball ever played - and some of the darkest moments that ever tainted a game and hastened the end of a career. The book is published by University of Nebraska Press. The audiobook will be published by University Press Audiobooks.

©2005 Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska (P)2018 Redwood Audiobooks

Narrator: Dale J Hubbard
Length: 14 hrs and 50 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Mike Trout

Mike Trout

Summary

Learn the inspiring story of the Los Angeles Angels' all-star Mike Trout! One of the many riveting listens in the Baseball Biography Books series by Clayton Geoffreys. In Mike Trout: The Inspiring Story of One of Baseball’s All-Stars, you will learn the story of one of baseball's star center fielders, Mike Trout. Since his selection in the first round of the 2009 MLB Draft, Mike Trout has accomplished quite a lot. At the time of this writing, Trout has been selected to eight All-Star teams and won the American League MVP Award three times and Silver Slugger Award seven times. He is easily one of the most accomplished baseball players in recent years, as he has led the American League in runs and times on base multiple times, as well as all active ballplayers in career slugging percentage. Pick up this unauthorized baseball biography today to learn the inspiring story behind baseball star Mike Trout! This is the perfect baseball chapter book for sports fans of all ages. This baseball book explores what makes Mike Trout great and what we can learn from his hard work. Here is a preview of what is inside this audiobook on Mike Trout:  Early life and childhood High school career - the one who got away Minor league career Major league career Rookie season, sophomore surge, all-star machine, and Trout's rise to fame Mike Trout's personal life Legacy and future Lessons from Trout as a role model and quiet leader Be sure to get this Mike Trout audiobook today.

©2020 Calvintir Books, LLC (P)2020 Calvintir Books, LLC

Narrator: Andrew J. Sholl
Length: 1 hr and 40 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Bona Fide Legend of Cool Papa Bell

The Bona Fide Legend of Cool Papa Bell

Summary

The ?rst full biography of the star Negro Leaguer and Hall of Famer James “Cool Papa” Bell (1903-1991) was a legend in Black baseball, a lightning-fast switch hitter elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974. Bell’s speed was extraordinary; as Satchel Paige famously quipped, he was so fast he could ?ip a light switch and be in bed before the room got dark. In The Bona Fide Legend of Cool Papa Bell, experienced baseball writer and historian Lonnie Wheeler recounts the life of this extraordinary player, a key member of some of the greatest Negro League teams in history. Born to sharecroppers in Mississippi, Bell was part of the Great Migration, the movement of African Americans from the southern states to the northern states from 1910 through 1930. In St. Louis, baseball saved Bell from a life working in slaughterhouses. Wheeler charts Bell’s ups and downs in life and in baseball, in the United States, the Dominican Republic, and Mexico, where he went to escape American racism and major league baseball’s color line. Rich in context and suffused in myth, this is a treat for fans of baseball history.

©2021 Lonnie Wheeler. Published in 2021 by The Overlook Press, an imprint of ABRAMS, New York. All rights reserved. (P)2021 Blackstone Publishing

Narrator: David Sadzin
Length: 9 hrs and 56 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Arm

The Arm

10 ratings

Summary

Yahoo's lead baseball columnist offers an in-depth look at the most valuable commodity in sports - the pitching arm - and how its vulnerability to injury is hurting players and the game, from Little League to the majors. Every year, Major League Baseball spends more than $1.5 billion on pitchers - five times more than the salary of every NFL quarterback combined. Pitchers are the game's lifeblood. Their import is exceeded only by their fragility. One tiny band of tissue in the elbow, the ulnar collateral ligament, is snapping at unprecedented rates, leaving current big league players vulnerable and the coming generation of baseball-playing children dreading the three scariest words in the sport: Tommy John surgery. Jeff Passan traveled the world for three years to explore in depth the past, present, and future of the arm and how its evolution left baseball struggling to wrangle its Tommy John surgery epidemic. He examined what compelled the Chicago Cubs to spend $155 million on one arm. He snagged a rare interview with Sandy Koufax, whose career was cut short by injury at 30, and visited Japan to understand how another baseball-mad country treats its prized arms. And he followed two major league pitchers, Daniel Hudson and Todd Coffey, throughout their returns from Tommy John surgery. He exposes how the baseball establishment long ignored the rise in arm injuries and reveals how misplaced incentives across the sport stifle potential changes. Injuries to the UCL start as early as Little League. Without a drastic cultural shift, baseball will continue to lose hundreds of millions of dollars annually to damaged pitchers, and another generation of children will suffer the same problems that vex current players. Informative and hard hitting, The Arm is essential listening for all who love the game, want to keep their children healthy, or relish a look into how a large, complex institution can fail so spectacularly.

©2016 Jeff Passan (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers

Narrator: Kevin Pierce
Author: Jeff Passan
Length: 12 hrs and 3 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Streak

The Streak

Summary

The fascinating story of baseball's most legendary "Iron Men", Cal Ripken Jr. and Lou Gehrig, who each achieved the coveted and sometimes confounding record of most consecutive games played. When Cal Ripken Jr. began his career with the Baltimore Orioles at age 21, he had no idea he'd beat the historic record of playing 2,130 games in a row set by Lou Gehrig, the fabled "Iron Horse" of the New York Yankees. When Ripken beat that record by 502 games, the baseball world was floored. Few feats in sports history have generated more acclaim. But the record spawns an array of questions. Was his streak or Gehrig's the more difficult achievement? Who owned the record before Gehrig? When did someone first think it was a good idea to play in so many games without taking a day off? Through probing research, meticulous analysis, and colorful parallel storytelling, The Streak delves into this impressive but controversial milestone, unraveling Gehrig's at times unwitting pursuit of that goal and Ripken's fierce determination to play the game his way. Along the way Eisenberg dives deep into the history of the record and offers a portrait of the pastime in different eras, going back more than a century. The question looms: Was it harder for Ripken or Gehrig to play every day for so long? The length of seasons, the number of teams in the major leagues, the inclusion of nonwhite players, travel, technology, and even media are all part of the equation. Larger than all of this, however, is a book that captures the deeply American appreciation - as seen in the sport itself - for that workaday mentality and that desire to be there for the game they love, the job they are paid to do.

©2017 John Eisenberg (P)2017 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Kyle McCarley
Length: 13 hrs and 38 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Yogi

Yogi

Summary

The definitive biography of Yogi Berra, the New York Yankees icon, winner of 13 World Series championships, and the most-quoted player in baseball history  He is at once one of America's best-loved-and least known-heroes. The Yankees' Everyman to Joe DiMaggio's Royalty, Lawrence "Yogi" Berra is famous for winning titles, his leadership, and the superlative play that secured his spot in the Hall of Fame. And his paradoxical quotes are nothing less than national touchstones. He is the quintessential American success story: a first-generation immigrant from a poor but determined family who went on to become one of the greatest players in baseball history.  But Yogi was never supposed to be a major league player. That's what his immigrant father told him. That's what Branch Rickey told him, too - right to Berra's face, in fact. Even the lowly St. Louis Browns of his youth said he'd never make it in the big leagues.  Yet baseball was his lifeblood. It was the only thing he was ever good at. Heck, it was the only thing he ever thought about. Berra couldn't allow a constant stream of ridicule about his appearance, taunts about his speech, and scorn about his perceived lack of intelligence to prevent him from becoming one of the best to ever play the game - at a position requiring the very skills he was told he did not have.  These are but a few of the rich ironies of a life well lived, as author Jon Pessah reveals in this meticulously reported and superbly written biography. Drawing on more than 100 interviews and four years of reporting, Pessah delivers a transformational portrait of how Berra handled his hard-earned success - on and off the playing field - as well as his failures; how the man who insisted he didn't say half the things he said nonetheless shaped decades of America's culture; and how Berra's humility and grace redefined what it truly means to be a star.  Overshadowed on the field by Joe DiMaggio early in his career and later by a youthful Mickey Mantle, Berra emerges as not only the best-loved Yankee but one of the most appealingly simple, innately complex, and universally admired men in all of America.  PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.  

©2020 Jon Pessah (P)2020 Little, Brown & Company

Narrator: Oliver Wyman
Author: Jon Pessah
Length: 21 hrs and 10 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The House That Ruth Built

The House That Ruth Built

Summary

This is the untold tale of the Yankees' break-out 1923 season: when they first played on their own field, when Babe Ruth broke out of his slump, and when the Bronx Bombers finally won their first world series against their cross-town rivals the New York Giants. Centered on the blood feud between John McGraw's Giants and Babe Ruth's Yankees, and filled with incredible stories of New York and baseball in what were arguably their greatest eras, it vividly illuminates how the Yankees transcended their earlier losses to become the heroic team New Yorkers know and love.

©2011 Robert Weintraub (P)2011 Recorded Books, LLC

Narrator: Fred Berman
Length: 11 hrs and 40 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Called Shot

The Called Shot

Summary

In the summer of 1932, at the beginning of the turbulent decade that would remake America, baseball fans were treated to one of the most thrilling seasons in the history of the sport. As the nation drifted deeper into the Great Depression and reeled from social unrest, baseball was a diversion for a troubled country - and yet the world of baseball was marked by the same edginess that pervaded the national scene.    On-the-field fights were as common as double plays. Amid the National League pennant race, Cubs' shortstop Billy Jurges was shot by showgirl Violet Popovich in a Chicago hotel room. When the regular season ended, the Cubs and Yankees clashed in what would be Babe Ruth's last appearance in the fall classic. After the Cubs lost the first two games in New York, the series resumed in Chicago at Wrigley Field, with Democratic presidential candidate Franklin Roosevelt cheering for the visiting Yankees from the box seats behind the Yankees' dugout.  In the top of the fifth inning the game took a historic turn. As Ruth was jeered mercilessly by Cubs players and fans, he gestured toward the outfield and then blasted a long home run. Ruth's homer set off one of baseball's longest-running and most intense debates: did Ruth, in fact, call his famous home run?

©2020 Thomas Wolf (P)2020 Tantor

Narrator: Barry Abrams
Author: Thomas Wolf
Length: 10 hrs and 59 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Tales from the Deadball Era

Tales from the Deadball Era

1 rating

Summary

The Deadball Era (1901-1920) is a baseball fan's dream. Hope and despair, innocence and cynicism, and levity and hostility blended then to create an air of excitement, anticipation, and concern for all who entered the confines of a major league ballpark. Cheating for the sake of victory earned respect, corrupt ballplayers fixed games with impunity, and violence plagued the sport.  At the same time, endearing practices infused baseball with lightheartedness, kindness, and laughter. Fans ran onto the field with baskets of flowers, loving cups, and cash for their favorite players in the middle of games. Ballplayers volunteered for "benefit contests" to aid fellow big leaguers and the country in times of need. "Joke games" reduced sport to pure theater as outfielders intentionally dropped fly balls, infielders happily booted easy grounders, hurlers tossed soft pitches over the middle of the plate, and umpires ignored the rules. Winning meant nothing, amusement meant everything, and league officials looked the other way.  Mark Halfon highlights the strategies, underhanded tactics, and bitter battles that defined this storied time in baseball history, while providing detailed insights into the players and teams involved in bringing to a conclusion this remarkable period in baseball history.

©2014 the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska (P)2019 Tantor

Length: 8 hrs and 4 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Willie Mays

Willie Mays

1 rating

Summary

Willie Mays is arguably the greatest player in baseball history, still revered for the passion he brought to the game. He began as a teenager in the Negro Leagues, became a cult hero in New York, and was the headliner in Major League Baseball's bold expansion to California. He was a blend of power, speed, and stylistic bravado that enraptured fans for more than two decades. Now. James Hirsch reveals the man behind the player. Mays was a transcendent figure who received standing ovations in enemy stadiums and who, during the turbulent civil rights era, urged understanding and reconciliation. More than his records, his legacy is defined by the pure joy that he brought to fans and the loving memories that have been passed to future generations so they might know the magic and beauty of the game. With meticulous research and drawing on interviews with Mays himself as well as with close friends, family, and teammates, Hirsch presents a brilliant portrait of one of America's most significant cultural icons.

©2011 James S. Hirsch (P)2011 Simon & Schuster

Narrator: Adam Grupper
Length: 27 hrs and 26 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for So Many Ways to Lose

So Many Ways to Lose

Summary

The Mets lose when they should win. They win when they should lose. And when it comes to being the worst, no team in sports has ever done it better than the Mets.  In So Many Ways to Lose, author and lifelong Mets fan Devin Gordon sifts through the detritus of Queens for a baseball history like no other. Remember the time the Mets lost an All-Star after he got charged by a wild boar? Or the time they blew a six-run ninth-inning lead at the peak of a pennant race? Or the time they fired their manager before he ever managed a game? Sure you do. It was only two years ago, and it was all in the same season. The Mets have an unrivaled gift for getting it backward, doing the impossible, snatching victory from the jaws of defeat, and then snatching defeat right back again.  And yet, just ask any Mets fan: Amazing and/or miraculous postseason runs are as much a part of our team's identity as losing 120 games in 1962. The DNA of seasons like 1969, the original Miracle Mets, and the 1973 “Ya Gotta Believe” Mets, who went from last place to Game 7 of the World Series in two months, and the powerhouse 1986 Mets, has encoded in us this hapless instinct that a reversal of fortune is always possible. It’s happened before. It’s kind of our thing. And now we've got Steve Cohen's hedge-fund billions to play with! What could go wrong? In this hilarious history of the Mets and love letter to the art of disaster, Devin Gordon presents baseball the way it really is, not in the wistful sepia tones we've come to expect from other sportswriters. Along the way, he explains the difference between being bad and being gifted at losing, and why this distinction holds the key to understanding the true amazin’ magic of the New York Mets.

©2020 Devin Gordon (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers

Narrator: Jeremy Arthur
Author: Devin Gordon
Length: 12 hrs and 44 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Eight Men Out

Eight Men Out

2 ratings

Summary

In 1919, American headlines proclaimed the fix and cover-up of the World Series as "the most gigantic sporting swindle in the history of America." In this painstaking review, Eliot Asinof has reconstructed the entire scene-by-scene story of the scandal, in which eight Chicago White Sox players arranged with the nation’s leading gamblers to throw the series to Cincinnati. Asinof vividly describes the tense meetings, the hitches in the conniving, the actual plays in which the Series was thrown, the Grand Jury indictment, and the famous 1921 trial. Moving behind the scenes, he perceptively examines the backgrounds and motives of the players and the conditions that made the improbable fix all too possible. Far more than a superbly told baseball story, this compelling American drama will appeal to all those interested in American popular culture.

©1963 Eliot Asinof (P)2000 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Harold N. Cropp
Author: Eliot Asinof
Length: 11 hrs and 30 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Damned Yankees

Damned Yankees

Summary

New York Daily News reporter Madden and Klein, of the Newark Star-Ledger, who have covered the Yankees for years, here join forces on a history that may send fans to their handkerchiefs and opponents into laughter. The authors chiefly discuss the period 1977 to 1989, when principal team owner George Steinbrenner converted a stable, conservative, successful franchise into a club characterized by "chaos, confusion, and craziness'' to the point that some top players refuse to sign with the team. Control of the Yankees, argue Madden and Klein, has been ruled by the whims of a tyrant; as a result, the era they survey has seen 18 managers, 11 presidents, 10 PR agents and innumerable here-today, gone-tomorrow players.

©1990, 1991, 2012 Bill Madden and Moss Klein (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Kyle Munley
Length: 16 hrs and 42 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Bronx Zoo

The Bronx Zoo

2 ratings

Summary

This best-selling, highly-acclaimed account is a hilarious but scathing baseball tell-all. After being voted the 1977 American League Cy Young Award winner, Sparky Lyle was rewarded for his efforts by being benched. The Yankees, a leader of free agency, signed Goose Gossage as their closer. Things only went downhill from there and the 1978 season turned out to be one of controversy, firings, fights, and acrimony. In short, it was a zoo.

©1979, 2005 Albert "Sparky" Lyle and Peter Golenbock (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Sparky Lyle
Length: 10 hrs and 38 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Doc

Doc

2 ratings

Summary

A brutally honest memoir of talent, addiction, and recovery from one of the greatest baseball pitchers of all time. As a shy 19-year-old, Dwight Gooden swept into New York, lifting a team of crazy characters to World Series greatness and giving a beleaguered city a reason to believe. Then he threw it all away. Now, with fresh and sober eyes, the Mets’ beloved Dr. K shares the intimate details of his life and career, revealing all the extraordinary highs and lows: The hidden traumas in his close-knit Tampa family. The thrill and pressure of being a young baseball phenom in New York. The raucous days and nights with the Mets’ bad boys (and the real reason he missed the 1986 World Series victory parade). The self-destructive drug binges and the three World Series rings. His heartbreaking attempts at getting sober, the senseless damage to family and friends, and the unexpected way he finally saved his life - on VH1’s Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew. In Doc, Gooden details his close friendships with many of baseball’s greats: Pete Rose, George Steinbrenner, Joe Torre, and nephew Gary Sheffield. For the first time ever, he reveals the full story of his troubled relationship with fellow Mets superstar Darryl Strawberry. And he tells the moving story of the Yankees no-hitter he pitched for his dying father. Doc is a riveting baseball memoir by one of the game’s most fascinating figures and an inspiring story for anyone who has faced tough challenges in life.

©2013 Dwight Gooden (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

Narrator: J. D. Jackson
Length: 9 hrs and 50 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Era, 1947-1957

The Era, 1947-1957

2 ratings

Summary

Celebrated sports writer Roger Kahn casts his gaze on the golden age of baseball, an unforgettable time when the game thrived as America's unrivaled national sport. The Era begins in 1947, with Jackie Robinson changing major league baseball forever by taking the field for the Dodgers. Dazzling, momentous events characterize the decade that followed - Robinson's amazing accomplishments; the explosion on the national scene of such soon-to-be legends as Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Bobby Thomson, Duke Snider, and Yogi Berra; Casey Stengel's crafty managing; the emergence of televised games; and the stunning success of the Yankees as they play in nine out of eleven World Series. The Era concludes with the relocation of the Dodgers from Brooklyn to Los Angeles, a move that shook the sport to its very roots.

©1993 Roger Kahn (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Allan Robertson
Author: Roger Kahn
Length: 12 hrs and 38 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Yankee Years

The Yankee Years

3 ratings

Summary

A dramatic and revelatory account of Joe Torre's 12 years as manager of the New York Yankees. Joe Torre is the most successful and most respected baseball manager of the modern era, steering the Yankees to six American League pennants and four World Series championships. When he left the team in 2007, it was front-page news around the country. Famously diplomatic during his tenure with the Yankees, Torre finally speaks out about what it was like building and managing the dynasty during those 12 glorious and tumultuous years. Written as a third-person narrative with Sports Illustrated Senior Baseball Writer Tom Verducci, The Yankee Years is a thoughtful, utterly honest, and gripping behind-the-scenes look at the Yankees organization from top to bottom.

©2009 Joe Torre (P)2009 Random House

Narrator: Michael Kramer
Length: 16 hrs and 44 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Inside Game

The Inside Game

5 ratings

Summary

In this groundbreaking book, Keith Law, the ESPN baseball writer and author of the acclaimed Smart Baseball, offers an era-spanning dissection of some of the best and worst decisions in modern baseball, explaining what motivated them, what can be learned from them, and how their legacy has shaped the game. For years, Daniel Kahneman’s iconic work of behavioral science Thinking Fast and Slow has been required reading in front offices across Major League Baseball. In this smart, incisive, and eye-opening book, Keith Law applies Kahneman’s ideas about decision making to the game itself. Baseball is a sport of decisions. Some are so small and routine they become the building blocks of the game itself - what pitch to throw or when to swing away. Others are so huge they dictate the future of franchises - when to make a strategic trade for a chance to win now, or when to offer a millions and a multi-year contract for a twenty-eight-year-old star. These decisions have long shaped the behavior of players, managers, and entire franchises. But as those choices have become more complex and data-driven, knowing what’s behind them has become key to understanding the sport. This fascinating, revelatory work explores as never before the essential question: What were they thinking? Combining behavioral science and interviews with executives, managers, and players, Keith Law analyzes baseball’s biggest decision making successes and failures, looking at how gambles and calculated risks of all sizes and scales have shaped the sport, and how the game’s ongoing data revolution is rewriting decades of accepted decision making. In the process, he explores questions that have long been debated, from whether throwing harder really increases a player’s risk of serious injury to whether teams actually "overvalue" trade prospects. Bringing his analytical and combative style to some of baseball’s longest running debates, Law deepens our knowledge of the sport in this entertaining work that is both fun and deeply informative.

©2020 Keith Law (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers

Author: Keith Law
Length: 8 hrs and 22 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Try Not to Suck

Try Not to Suck

Summary

With his irreverant personality, laid-back approach, and penchant for the unexpected, Joe Maddon is a singular presence among Major League Baseball managers. Whether he's bringing clowns and live bear cubs to spring training or leading the Chicago Cubs to their first World Series victory in 108 years, Maddon is always one to watch. In Try Not to Suck, ESPN's Jesse Rogers and MLB.com's Bill Chastain fully explore Maddon's life and career, delving behind the scenes and dissecting that mystique which makes Maddon so popular with players and analysts alike. Packed with insight, anecdotes, and little-known facts, this is the definitive account of the curse-breaker and trailblazer at the helm of the Cubs' new era.

©2018 Bill Chastain and Jesse Rogers (P)2018 Tantor

Available on Audible
Cover art for Game of Shadows

Game of Shadows

3 ratings

Summary

The complete inside story of the shocking steroids scandal that turned the sports world upside down For years, in the shadowy reaches of the world of sports, there were rumors that some of our nation’s greatest athletes were using steroids, human growth hormone, and other drugs to run faster, jump higher, and hit harder. But as track stars blazed their way to Olympic medals and sluggers brought fans back to baseball, sports officials, the media, and fans looked past the rumors and cheered on the athletes to ever-higher levels of performance. Then, in December 2004, San Francisco Chronicle reporters Mark Fainaru-Wada and Lance Williams broke the story of the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative, a tiny nutritional supplement company that, according to sworn testimony, was supplying elite athletes with banned drugs. The stories shocked the nation and the exposés led to congressional hearings on baseball's drug problems and a revived effort to purge the US Olympic movement of drug cheats. Now, in Game of Shadows, Fainaru-Wada and Williams tell the complete story of BALCO and the investigation that has shaken the foundations of the sporting world. And at the center of the story is the biggest star of them all, Barry Bonds, the muscle-bound MVP outfielder for the San Francisco Giants whose suspicious late-career renaissance has him threatening Hank Aaron’s all-time home run record. Shocking, revelatory, and riveting, Game of Shadows casts light into the shadows of American sports to reveal the dark truths at the heart of the game today.

©2006 Mark Fainaru-Wada and Lance Williams (P)2006 Books on Tape

Narrator: Scott Brick
Length: 10 hrs and 36 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Intangiball

Intangiball

Summary

Intangiball tracks the progress of the Cincinnati Reds through five years of culture change, beginning with the trades of decorated veterans Adam Dunn and Ken Griffey, Jr. It also draws liberally from such character-conscious clubs as the Atlanta Braves, St. Louis Cardinals, San Francisco Giants, New York Yankees, and Tampa Bay Rays. Author, sportswriter, and eternal fan of the game Lonnie Wheeler systematically identifies the performance-enhancing qualities (PEQs) that together comprise the "communicable competitiveness" that he calls "teamship."

©2015 Lonnie Wheeler (P)2015 Tantor

Length: 8 hrs and 20 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Here's the Catch

Here's the Catch

Summary

In time for the 50th anniversary of the Mets' miraculous 1969 World Series win, right fielder Ron Swoboda tells the story of that amazing season, the people he played with and against (sometimes at the same time), and what life was like as an "Every Man" ballplayer.  Ron Swoboda wasn't the greatest player the Mets ever had, but he made the greatest catch in Met history, saving a game in the 1969 World Series, and his RBI clinched the final game. By Met standards that makes him legend. The Mets even use a steel silhouette of the catch as a backing for the right field entrance sign at Citi Field.  In this smart, funny, insightful memoir, which is as self-deprecating as a lifetime .249 hitter has to be, he tells the story of that magical year nearly game by game, revealing his struggles, his triumphs, and what life was like for an everyday, Every Man player, even when he was being platooned. He shows what it took to make one of the worst teams in baseball and what it was like to leave one of the best. And when he talks about the guys he played with and against, it's like you're sitting next to him on the team bus, drinking Rheingold. This is a book anyone who loves the game will love as much.

©2019 Ronald Swoboda (P)2019 Tantor

Narrator: Ron Swoboda
Author: Ron Swoboda
Length: 7 hrs and 58 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for A False Spring

A False Spring

Summary

In A False Spring, Pat Jordan traces the falling star of his once-promising pitching career, illuminating along the way his equally difficult personal struggles and quest for maturity. When the reader meets Jordan, he is a hard-throwing pitcher with seemingly limitless potential, one of the first "bonus babies" for the Milwaukee Braves organization. Jordan’s sojourn through the lower levels of minor-league ball takes him through the small towns of America: McCook, Waycross, Davenport, Eau Claire, and Palatka. As the promised land of the majors recedes because of his inconsistency and lack of control, the young man who had previously known only glory and success is forced to face himself.

©1975 Pat Jordan (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Alan Robertson
Author: Pat Jordan
Length: 10 hrs and 14 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for One Tough Out

One Tough Out

Summary

For 19 seasons, Rod Carew was a maestro in the batter's box. Uncoiling from his crouched stance, he seemed to guide the ball wherever he wanted on the way to a whopping seven batting titles and a spot in the Baseball Hall of Fame. If only everything in life had been as easy as he made hitting look.  In One Tough Out: Fighting Off Life's Curveballs, Carew reflects on the highlights, anecdotes, and friendships from his outstanding career, describing the abuse, poverty, and racism he overcame to even reach the majors. In conversational, confessional prose, he takes listeners through the challenges he's conquered in the second half of his life, from burying his youngest daughter to surviving several near-fatal bouts with heart disease. He also details the remarkable reason he's alive today: the heart transplant he received from Konrad Reuland, a 29-year-old NFL player he'd met years before. Carew explains how that astonishing connection was revealed and the unique bond he and his wife, Rhonda, have since forged with his donor's family. An important thread running through this mosaic of Carew's life is his faith. He illustrates how his mother instilled those beliefs during their darkest days and how conversations with God helped him fight off every curveball life has thrown his way.

©2020 Rod Carew and Jaime Aron (P)2020 Recorded Books

Narrator: Ron Butler
Length: 8 hrs and 47 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Pete Rose

Pete Rose

Summary

Pete Rose played baseball with a singular and headfirst abandon that endeared him to fans and peers, even as it riled others--a figure at once magnetic, beloved and polarizing. Rose has more base hits than anyone in history, yet he is not in the Hall of Fame. Twenty-five years ago he was banished from baseball for gambling, then ruled ineligible for Cooperstown; today, the question "Does Pete Rose belong in the Hall of Fame?" has evolved into perhaps the most provocative in sports, a layered, slippery and ever-relevant moral conundrum. How do we evaluate the Hit King now, at a time when steroid cheats appear on the Hall of Fame ballot even as Rose is denied? What do we make of this happily unrepentant gambler, this shameless but beguiling showman whose post-baseball journey has led him to a curious reality show and to the streets of Cooperstown to hawk his signature, his story, himself? Best-selling author Kostya Kennedy delivers an evocative answer in his fascinating re-examination of Pete Rose's life; from his cocky and charismatic early years through his storied playing career to his bitter war against baseball's hierarchy to the man we find today--still incorrigible, still adored by many. Where has his improbable saga landed him in the redefined, post-steroid world? Do we feel any differently about Pete Rose today? Should we?

©2014 Kostya Kennedy (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Ben Bartolone
Length: 10 hrs and 30 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Final Game at Ebbets Field

The Final Game at Ebbets Field

Summary

The Dodgers’ final game in Brooklyn was played on September 24, 1957. From the author of The Giants of The Polo Grounds, here's a thoughtful, entertaining new account of that last game played by the Brooklyn Dodgers at baseball's fabled Ebbets Field.  The Final Game At Ebbets Field starts this unique collection of true baseball stories. A treasure trove of new insights and details accompany this newly researched account. The book continues with a lively assemblage of true major league stories from the golden age of baseball, focusing on New York, Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Brooklyn, with a touch of San Francisco at the conclusion. We meet the fascinating men and women of the first half of the 20th century. We get to know the people and places of a colorful bygone time: back when there were 16 teams and hundreds of legendary players. Meet, for example, the family that lived at a ballpark in New York, the female Olympic swimmer who became the pitcher and captain of the New York Female Giants. Spend time with championship Boston Red Sox team that featured the greatest everyday outfield ever. Go back to the day when John Dillinger played professional baseball and Al Capone asked a Chicago player for an autograph, a request that was not to be refused.  Fly a single engine plane with Ruth Law, the skilled aviatrix who dropped a grapefruit from an airplane on the Brooklyn manager. Relive the torments of the A's owner who erected a spiteful wall in Philadelphia to prevent neighborhood fans from seeing his team's games. All these true stories and more are contained here, told in the wry amusing style of Noel Hynd, a former contributor to Sports Illustrated. The Final Game at Ebbets Field is an insightful romp through some of American baseball's quirkiest events. It’s a memorable listen! Come join us on a road trip into baseball's most colorful times.

©2019 Noel Hynd (P)2019 Noel Hynd

Author: Noel Hynd
Length: 5 hrs and 42 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ann Liguori's Audio Hall of Fame: Pete Rose

Ann Liguori's Audio Hall of Fame: Pete Rose

Summary

Pete Rose is best known for his many years with the Cincinnati Reds as a player and manager. His career began in 1963 and Rose earned his nickname "Charlie Hustle" for his brisk style of play, especially when stealing bases. Rose retired as a player in 1986 and moved to coaching. Three years later, his brilliant career was mired in a gambling scandal. This interview discusses his many different roles in sports, as a player, a manager and most recently as a radio broadcaster. Here Rose is interviewed by Ann Liguori, award-winning luminary in sports broadcasting with a celebrated career that spans two decades. Pete's feisty style comes across when Ann asks him about the gambling scandal and what he feels his chances are in ever getting into Baseball's Hall of Fame. Liguori has interviewed some of the most legendary sports personalities, drawing out their success stories, their opinions on a variety of issues, and their love of the game.

©2009 Ann Liguori (P)2009 Ann Liguori

Narrator: Ann Liguori
Author: Pete Rose
Length: 19 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Faithful

Faithful

1 rating

Summary

Early in 2004, two writers and Red Sox fans, Stewart O'Nan and Stephen King, decided to chronicle the upcoming season, one of the most hotly anticipated in baseball history. They would sit together at Fenway. They would exchange e-mails. They would write about the games. And, as it happened, they would witness not only the greatest comeback ever in sports, but the first Red Sox championship in 86 years as the team put '86 behind them and eighty-sixed the Curse. A-Rod. Schilling. Sheffield. Foulke. The hot stove league was smoking. In April, the Sox took six of seven from the New York Yankees. They led their division through May, but June was a disaster. Then Nomar went to Chicago, Varitek shoved A-Rod, Billy Mueller proved to be a Yankee killer, and this team never looked back, logging an astounding August and a solid September to claim the wild card. In the playoffs they killed the Angels, then ran into those damn Yankees. Who saved the pennant race? David Ortiz. Who hit the only grand slam? Johnny Damon. Who's your daddy? Papi is. Down three games to none, down to their last three outs, the Red Sox rose from the dead to make history. Nothing left to do but sweep up. What began as a Sox-filled summer like any other is now a fan's notes for the ages.

©2004 Stewart O'Nan and Stephen King (P)2004 Simon & Schuster, Inc.

Length: 16 hrs and 5 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Mike Trout

Mike Trout

Summary

Discover the Inspirational Story of Baseball Superstar Mike Trout! You're about to discover the incredibly inspirational story of baseball superstar Mike Trout. If you're reading this, then you must be a Mike Trout fan, like so many others. As a fan, you must wonder how this man is so talented and want to know more about him. Mike Trout is considered as one of the greatest young baseball players in the world, and it's been an honor to be able to watch him play throughout his young career. This audiobook will reveal to you much about Mike Trout's story and the many accomplishments throughout his career. Here is a preview of what you'll learn: Youth and Family Life High School and College Career Professional Career and Personal Life Legacy, Charitable Acts, and Much More! If you want to learn more about Mike Trout, then this book is for you. It will reveal to you many things that you did not know about this incredible baseball star!

©2013 Bill Redban (P)2015 Bill Redban

Narrator: Michael Pauley
Author: Bill Redban
Length: 21 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Cobb

Cobb

Summary

As a boy in the 1890s he went looking for thrills in a rural Georgia that still burned with humiliation from the Civil War. As an old man in the 1960s he dared death, picked fights, refused to take his medicine, and drove off all his friends and admirers. He went to his deathbed alone, clutching a loaded pistol and a bag containing millions of dollars worth of cash and securities. During the years in between, he became, according to Al Stump, "the most shrewd, inventive, lurid, detested, mysterious, and superb of all baseball players." He was Ty Cobb. In Cobb, Stump tells how he was given a fascinating window into the Georgia Peach's life and times when the dying Cobb hired him in 1960 to ghostwrite his autobiography.

©1994 by Al Stump (P)1997 by Blackstone Audiobooks

Narrator: Ian Esmo
Author: Al Stump
Length: 19 hrs and 39 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Stan Musial

Stan Musial

Summary

When baseball fans voted on the top 25 players of the 20th century in 1999, Stan Musial didn’t make the cut. This glaring omission - later rectified by a panel of experts - aised an important question: How could a first-ballot Hall of Famer, widely considered one of the greatest hitters in baseball history, still rank as the most underrated athlete of all time? In Stan Musial, veteran sports journalist George Vecsey finally gives this 20-time All-Star and St. Louis Cardinals icon the kind of prestigious biographical treatment previously afforded to his more celebrated contemporaries Ted Williams and Joe DiMaggio. More than just a chronological recounting of the events of Musial’s life, this is the definitive portrait of one of the game’s best-loved but most unappreciated legends, told through the remembrances of those who played beside, worked with, and covered “Stan the Man” over the course of his nearly seventy years in the national spotlight. Stan Musial never married a starlet. He didn’t die young, live too hard, or squander his talent. There were no legendary displays of temper or moodiness. He was merely the most consistent superstar of his era, a scarily gifted batsman who compiled 3,630 career hits (1,815 at home and 1,815 on the road), won three World Series titles, and retired in 1963 in possession of seventeen major-league records. Away from the diamond, he proved a savvy businessman and a model of humility and graciousness toward his many fans in St. Louis and around the world. From Keith Hernandez’s boyhood memories of Musial leaving tickets for him when the Cardinals were in San Francisco to the little-known story of Musial’s friendship with novelist James Michener - and their mutual association with Pope John Paul II - Vecsey weaves an intimate oral history around one of the great gentlemen of baseball’s Greatest Generation. There may never be another Stan the Man, a fact that future Hall of Famer Albert Pujols - reluctantly nicknamed “El Hombre” in Musial’s honor - is quick to acknowledge. But thanks to this long-overdue reappraisal, even those who took his greatness for granted will learn to appreciate him all over again.

©2011 Random House Audio (P)2011 George Vecsey

Narrator: Scott Brick
Length: 12 hrs and 7 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Honus Wagner

Honus Wagner

Summary

Honus Wagner, whose career in baseball (most of it with the Pittsburgh Pirates) stretched from 1895 to 1917, was the first American sports superstar of the twentieth century. One of the first five players to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in its first year (1939), he was probably the best shortstop in baseball's history. His great career and the dawn of baseball as popular entertainment occurred simultaneously, and he has become an icon of the early game; his 1909 baseball card, one of which sold four years ago for $451,000, is a holy grail of American memorabilia. This first major biography shows why Wagner was America's favorite image of sport during baseball's transition to the modern era.

©1995 Dennis DeValeria and Jeanne Burke DeValeria (P)1996 Blackstone Audiobooks

Narrator: Ian Esmo
Length: 13 hrs and 59 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Baseball Maverick

Baseball Maverick

Summary

In 2010 the New York Mets were in trouble. One of baseball's most valuable franchises, they had recently suffered an embarrassing September collapse and two bitter losing seasons. Their GM had made costly mistakes. And their principle owners were embroiled in the largest financial scam in American history. To whom did they turn? Sandy Alderson, a former marine who served in Vietnam and graduated from Harvard Law. In 1981 Alderson started in baseball with Oakland, where he led a revolution in the sport. The A's partnered with Apple, pioneered using statistical analysis, and became a powerhouse, winning the 1989 World Series. When new owners slashed payroll in the 1990s, Alderson's under-the-radar creativity and intelligent management were thrust into the spotlight. Granted unprecedented access to a working GM over several seasons, best-selling author Steve Kettmann traces Alderson's history and his renewal of the Mets despite a limited budget, through big trades that brought back high-profile prospects, to the development of young aces including Matt Harvey, Zach Wheeler, and Jacob deGrom. Now the turnaround is almost complete. Baseball Maverick is a gripping, behind-the-scenes look at a Major League team and a fascinating exploration of what it means to be smart.

©2015 Steve Kettmann. Recorded by arrangement with Grove Atlantic, Inc. (P)2015 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: L. J. Ganser
Length: 12 hrs and 32 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Gil Hodges

Gil Hodges

Summary

Due to his achievements as a player and manager, as well as his sterling character, Gil Hodges deserves to be in the Hall of Fame more than any other player. A towering figure during the Golden Era of the 1950s, Hodges was the Brooklyn Dodgers’ powerful first baseman who, alongside Jackie Robinson, helped drive his team to six pennants and a thrilling World Series victory in 1955. Fans never booed the beloved home run hitter from Indiana who married a Brooklyn girl and settled in their borough, and they famously prayed for him when he slumped. Dutifully following the Dodgers to Los Angeles in 1958, Hodges longed to return to New York City. He joined the original Mets team in 1962, and he finished his playing career with them. In 1968, he took over the manager’s spot on their bench. Under his steady hand, the Mets went from a joke to World Champions in 1969 - the Miracle Mets. Yet behind his stoic demeanor lay a man prone to anxiety and worry. Hodges was scarred by combat on Tinian and Okinawa during World War II, and his inner turmoil was exacerbated by tight pennant races and excruciating defeats. His sudden death in 1972 shocked his friends and family, and left a void in the hearts of baseball fans everywhere. Acclaimed authors Tom Clavin and Danny Peary delve into one of baseball’s most overlooked stars, shedding light on a fascinating life and career that even his most ardent fans never knew. An exciting biography that paints a portrait of an amazing era of baseball as much as it does an admirable player, Gil Hodges is sure to please fans of America’s pastime.

©2012 Tom Clavin and Danny Peary (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Kris Koscheski
Length: 14 hrs and 13 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Closer

The Closer

1 rating

Summary

Mariano Rivera, the man who intimidated thousands of batters merely by opening a bullpen door, began his incredible journey as the son of a poor Panamanian fisherman. When first scouted by the Yankees, he didn't even own his own glove. He thought he might make a good mechanic. When discovered, he had never flown in an airplane, had never heard of Babe Ruth, spoke no English, and couldn't imagine Tampa, the city where he was headed to begin a career that would become one of baseball's most iconic. What he did know: that he loved his family and his then girlfriend, Clara, that he could trust in the Lord to guide him, and that he could throw a baseball exactly where he wanted to, every time. With astonishing candor, Rivera tells the story of the championships, the bosses (including The Boss), the rivalries, and the struggles of being a Latino baseball player in the United States and of maintaining Christian values in professional athletics. The thirteen-time All-Star discusses his drive to win; the secrets behind his legendary composure; the story of how he discovered his cut fastball; the untold, pitch-by-pitch account of the ninth inning of Game 7 in the 2001 World Series; and why the lowest moment of his career became one of his greatest blessings. In The Closer, Rivera takes readers into the Yankee clubhouse, where his teammates are his brothers. But he also takes us on that jog from the bullpen to the mound, where the game - or the season - rests squarely on his shoulders. We come to understand the laser-like focus that is his hallmark, and how his faith and his family kept his feet firmly on the pitching rubber. When Rivera retired, the whole world watched -- and cheered. In The Closer, we come to an even greater appreciation of a legend built from the ground up.

©2014 Mariano Rivera (P)2014 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Michael Kay
Length: 7 hrs and 25 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for El Cerrador: Mi vida (The Closer)

El Cerrador: Mi vida (The Closer)

Summary

The greatest relief pitcher of all time shares his extraordinary story of survival, love, and baseball. Mariano Rivera, the man who intimidated thousands of batters merely by opening a bullpen door, began his incredible journey as the son of a poor Panamanian fisherman. When first scouted by the Yankees, he didn't even own his own glove. He thought he might make a good mechanic. When discovered, he had never flown in an airplane, had never heard of Babe Ruth, spoke no English, and couldn't imagine Tampa, the city where he was headed to begin a career that would become one of baseball's most iconic. What he did know: that he loved his family and his then girlfriend, Clara, that he could trust in the Lord to guide him, and that he could throw a baseball exactly where he wanted to, every time. With astonishing candor, Rivera tells the story of the championships, the bosses (including The Boss), the rivalries, and the struggles of being a Latino baseball player in the United States and of maintaining Christian values in professional athletics. The 13-time All-Star discusses his drive to win; the secrets behind his legendary composure; the story of how he discovered his cut fastball; the untold, pitch-by-pitch account of the ninth inning of Game 7 in the 2001 World Series; and why the lowest moment of his career became one of his greatest blessings. In The Closer, Rivera takes listeners into the Yankee clubhouse, where his teammates are his brothers. But he also takes us on that jog from the bullpen to the mound, where the game - or the season - rests squarely on his shoulders. We come to understand the laserlike focus that is his hallmark, and how his faith and his family kept his feet firmly on the pitching rubber. Please note: This audiobook is in Spanish. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.

©2014 Mariano Rivera (P)2014 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Carlos Carrasco
Length: 12 hrs and 20 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Mental Conditioning for Baseball

Mental Conditioning for Baseball

Summary

In Mental Conditioning for Baseball, Brian Cain, the foremost authority on mental toughness on the diamond, takes you through the process of developing mental toughness in yourself, your players, and your program as you learn how to truly play one pitch at a time. Matt Morse, former D1 baseball player and student of Brian Cain Peak Performance, brings his experiences in the mental game to Mental Conditioning for Baseball. He adds a tremendous perspective gained throughout his playing career, and offers simple strategies to maximize performance and master the mental side of the game. Join Cain and Morse as they train you to: Compete one pitch at a time and live in the present moment Become a machine of consistency by implementing routines into what you do each day Build championship character and redefine who you are as a program Enhance your skill of self-discipline and live a lifestyle of excellence Gain emotional control and become master of your mental game Implement a step-by-step process to take you from where you are to where you want to be Mental Conditioning for Baseball gives you incredible understanding and insight into the minds of the players you coach and human nature in general.

©2014 Brian Cain (P)2017 Brian Cain

Length: 5 hrs and 2 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for I Never Had It Made

I Never Had It Made

1 rating

Summary

A straightforward yet inspiring story of what it took to be the first man of color to break into the white world of professional sports. Jackie Robinson's story is more than a telling of his tremendous talent; it is also a recollection that showcases his tenacious spirit, bravery, and the courage of his ideals. From the early influences of family and friends, to his time at UCLA, to the Army, where he challenged racism and Jim Crow laws, Jackie Robinson traces his life to playing in the black leagues, frustrated by the abuses and restrictions of second-class status in professional baseball. As Branch Rickey, president of the Brooklyn Dodgers, began to look around for a player to break the color barrier in 1946, he knew he needed a man of character who could withstand the pressures of his "Noble Experiment". Choosing Robinson gave both of them the chance to prove what they believed in. Struggles that continued in his personal life and in response to the turbulent sixties are interpreted with insight by Robinson and will give listeners an added appreciation for the amazing strength of his character.

Public Domain (P)2008 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Ossie Davis
Length: 2 hrs and 59 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Dinner with DiMaggio

Dinner with DiMaggio

Summary

The real Joe DiMaggio, remembered by the man who knew him best in the last decade of his life - candid and little-known stories about icons from Ted Williams, Lou Gehrig, and his Yankees teammates on the field to Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra, and other great celebrities off the field. Dr. Rock Positano, an internationally renowned foot specialist in New York City, was introduced to Joe DiMaggio by the dean of New York sports writers, Bill Gallo, in 1990. The Yankee Clipper's career-ending heel spur injury and botched surgeries brought them together. During the time Dr. Positano successfully treated the Yankee Clipper, a friendship slowly developed. As Dr. Positano would learn, DiMaggio moved very carefully and deliberately. Dinner with DiMaggio follows the story of their friendship from its starstruck beginning through all its highs and lows over the next decade. Forty years younger than DiMaggio, Dr. Positano became a surrogate son at a time when his actual son was suffering from substance-abuse problems. Positano's accounts of their times together reveal DiMaggio's many rituals and quirks: the same meals at the same restaurants, the same pals in New York and Florida, jacket and tie everywhere. At the pinnacle of his fame, DiMaggio had learned to be guarded and carefully managed his image and private life. As his trust in his young friend grew, DiMaggio opened up about Marilyn but also about his first wife, Dorothy Arnold, the mother of his son and the real love of his life. The Yankee Clipper knew everyone, and Positano shares never-before-told stories of famous people DiMaggio admired and those he didn't. This is DiMaggio as he really was: sometimes cranky and calculating but more often charming, generous, and loyal and always big-hearted when it came to kids. The stories and experiences he shared with Rock Positano comprise an intimate portrait of one of the great stars of baseball and one of the icons of the 20th century. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2017 Rock Positano (P)2017 Simon & Schuster Audio

Available on Audible
Cover art for Last Out

Last Out

Summary

If you are a baseball junkie, this program is for you. Producers Moira Rankin and Dan Collison explore the baseball fan's addiction to the game as they follow two die-hard enthusiasts to see how they endure the off-season. Along the way, they find solace in winter trade news, visit a psychologist, drop in on a support group, and reach nirvana and spring training. The Soundprint documentary series features the best work of top radio producers. The award winning documentaries are renowned for drawing the listener into the story with compelling interviews, authentic voices and rich sound. From memoirs to science, health and popular culture, Soundprint creates a powerful experience the listener will not soon forget. Here are some related Soundprint documentaries: The Baseball Plantation Produced by: Kathy McAnallyChicago: A Rookie Fan’s Love Story Produced by: Judith KampfnerHeavy Petting Produced by: Gemma HooleyHockey Diaries: Ready to Play Produced by: Gemma Hooley and Chris NelsonSoundprint Executive Producer: Bill SiemeringProducer: Moira RankinAudio Engineer: Anna Maria de FreitasAssociate Producer: Debra Morris

©1991 SMCI (P)2013 SMCI

Available on Audible
Cover art for Ann Liguori's Audio Hall of Fame: Ted Williams

Ann Liguori's Audio Hall of Fame: Ted Williams

Summary

Ted Williams defined excellence in whatever he took on. Whether he was playing left field in the major leagues, or flying an airplane, Williams would not settle for second-best. He played 21 seasons with the Boston Red Sox in a career interrupted two times by service as a Marine Corps pilot. He is widely considered one of the greatest hitters in baseball, was a two-time American League MVP, and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. In 1941, he batted over .400 in a single season and no one has touched the record since. Ironically, Williams attributes the secret of his success to 'pure luck.' Here, Williams is interviewed in Boston during All-Star Week by Ann Liguori, award-winning luminary in sports broadcasting with a celebrated career that spans two decades. Liguori has interviewed some of the most legendary sports personalities, drawing out their success stories, their opinions on a variety of issues, and their love of the game.

©2009 Ann Liguori (P)2009 Ann Liguori

Narrator: Ann Liguori
Author: Ted Williams
Length: 19 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Making My Pitch: A Woman's Baseball Odyssey

Making My Pitch: A Woman's Baseball Odyssey

Summary

Making My Pitch tells the story of Ila Jane Borders, who, despite formidable obstacles, became a Little League prodigy, MVP of her otherwise all-male middle school and high school teams, the first woman awarded a baseball scholarship, and the first to pitch and win a complete men’s collegiate game. After Mike Veeck signed Borders in May 1997 to pitch for his St. Paul Saints of the independent Northern League, she accomplished what no woman had done since the Negro Leagues era: play men’s professional baseball. Borders played four professional seasons and in 1998 became the first woman in the modern era to win a professional ball game. Borders had to find ways to fit in with her teammates, reassure their wives and girlfriends, work with the media, and fend off groupies. But these weren’t the toughest challenges. She had a troubled family life, a difficult adolescence as she struggled with her sexual orientation, and an emotionally fraught college experience as a closeted gay athlete at a Christian university.

Making My Pitch shows what it’s like to be the only woman on the team bus, in the clubhouse, and on the field. Borders ultimately relates how she achieved self-acceptance and created a life as a firefighter and paramedic and as a coach and goodwill ambassador for the game of baseball.

The book is published by University of Nebraska Press.

©2017 Ila Jane Borders with Jean Hastings Ardell (P)2018 Redwood Audiobooks

Narrator: Karen Commins
Length: 10 hrs and 7 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for As They See 'Em

As They See 'Em

1 rating

Summary

Millions of American baseball fans know, with absolute certainty, that umpires are simply overpaid galoots who are doing an easy job badly. Millions of American baseball fans are wrong. As They See 'Em is an insider's look at the largely unknown world of professional umpires, the small group of men (and the very occasional woman) who make sure America's favorite pastime is conducted in a manner that is clean, crisp, and true. Bruce Weber, a New York Times reporter, not only interviewed dozens of professional umpires but entered their world, trained to become an umpire, and then spent a season working games from Little League to big league spring training. As They See 'Em is Weber's entertaining account of this experience as well as a lively exploration of what amounts to an eccentric secret society, with its own customs, its own rituals, and its own colorful vocabulary.

©2009 Bruce Weber (P)2009 Phoenix Books

Narrator: Charley Steiner
Author: Bruce Weber
Length: 13 hrs and 28 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Baseball before We Knew It

Baseball before We Knew It

Summary

It may be America's game, but no one seems to know how or when baseball really started. Theories abound, myths proliferate, but reliable information has been in short supply - until now, when Baseball before We Knew It brings fresh new evidence of baseball's origins into play. David Block looks into the early history of the game and of the 150-year-old debate about its beginnings. He tackles one stubborn misconception after another, debunking the enduring belief that baseball descended from the English game of rounders and revealing a surprising new explanation for the most notorious myth of all - the Abner Doubleday - Cooperstown story. Block's book takes listeners on an exhilarating journey through the centuries in search of clues to the evolution of our modern National Pastime. Among his startling discoveries is a set of long-forgotten baseball rules from the 1700s. Block evaluates the originality and historical significance of the Knickerbocker rules of 1845, revisits European studies on the ancestry of baseball which indicate that the game dates back hundreds, if not thousands of years, and assembles a detailed history of games and pastimes from the Middle Ages onward that contributed to baseball's development. In its thoroughness and reach, and its extensive descriptive bibliography of early baseball sources, this audiobook is a unique and invaluable resource - a comprehensive and reliable account of baseball before it was America's game.

©2005 David Block (P)2014 Audible Inc.

Author: David Block
Length: 7 hrs and 13 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Branch Rickey

Branch Rickey

Summary

The idea of integrating baseball began as a dream in the mind of Branch Rickey. In 1947, as president and general manager of the Brooklyn Dodgers, he defied racism on and off the field to bring Jackie Robinson into the major leagues, changing the sport and the nation forever. Rickey's is the classic American tale of a poor boy from Ohio whose deep-seated faith and dogged work ethic took him to the pinnacle of success, earning him a place in the Hall of Fame and in history. Bestselling author and Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Jimmy Breslin is a legend in his own right. In his inimitable anecdotal style, he provides a lively portrait of Rickey and his times, including such colorful characters as Dodgers' owner George V. McLaughlin (dubbed "George the Fifth" for his love of Scotch); diamond greats Leo Durocher, George Sisler, and Dizzy Dean; and Robinson himself, a man whose remarkable talent was equaled only by his resilience in the face of intolerance. Breslin brings to life the heady days when baseball emerged as the national pastime in this inspiring biography of a great American who remade a sport---and dreamed of remaking a country.

©2011 Jimmy Breslin (P)2011 Tantor

Narrator: Dick Hill
Length: 4 hrs and 9 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Baseball: How to Become a Better Baseball Player with These 10 Steps

Baseball: How to Become a Better Baseball Player with These 10 Steps

Summary

How to become a better baseball player with these 10 steps.

©2018 Jeremy Rupert (P)2018 Jeremy Rupert

Narrator: Joseph Mitchell
Length: 6 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Infinite Baseball

Infinite Baseball

Summary

In this deeply entertaining book, philosopher and baseball fan Alva Noë explores the many unexpected ways in which baseball is truly a philosophical kind of game. For example, he ponders how observers of baseball are less interested in what happens, than in who is responsible for what happens; every action receives praise or blame. To put it another way, in baseball - as in the law - we decide what happened based on who is responsible for what happened. Noë also explains the curious activity of keeping score: a score card is not merely a record of the game, like a video recording; it is an account of the game. Baseball requires that true fans try to tell the story of the game, in real time, as it unfolds, and thus actively participate in its creation.  Some argue that baseball is fundamentally a game about numbers. Noë's wide-ranging, thoughtful observations show that, to the contrary, baseball is not only a window on language, culture, and the nature of human action, but is intertwined with deep and fundamental human truths. The book ranges from the nature of umpiring and the role of instant replay, to the nature of the strike zone, from the rampant use of surgery to controversy surrounding performance enhancing drugs. Throughout, Noë's observations are surprising and provocative. Infinite Baseball is a book for the true baseball fan.

©2019 Oxford University Press (P)2019 HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books

Narrator: Barry Abrams
Author: Alva Noe
Length: 4 hrs and 31 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Charlie Finley

Charlie Finley

Summary

Before the "Bronx Zoo" of George Steinbrenner and Billy Martin, there were the Oakland Athletics of the early 1970s, one of the most successful, most colorful - and most chaotic - baseball teams of all time. They were all of those things because of Charlie Finley. Not only the A's owner, he was also the general manager, personally assembling his team, deciding his players' salaries, and making player moves during theseason - a level of involvement no other owner, not even Steinbrenner, engaged in. Drawing on interviews with dozens of Finley's players, family members, and colleagues, G. Michael Green and Roger D. Launius present "Baseball's Super Showman" (Time magazine's description of Finleyon the cover of an August 1975 issue) in all his contradictions: generous yet vengeful, inventive yet destructive. The stories surrounding him are as colorful as the life he led, the chronicle of which fills an important gap in baseball's literature.

©2010 G. Michael Greenand Roger D. Launius (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Rex Linn
Length: 12 hrs and 47 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Baseball

Baseball

1 rating

Summary

Best-selling author George Vecsey is an esteemed and award-winning sports journalist for the New York Times. In Baseball, he recounts the history of America's national pastime. Baseball has been around in various forms for thousands of years, but only within the last 200 years has it become an American institution. Growing from a sport played in open fields and big-city streets, baseball has seen its share of innovators and detractors, heroes and villains. Vecsey details them all, from the scandalous Black Sox of 1919 and modern steroid abusers to icons like Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson, and the countless underdogs that came out of nowhere to capture the imaginations of fans everywhere. Vecsey's Baseball is a concise history filled with details and stories that will appeal to rookie and veteran fans alike. Narrator Alan Nebelthau's warm voice punctuates all of the wit and charm of Vecsey's prose.

©2006 George Vecsey (P)2006 Recorded Books, LLC

Narrator: Alan Nebelthau
Length: 6 hrs and 44 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Mr. Met

Mr. Met

Summary

Anyone who knows Jay Horwitz knows he loves stories and has a wealth of them to share. As the beloved, longtime PR director for the New York Mets, he has witnessed and quietly shaped some of the most memorable moments in team history, becoming a trusted friend and mentor to generations of players, from Darryl Strawberry to Jacob deGrom.  In this fascinating memoir, Horwitz tells the unlikely story of a childhood dream come true, offering an unparalleled insider's perspective on four dynamic and unpredictable decades of Mets baseball. Featuring reflections and anecdotes only Horwitz can tell, on subjects ranging from clubhouse hijinks, to the chaotic New York media scene, to navigating moments of greatness and defeat, Mr. Met is a remarkable behind-the-scenes ride that fans will not want to miss.

©2020 Jay Horwitz (P)2020 Tantor

Narrator: Barry Abrams
Length: 8 hrs and 50 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for A Renegade Championship Summer

A Renegade Championship Summer

Summary

Come along for the ride with the 1999 New York-Penn League Champion Hudson Valley Renegades. Hear from the players and coaches who made it happen, including superstar Josh Hamilton and many other household names! You'll also get the true feel of minor league baseball, going behind the scenes with umpires, front office executives, scouts, former players and many more! Put yourself in the dugout, clubhouse and team bus to see what really goes on with a minor league baseball team! See what kind of impact Josh Hamilton, the number one pick in the draft, had on the 1999 Renegades. Truly a must for any baseball fan who wants to be closer than ever to the game! This storybook season took place in the summer of 1999. It was my final season as the play by play voice of the Hudson Valley Renegades, a Tampa Bay Devil Rays Short Season A-Ball affiliate. I had no idea what kind of ride I was in for, but I paid close attention just in case. This season in 1999 turned out to be one of the most memorable, amazing runs in recent minor league baseball history! I was there for every pitch and every bus ride. I witnessed every moment, as the season crystalized into one for the ages. Complete with future Big Leaguers such as Josh Hamilton, Matt Diaz, Jorge Cantu and Edwin Rodriguez, the season was a continuous series of unexpected turns. Following the season, I spent seven months holed up in a downtown apartment, transcribing thousands of hours of taped interviews and culling pages of notes. I'd make phone calls to players - recalling my recollection of events, in an effort to piece together an accurate and exciting recap of the season.

©2016 Rick Schultz (P)2017 Rick Schultz

Narrator: Mark Rossman
Author: Rick Schultz
Length: 6 hrs and 17 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Brothers in Arms

Brothers in Arms

Summary

The Los Angeles Dodgers are one of the most storied franchises in all of sports, with enduring legacies both on and off the diamond. Chief among the hallmarks of the organization is an unparalleled pitching dominance; Dodger blue and white brings to mind brilliance on the mound and the Cy Young Awards that follow. In Brothers in Arms, acclaimed Dodgers writer Jon Weisman explores the organization's rich pitching history, from Koufax and Drysdale to Valenzuela, Hershiser, and the sublime Clayton Kershaw. Weisman delves deep into this lineage of excellence, interviewing both the legends who toed the rubber and the teammates, coaches, and personalities who witnessed their genius. 

©2018 Jon Weisman (P)2019 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Length: 13 hrs and 10 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ken Griffey Jr.

Ken Griffey Jr.

Summary

Learn the inspiring story of the Seattle Mariners and Cincinnati Reds' legendary outfielder Ken Griffey Jr.! One of the many riveting listens in the Baseball Biography books series by Clayton Geoffreys. In Ken Griffey Jr.: The Inspiring Story of One of Baseball's Greatest Outfielders, you will learn the story of one of baseball's greatest outfielders, Ken Griffey Jr. Griffey Jr. accomplished a lot over the course of his career, playing the bulk of it for the Seattle Mariners and the Cincinnati Reds. By the time he retired, he was a 13-time all-star, American League MVP, and 10-time Gold Glove Award recipient. Ken Griffey Jr. serves as a role model for baseball fans of all ages in the way he carried himself on and off the field throughout his career and showing his dominance on both the offensive and defensive sides of the game. Buy this unauthorized baseball biography today to learn the inspiring story behind star baseball outfielder Ken Griffey Jr.! This is the perfect baseball chapter book for sports fans of all ages. This baseball book explores what makes Ken Griffey Jr. great and what we can learn from his hard work. Here is a preview of what is inside the Ken Griffey Jr. audiobook: Childhood and no love for the Yankees  High school career and the draft  Minor league career  Major league career: rookie season, becoming the man and the best in baseball  The trade, a rough new beginning, the comeback, and the end of an era  Griffey Jr.'s personal life  Griffey Jr.'s legacy  Be sure to pick up this audiobook on Ken Griffey Jr. today!

©2020 Calvintir Books, LLC (P)2020 Calvintir Books, LLC

Narrator: Tom Sleeker
Length: 1 hr and 41 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for A View from My Seat

A View from My Seat

Summary

Horror and crime fiction author Armand Rosamilia loves baseball.

He grew up in a baseball family. He loves watching it. Studying it. Getting lost in it.

When his wife mentioned getting season tickets for the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp, the Double-A affiliate of the Miami Marlins, he jumped on it.

And a nonfiction book idea was born. His love of baseball and a season of minor league baseball.

He not only breaks down the entire 2017 Jumbo Shrimp season but gives his own perspective as a fan and tells stories from his own past as a baseball fan...going to the infamous Pine Tar game...being a diehard Red Sox fan...the 1993 World Series...Brooks Robinson's final game...collecting baseball cards, and so much more!

Features interviews with Jumbo Shrimp staff and players, too:

“We want you to leave here and feel like you had a great affordable experience. You can go home with some money still in your wallet. That’s a very important thing. It also hopefully makes you want to come back for more.” (Ken Babby, owner of your Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp)

“We were definitely expecting an increase in attention. The sales and the amount of repeat customers exceeded our expectations. I was blown away.” (Noel Baha, assistant GM)

“What we’re trying to do here in Jacksonville is help the Marlins win in Miami.” (Roger Hoover, director of Broadcasting)

“You can’t think about looking ahead because this game is tough. It has different ways of bringing you up and bringing you down. If you get on the field and give it everything the rest falls into place.” (John Norwood, right field)

“We have an advantage with the crowds we get. How loud this place gets when we have success and the other team doesn’t.” (Alex Yarbrough, infield)

“I’m looking for an extra one percent from these players. One percent better per month. Everyone has different things they need to get a little better at. It’s why we’re here in the minor leagues.” (Storm Davis, pitching coach and Jacksonville native)

©2018 Armand Rosamilia (P)2019 Armand Rosamilia

Narrator: Roland Purdy
Length: 6 hrs and 32 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ann Liguori's Audio Hall of Fame: Barry Bonds

Ann Liguori's Audio Hall of Fame: Barry Bonds

Summary

Barry Bonds holds the career homerun record, having crushed his 756th homerun deep into the stands in right field and breaking Hank Aaron's record on August 7th, 2007. But Barry Bond's legendary career has been overshadowed by his role in the professional baseball's ever-deepening steroids scandal. Barry is the son of former major league All-Star Bobby Bonds. This candid interview was conducted just after he joined the San Francisco Giants in the '90s, when his dad was coach. Bonds' accomplishments place him among the greatest baseball players of all-time. Barry is interviewed by Ann Liguori, award-winning luminary in sports broadcasting with a celebrated career that spans two decades. Liguori has interviewed some of the most legendary sports personalities, drawing out their success stories, their opinions on a variety of issues, and their love of the game.

©2009 Ann Liguori (P)2009 Ann Liguori

Narrator: Ann Liguori
Author: Barry Bonds
Length: 20 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Joe DiMaggio

Joe DiMaggio

2 ratings

Summary

In the hard-knuckled '30s, Joe DiMaggio was the immigrant boy who made it big. He was the dominant star in the New York Yankees dynasty. As World War II loomed, Joltin' Joe launched a 56-game hitting streak - and the nation literally sang his name. In the age of postwar ease and plenty, he became Broadway Joe, the icon of elegance and class - marrying Marilyn Monroe, the most beautiful girl in America. In 1962, when he lost that girl for good, Joe was everyman embarking on a decade of national bereavement. Joe DiMaggio mirrored our best self, but he was also the loneliest hero we ever had. A nation of fans would give him anything, but what he wanted most was to hide the life he chose. In this groundbreaking biography, Richard Ben Cramer presents a stunning, often shocking portrait of the hero nobody knew. It is a story that sweeps through the 20th century, bringing light to America's national game, movie stars, mobsters, as well as the birth - and the price - of national celebrity. This is the story that Joe DiMaggio never wanted to tell. It is the story of his grace and greed, his dignity, pride, and his hidden shame.

©2000 Richard Ben Cramer, All Rights Reserved (P)2000 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All Rights Reserved, AUDIOWORKS Is an Imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division, Simon & Schuster, Inc.

Length: 6 hrs and 18 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Three Nights in August

Three Nights in August

1 rating

Summary

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author captures baseball's essence in this account of a dramatic three-game series viewed through the eyes of legendary St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa. Through 25 years of managing, Tony La Russa has won more games than any current manager. He's the most strategically adept and arguably the smartest manager in baseball, and he still believes that games are won not by statistics, but by the hearts and minds of the players. Given unprecedented access to La Russa and his team, best-selling journalist Bissinger captures baseball's strategic and emotional essence. We watch from the dugout as La Russa's Cardinals take on their archrivals, the Chicago Cubs, in a thrilling three-game series. Some of the greatest players of our time grace the lineups: Albert Pujols, Sammy Sosa, Scott Rolen, Mark Prior. La Russa, a 40-year veteran of the game, shows why he's so revered. And Bissinger's laser-beam focus uncovers surprising truths about the pathology of slumps, the art of beanball retaliation, the eccentricities of pitchers, and the timelessness of the game. His swinging prose brings every moment gloriously to life.

©2005 Tony La Russa and H.G. Bissinger (P)2005 HighBridge Company

Length: 9 hrs and 50 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Baseball

Baseball

1 rating

Summary

A succinct history of baseball, newly revised and updated. In this third edition of his lively history of America's game, widely recognized as the best of its kind, Benjamin G. Rader expands his scope, covering record crowds and record income, construction of new ballparks, a change in the strike zone, a surge in recruiting Japanese players, and an emerging cadre of explosive long-ball hitters. The book is published by The University of Illinois Press.

©2008 Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois (P)2010 Redwood Audiobooks

Narrator: Joe Barrett
Length: 12 hrs and 40 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Mantle

Mantle

Summary

In Mantle: The Best There Ever Was, Mickey Mantle biographer Tony Castro brings to life the man who is arguably not only the greatest ballplayer of his time but also the greatest ballplayer of all time. Castro offers illuminating new insight into Mantle's extraordinary career, including the head-turning conclusion based on the evolution of analytics that the beloved Yankee switch-hitting slugger may ultimately win acclaim as having fulfilled the weighty expectations once placed on him: of being greater than even Babe Ruth. Mantle himself believed he would one day be the one to break Ruth's single season home run record. Mantle: The Best There Ever Was completes Castro's Mickey Mantle Trilogy that includes Mickey Mantle: America's Prodigal Son, which the New York Times has called the best biography ever written about the Hall of Fame icon, and DiMag & Mick: Sibling Rivals, Yankee Blood Brothers. Its publication comes on the eve of the commemoration of the 25th anniversary of Mantle's death.

©2019 The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group, Inc. (P)2019 Tantor

Author: Tony Castro
Length: 9 hrs and 5 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Breaking Babe Ruth: Baseball's Campaign Against Its Biggest Star

Breaking Babe Ruth: Baseball's Campaign Against Its Biggest Star

Summary

Rather than as a Falstaffian figure of limited intellect, Edmund Wehrle reveals Babe Ruth as an ambitious, independent operator, one not afraid to challenge baseball’s draconian labor system. To the baseball establishment, Ruth’s immense popularity represented opportunity, but his rebelliousness and potential to overturn the status quo presented a threat. After a decades-long campaign waged by baseball to contain and discredit him, the Babe, frustrated and struggling with injuries and illness, grew more acquiescent, but the image of Ruth that baseball perpetuated still informs how many people remember Babe Ruth to this day. This new perspective, approaching Ruth more seriously and placing his life in fuller context, is long overdue. The book is published by University of Missouri Press. The audiobook is published by University Press Audiobooks.

©2018 The Curators of the University of Missouri (P)2020 Redwood Audiobooks

Narrator: Ted Brooks
Length: 10 hrs and 26 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Willie Mays

Willie Mays

Summary

Authorized by Willie Mays and written by a New York Times best-selling author, this is the definitive biography of one of baseball's immortals.

Considered to be "as monumental -- and enigmatic -- a legend as American sport has ever seen" (Sports Illustrated), Willie Mays is arguably the greatest player in baseball history, still revered for the passion he brought to the game. He began as a teenager in the Negro Leagues, became a cult hero in New York, and was the headliner in Major League Baseball's bold expansion to California. With 3,283 hits, 660 home runs, and 338 stolen bases, he was a blend of power, speed, and stylistic bravado that enraptured fans for more than two decades. Now, in the first biography authorized by and written with the cooperation of Willie Mays, James Hirsch reveals the man behind the player.

Willie is perhaps best known for "The Catch" -- his breathtaking over-the-shoulder grab in the 1954 World Series. But he was a transcendent figure who received standing ovations in enemy stadiums and who, during the turbulent civil rights era, urged understanding and reconciliation. More than his records, his legacy is defined by the pure joy that he brought to fans and the loving memories that have been passed to future generations so they might know the magic and beauty of the game. With meticulous research, and drawing on interviews with Mays himself as well as with close friends, family, and teammates, Hirsch presents a complex portrait of one of America's most significant cultural icons.

©2010 James S Hirsch (P)2010 Simon & Schuster

Narrator:
Author:
Length: 10 hrs and 9 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for 108 Stitches

108 Stitches

1 rating

Summary

This is New York Times bestselling author and Emmy-nominated broadcaster Ron Darling's 108 baseball anecdotes that connect America’s game to the men who played it.

In 108 Stitches, Ron Darling offers his own take on the "six degrees of separation" game and knits together a collection of wild, wise, and wistful stories reflecting the full arc of a life in and around our national pastime. 

Darling has played with or reported on just about everybody who has put on a uniform since 1983, and they in turn have played with or reported on just about everybody who put on a uniform in a previous generation. Through relationships with baseball legends on and off the field, like Yale coach Smoky Joe Wood, Willie Mays, Bart Giamatti, Tom Seaver and Mickey Mantle, Darling's reminiscences reach all the way back to Babe Ruth and other turn-of-the-century greats. 

Like the 108 stitches on a baseball, Darling's experiences are interwoven with every athlete who has ever played, every coach or manager who ever sat in a dugout, and with every fan who ever played hooky from work or school to sit in the bleachers for a day game. 

Darling's anecdotes come together to tell the story of his time in the game, and the story of the game itself.

©2019 by Ron Darling. (P)2019 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

Available on Audible
Cover art for Great Baseball Stories

Great Baseball Stories

Summary

Here is a wonderful collection of 20 revealing essays on the national pastime. Featuring contributions from Roger Angell, John Thorn, Frank Deford, George Plimpton, Stefan Fatsis, and others (plus a foreword by the legendary Yogi Berra), the stories are united by the authors’ fervent love of the game.

©2008, 2012 the Creative Nonfiction Foundation (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

Narrator:
Author:
Length: 9 hrs and 31 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Papi

Papi

7 ratings

Summary

An entertaining, unfiltered memoir by one of the game's greatest, most clutch sluggers and beloved personalities David "Big Papi" Ortiz is a baseball icon and one of the most popular figures ever to play the game. As a key part of the Boston Red Sox for 14 years, David has helped the team win three World Series, bringing back a storied franchise from "never wins" to "always wins". He helped them upend the doubts, the naysayers, and the nonbelievers and captured the imagination of millions of fans along the way, as he launched balls into the stands again and again and again. He made Boston and the Red Sox his home, his place of work, and his legacy. As he put it: This is our f*&#ing city. Now, looking back at the end of his legendary career, Ortiz opens up fully for the first time about his last two decades in the game. Unhindered by political correctness, Ortiz talks colorfully about his journey, from his poor upbringing in the Dominican Republic to when the expansion Florida Marlins passed up a chance to sign him due to what was essentially tennis elbow. He recalls his days in Peoria, Arizona, his first time in the United States; tense exchanges with Twins manager Tom Kelly in Minnesota; and his arrival in Boston. Listeners go behind the scenes for the many milestones of his Red Sox career - from the huge disappointment of the Red Sox losing to the Yankees in 2003, ending the curse in 2004 with the infamous "band of idiots", including his extraordinary clutch hitting to overcome a 3-0 series deficit against the Yankees, to earning a second title in 2007 and a third in 2013. Along the way he was tainted by the infamous banned substances list in 2009; he used his passion and place to fortify a city devastated by the Boston Marathon bombings; and he dominated pitchers right up through his retirement season at age 40. Papi, as he became so affectionately called, gave his fans big hits when they needed them most. He was an even bigger presence: He was a champion who rallied a team, a city, and a sport in a way that no one will ever forget. In Papi, his ultimate memoir, Ortiz opens up as never before about his life in baseball and about the problems he sees in Major League Baseball, about former teammates, opponents, coaches, and executives, and about the weight of expectation whenever he stepped up to the plate. The result is a revelatory, fly-on-the wall story of a career by a player with a lot to say at the end of his time in the game, a game to which he gave so much and which gave so much to him.

©2017 David Ortiz (P)2018 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Peter Larkin
Length: 7 hrs and 47 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ann Liguori's Audio Hall of Fame: Duke Snider

Ann Liguori's Audio Hall of Fame: Duke Snider

Summary

Duke Snider played centerfield with the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers until 1962. From 1947 to 1956, Brooklyn ruled the National League, but that wasn't the only item in the news. Snider had a front row seat to the controversy surrounding the brilliant career of Jackie Robinson - they started in the major leagues on the same day. In this candid interview Snider also talks with warmth and humility about the day the Brooklyn Dodgers moved to Los Angeles. Snider is interviewed here by Ann Liguori, award-winning luminary in sports broadcasting with a celebrated career that spans two decades. Liguori has interviewed some of the most legendary sports personalities, drawing out their success stories, their opinions on a variety of issues, and their love of the game.

©2009 Ann Liguori (P)2009 Ann Liguori

Narrator: Ann Liguori
Author: Duke Snider
Length: 19 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Greatest Baseball Stories Ever Told

The Greatest Baseball Stories Ever Told

1 rating

Summary

At a 1931 barnstorming exhibition game in Tennessee, a 17-year-old pitcher for the Chattanooga Lookouts struck out Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig back to back. Her name was Jackie Mitchell - "organized baseball's first girl pitcher." On September 9, 1965, Sandy Koufax made baseball history by pitching his fourth perfect game. In July 1970, a stripper rushed onto the field at Riverfront Stadium to kiss Johnny Bench, temporarily disrupting a game attended by President Nixon and his family. These are just some of the great, quirky, and comic moments in the annals of baseball recorded in The Greatest Baseball Stories Ever Told. Here also are profiles of such legendary figures as Joe DiMaggio, Pete Rose, and Yogi Berra, essays that explore the complexities and pleasures of the game, even an excerpt from the movie Bull Durham. This is the perfect book for anyone who has ever played so much as a game of catch.

©2001 Jeff Silverman (P)2016 Tantor

Length: 14 hrs and 51 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Crowd Sounds Happy

The Crowd Sounds Happy

Summary

Growing up in a doomed hometown with a missing father and a single mother, Nicholas Dawidoff listened to baseball every night on his bedside radio, the professional ballplayers gradually becoming the men in his life. A portrait of a childhood shaped by a stoical, enterprising mother, a disturbed, dangerous father, the private world of baseball, and the awkwardness of first love, The Crowd Sounds Happy is the moving tale of a spirited boy's coming-of-age in troubled times.

©2008 Nicholas Dawidoff (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Pat Young
Length: 10 hrs and 3 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for From the Stick to the Cove

From the Stick to the Cove

Summary

Day in, day out, Mike Murphy has been a constant presence with the San Francisco Giants since the team moved west in 1958. The clubhouse at Oracle Park bears his name, and in the jubilant aftermath of the team's 2010 World Series victory, Buster Posey told Murphy, "We did it for you, we got your ring." If you know the Giants, you know "Murph." In From the Stick to the Cove, the beloved longtime clubhouse manager reflects on over six decades of incredible memories, from getting his start as a bat boy and first meeting his idol Willie Mays, to unexpected celebrity encounters, to his role as a father figure for more recent generations of Giants.

©2020 Mike Murphy and Chris Haft (P)2020 Tantor

Narrator: Kyle Tait
Length: 6 hrs and 19 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Harvard Boys

Harvard Boys

Summary

Harvard has a reputation for turning out notable lawyers, doctors, politicians, and scientists - but not exactly for producing professional ballplayers. However, in the mid-1970s Rick Wolff transferred from this major leaguer of academia to baseball’s minors, playing for the Detroit Tigers organization. Thirty years later, his son followed in his footsteps: Harvard diploma in hand, he now plays for a minor league affiliate of the New York Mets. Baseball fans will enjoy the duo’s parallel adventures in the little-known world of boarding houses, horrible meals, long bus rides, and colorful coaches that make minor league baseball so popular and fascinating.

©2007 Pond Lane Productions, Inc. (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Bill Dewees
Length: 7 hrs and 30 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ted Williams

Ted Williams

Summary

He was one of the greatest figures of his generation and arguably the greatest baseball hitter of all time. But what made Ted Williams a legend and a lightning rod for controversy in life and in death? New York Times best-selling author Leigh Montville delivers an intimate, riveting account of this extraordinary life. Still a gangly teenager when he stepped into a Boston Red Sox uniform in 1939, Williams' boisterous personality and penchant for towering home runs earned him adoring admirers (the fans) and venomous critics (the sportswriters). In 1941, the entire country followed Williams' stunning .406 season, a record that has not been touched in more than six decades. At the pinnacle of his prime, Williams left Boston to train and serve as a fighter pilot in World War II, missing three full years of baseball. He was back in 1946, dominating the sport alongside teammates Dominic DiMaggio, Johnny Pesky, and Bobby Doerr. Ted Willams' personal life was equally colorful. His attraction to women (and their attraction to him) was a constant. He was married and divorced three times, and he fathered two daughters and a son. He was one of corporate America's first modern spokesmen, and he remained, nearly into his 80s, a fiercely devoted fisherman. With his son, John Henry Williams, he devoted his final years to the sports memorabilia business, even as illness overtook him. In death, controversy and public outcry followed Williams, the result of disagreements among his children over the decision to have his body preserved in a cryonics facility; a fate, many argue, Williams never wanted. With unmatched verve and passion, and drawing upon hundreds of interviews, acclaimed best-selling author Leigh Montville brings to life Ted Williams' superb triumphs, lonely tragedies, and intensely colorful personality in a biography that is fitting of an American hero and legend.

©2004 Leigh Montville (P)2004 Books on Tape

Narrator: Scott Brick
Length: 21 hrs and 12 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ann Liguori's Audio Hall of Fame: Goose Gossage

Ann Liguori's Audio Hall of Fame: Goose Gossage

Summary

Goose Gossage won his claim to fame as a relief pitcher in crucial games. He recorded the final out to clinch a division, league or World Series title seven times. Between 1972 and 1994, Gossage played 22 seasons for nine different teams, spending his best years with the New York Yankees and San Diego Padres. His wild facial hair and a gruff demeanor only added to the intimidation of his blistering fastball. By the end of the 1987 season he trailed only Rollie Fingers in major league history in career saves. His eight All-Star selections as a reliever were a record until recently, and Goose Gossage was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2008. Gossage is interviewed here by Ann Liguori, award-winning luminary in sports broadcasting with a celebrated career that spans two decades. Liguori has interviewed some of the most legendary sports personalities, drawing out their success stories, their opinions on a variety of issues, and their love of the game.

©2009 Ann Liguori (P)2009 Ann Liguori

Narrator: Ann Liguori
Length: 19 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Soul of Baseball

The Soul of Baseball

1 rating

Summary

When legendary Negro League player Buck O'Neil asked Joe Posnanski how he fell in love with baseball, the renowned sports columnist was inspired by the question. He decided to spend the 2005 baseball season touring the country with the 94-year-old O'Neil in hopes of rediscovering the love that first drew them to the game. The Soul of Baseball is as much the story of Buck O'Neil as it is the story of baseball. Driven by a relentless optimism and his two great passions - for America's pastime and for jazz, America's music - O'Neil played solely for love. In an era when greedy, steroid-enhanced athletes have come to characterize professional ball, Posnanski offers a salve for the damaged spirit: the uplifting life lessons of a truly extraordinary man who never missed an opportunity to enjoy and love life.

©2007 Joe Posnanski (P)2020 Tantor

Narrator: David Sadzin
Length: 7 hrs and 52 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Hall: A Celebration of Baseball's Greats

The Hall: A Celebration of Baseball's Greats

1 rating

Summary

A deluxe baseball treasury unlike any other, complete with essays, photos, and player bios from The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Everyone dreams of Cooperstown. It's a hallowed name in baseball, for players as well as their fans. It's a house where legends live; it's everything that's great about the game. Never before has the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum published a complete registry of inductees with plaques, photographs, and extended biographies. In this unique, 75th anniversary edition, hear the stories of every player inducted into the Hall, organized by position. Each section begins with an original essay by a living Hall of Famer who played that position: Hank Aaron, George Brett, Orlando Cepeda, Carlton Fisk, Tommy Lasorda, Joe Morgan, Jim Rice, Cal Ripken Jr., Nolan Ryan, and Robin Yount.

©2014 The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum (P)2014 Hachette Audio

Available on Audible
Cover art for Beyond Belief

Beyond Belief

1 rating

Summary

Josh Hamilton was the first player chosen in the first round of the 1999 baseball draft. He was destined to be one of those rare "high-character" superstars. But in 2001, working his way from the minors to the majors, all of the plans for Josh went off the rails in a moment of weakness. What followed was a four-year nightmare of drugs and alcohol, estrangement from friends and family, and his eventual suspension from baseball. Beyond Belief details the events that led up to the derailment. Josh explains how a young man destined for fame and wealth could allow his life to be taken over by drugs and alcohol. But it is also the memoir of a spiritual journey that breaks through pain and heartbreak and leads to the spectacular rebirth of his major-league career. Josh Hamilton makes no excuses and places no blame on anyone other than himself. He takes responsibility for his poor decisions and believes his story can help millions who battle the same demons. "I have been given a platform to tell my story," he says. "I pray every night I am a good messenger."

©2012 Josh Hamilton (P)2012 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Ethan Sawyer
Length: 7 hrs and 56 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Pitching in a Pinch

Pitching in a Pinch

Summary

An inside baseball memoir from the game’s first superstar, with a foreword by Chad Harbach Christy Mathewson was one of the most dominant pitchers ever to play baseball. Posthumously inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame as one of the “Five Immortals,” he was an unstoppable force on the mound, winning at least 22 games for 12 straight seasons and pitching three complete-game shutouts in the 1905 World Series. Pitching in a Pinch, his witty and digestible book of baseball insights, stories, and wisdom, was first published over a hundred years ago and presents listeners with Mathewson’s plainspoken perspective on the diamond of yore - on the players, the chances they took, the jinxes they believed in, and, most of all, their love of the game. Baseball fans will love to listen to first-hand accounts of the infamous Merkle’s Boner incident, Giants manager John McGraw, and the unstoppable Johnny Evers and to learn how much - and just how little - has really changed in a hundred years.

Public Domain (P)2018 Tait Productions, LLC

Narrator: Kyle Tait
Length: 6 hrs and 2 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Bigger than the Game

Bigger than the Game

1 rating

Summary

After nearly a decade in the minors, Dirk Hayhurst defied the odds to climb onto the pitcher's mound for the Toronto Blue Jays. Newly married, with a big league paycheck and a brand new house, Hayhurst was ready for a great season in the Bigs.Then fate delivered a crushing hit. Hayhurst blew out his pitching shoulder in an insane off-season workout program. After surgery, rehab, and more rehab, his major-league dreams seemed more distant than ever.From there things got worse, weirder, and funnier. In a crazy world of injured athletes, autograph-seeking nuns, angry wrestlers, and trainers with a taste for torture, Hayhurst learned lessons about the game—and himself—that were not in any rulebook. Honest, soul-searching, insightful, hilarious, and moving, Dirk Hayhurst's latest memoir is an indisputable baseball classic.

©2014 Dirk Hayhurst (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Stephen Hoye
Length: 9 hrs and 11 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Eastern Stars

The Eastern Stars

Summary

In the town of San Pedro in the Dominican Republic, baseball is not just a way of life. It's the way of life. By the year 2008, 79 boys and men from San Pedro had gone on to play in the Major Leagues - that means one in six Dominican Republicans who have played in the Majors have come from one tiny, impoverished region. Manny Alexander, Sammy Sosa, Tony Fernandez, and legions of other San Pedro players who came up in the sugar-mill teams flocked to the United States looking for opportunity, wealth, and a better life. Because of the sugar industry and the influxes of migrant workers from across the Caribbean to work in the cane fields and factories, San Pedro is one of the most ethnically diverse areas of the Dominican Republic. A multitude of languages are spoken there, and a variety of skin colors populate the community; but the one constant is sugar and baseball. The history of players from San Pedro is also a chronicle of racism in baseball, changing social mores in sports and in the Dominican Republic, and the personal stories of the many men who sought freedom from poverty through playing ball. The story of baseball in San Pedro is also that of the Caribbean in the 20th and 21st centuries and, on a broader level, opens a window into U.S. history. As with Mark Kurlansky's Cod and Salt, this small story, rich with anecdote and detail, becomes much larger than ever imagined. Kurlansky reveals two countries' love affair with a sport and the remarkable journey of San Pedro and its baseball players. In his distinctive style, he follows common threads and discovers wider meanings about place, identity, and, above all, baseball.

©2010 Mark Kurlansky (P)2010 Tantor

Narrator: Ed Sala
Length: 8 hrs and 38 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Sixty Feet, Six Inches

Sixty Feet, Six Inches

Summary

Legendary. Insightful. Uncompromising. Candid. Uncensored. Mr. October and Hoot Gibson unfortunately never faced each other on the field. But now, in Sixty Feet, Six Inches, these two legends open up in fascinating detail about the game they love and how it was, is, and should be played. Their one-of-a-kind insider stories recall a who's who of baseball nobility, including Willie Mays, Alex Rodriguez, Hank Aaron, Albert Pujols, Billy Martin, and Joe Torre. This is an unforgettable baseball history by two of its most influential superstars.

©2009 Bob Gibson (P)2009 Random House

Available on Audible
Cover art for Wherever I Wind Up

Wherever I Wind Up

4 ratings

Summary

The Glass Castle meets Ball Four as Mets knuckleballer R. A. Dickey weaves searing honesty and baseball insight in this memoir about his unlikely journey to the big leagues. An English Lit major at the University of Tennessee, Dickey is as articulate and thoughtful as any professional athlete in any sport - and proves it page after page, as he provides fresh and honest insight into baseball and a career unlike any other. Fourteen years ago, Dickey was a heralded No. 1 draft choice of the Texas Rangers, only to have an $810,000 signing bonus, and his lifelong dream, ripped away by an X- ray - and the discovery that he did not have an ulna collateral ligament in his right elbow. Five years ago, he gave up a record six home runs in three innings to the Detroit Tigers - and was effectively consigned to the baseball scrap heap. Sustained by his profound Christian faith, the love of his wife and children, and a relentless quest for self-awareness and authenticity, the immensely likable Dickey details his transformation from a reckless, risk-taking loner to a grounded, life-affirming big leaguer. He emerged as one of the premier pitchers in the National League in 2010-and the knuckleballing embodiment of the wonders that perseverance and human wisdom can produce. Dickey views his story as one of redemption. Readers will come to see it as something more - a uniquely American story of beating back demons, listening to your heart, and overcoming extraordinary odds.

©2012 eChristian (P)2012 eChristian

Narrator: Ben Hunter
Length: 9 hrs and 31 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Pete Hamill on Eddie Stanky

Pete Hamill on Eddie Stanky

Summary

It's a cold spring day in 1944. A young Pete Hamill is with his father watching the Brooklyn Dodgers play the Boston Braves. The wartime teams are just dismal - many major league players are serving their country and the teams have been clogged with has-beens and guys that are 4-F. But Pete's father tells him to "watch this little guy." His name is Eddie Stanky.  An ex-soccer player, Stanky bounced around the minor leagues until getting the call to the majors. He was small, but played with intensity. He risked beanings by crouching over the plate. He slid hard into second base to break up the double play. Instead of hitting home runs, he'd draw a walk, and then steal second. He wasn't a great player, but his intangibles made him stand out. Eddie Stanky represents the twilight of Hamill's youth and his growing appreciation of his father through his admiration of Stanky. A time before Jackie Robinson; before the hated Giants and before the demise of Ebbets Field. This story will appeal not only to baseball fans, but to anyone who has rooted for the underdog.

©1990 Pete Hamill and Danny Peary (P)2001 Random House, Inc.

Narrator: Pete Hamill
Author: Pete Hamill
Length: 14 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Pinstripe Nation

Pinstripe Nation

Summary

In Pinstripe Nation, Will Bishop explores the myriad of ways in which the Yankees and their successes (or spectacular failures) became interwoven with the nation's larger cultural narrative. In 1920, with their acquisition of Babe Ruth, the Yankees rose to prominence. With his power-hitting style attracting legions of new fans, the "Great Bambino" became a national hero of the Roaring Twenties. In contrast to Ruth's flamboyance, his less flashy successors Lou Gehrig and Joe DiMaggio captured the spirit of striving and courage that carried America through the Depression and WWII years. The Pride of the Yankees, a popular movie celebrating Gehrig's career, typified the trend. Mirroring the nation's postwar swagger and confidence, the club of the Mickey Mantle-era remained hugely popular, but "Yankee hating" set in as well. Novels like Mark Harris' The Southpaw and Douglas Wallop's The Year the Yankees Lost the Pennant signified a widespread resentment of the team's outsized dominance. Amid the national turmoil of the 1960s, the Yankees also went into decline. In the following decades, as player salaries soared and team infighting grabbed headlines, the once-glowing portrayals of the team gave way to tell-all books like Ball Four and The Bronx Zoo. Yet, as this informative and entertaining audiobook amply shows, the Yankees have, through all their ups and downs, retained a hold on the American imagination unmatched by any other sports franchise. The book is published by University of Tennessee Press. The audiobook will be published by University Press Audiobooks. "The Yankees have connected with American culture for a century, and Will Bishop has done readers and fans a great service by documenting it all in one volume." (Marty Appel, author of Pinstripe Empire: The New York Yankees from Before the Babe to After the Boss)

©2018 University of Tennessee Press (P)2019 Redwood Audiobooks

Narrator:
Length: 13 hrs and 46 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Baseball Cop

Baseball Cop

5 ratings

Summary

Exposing trafficking, theft, fraud, and gambling in the major leagues, a founding member of the MLB's Department of Investigations reveals a news-breaking true story of power and corruption.  In the wake of 2005's sometimes contentious, sometimes comical Congressional hearings on performance-enhancing drugs in baseball and the subsequent Mitchell Report, Major League Baseball established the Department of Investigations (DOI). An internal and autonomous unit, it was created to not only eliminate the use of steroids, but also to rid baseball of any other illegal, unsavory, or unethical activities. The DOI would investigate the dark side of the national pastime - gambling, age and identity fraud, human trafficking, cover-ups, and more - with the singular purpose of cleaning up the game.  Eduardo Dominguez Jr. was a founding member of that first DOI team, leaving a stellar career with the Boston Police Department to join four other "supercops" - a group that included a 9/11 hero, a mob-buster, and narcotics experts - keeping watch over Major League Baseball. A decorated detective as well as a member of an FBI task force, Dominguez was initially reluctant to leave his law-enforcement career to work full-time in baseball. He had already seen the game's underbelly when he worked as a resident security agent (RSA) for the Boston Red Sox in 1999 and become wary of the game's commitment to any kind of reform. Only at the persuasion of a widely respected NYPD detective tapped to lead the DOI did Dominguez agree to join the unit, which was the first - and last - of its kind in major American sports.  "We could clean up this game," his new boss promised.  In Baseball Cop, Dominguez shares the shocking revelations he confronted every day for six years with the DOI and nine as an RSA. He shines a light on the inner workings of the commissioner's office and the complicity of baseball's bosses in dealing with the misdeeds compromising the integrity of the game. Dominguez details the investigations and the obstacles - from the Biogenesis scandal to the perilous trafficking of Cuban players now populating the game to the theft of prospects' signing bonuses by buscones, street agents, and even clubs' employees. He further reveals how the mandates of former senator George Mitchell's report were modified or ignored altogether.  Bracing and eye-opening, Baseball Cop is a wake-up call for anyone concerned about America's national pastime. 

©2018 Eddie Dominguez, Christian Red, Teri Thompson (P)2018 Hachette Audio

Available on Audible
Cover art for Pastime Lost

Pastime Lost

Summary

Long before baseball became America’s national pastime, English citizens of all ages, genders, and classes of society were playing a game called baseball. It had the same basic elements as modern American baseball, such as pitching and striking the ball, running bases, and fielding, but was played with a soft ball on a smaller playing field and, instead of a bat, the ball was typically struck by the palm of the hand. There is no doubt, however, that this simpler English version of baseball was the original form of the pastime and was the immediate forerunner of its better-known American offspring. Strictly a social game, English baseball was played for nearly two hundred years before fading away at the beginning of the twentieth century. Despite its longevity and its important role in baseball’s evolution, however, today it has been completely forgotten. In Pastime Lost David Block unearths baseball’s buried history and brings it back to life, illustrating how English baseball was embraced by all sectors of English society and exploring some of the personalities, such as Jane Austen and King George III, who played the game in their childhoods. While rigorously documenting his sources, Block also brings a light touch to his story, inviting us to follow him on some of the adventures that led to his most important discoveries. The book is published by University of Nebraska Press. The audiobook is published by University Press Audiobooks. "Will entertain and enlighten baseball aficionados and any who are fascinated by bat and ball games." (Choice) "Makes for an excellent combination of information and entertainment that is sure to please any reader." (Lance Smith, Guy Who Reviews Sports Books) “You must read this awesome, indispensable book.”(John Thorn, official historian of Major League Baseball)

©2019 David Block (P)2020 Redwood Audiobooks

Narrator: Michael Hanko
Author: David Block
Length: 8 hrs and 50 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Yogi Berra on When You Come to a Fork in the Road, Just Take It!

Yogi Berra on When You Come to a Fork in the Road, Just Take It!

Summary

Yogi Berra comments on his book, When You Come to a Fork in the Road, Just Take It!, a collection of his famous witticisms. The baseball legend also talks about growing up in St. Louis and his baseball career.

(P) Sports Byline USA

Narrator: Ron Barr
Author: Yogi Berra
Length: 9 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for 56

56

Summary

Seventy baseball seasons ago, on a May afternoon at Yankee Stadium, Joe DiMaggio lined a hard single to left field. It was the quiet beginning to the most resonant baseball achievement of all time. Starting that day, the vaunted Yankee center fielder kept on hitting - at least one hit in game after game after game. In the summer of 1941, as Nazi forces moved relentlessly across Europe and young American men were drafted by the millions, it seemed only a matter of time before the U.S. went to war. The nation was apprehensive. Yet for two months in that tense summer, America was captivated by DiMaggio's astonishing hitting streak. In 56, Kostya Kennedy tells the remarkable story of how the streak found its way into countless lives, from the Italian kitchens of Newark to the playgrounds of Queens to the San Francisco streets of North Beach; from the Oval Office of FDR to the Upper West Side apartment where Joe's first wife, Dorothy, the movie starlet, was expecting a child. In this crisp, evocative narrative Joe DiMaggio emerges in a previously unseen light, a 26-year-old on the cusp of becoming an icon. He comes alive - a driven ballplayer, a mercurial star and a conflicted husband - as the tension and the scrutiny upon him build with each passing day. DiMaggio's achievement lives on as the greatest of sports records. Alongside the story of DiMaggio's dramatic quest, Kennedy deftly examines the peculiar nature of hitting streaks and with an incisive, modern-day perspective gets inside the number itself, as its sheer improbability heightens both the math and the magic of 56 games in a row.

©2011 Kostya Kennedy (P)2014 Audible Inc.

Length: 13 hrs and 39 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Catcher Was a Spy

The Catcher Was a Spy

1 rating

Summary

The only Major League ballplayer whose baseball card is on display at the headquarters of the CIA, Moe Berg has the singular distinction of having both a 15-year career as a catcher for such teams as the New York Robins and the Chicago White Sox and that of a spy for the OSS during World War II. Here, Dawidoff provides "a careful and sympathetic biography" ( Chicago Sun-Times) of this enigmatic man.

©1994 Nicholas Dawidoff (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

Narrator: Jeff Kramer
Length: 11 hrs and 25 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for A Rare Recording of Babe Ruth

A Rare Recording of Babe Ruth

Summary

On April 27, 1947, baseball legend Babe Ruth, diagnosed with a terminal case of throat cancer, attended "Babe Ruth Day" at Yankee Stadium. A 13-year-old boy representing the American Legion baseball program introduces Babe Ruth, who delivers a speech to the crowd from home plate.    George Herman "Babe" Ruth Jr. (Feb 06, 1895 - Aug 16, 1948) was an American professional baseball player whose career in Major League Baseball spanned 22 seasons, from 1914 through 1935. Nicknamed "The Bambino" and "The Sultan of Swat", he began his MLB career as a stellar left-handed pitcher for the Boston Red Sox, but achieved his greatest fame as a slugging outfielder for the New York Yankees.

Public Domain (P)2019 Listen & Live Audio

Narrator: Babe Ruth
Author: Babe Ruth
Length: 4 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ty Cobb

Ty Cobb

Summary

"I had to fight all my life to survive. They were all against me, but I beat the bastards and left them in the ditch." (Ty Cobb) "Cobb is a prick. But he sure can hit. God Almighty, that man can hit." (Babe Ruth) As one of America's oldest and most beloved sports, baseball has long been touted as the national pastime, but of all the millions of people who have played it over the last few centuries, few have influenced Major League Baseball like Ty Cobb, whose career spanned over 20 seasons. The Georgia Peach overcame early hardships to set nearly 100 MLB records in his time as a player and player-manager for the Detroit Tigers and Philadelphia Athletics. With an MVP and Triple Crown under his belt by the age of 25, Cobb went on to produce statistics that still lead MLB in several categories, including 4,065 combined runs scored and RBIs, a career batting average over .365, and at least 11 batting titles. In cases where he's no longer the record holder, it would take decades for players like Pete Rose to play in more games and collect more at bats and hits, for Rickey Henderson to score as many runs, and for Lou Brock to steal more bases.  Even Americans who are relatively unfamiliar with baseball's storied history have likely heard of Ty Cobb and can recognize him as one of the sport's all time greats, but today his legacy is better known for controversy. In his day, Cobb was cast as a villain by fans of teams he played against, but he was portrayed in flattering manners shortly after his death. Things changed when other contemporary accounts came out and cast him as a vile racist, among other personal failings, much of which can be credited to the writing of sportswriter Al Stump and the modern biopic Cobb, released in 1994. It has only been recently that modern historians have pushed back a bit on those portrayals of Cobb and attempted to depict him in a more balanced light, and even then some of them have struggled. For example, in The Journal of American Culture, writer Hunter M. Hampton noted that biographer Charles Leerhsen's Ty Cobb: A Terrible Beauty, released in 2015, "succeeds in debunking the myth of Cobb that Stump created, but...spawned a new myth by conflating Stump's shortcomings to depict Cobb as an egalitarian".  Ty Cobb: The Life and Legacy of the Player Who Set the Most Major League Baseball Records profiles the controversial legend, both on the field and off it. You will learn about Ty Cobb like never before."

©2019 Charles River Editors (P)2020 Charles River Editors

Narrator: Bill Hare
Length: 1 hr and 17 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Right Off the Bat

Right Off the Bat

Summary

Are baseball and cricket two sports divided by a common language? Both employ bats, balls, and innings. Fans of both love statistics, revel in nostalgia, and use baffling jargon. In Right Off the Bat, baseball nut Evander Lomke and cricket buff Martin Rowe explain "their" sport to the other sport's fans - through anecdotes, diagrams, photographs, and a curve (or dipper) or two. Cricket and baseball share a parallel and occasionally intertwined history (the first international cricket match was played in the United States). Indeed, they have mirrored their countries' struggles with identity and race, and have expanded beyond the shores of their founding countries to become multinational sports commanding global followings that are, even now, challenging the future of both sports. Right off the Bat is the perfect present for fans of either sport, as well as a handy introduction to those who want to divine the deeper rhythms of play.

©2011 Evander Lomke and Martin Rowe (P)2012 Evander Lomke and Martin Rowe

Length: 5 hrs and 21 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Pitching in a Pinch: Or Baseball from the Inside

Pitching in a Pinch: Or Baseball from the Inside

Summary

Christy Mathewson's famous work Baseball from the Inside, originally published in 1912, now presented in a brand-new edition by historian, actor, writer, and biographer Eddie Frierson with additional writings by Matty never before published in audiobook form.  This is a grand piece of history experienced by one of the greatest ballplayers who has ever lived. Christy Mathewson was more than baseball during his lifetime. He was the most recognizable American across the glove (along with Teddy Roosevelt) during the first two decades of the 20th century. His insights on life and the lessons he taught continue to inspire those who discover him today.  The Mathewson Foundation brings you this all-new edition and hopes to introduce you, the listener, to a new friend and fascinating man.

©2018 The Mathewson Foundation and Eddie Frierson (P)2018 The Mathewson Foundation, Eddie Frierson and DWAR38 Productions

Narrator: Eddie Frierson
Length: 12 hrs
Available on Audible
Cover art for Ten Innings at Wrigley

Ten Innings at Wrigley

Summary

It was a Thursday at Chicago's Wrigley Field, mostly sunny with the wind blowing out. Nobody expected an afternoon game between the Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago Cubs on May 17, 1979, to be much more than a lazy early-season contest matching two teams heading in opposite directions - the first-place Phillies and the Cubs, those lovable losers - until they combined for 13 runs in the first inning. "The craziest game ever," one player called it. "And then the second inning started." Ten Innings at Wrigley is Kevin Cook's vivid account of a game that could only have happened at this ballpark, in this era, with this colorful cast of heroes and heels: Hall of Famers Mike Schmidt and Bruce Sutter, surly slugger Dave Kingman, hustler Pete Rose, unlucky Bill Buckner, scarred Vietnam vet Garry Maddox, troubled relief pitcher Donnie Moore, clubhouse jester Tug McGraw, and two managers pulling out what was left of their hair. It was the highest-scoring ballgame in a century, and much more than that. Bringing to life the run-up and aftermath of a contest the New York Times called "the wildest in modern history," Cook reveals the human stories behind the game-and how money, muscles and modern statistics were about to change baseball forever.

©2019 Kevin Cook (P)2019 Tantor

Narrator: Barry Abrams
Author: Kevin Cook
Length: 7 hrs and 38 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for In Pursuit of Pennants

In Pursuit of Pennants

Summary

The 1936 Yankees, the 1963 Dodgers, the 1975 Reds, the 2010 Giants - why do some baseball teams win while others don't? General managers and fans alike have pondered this most important of baseball questions. The Moneyball strategy is not the first example of how new ideas and innovative management have transformed the way teams are assembled. Pursuit of Pennants examines and analyzes a number of compelling, winning baseball teams over the past 100-plus years, focusing on their decision making and how they assembled their championship teams. Whether through scouting, integration, instruction, expansion, free agency, or modernizing their management structure, each winning team and each era had its own version of Moneyball, where front office decisions often made the difference. Mark L. Armour and Daniel R. Levitt show how these teams succeeded and how they relied on talent both on the field and in the front office. While there is no recipe for guaranteed success in a competitive, ever-changing environment, these teams demonstrate how creatively thinking about one's circumstances can often lead to a competitive advantage.

©2015 Mark L. Armour and Daniel R. Levitt (P)2016 Redwood Audiobooks

Narrator: John T. Arnott
Length: 15 hrs and 42 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for My Cubs

My Cubs

Summary

NPR's Scott Simon's personal, heartfelt reflections on his beloved Chicago Cubs, replete with club lore, memorable anecdotes, frenetic fandom, and wise and adoring intimacy that have made the world champion Cubbies baseball's most tortured - and now triumphant - franchise. No metaphor is necessary; the Chicago Cubs have been the living example of disappointment and failure for more than a century - until now. The Cubs' 2016 World Series win marked the end of a 108-year drought in the team's history, and Game Seven will forever be remembered as one of the most thrilling, monumental moments in sports history. For Scott Simon, host of NPR's Weekend Edition Saturday and a lifelong Cubs fan, it was a moment he never thought he'd live to see. My Cubs chronicles Simon's adolescence in Chicago as a die-hard fan to tell the story of the relationship between the team and the neighborhood and city, and how the condition of Cubness has both charmed and haunted the lives of so many fans. From theories and curses to jinxes and myths, Simon chronicles how a team of "loveable losers" inspired such fervor and dedication from their fans and how their 2016 win transcended sports to become an underdog narrative for the whole nation.

©2017 Scott Simon (P)2017 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Scott Simon
Author: Scott Simon
Length: 2 hrs and 46 mins
Available on Audible