Top Baseball Ebook Best Sellers

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Ball Four - Jim Bouton Cover Art

Ball Four

Ball Four by Jim Bouton

The 50th Anniversary edition of “the book that changed baseball” (NPR), chosen by Time magazine as one of the “100 Greatest Non-Fiction” books.   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. 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.”   Today Ball Four has taken on another role—as a time capsule of life in the sixties. “It is not just a diary of Bouton’s 1969 season with the Seattle Pilots and Houston Astros,” says sportswriter Jim Caple. “It’s a vibrant, funny, telling history of an era that seems even further away than four decades. To call it simply a ‘tell all book’ is like describing The Grapes of Wrath as a book about harvesting peaches in California.”   Includes a new foreword by Jim Bouton's wife, Paula Kurman   “An irreverent, best-selling book that angered baseball’s hierarchy and changed the way journalists and fans viewed the sports world.” — The Washington Post

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Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game - Michael Lewis Cover Art

Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game

Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game by Michael Lewis

Michael Lewis’s instant classic may be “the most influential book on sports ever written” (People), but “you need know absolutely nothing about baseball to appreciate the wit, snap, economy and incisiveness of [Lewis’s] thoughts about it” (Janet Maslin, New York Times). One of GQ's 50 Best Books of Literary Journalism of the 21st Century Just before the 2002 season opens, the Oakland Athletics must relinquish its three most prominent (and expensive) players and is written off by just about everyone—but then comes roaring back to challenge the American League record for consecutive wins. How did one of the poorest teams in baseball win so many games? In a quest to discover the answer, Michael Lewis delivers not only “the single most influential baseball book ever” (Rob Neyer, Slate) but also what “may be the best book ever written on business” (Weekly Standard). Lewis first looks to all the logical places—the front offices of major league teams, the coaches, the minds of brilliant players—but discovers the real jackpot is a cache of numbers?numbers!?collected over the years by a strange brotherhood of amateur baseball enthusiasts: software engineers, statisticians, Wall Street analysts, lawyers, and physics professors. What these numbers prove is that the traditional yardsticks of success for players and teams are fatally flawed. Even the box score misleads us by ignoring the crucial importance of the humble base-on-balls. This information had been around for years, and nobody inside Major League Baseball paid it any mind. And then came Billy Beane, general manager of the Oakland Athletics. He paid attention to those numbers?with the second-lowest payroll in baseball at his disposal he had to?to conduct an astonishing experiment in finding and fielding a team that nobody else wanted. In a narrative full of fabulous characters and brilliant excursions into the unexpected, Michael 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?

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How Baseball Happened - Thomas W. Gilbert Cover Art

How Baseball Happened

How Baseball Happened Outrageous Lies Exposed! The True Story Revealed by Thomas W. Gilbert

The untold story of baseball’s nineteenth-century origins: “a delightful look at a young nation creating a pastime that was love from the first crack of the bat” (Paul Dickson, The Wall Street Journal ). 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. Perhaps you’ve read that baseball’s color line was first crossed by Jackie Robinson in 1947. Nope. Baseball’s true founders don’t have plaques in Cooperstown. They were hundreds of uncredited, ordinary people who played without gloves, facemasks, or performance incentives. 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. In this myth-busting history, Thomas W. Gilbert reveals the true beginnings of baseball. Through newspaper accounts, diaries, and other accounts, he explains how it evolved through the mid-nineteenth century into a modern sport of championships, media coverage, and famous stars—all before the first professional league was formed in 1871. Winner of the Casey Award: Best Baseball Book of the Year

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Tales from the 1967 Red Sox - Rico Petrocelli Cover Art

Tales from the 1967 Red Sox

Tales from the 1967 Red Sox A Collection of the Greatest Stories Ever Told by Rico Petrocelli

An electrifying first-hand account of a legendary season in Boston baseball history, written by the former shortstop on that unforgettable Red Sox team. By the end of 1966, the Boston Red Sox had not won a pennant in twenty years and had not posted a winning record in eight. Pampered by their benevolent owner, Tom Yawkey, the Red Sox had developed a reputation as a team that cared more about having a good time than winning baseball games. The “Gold Sox” (or “Jersey Street Jesters”) were sometimes playing before fewer than 1,000 fans at Fenway Park. Yawkey, disillusioned, began seriously considering selling the team or moving the franchise to another city. Then, in 1967, a brash rookie manager named Dick Williams took charge of a hungry, but very young and inexperienced team. A strict disciplinarian, Williams had no tolerance for nonsense, and he taught the Red Sox how to play the game right. Adopting the theme song from the hit Broadway musical, Man of La Mancha, the 1967 Red Sox season became “The Impossible Dream.” Over the season’s final six weeks, the Red Sox never led or trailed by more than 1 1/2 games. Three teams were still in the pennant race during their final game. When that day was over, the Red Sox had become the first and only team in major-league history to rise from ninth place to league champion. Rico Petrocelli, one of Boston’s most beloved athletes and a twenty-four-year-old shortstop on that “Impossible Dream” team, recaptures the thrills of that improbable season through his unique anecdotes.

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The Classic Mantle - Buzz Bissinger Cover Art

The Classic Mantle

The Classic Mantle by Buzz Bissinger

Filled with stunning photos, this book by the #1 New York Times –bestselling sportswriter tells the story of Mickey Mantle’s legendary career. Mickey Mantle has long been considered one of baseball's most memorable figures—playing his entire eighteen-year baseball career for the New York Yankees (1951-68), winning three American League MVP titles, playing in twenty All-Star games, and winning seven World Series. Today, decades after his retirement, he still holds six World Series records, including most home runs (18). Buzz Bissinger, Pulitzer Prize winner and acclaimed author of Friday Night Lights and Three Nights in August , goes beyond the statistics to bring Mantle to life, and striking photographs by Marvin E. Newman make this book a fitting tribute to Mantle’s career and his lasting impact on the sport of baseball.

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Intentional Balk - Daniel Levitt & Mark Armour Cover Art

Intentional Balk

Intentional Balk Baseball's Thin Line Between Innovation and Cheating by Daniel Levitt & Mark Armour

From the moment of its inception, the quintessentially American sport of baseball has included cheating. Sometimes that rule-skirting is embraced as ingenious hijinks; other times, reviled as an unforgivable trespass. But what exactly is the difference? Why is skipping bases less egregious than signing underage players? Is sign-stealing evidence of ingenuity, or does it fundamentally change the nature of the game? In Intentional Balk, nationally-recognized baseball historians Dan Levitt and Mark Armour examine cheating in baseball as the pursuit of a competitive edge that in other endeavors might be heralded as innovation. Wherever you come down on the question, Intentional Balk offers an engrossing chronicle of America's pastime and the players, coaches, groundskeepers and management who for more than 150 years have sought any advantage to win at all costs.

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Out of My League: - Dirk Hayhurst Cover Art

Out of My League:

Out of My League: A Rookie's Survival in the Bigs by Dirk Hayhurst

The New York Times bestseller from the author of The Bullpen Gospels . “ A humorous, candid and insightful memoir . . . Grade: Home Run.”— Cleveland Plain Dealer After six years in the minors, pitcher Dirk Hayhurst hopes 2008 is the year he breaks into the big leagues. But every time Dirk looks up, the bases are loaded with challenges—a wedding balancing on a blind hope, a family in chaos, and paychecks that beg Dirk to ask, “How long can I afford to keep doing this?”  Then it finally happens—Dirk gets called up to the Majors, to play for the San Diego Padres. A dream comes true when he takes the mound against the San Francisco Giants, kicking off forty insane days and nights in the Bigs.  Like the classic games of baseball’s history,  Out of My League  entertains from the first pitch to the last out, capturing the gritty realities of playing on the big stage, the comedy and camaraderie in the dugouts and locker rooms, and the hard-fought, personal journeys that drive our love of America’s favorite pastime.  “A rare gem of a baseball book.”—Tom Verducci,  Sports Illustrated “Observant, insightful, human, and hilarious.”—Bob Costas   “A fun read . . . This book shows why baseball is so often used as a metaphor for life.”—Keith Olbermann “Entertaining and engaging . . . reminiscent of Jim Bouton’s  Ball Four .”— Booklist “The book is a terrific read. If you loved Bullpen Gospels (I’d have a hard time believing you are a baseball fan if you didn’t) you will love Out of My League too.”—Bluebird Banter

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Where Nobody Knows Your Name - John Feinstein Cover Art

Where Nobody Knows Your Name

Where Nobody Knows Your Name Life In the Minor Leagues of Baseball by John Feinstein

From the acclaimed #1 bestselling author . . . a riveting journey through the world of minor-league baseball “No one grows up playing baseball pretending that they’re pitching or hitting in Triple-A.” —Chris Schwinden, Triple-A pitcher “If you don’t like it here, do a better job.” —Ron Johnson, Triple-A manager John Feinstein gave readers an unprecedented view of the PGA Tour in A Good Walk Spoiled . He opened the door to an NCAA basketball locker room in his explosive bestseller A Season on the Brink . Now, turning his eye to our national pastime, sports journalist John Feinstein explores the colorful and mysterious world of minor-league baseball—a gateway through which all major-league players pass in their careers . . . hoping never to return.      Baseball’s minor leagues are a paradox. For some players, the minors are a glorious launching pad toward years of fame and fortune; for others, a crash-landing pad when injury or poor play forces a big leaguer back to a life of obscure ballparks and cramped buses instead of Fenway Park and plush charter planes. Focusing exclusively on the Triple-A level, one step beneath Major League Baseball, Feinstein introduces readers to nine unique men: three pitchers, three position players, two managers, and an umpire. Through their compelling stories, Feinstein pulls back the veil on a league that is chock-full of gifted baseball players, managers, and umpires who are all one moment away from getting called up—or back—to the majors.      The stories are hard to believe: a first-round draft pick and pitching ace who rocketed to major-league success before finding himself suddenly out of the game, hatching a presumptuous plan to get one more shot at the mound; a home run–hitting former World Series hero who lived the dream, then bounced among six teams before facing the prospects of an unceremonious end to his career; a big-league All-Star who, in the span of five months, went from being completely out of baseball to becoming a star in the ALDS, then signing a $10 million contract; and a well-liked designated hitter who toiled for eighteen seasons in the minors—a record he never wanted to set—before facing his final, highly emotional chance for a call-up to the big leagues.      From Raleigh to Pawtucket, from Lehigh Valley to Indianapolis and beyond, Where Nobody Knows Your Name gives readers an intimate look at a baseball world not normally seen by the fans. John Feinstein gets to the heart of the human stories in a uniquely compelling way, crafting a masterful book that stands alongside his very best works.

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David Halberstam on Sports - David Halberstam Cover Art

David Halberstam on Sports

David Halberstam on Sports Summer of '49, October 1964, The Amateurs, Playing for Keeps by David Halberstam

Four New York Times bestsellers by a “remarkable” Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist capture and celebrate America’s passion for sports ( The Seattle Times ).   Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist David Halberstam, preeminent chronicler of the American experience, focuses his meticulous narrative gifts on some of Major League Baseball’s most iconic moments, training for the Olympics, and a remarkable profile of hoops legend Michael Jordan.   Summer of ’49 : In this #1 New York Times bestseller, Halberstam brings to stirring life the unforgettable season that cemented baseball as America’s pastime. A nation in transition is gripped by a pennant race for the ages: the Boston Red Sox, led by Ted Williams’s unearthly bat skills, versus the New York Yankees and Joe DiMaggio’s legendary heroics. Every hit on and off the field crackles across the page “in such an enjoyable, interesting, and informative manner that a reader needn’t be a baseball fan to appreciate the book” ( Library Journal ).   October 1964 : The 1964 World Series pitted the established Yankees against the upstart St. Louis Cardinals in an epic, seven-game seesaw battle that seemed to reflect the tensions of a nation in turmoil. The barnburner included a cast of legends—Mantle, Maris, Ford, Gibson, Brock—and enough game-changing plays to last a lifetime. Halberstam captures every moment with “a fluidity of writing that make[s] the reading almost effortless. . . . Absorbing” ( San Francisco Chronicle ).   The Amateurs : This inspirational bestseller focuses Halberstam’s brilliant reportage on the travails and triumphs of Olympic rowing. Introducing us to a cast of highly driven athletes at the 1984 single sculls trials in Princeton, Halberstam delves deep into their struggles, motivations, and failures—but in the end only one will represent the United States at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. Informative and compelling, Halberstam “maintains the suspense to the very last stroke” ( Sports Illustrated ).   Playing for Keeps : A wildly entertaining and revealing portrait of global icon Michael Jordan and the rise of the NBA. With his usual impeccable research and gripping storytelling, Halberstam covers the whole court, from the transformative rivalry of Larry Bird and Magic Johnson to the invention of ESPN to Spike Lee’s Nike commercials to every unforgettable playoff game that built Jordan’s legend. “Filled with salty, informed hoops talk” ( Publishers Weekly ), this “remarkable book . . . [is] a must-read for basketball fans, admirers of Jordan, and anyone who seeks to understand sports in America today” (Bill Bradley).

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Black and Blue - Tom Adelman Cover Art

Black and Blue

Black and Blue Sandy Koufax, the Robinson Boys, and the World Series That Stunned America by Tom Adelman

The author of The Long Ball revisits the drama of the 1966 World Series in which the underdog Baltimore Orioles take on the favored Los Angeles Dodgers.   Baltimore 1966. Suffering through a summer of heated racial animosity, baseball fans look to the Orioles to bring new respect to their once-great city. Their young team of no-name kids and promising prospects may be strengthened by the recent addition of veteran slugger Frank Robinson—but the former National League MVP is rumored to be bad news, washed up, and unreliable.   To squash these rumors, Robby must play harder than ever—which he does by delivering a Triple Crown performance. Aided by a memorable cast of characters—the gentlemanly southerner Brooks Robinson, the prankster Moe Drabowsky, unknown pitchers like Jim Palmer and Dave McNally, and a gargantuan yet nimble fielder called “Boog”—Frank Robinson brings his new team to its first World Series. But before they take it all, the Orioles must unseat the reigning champion Los Angeles Dodgers.   Los Angeles seems otherworldly, a sunny land of surfers and movie stars. Comfortably dwelling in this higher plane is pitching ace Sandy Koufax, arguably the greatest lefthander in baseball history, behind whom the Dodgers have won two of the previous three World Series. Though battling agonizing arthritis throughout the season, the godlike Koufax has nonetheless persevered to win twenty-seven games in 1966, a personal best. Few outside Baltimore give the Orioles more than a fighting chance against such series veterans as Koufax, Don Drysdale, Maury Wills, Tommy Davis, and the rest. Experts are betting that the Dodgers can sweep it in four. What transpires instead astonishes the nation . . .

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Shoeless - David L. Fleitz Cover Art

Shoeless

Shoeless The Life and Times of Joe Jackson by David L. Fleitz

"Shoeless" Joe Jackson was one of baseball's greatest hitters and most colorful players. Born Joseph Jefferson Wofford Jackson on July 16, 1888, in Pickens County, South Carolina, Jackson went to work in a textile mill when he was around six years old, and got his start in baseball playing for the Brandon Mill team at the age of 13 earning $2.50 a game. He emerged as the star of the team and a favorite of fans with his hitting and throwing abilities, and moved up to play in the Carolina Association, where he received his nickname "Shoeless" because the blisters on his feet forced him to play in his stockings. He then made his move to the major leagues, signing on with the Philadelphia Athletics and rising to fame. This work chronicles Jackson's life from his poor beginnings to his involvement in the scandal surrounding the 1919 World Series to his life after baseball and his death December 5, 1951, with most of the work focusing on his baseball career.

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The Long Season - Jim Brosnan Cover Art

The Long Season

The Long Season The Classic Inside Account of a Baseball Year, 1959 by Jim Brosnan

"One of the best baseball books ever written. It is probably one of the best American diaries as well." —New York Times A timeless classic from baseball's golden era, legendary pitcher Jim Brosnan's witty and candid chronicle of the 1959 Major League Baseball season, which set the standard for all sports memoirs to follow. The Long Season was a revelation when it was first published in 1960. Here is an insider's perspective on America's national pastime that is funny, honest, and above all, real. The man behind this fascinating account of baseball and its players was not a sportswriter but a self-proclaimed "average ballplayer"—a relief pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals. Called "Professor" by his teammates and "Meat" by his wife, Jim Brosnan turned out to be the ideal guide to the behind-the-scenes world of professional baseball with his keen observations, sharp wit, and clear-eyed candor. His player's diary takes readers on the mound and on the road; inside the clubhouse and most enjoyably inside his own head. While solving age-old questions like "Why can't pitchers hit?" and what makes for the best chewing tobacco, Brosnan captures the game-to-game daily experiences of an ordinary season, unapologetically, "the way I saw it"—from sweating it out in spring training to blowing the opening game to a mid-season trade to the Cincinnati Reds. In The Long Season, Brosnan reveals, like no other sportswriter before him, the human side of professional ballplayers and has forever preserved not only a season, but a uniquely American experience.

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The Arm - Jeff Passan Cover Art

The Arm

The Arm Inside the Billion-Dollar Mystery of the Most Valuable Commodity in Sports by Jeff Passan

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 thirty, 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 reading for everyone who loves the game, wants to keep their children healthy, or relishes a look into how a large, complex institution can fail so spectacularly.

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Situation Baseball - Steve Gelfius Cover Art

Situation Baseball

Situation Baseball Basics of Knowing What to Do With the Ball by Steve Gelfius

Have you ever watched young ball players field A baseball and then hesitate? One of the coaches yells 2nd, a team mate yells go home and where ever the player throws, there is no positive result for his team. Those developing baseball players from the ages of six to twelve need to have more smarts about the game. If the ball is hit to me - what do I do with it is the most fundamental area of the game following physical skills. Developing this skill can make the difference between a mediocre and a good baseball player. It can give them the edge, it can mean being a starter or a sub, its the little things that make the big difference. This book gives infielders and outfielders the basic solutions to every base running situation. It gives situations that make them think to develop that instinctive sense of what to do with the ball. This book can be used in the field by coaches, in the backyard by dads, between players on the way to the game to build confidence. It is a basic tool for every player.

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Pitch by Pitch - Bob Gibson & Lonnie Wheeler Cover Art

Pitch by Pitch

Pitch by Pitch My View of One Unforgettable Game by Bob Gibson & Lonnie Wheeler

Pitch by Pitch gets inside the head of Bob Gibson on October 2, 1968, when he took the mound for game one of the World Series against the Detroit Tigers and struck out a record seventeen batters. With the tension rising in the stadium, an uproarious crowd behind him, and the record for the most strikeouts thrown in a World Series game on the line, Gibson, known as one of the most intimidating pitchers in baseball history, relives every inning and each pitch of this iconic game. Facing down batter after batter, he breaks down his though process and recounts in vivid and candid detail his analysis of the players who stepped into the batter's box against him, his control of both the ball and the elements of the day, and his moments of synchronicity with teammate Tim McCarver, all the while capturing the fascinating relationship and unspoken dialogue that carries on between pitcher and catcher over the course of nine critical innings. From the dugout to the locker room, Gibson offers a behind-the-scenes look at the lives of the players, the team's chemistry, and clubhouse culture. He recounts the story of Curt Flood, Gibson's best friend and the Cardinal center fielder, who would go on to become one of the pioneers of free agency; shares colorful anecdotes of his interactions with some of baseball's most unforgettable names, from Denny McLain and Roger Maris to Sandy Koufax and Harry Caray; and relives the confluence of events, both on and off the field, that led to one of his---and baseball's---most memorable games ever. This deep, unfiltered insider look at one particular afternoon of baseball allows for a better understanding of how pros play the game and all the variables that a pitcher contends with as he navigates his way through a formidable lineup. Gibson's extraordinary and engrossing tale is retold from the unique viewpoint of an extremely perceptive pitcher who happens to be one of baseball's all-time greats.

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The Last Real Season - Mike Shropshire Cover Art

The Last Real Season

The Last Real Season A Hilarious Look Back at 1975 - When Major Leaguers Made Peanuts, the Umpires Wore Red, and Billy Martin Terrorized Everyone by Mike Shropshire

A rollicking and ribald first-person account of the 1975 Major League Baseball season—the last year before free agency took over and changed the national pastime forever—for better or for worse! There are baseball books and there are baseball books. But for the baseball cognoscenti, there are just a few "must-have" classics: Ball Four by Jim Bouton. The Long Season by Jim Brosnan. Willie's Time by Charles Einstein. And Seasons In Hell by Mike Shropshire, which was a hilarous first-person account of Mike's travails serving as a daily beat writer covering the hapless 1972 Texas Rangers. Now, in The Last Real Season , Shropshire captures the essence of a different time and different place in baseball, when the average salary for major leaguers was only $27,600...when the ballplayers' drug of choice was alcohol, not steroids...when major leaguers sported tight doubleknit uniforms over their long-hair and Afros...and on July 28th, 1975, the day that famed Detroit resident Jimmy Hoffa went missing, the Detroit Tigers started a losing streak of 19 games in a row. On the day that the Tigers blew a 4-run lead in the bottom of the ninth, Shropshire recalls: "I drank three bottles of Stroh's beer in less than a minute and wrote that 'Jimmy Hoffa will show up in the left field stands with Amelia Earhart as his date before the Tigers will win another game.'" And so it goes. Filled with just the kind of wonderful baseball stories that real fans crave, this is the funniest baseball book of the year.

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The Champions of Philadelphia - Rich Westcott & Pat Williams Cover Art

The Champions of Philadelphia

The Champions of Philadelphia The Greatest Eagles, Phillies, Sixers, and Flyers Teams by Rich Westcott & Pat Williams

Since the start of the twentieth century, Philadelphia’s professional teams in four major sports have won a combined total of seventeen championships. All of Philadelphia’s current teams—the Phillies in baseball, the Eagles in football, the Flyers in ice hockey, and the 76ers in basketball—have won championships. The list of champs also includes long-gone teams such as the Athletics in baseball, the Warriors in basketball, and the Frankford Yellow Jackets in football. In Rich Westcott’s The Champions of Philadelphia , each of these teams earns a chapter devoted to its championship season. There are detailed descriptions of the games and players, plus noteworthy interviews. Starting with teams from the 1940s, Westcott has interviewed more than fifty players, managers, coaches, and others, including luminaries such as Mike Schmidt, Chuck Bednarik, and Bobby Clarke. The City of Brotherly Love is also a city that loves its champions. Westcott’s in-depth account of Philadelphia’s athletic triumphs will attract fans of each of the four active professional teams. Skyhorse Publishing, as well as our Sports Publishing imprint, are proud to publish a broad range of books for readers interested in sports—books about baseball, pro football, college football, pro and college basketball, hockey, or soccer, we have a book about your sport or your team. Whether you are a New York Yankees fan or hail from Red Sox nation; whether you are a die-hard Green Bay Packers or Dallas Cowboys fan; whether you root for the Kentucky Wildcats, Louisville Cardinals, UCLA Bruins, or Kansas Jayhawks; whether you route for the Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs, Montreal Canadiens, or Los Angeles Kings; we have a book for you. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to publishing books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked by other publishers and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.

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The Captain - Ian O'Connor Cover Art

The Captain

The Captain The Journey of Derek Jeter by Ian O'Connor

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER “Derek Jeter is undoubtedly the most talked about, argued about, cheered, booed and ultimately respected baseball player of his generation. And as public a figure as he has been, he is in many ways the least known. That changes now as Ian O’Connor, one of the best sports writers anywhere, goes deep and does what no one has quite been able to do: Tell us a bit about who Derek Jeter really is.”—Joe Posnanski, author of The Machine "Deftly told.”—The Washington Post In The Captain, Ian O’Connor draws on unique access to Derek Jeter and more than 200 new interviews to reveal how a biracial kid from Michigan became New York’s most beloved sports figure and the face of the steroid-free athlete. O’Connor takes us behind the scenes of a legendary baseball life, from Jeter’s early struggles in the minor leagues, when homesickness and errors threatened a stillborn career, to the heady days of Yankee superiority and nightlife, to the battles with former best friend A-Rod. All along the way, Jeter has made his Hall-of-Fame destiny look easy. But behind that leadership and hero’s grace there are hidden struggles and complexities that have never been explored, until now.

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Satchel - Larry Tye Cover Art

Satchel

Satchel The Life and Times of an American Legend by Larry Tye

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The superbly researched, spellbindingly told story of athlete, showman, philosopher, and boundary breaker Leroy “Satchel” Paige “Among the rare biographies of an athlete that transcend sports . . . gives us the man as well as the myth.”— The Boston Globe Few reliable records or news reports survive about players in the Negro Leagues. Through dogged detective work, award-winning author and journalist Larry Tye has tracked down the truth about this majestic and enigmatic pitcher, interviewing more than two hundred Negro Leaguers and Major Leaguers, talking to family and friends who had never told their stories before, and retracing Paige’s steps across the continent. Here is the stirring account of the child born to an Alabama washerwoman with twelve young mouths to feed, the boy who earned the nickname “Satchel” from his enterprising work as a railroad porter, the young man who took up baseball on the streets and in reform school, inventing his trademark hesitation pitch while throwing bricks at rival gang members. Tye shows Paige barnstorming across America and growing into the superstar hurler of the Negro Leagues, a marvel who set records so eye-popping they seemed like misprints, spent as much money as he made, and left tickets for “Mrs. Paige” that were picked up by a different woman at each game. In unprecedented detail, Tye reveals how Paige, hurt and angry when Jackie Robinson beat him to the Majors, emerged at the age of forty-two to help propel the Cleveland Indians to the World Series. He threw his last pitch from a big-league mound at an improbable fifty-nine. (“Age is a case of mind over matter,” he said. “If you don’t mind, it don’t matter.”) More than a fascinating account of a baseball odyssey, Satchel rewrites our history of the integration of the sport, with Satchel Paige in a starring role. This is a powerful portrait of an American hero who employed a shuffling stereotype to disarm critics and racists, floated comical legends about himself–including about his own age–to deflect inquiry and remain elusive, and in the process methodically built his own myth. “Don’t look back,” he famously said. “Something might be gaining on you.” Separating the truth from the legend, Satchel is a remarkable accomplishment, as large as this larger-than-life man.

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The Baseball 100 - Joe Posnanski Cover Art

The Baseball 100

The Baseball 100 by Joe Posnanski

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * Winner of the CASEY Award for Best Baseball Book of the Year “An instant sports classic.” — New York Post * “Stellar.” — The Wall Street Journal * “A true masterwork…880 pages of sheer baseball bliss.” — BookPage (starred review) * “This is a remarkable achievement.” — Publishers Weekly (starred review) A magnum opus from acclaimed baseball writer Joe Posnanski, The Baseball 100 is an audacious, singular, and masterly book that took a lifetime to write. The entire story of baseball rings through a countdown of the 100 greatest players in history, with a foreword by George Will. Longer than Moby-Dick and nearly as ambitious,​ The Baseball 100 is a one-of-a-kind work by award-winning sportswriter and lifelong student of the game Joe Posnanski that tells the story of the sport through the remarkable lives of its 100 greatest players. In the book’s introduction, Pulitzer Prize–winning commentator George F. Will marvels, “Posnanski must already have lived more than 200 years. How else could he have acquired such a stock of illuminating facts and entertaining stories about the rich history of this endlessly fascinating sport?” Baseball’s legends come alive in these pages, which are not merely rankings but vibrant profiles of the game’s all-time greats. Posnanski dives into the biographies of iconic Hall of Famers, unfairly forgotten All-Stars, talents of today, and more. He doesn’t rely just on records and statistics—he lovingly retraces players’ origins, illuminates their characters, and places their accomplishments in the context of baseball’s past and present. Just how good a pitcher is Clayton Kershaw in the twenty-first- century game compared to Greg Maddux dueling with the juiced hitters of the nineties? How do the career and influence of Hank Aaron compare to Babe Ruth’s? Which player in the top ten most deserves to be resurrected from history? No compendium of baseball’s legendary geniuses could be complete without the players of the segregated Negro Leagues, men whose extraordinary careers were largely overlooked by sportswriters at the time and unjustly lost to history. Posnanski writes about the efforts of former Negro Leaguers to restore sidelined Black athletes to their due honor, and draws upon the deep troves of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and extensive interviews with the likes of Buck O’Neil to illuminate the accomplishments of players such as pitchers Satchel Paige and Smokey Joe Williams; outfielders Oscar Charleston, Monte Irvin, and Cool Papa Bell; first baseman Buck Leonard; shortstop Pop Lloyd; catcher Josh Gibson; and many, many more. The Baseball 100 treats readers to the whole rich pageant of baseball history in a single volume. Chapter by chapter, Posnanski invites readers to examine common lore with brand-new eyes and learn stories that have long gone unheard. The epic and often emotional reading experience mirrors Posnanski’s personal odyssey to capture the history and glory of baseball like no one else, fueled by his boundless love for the sport. Engrossing, surprising, and heartfelt, The Baseball 100 is a magisterial tribute to the game of baseball and the stars who have played it.

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Ten Innings at Wrigley - Kevin Cook Cover Art

Ten Innings at Wrigley

Ten Innings at Wrigley The Wildest Ballgame Ever, with Baseball on the Brink by Kevin Cook

The dramatic story of a legendary 1979 slugfest between the Chicago Cubs and the Philadelphia Phillies, full of runs, hits, and subplots, at the tipping point of a new era in baseball history 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 thirteen 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.

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The Machine - Joe Posnanski Cover Art

The Machine

The Machine A Hot Team, a Legendary Season, and a Heart-stopping World Series: The Story of the 1975 Cincinnati Reds by Joe Posnanski

Award-winning sports columnist Joe Posnanski hits a grand slam with The Machine—a thrilling account of the magical 1975 season of the Cincinnati Reds, baseball’s legendary “Big Red Machine,” from spring training through the final game of the ’75 World Series. Featuring a Hall of Fame lineup of baseball superstars—including Johnny Bench, George Foster, Joe Morgan, Cesar Geronimo, and “Charlie Hustle” Pete Rose himself—The Machine is a wild ride with one of the greatest baseball teams in the history of the American Pastime.

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I'm Fascinated by Sacrifice Flies - Tim Kurkjian Cover Art

I'm Fascinated by Sacrifice Flies

I'm Fascinated by Sacrifice Flies Inside the Game We All Love by Tim Kurkjian

Hilarious and insightful tales from the world of professional baseball by ESPN baseball analyst Tim Kurkjian The New York Times Bestseller! In the aftermath of the Steroid Era that stained the game of baseball, at a time when so many players are so rich and therefore have a sense of entitlement that they haven't earned, ESPN baseball commentator Tim Kurkjian shows readers how to love the game more than ever, with incredible insight and stories that are hilarious, heartbreaking, and revealing. From what Pete Rose was doing in the batting cage a few minutes after getting out of prison, to why everyone strikes out these days and why no one seems to care, I'm Fascinated By Sacrifice Flies will surprise even longtime baseball fans. Tim explains the fear factor in the game, and what it feels like to get hit by a pitch; Adam LaRoche wanted to throw up in the batter's box. He examines the game's superstitions: Eliot Johnson's choice of bubble gum, a poker chip in Sean Burnett's back pocket. He unearths the unwritten rules of the game, takes readers inside ESPN, and reveals how Tony Gwynn made baseball so much more fun to watch. And, of course, Tim will explain to readers why he is fascinated by sacrifice flies.

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The Wax Pack - Brad Balukjian Cover Art

The Wax Pack

The Wax Pack On the Open Road in Search of Baseball's Afterlife by Brad Balukjian

A Los Angeles Times Best Seller A 2020 NPR Best Book of the Year 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 thirty-year-old gum inside, gagged, and then embarked on a quest to find all the players in the pack. On Balukjian’s trip in the summer of 2015, he spanned 11,341 miles through thirty states in forty-eight days. Actively engaging with his subjects, he took a hitting lesson from Rance Mulliniks, watched kung fu movies with Garry Templeton, and went 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. 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. Alternately elegiac and uplifting, The Wax Pack is part baseball nostalgia, part road trip travelogue, and all heart, a reminder that greatness is not found in the stats on the backs of baseball cards but in the personal stories of the men on the front of them.                 

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Kings of Queens - Erik Sherman Cover Art

Kings of Queens

Kings of Queens Life Beyond Baseball with the '86 Mets by Erik Sherman

In 1986, the bad guys of baseball won the World Series. Now, Erik Sherman, the New York Times bestselling 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. INCLUDES PHOTOS

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Uppity - Bill White & Willie Mays Cover Art

Uppity

Uppity My Untold Story About The Games People Play by Bill White & Willie Mays

There are very few major personalities in the world of sports who have so much to say about our National Pastime. And even fewer who are as well respected as Bill White. Bill White, who's now in his mid 70s, was an All-Star first baseman for many years with the New York Giants, St.Louis Cardinals and Philadelphia Phillies before launching a stellar broadcasting career with the New York Yankees for 18 years. He left the broadcast booth to become the President of the National League for five years. A true pioneer as an African-American athlete, sportscaster, and top baseball executive, White has written his long-awaited autobiography in which he will be candid, open, and as always, most forthcoming about his life in baseball. Along the way, White shares never-before-told stories about his long working relationship with Phil Rizzutto, insights on George Steinbrenner, Barry Bonds, Reggie Jackson, Thurman Munson, Bob Gibson, Bart Giamatti, Fay Vincent, and scores of other top baseball names and Hall of Famers. Best of all, White built his career on being outspoken, and the years fortunately have not mellowed him. Uppity is a baseball memoir that baseball fans everywhere will be buzzing about.

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Stealing Home - Eric Nusbaum Cover Art

Stealing Home

Stealing Home Los Angeles, the Dodgers, and the Lives Caught in Between by Eric Nusbaum

A story about baseball, family, the American Dream, and the fight to turn Los Angeles into a big league city. Dodger Stadium is an American icon. But the story of how it came to be goes far beyond baseball. The hills that cradle the stadium were once home to three vibrant Mexican American communities. In the early 1950s, those communities were condemned to make way for a utopian public housing project. Then, in a remarkable turn, public housing in the city was defeated amidst a Red Scare conspiracy. Instead of getting their homes back, the remaining residents saw the city sell their land to Walter O'Malley, the owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers. Now LA would be getting a different sort of utopian fantasy -- a glittering, ultra-modern stadium. But before Dodger Stadium could be built, the city would have to face down the neighborhood's families -- including one, the Aréchigas, who refused to yield their home. The ensuing confrontation captivated the nation - and the divisive outcome still echoes through Los Angeles today.

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Reversing the Curse - Dan Shaughnessy Cover Art

Reversing the Curse

Reversing the Curse Inside the 2004 Boston Red Sox by Dan Shaughnessy

“A true insider’s perspective on the 2004 Red Sox” and their World Series win, from the bestselling author of Curse of the Bambino ( USA Today ). On October 27, 2004, the Red Sox won their first World Series Championship in eighty-six years—breaking the infamous Curse of the Bambino and giving diehard fans the thrill of a lifetime.   Reversing the Curse preserves one of the greatest stories in sports history with an absorbing account of the team—a raggedy lineup of motorcycle-riding, whiskey-drinking rogues—and the key events that led to their incredible championship victory. A more epic sports saga could not have been invented: Here we have the curse that began with Babe Ruth; a team of comeback kids determined to prove their mettle; the perennial rivalry against the Yankees; and a historic win that was celebrated around the world.   Dan Shaughnessy captures the Sox triumph in all its drama and euphoria with penetrating insight, a keen sense of history, and unparalleled insider access. With photographs by the Pulitzer Prize–winning photographer Stan Grossfeld, Reversing the Curse is the definitive record of a landmark moment in baseball history.   “[Shaughnessy is] adept at capturing the mood, the emotion, the palpable feel of the Boston-New York showdown.” — The New York Times   “In story after story of near-triumph, the book should delight the team’s most fanatically loyal followers.” — Publishers Weekly

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Phillies 1980! - Lew Freedman Cover Art

Phillies 1980!

Phillies 1980! Mike Schmidt, Steve Carlton, Pete Rose, and Philadelphia's First World Series Championship by Lew Freedman

How the 1980 Philadelphia Phillies Won the First World Series Championship in Franchise History The road was rocky and the suspense intense as a make-or-break 1980 baseball season unfolded for the Philadelphia Phillies under a new, often-unpopular manager who sought to shape a collection of All-Star talent into champions.   In the end, Dallas Green’s gruffness, Pete Rose’s clubhouse leadership, Mike Schmidt’s Most Valuable Player performance, Steve Carlton’s almost unbeatable pitching, Tug McGraw’s irrepressible personality—plus contributions from young, unheralded players and savvy veterans—led the club to the franchise’s first World Series in history.   Although the Phillies had risen to prominence and relevance in the late 1970s, they could not get past the National League Championship Series. Management was tempted to blow up the team. Wooing Rose as a free agent to add spirit, as well as a clutch bat, and the promotion of the reluctant Green from the farm system in place of well-liked Danny Ozark, helped change the dynamics of the team.   The risky strategy led to some internal discord and relentless challenges from Green, but after months of seeming slow to emerge as a team prepared to grab a championship, the Phillies clutch ballplaying through the end of September to qualify for the playoffs, and then played inspired baseball when most needed in October.   Some forty years later, that Phillies group is especially prized for the breakthrough in a near-century-long wait for a title for a club that began play in 1883. Only once since then have the Phillies claimed another crown.   The mix of superstars, with the major influence of such players as Bob Boone, Larry Bowa, Greg Luzinski, Lonnie Smith, Manny Trillo, Garry Maddox, and Bake McBride helped take the Phillies on a months-long-ride, culminating in the glory they and their fans both hungered for for so long.  

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They Played the Game - Norman L Macht Cover Art

They Played the Game

They Played the Game Memories from 47 Major Leaguers by Norman L Macht

Noted baseball historian Norman L. Macht brings together a wide‑ranging collection of baseball voices from the Deadball Era through the 1970s, including nine Hall of Famers, who take the reader onto the field, into the dugouts and clubhouses, and inside the minds of both players and managers. These engaging, wide-ranging oral histories bring surprising revelations—both highlights and lowlights—about their careers, as they revisit their personal mental scrapbooks of the days when they played the game. Not all of baseball’s best stories are told by its biggest stars, especially when the stories are about those stars. Many of the storytellers you’ll meet in They Played the Game are unknown to today’s fans: the Red Sox’s Charlie Wagner talks about what it was like to be Ted Williams’s roommate in Williams’s rookie year; the Dodgers’ John Roseboro recounts his strategy when catching for Don Drysdale and Sandy Koufax; former Yankee Mark Koenig recalls batting ahead of Babe Ruth in the lineup, and sometimes staying out too late with him; John Francis Daley talks about batting against Walter Johnson; Carmen Hill describes pitching against Babe Ruth in the 1927 World Series.

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Red Sox by the Numbers - Bill Nowlin, Matthew Silverman & Joe Castiglione Cover Art

Red Sox by the Numbers

Red Sox by the Numbers A Complete Team History of the Boston Red Sox by Uniform Number by Bill Nowlin, Matthew Silverman & Joe Castiglione

What do Rube Walberg, Mike Nagy, Kevin Millar, and Dustin Pedroia all have in common? They all wore #15 for the Boston Red Sox. Since 1931, the Red Sox have issued 74 different numbers to more than 1,500 players. Red Sox by the Numbers tells the story of every Red Sox player since '31—from Bill Sweeney (the first Red Sox player to don #1) to J.T. Snow (#84, the highest-numbered non-coach in Sox history). Each chapter also features a fascinating sidebar that reveals which players were the most obscure to wear a certain number and also which numbers produced the most wins, home runs, and stolen bases in club history.

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Can't Anybody Here Play This Game? - Jimmy Breslin Cover Art

Can't Anybody Here Play This Game?

Can't Anybody Here Play This Game? The Improbable Saga of the New York Mets' First Year by Jimmy Breslin

A “hilarious” look back at the worst baseball team in history—the 1962 Mets—by the New York Times– bestselling author ( Newark Star-Ledger ).   Five years after the Dodgers and Giants fled New York for California, the city’s National League fans were offered salvation in the shape of the New York Mets: an expansion team who, in the spring of 1962, attempted to play something resembling the sport of baseball.  Helmed by the sagacious Casey Stengel and staffed by the league’s detritus, the new Mets played 162 games and lost 120 of them, making them statistically the worst team in the sport’s modern history. It’s possible they were even worse than that. Starring such legends as Marvin Throneberry—a first baseman so inept that his nickname had to be “Marvelous”—the Mets lost with swashbuckling panache. In an era when the fun seemed to have gone out of sports, the Mets came to life in a blaze of delightful, awe-inspiring ineptitude. They may have been losers, but a team this awful deserves to be remembered as legends.  This ebook features an illustrated biography of Jimmy Breslin including rare photos and never-before-seen documents from the author’s personal collection.

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The Roger Angell Baseball Collection - Roger Angell Cover Art

The Roger Angell Baseball Collection

The Roger Angell Baseball Collection The Summer Game, Five Seasons, and Season Ticket by Roger Angell

From “the clear-eyed poet laureate of baseball”—a definitive collection of three nonfiction classics chronicling MLB into the modern age ( New York Post ). In these three classic volumes, legendary New Yorker sportswriter Roger Angell chronicles the triumphs, travails, heroes, and history of America’s favorite pastime.   In The Summer Game, Angell covers ten seasons in the major leagues from the 1960s to the early 1970s. With his signature panache, Angell captures the flavor of the game and the spirit of legends such as Sandy Koufax, Bob Gibson, Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson, and Willie Mays.   In Five Seasons , Angell covers the mid-1970s, which he calls “the most important half-decade in the history of the game.” From the accomplishments of Nolan Ryan and Hank Aaron to the rising influence of network television, Angell offers a fresh perspective on this transformative period.   And in Season Ticket , Angell recounts the larger-than-life narratives of baseball in the mid-1980s. Diving into subjects including the notorious 1986 World Series and the Curse of the Bambino, Sparky Anderson’s Detroit Tigers, and performance-enhancing drug use, Angell offers insights that are crucial to understanding the game as we know it today.  

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Tales from the Dodgers Dugout - Carl Erskine & Vin Scully Cover Art

Tales from the Dodgers Dugout

Tales from the Dodgers Dugout A Collection of the Greatest Dodgers Stories Ever Told by Carl Erskine & Vin Scully

To baseball fans of today, the name “Dodgers” is synonymous with Hollywood, the warm California sun, and names like Tommy Lasorda, Kirk Gibson, Steve Garvey, and Orel Hershiser. The Dodgers mean much more than that to fans of baseball history, however. Namely, these fans remember the famed “Boys of Summer,” otherwise known as the Brooklyn Dodgers, a team that included some of the most storied players in baseball history, such as Hall of Famers Duke Snider, Roy Campanella, Gil Hodges, Pee Wee Reese, and Jackie Robinson. Although they eventually moved out west, the Brooklyn Dodgers provided some of the greatest moments the game has ever seen and some of the greatest personalities to ever take the field. Carl Erskine, another member of that legendary team, relates memories about his days with the Dodgers in a book full of true stories and revealing anecdotes. The result is Tales from the Dodgers Dugout , first published in 2004 and newly updated to provide a delightfully interesting trip through the world of baseball in the 1950s. Among Erskine’s many tales are his dealings with immortal team official Branch Rickey, his view from the Dodgers bench during Don Larsen’s perfect game in the 1956 World Series, and his firsthand experiences when Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier and became the first black player in Major League Baseball history. During his frequent speaking engagements, people often ask Erskine if all of his stories are true. His standard response has been, “Yes, I couldn’t possibly make them up the way they actually happened.” Now fans can read all of those great stories in Tales from the Dodgers Dugout .

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Ballplayer - Chipper Jones & Carroll Rogers Walton Cover Art

Ballplayer

Ballplayer by Chipper Jones & Carroll Rogers Walton

Atlanta Braves third baseman and National Hall of Famer 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 nineteen-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 make 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 fourteen-straight division-title run.   Ballplayer takes readers 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, and 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.

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So Many Ways to Lose - Devin Gordon Cover Art

So Many Ways to Lose

So Many Ways to Lose The Amazin' True Story of the New York Mets—the Best Worst Team in Sports by Devin Gordon

“This is a weird, wonderful, and essential book about both America and its pastime. It’s about a place as vast as New York City and as intimate as the human heart. Fred Exley meets Richard Ben Cramer—a funny, wild, heartfelt, and keenly observed portrait of yearning itself.”—Wright Thompson, New York Times bestselling author of The Cost of These Dreams “Mr. Gordon’s ability to explain the Sisyphean plight of all Mets fans is truly remarkable. Bravo!”—Ron Darling, New York Times bestselling author of Game 7, 1986 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 Yoenis Céspedes 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.

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Jim Kaat: Good As Gold - Jim Kaat & Douglas B. Lyons Cover Art

Jim Kaat: Good As Gold

Jim Kaat: Good As Gold My Eight Decades in Baseball by Jim Kaat & Douglas B. Lyons

An unforgettable look at a lifetime of baseball packed with humor and passion for the game With a career that has now touched eight decades, Jim Kaat has had a prime front row seat for baseball's continuing evolution. Not only was he a major-league pitcher for 25 seasons, but his time as a pitching coach and his many years as a broadcaster have given him a singular long view of the game. In Good as Gold, Kaat weaves the tale of a lifetime, taking fans on the field, into the clubhouse, and behind the mic as only he can. Full of priceless stories from New York, Minnesota, and across the major leagues, this honest and engaging autobiography gives fans a rare seat alongside Kaat on a tour of baseball history.

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The Pitch That Killed - Mike Sowell Cover Art

The Pitch That Killed

The Pitch That Killed by Mike Sowell

On a torridly hot August day in 1920, Ray Chapman was struck and killed by a Carl Mays fastball, in what was and remains the only on-the-field fatality in the history of major league baseball. The drama of Good Guy Chapman versus Bad Guy Mays is a wrenching human tale. Add to it an intense pennant race, the meteoric ascension of Babe Ruth to baseball supremacy, the banning of the Black Sox for throwing the previous year's World Series, and the story grows to one of the most fascinating and compelling in the annals of baseball history.  Mike Sowell's brilliant account of the events of 1920--meticulously researched and mellifluously written--captures all the intensity of the moment of the Chapman beaning and the entire incredible season. Only a writer of Sowell's power and skill could do justice to such a tale, and the result is one of the most highly respected and widely acclaimed baseball books ever written.  The Summer Game Books edition is the first and only eBook of this classic, and features an exclusive new epilogue by the author, with 25 years of perspective, during which time the legends of Mays, Chapman, and Chapman's replacement, Joe Sewell, have only grown.

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Praying for Gil Hodges - Thomas Oliphant Cover Art

Praying for Gil Hodges

Praying for Gil Hodges A Memoir of the 1955 World Series and One Family's Love of the Brooklyn Dodgers by Thomas Oliphant

On a steamy hot Sunday, the Reverend Herbert Redmond was celebrating Mass at a church in Brooklyn, when he startled his congregation thus: "It's far too hot for a sermon. Keep the Commandments and say a prayer for Gil Hodges." Praying for Gil Hodges is built around a detailed reconstruction of the seventh game of the 1955 World Series, which has always been on the short list of great moments in baseball history. On a sunny, breezy October afternoon, something happened in New York City that had never happened before and never would again: the Brooklyn Dodgers won the world championship of baseball. For one hour and forty-four minutes, behind a gutsy, twenty-three-year-old kid left-hander from the iron-mining region of upstate New York named Johnny Podres, everything that had gone wrong before went gloriously right for a change. Until that afternoon, leaving out the war years, the Dodgers and their legions of fans had endured ten seasons during which they lost the World Series to the New York Yankees five times and lost the National League pennant on the final day of the season three times--- facts of history that give the famous cry of "Wait Till Next Year!" its defiant meaning. Pitch by pitch and inning by inning, Thomas Oliphant re-creates a relentless melodrama that shows this final game in its true glory. As we move through the game, he builds a remarkable history of the hapless "Bums," exploring the Dodgers' status as a national team, based on their fabled history of near-triumphs and disasters that made them classic underdogs. He weaves into this brilliant recounting a winning memoir of his own family's story and their time together on that fateful day that the final game was played. This victory thrilled the national African-American community, still mired in the evils of segregation, who had erupted in joy at the arrival of Jackie Robinson eight years earlier and rooted unabashedly for this integrated team at a time when the country was thoroughly segregated. And it also thrilled a nine-year-old boy on the East Side of Manhattan in a loving, struggling family for whom the Dodgers were a rare source of the joys and symbols that bring families together through tough times. Every once in a while a book provides a certain view of America, and whether it is The Greatest Generation , Big Russ & Me, or Wait Till Next Year, these works strike a chord with readers everywhere. Praying for Gil Hodges is such a book. Written with power and clarity, this is a brilliant work capturing the majesty of baseball, the issue of race in America, and the love that one young boy, his parents, and the borough of Brooklyn had for their team.

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COVID Curveball - Tim Neverett & Orel Hershiser Cover Art

COVID Curveball

COVID Curveball An Inside View of the 2020 Los Angeles Dodgers World Championship Season by Tim Neverett & Orel Hershiser

A riveting inside account of the most unforgettable season in Los Angeles Dodgers history, from the COVID-delayed start through the incredible playoff run, by the broadcaster who saw it all. As America’s Pastime reeled from a global pandemic, the LA Dodgers rallied to win arguably the most difficult baseball season ever played. Amid strict new rules and Coronavirus outbreaks on other teams that wreaked havoc on the schedule, the Dodgers maintained a laser focus as a team and organization, and ultimately, won the first bubbled playoffs in the history of Major League Baseball. In COVID Curveball , author and Dodgers’ broadcaster Tim Neverett takes us through this unprecedented season, offering exclusive access and firsthand, edge-of-your-seat, play-by-play coverage of the surreal days and weeks that led up to the dramatic championship climax. It’s a highly entertaining, often humorous chronicle of the quirky nature of the season, the goings-on behind the scenes at the stadium and MLB at large, as well as the unique chemistry forged in the diverse and dynamic clubhouse.  Along with insights into the potent lineup that produced jaw-dropping moments by Mookie Betts, Corey Seager, Justin Turner, Max Muncy, and Cody Bellinger, the book also celebrates the incredible achievements of Clayton Kershaw that cemented his Hall-of-Fame legacy, and the remarkable job done by Dave Roberts and the Dodgers’ executives and ownership. Highlighted by empty stands, remote broadcasts, and relentless testing, 2020 was perhaps the strangest baseball season ever…but it produced the most savored World Series celebration in the history of the game. Includes an in-depth foreword by Dodgers’ legend Orel Hershiser.

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I Told You I Wasn't Perfect - Denny McLain & Eli Zaret Cover Art

I Told You I Wasn't Perfect

I Told You I Wasn't Perfect by Denny McLain & Eli Zaret

Few characters soar to such dizzying heights and then plunge to the depth of despair like McLain did.  But it is his ability to finally reflect on his mistakes and self-indulgences that make his story especially compelling. Winner 2015 eLit Award for Sports-Bronze Medal

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Incredible Baseball Stories - Ken Samelson Cover Art

Incredible Baseball Stories

Incredible Baseball Stories Tales from the Diamond by Ken Samelson

An incomparable collection of true-life tales from the rich history of America’s pastime.   Spanning more than a hundred years, and featuring some of the game’s iconic stars, the stories in this one-of-a-kind book bring the legends of the baseball diamond to life once more. Fans of all ages will enjoy recalling the great and not-so-great moments of the most popular names in the sport. Found in this collection are timeless tales that enable the reader to:   Relive great World Series moments like Kirk Gibson’s home run off Dennis EckersleyFind out what it’s like to pitch to Ted WilliamsWitness record-breaking performances by Babe Ruth and Hank AaronLearn what goes on behind the scenes of drafting stars like Jim Thome and Manny Ramírez   With three-dozen photographs that beautifully illustrate the anecdotes, Incredible Baseball Stories is the perfect gift for baseball fans of all ages.

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Out of My League - Jane Leavy & George Plimpton Cover Art

Out of My League

Out of My League The Classic Hilarious Account of an Amateur's Ordeal in Professional Baseball by Jane Leavy & George Plimpton

This baseball classic that Ernest Hemingway called "beautifully observed and incredibly conceived" includes a foreword from Jane Leavy and never-before-seen content from the Plimpton archives. 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

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Tales from the Cincinnati Reds Dugout - Tom Browning & Dann Stupp Cover Art

Tales from the Cincinnati Reds Dugout

Tales from the Cincinnati Reds Dugout A Collection of the Greatest Reds Stories Ever Told by Tom Browning & Dann Stupp

In Tales from the Cincinnati Reds Dugout , fans can join former pitcher Tom Browning for legendary tales of festivity (the 1990 World Series championship), immortality (a perfect game in 1988), and a bit of eccentricity (life with owner Marge Schott). He tries to answer a variety of questions that fans have been asking for years: What was his reaction to the lifetime suspension of his manager and friend Pete Rose? How did a ragtag group of Cincinnati ballplayers topple the mighty Oakland A's in the 1990 Fall Classic? Was that really Tom on a Sheffield Avenue rooftop—in uniform—during a 1993 Reds-Cubs game at Wrigley Field? Browning also offers stories and anecdotes about some of the biggest names in Reds history, including Pete Rose, Tony Perez, Marge Schott, Lou Piniella, Eric Davis, Dave Parker, Buddy Bell, Barry Larkin, Joe Nuxhall, Mario Soto, and Jose Rijo. He devotes an entire chapter to his perfect game, considered to be one of the greatest moments in club history. Tales from the Cincinnati Reds Dugout is a must-have for any Reds fan.

45

Coming Home - Cleon Jones & Gary Kaschak Cover Art

Coming Home

Coming Home My Amazin' Life with the New York Mets by Cleon Jones & Gary Kaschak

A compelling memoir at the intersection of baseball and American history Cleon Jones has never forgotten where he came from. As a child, growing up in a Mobile, Alabama shotgun house with no electricity or running water, he yearned to follow the path of hometown heroes Satchel Paige and Hank Aaron, and his community uplifted him. Navigating the perilous norms of the Jim Crow South, Jones ascended to baseball's highest ranks, leading the 1969 New York Mets with his bat and catching the final out to clinch the "miracle" World Series title. But after 13 years in the major leagues, Jones returned to the place he loves, the neighborhood where it all started: Africatown. Coming Home is Jones's love letter to his roots in Alabama's most historic Black settlement, whose origins can be traced back to the last known illegal transport of slaves to the United States aboard the Clotilda. Jones candidly discusses how his Africatown neighbors helped supply him with a bat and glove when his family could not afford equipment, the opposition he faced as a Black player after leaving Alabama, his fond memories of the Miracle Mets, and his post-baseball fight to save his dying community. Also featuring Jones's outlook on the modern game and American society, this timely chronicle is a profound slice of history for all baseball fans.

46

The Lords of the Realm - John Helyar Cover Art

The Lords of the Realm

The Lords of the Realm The Real History of Baseball by John Helyar

"The ultimate chronicle of the games behind the game."— The New York Times Book Review Baseball has always inspired rhapsodic elegies on the glory of man and golden memories of wonderful times. But what you see on the field is only half the game. In this fascinating, colorful chronicle—based on hundreds of interviews and years of research and digging—John Helyar brings to vivid life the extraordinary people and dramatic events that shaped America's favorite pastime, from the dead-ball days at the turn of the century through the great strike of 1994. Witness zealous Judge Landis banish eight players, including Shoeless Joe Jackson, after the infamous "Black Sox" scandal; the flamboyant A's owner Charlie Finley wheel and deal his star players, Vida Blue and Rollie Fingers, like a deck of cards; the hysterical bidding war of coveted free agent Catfish Hunter; the chain-smoking romantic, A. Bartlett Giamatti, locking horns with Pete Rose during his gambling days of summer; and much more. Praise for The Lords of the Realm "A must-read for baseball fans . . . reads like a suspense novel." — Kirkus Reviews "Refreshingly hard-headed . . . the only book you'll need to read on the subject." — Newsday "Lots of stories . . . well told, amusing . . . edifying." — The Washington Post

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The Last Best League (10th anniversary edition) - Jim Collins Cover Art

The Last Best League (10th anniversary edition)

The Last Best League (10th anniversary edition) One Summer, One Season, One Dream by Jim Collins

Every summer, in ten small towns across Cape Cod, young college baseball players showcase their talents in hopes of making it to the "show." A vicious filter, the league has produced one out of every six major league players, from Nomar Garciaparra and Todd Helton to Jeff Bagwell and Barry Zito.In this brilliantly crafted narrative, Jim Collins chronicles a season in the life of the Chatham A's, perhaps the most celebrated team in the Cape Cod Baseball League. Set against a seemingly bucolic backdrop--a well-heeled resort town on the bend of the outer Cape -- the story charts the changing fortunes of a handful of players, all of whom battle slumps and self-doubt in an effort to impress major league scouts and make the playoffs. Several players go home with career-threatening injuries; one blue-chip prospect fulfills great expectations while another is dubbed "the biggest disappointment on the Cape." A pitcher hides an arm injury while negotiating a minor league contract; another leaves early to tend to his dying father. And nearly all look to the following year's major league draft as a barometer of their worth. Far more than a baseball book, The Last Best League is an engrossing story about dreams fulfilled and dreams destroyed, about Cape Cod and the rites of summer, about coming of age in America.

48

Pull Up a Chair - Curt Smith Cover Art

Pull Up a Chair

Pull Up a Chair The Vin Scully Story by Curt Smith

In 1950, Vin Scully broadcast his first major league baseball game for the then–Brooklyn Dodgers. Nearly sixty years later he still invites a listener to “pull up a chair,” completing a record fifty-ninth consecutive year of play-by-play. Recruited and mentored by the legendary Red Barber, the New York–born Scully moved with the Dodgers to Los Angeles in early 1958. His instantly recognizable voice has described players from Duke Snider to Orel Hershiser to Manny Ramirez, with hundreds in between.At one time or another, Scully has aired NBC Television’s Game of the Week, twelve All-Star Games, eighteen no-hitters, twenty-five World Series, and network football, golf, and tennis. He has made every sportscasting Hall of Fame; received a Lifetime Emmy Achievement award and a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame; and been voted “most memorable [L.A. Dodgers] franchise personality.” In 2000, the American Sportscasters Association named Scully the Sportscaster of the 20th Century.The first biography of Vin Scully is long overdue. Curt Smith—to USA Today , “The voice of authority on baseball broadcasting”—is the ideal man to write it. Scully opens each broadcast by wishing listeners, “A very pleasant good afternoon.” Pull Up a Chair will provide a reader with the same.

49

Playing Through the Pain - Dan Good Cover Art

Playing Through the Pain

Playing Through the Pain Ken Caminiti and the Steroids Confession That Changed Baseball Forever by Dan Good

The powerful story of Ken Caminiti, who changed baseball forever as the first player to confess to having used performance-enhancing steroids In  Playing Through the Pain: Ken Caminiti and the Steroids Confession That Changed Baseball Forever , writer Dan Good seeks to make sense of MLB MVP Ken Caminiti’s fascinating, troubled life. Good began researching Caminiti in 2012 and conducted his first interviews for his biography in 2013. Since then he’s interviewed nearly 400 people, providing him with an exclusive and exhaustive view into Caminiti’s addictions, use of steroids, baseball successes, and inner turmoil.  Decades later, the full truth about Major League Baseball’s steroids era remains elusive, and the story of Caminiti, the player who opened the lid on performance-enhancing drugs in baseball has never been properly told. A gritty third baseman known for his diving stops, cannon arm, and switch-hit power, Caminiti voluntarily admitted in a 2002 Sports Illustrated cover story that he used steroids during his career, including his 1996 MVP season, and guessed that half of the players were using performance-enhancing drugs. “I’ve made a ton of mistakes,” he said. “I don’t think using steroids is one of them.”     Good’s on-the-record sources include Caminiti’s steroids supplier, who has never come forward, discussing in detail his efforts to set up drug programs for Caminiti and dozens of other MLB players during the late 1990s; people who attended rehab with Caminiti and revealed the secret inner trauma that fueled his addictions; hundreds of Caminiti’s baseball teammates and coaches, from Little League to the major leagues, who adored and respected him while struggling to understand how to help him amid a culture that cultivated substance abuse; childhood friends who were drawn to his daring personality, warmth, and athleticism; and the teenager at the center of Caminiti’s October 2004 trip to New York City during which he overdosed and died.

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The Big 50: New York Yankees - Peter Botte, Bernie Williams & Chazz Palminteri Cover Art

The Big 50: New York Yankees

The Big 50: New York Yankees by Peter Botte, Bernie Williams & Chazz Palminteri

Longtime columnist Peter Botte recounts the living history of the team, counting down from No. 50 to No. 1. Learn about and revisit the remarkable stories, featuring greats like Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, Lou Gehrig, Derek Jeter, and Aaron Judge.

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