Diamond Classics

Essays on 100 of the Best Baseball Books Ever Published


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SKU: 9780786418534 Categories: , ,

About the Book

Each work, chosen with exquisite care by an expert, is analyzed and summarized. Its greatness as baseball literature, its place in the genre, its peculiarities, weaknesses, strengths, how the critics went for it—all are discussed in such a way, with quotations, that reading or browsing Shannon’s book is equivalent to absorbing a rich history of the sport.

About the Author(s)

Mike Shannon is the co-founder and current editor-in-chief of Spitball magazine. The author of more than a dozen baseball books, he lives in Cincinnati.

Bibliographic Details

Mike Shannon
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 471
Bibliographic Info: photos, notes, index
Copyright Date: 2004 [1989]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-1853-4
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1772-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Introduction  xi

American Baseball I  1
American Baseball II  6
American Baseball III  9
The American Diamond   13
The Annotated Casey at the Bat   16
The Armchair Book of Baseball   21
Babe: The Legend Comes to Life   23
Ball Four   29
Bang the Drum Slowly   34
Baseball [photographs]   39
Baseball: A Historical Narrative  42
Baseball America  45
Baseball as I Have Known it  50
Baseball Between the Lines  54
The Baseball Encyclopedia  58
Baseball I Gave You All the Best Years of My Life  62
Baseball Is a Funny Game  66
Baseball When the Grass Was Real  70
Baseball’s Best: The MVPs  74
Baseball’s Great Experiment: Jackie Robinson  77
Baseball’s 100: A Personal Ranking  81
Beating the Bushes  84
The Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract  88
The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars  94
Bo: Pitching and Wooing  99
The Boys of Summer  102
The Bronx Zoo  107
Bums: An Oral History of the Brooklyn Dodgers  111
The Bush League  115
Can’t Anybody Here Play the Game  119
The Celebrant  123
The Chrysanthemum and the Bat  128
Clemente!  132
A Day in the Bleachers  137
Destiny’s Darlings  140
Diamonds Are Forever  144
Dock Ellis in the Country of Baseball  147
Dollar Sign on the Muscle  151
Eight Men Out  155
A False Spring 160
Fan Poems  166
Fear Strikes Out: The Jim Piersall Story  169
The Fireside Book of Baseball 174
The Second Fireside Book of Baseball 179
The Third Fireside Book of Baseball 182
Five Seasons: A Baseball Companion 186
The Glory of Their Times 190
Good Enough to Dream 195
The Great American Baseball Card…Book 198
The Great American Novel 202
The Hidden Game of Baseball 207
The Hot Stove League 211
How Life Imitates the World Series 214
I Don’t Care if I Never Come Back 218
The Image of Their Greatness 221
Insider’s Baseball 224
Invisible Men 228
It’s Good to Be Alive 232
Joe, You Coulda Made Us Proud 236
The Long Season 240
The Lords of Baseball 244
The Man Who Invented Baseball 248
Maybe I’ll Pitch Forever 251
The Men in Blue 255
Mighty Casey: All-American 260
The Miracle at Coogan’s Bluff 264
My Baseball Diary 268
My Life in Baseball 272
My Turn at Bat 275
The Natural 279
Nice Guys Finish Last  284
Nobody’s Perfect 288
One for the Record: Hank Aaron 292
Only the Ball Was White 297
Out of Left Field: Willie Stargell 301
Out of My League 305
Pennant Race 310
The Pitcher 314
Sandlot Peanuts 317
Say It Ain’t So, Joe! 322
A Season in the Sun 326
Shoeless Joe 332
Some Are Called Clowns 338
Stengel: His Life and Times 342
The Suitors of Spring 346
The Summer Game 350
Take Me Out to the Ballpark 356
A Thinking Man’s Guide to Baseball 360
This Great Game 366
The Thrill of the Grass 369
Topps Baseball Cards 373
Ty Cobb 376
The Ultimate Baseball Book 382
The Umpire Strikes Back 386
The Universal Baseball Association, Inc. 390
Veeck as in Wreck 394
Voices from the Great Black Baseball Leagues 400
The Way It Is 404
Why Time Begins on Opening Day 408
Willie’s Time 412
The Year the Yankees Lost the Pennant 416
You Know Me Al 422

Index 427

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “Mike Shannon is a name well known to serious baseball fans”—Sports Collectors Digest
  • “A remarkable survey of baseball literature…. For each [:] the content, author’s background, and the book’s significance—often with critical comments of others. A unique resource useful for selection, reference, and yes, fun reading”—Library Journal
  • “Outstanding”—Choice