Frommer on Sports
"Bury My Heart at
Cooperstown" and Other Holiday 2006 Reads
The idea was rare, simple if a bit
macabre - a book about how many former major league baseball players
met their fate. Or as the sub-title of the tome states: "Salacious,
Sad and Surreal Deaths in the History of Baseball." That is the
story of "Bury My Heart at Cooperstown" by Frank Russo and Gene
Racz (Triumph, $14.95, 261 pages).
The gang's not all here, not yet, but there are stories galore of
the Yankees of Murderers Row, of suicides, of those too young to
die, of tragic and sudden demises. For me (finishing up the next
Harvey Frommer sports book that has him amply covered) the most
moving story was of Eddie Bennett, Yankee hunchbacked batboy and
good luck charm. The guy who guarded and fondled the bats of the
great 1927 Yankees, hit by a cab, after weeks of very heavy
drinking, he died in his rented room of alcoholism on January 16,
1935. He was just 32 years old. It is stories like these and others
that make "Bury My Heart at Cooperstown" a memorable read! And for
further involvement with this subject matter check out the site: the
deadballera.com and From the University of Nebraska Press comes
three books with interesting baseball angles: "Three Finger" by
Cindy Thomson and Scott Brown ($26.95, 250 pages) about legendary
hurler Three Finger Brown, "Baseball's Natural" by John Theodore
($14.95, 136 pages) about Eddie Watikus of the Philadelphia Phillies
and "Baseball Without Borders" edited by George Gmelch ($19.95, 326
pages). As always the price for U. of Nebraska Press books is a bit
inflated, but the works are carefully produced.
HIGHLY NOTABLE: "Coach," (Warner, $14.99, 285) a wonderful and
moving read reviewed by your diligent reviewer when it was in
hardcover is now in paperback. Edited by Andrew Blauner with a
foreword by Bill Bradley, the terrific tome has 25 writers musing on
sports people who made a difference in their lives.
For those among you into oral history and into pro football - "Hail
Victory" by Thom Loverro (Wiley, $24.95, 302 pages) should be right
up there on your sports bookshelf. Filled with insights galore,
stories by such as Sonny Jurgensen, Joe Jacoby, George Pepper and
other eloquent tellers of tales - this multiple memoir of the
Washington Redskins is fabulous!
# # #
You can reach
Harvey Frommer at:
About the Author:
Harvey Frommer is in his 38th year of writing books.
A noted oral historian and sports journalist, the author of 42 sports
books including the classics: "New York City Baseball,1947-1957" and
"Shoeless Joe and Ragtime Baseball," his acclaimed REMEMBERING YANKEE
STADIUM was published in 2008 and his REMEMBERING FENWAY PARK: AN ORAL
AND NARRATIVE HISTORY OF THE HOME OF RED SOX NATION was published to
acclaim in 2011. The prolific Frommer is at work on When It Was
Just a Game, An Oral History on Super Bowel One.
His work has appeared in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times,
Washington Post, New York Daily News, Newsday, USA Today, Men's Heath,
The Sporting News, among other publications.
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Frommer along with his wife, Myrna Katz Frommer are the authors of
five critically acclaimed oral/cultural histories, professors at Dartmouth
College, and travel writers who specialize in cultural history, food, wine, and Jewish history and heritage
in the United States, Europe, and the Caribbean.
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