Old Ball Game How John McGraw, Christy Mathewson, and the New York Giants Created Modern Baseball
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Description: Frank Deford is one of our most beloved sports commentators, familiar to listeners of NPR and readers of Sports Illustrated. Now Deford retells the story of one of the most unusual friendships 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, college educated (at a time when only a tiny fraction of Americans had even finished high school), 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. Nicknamed "the Little Napoleon," 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, and incredible feat that has never been surpassed by any pitcher and 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. The Old Ball Game is a masterful chronicle of the early days of baseball from America's most beloved sportswriter.
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List price: $14.00
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Incorporated
Publication date: 3/2/2006
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.75" tall