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Just Play Ball a great read!Posted Sunday, April 24, 2011, at 4:42 PM
Just Play Ball
By JOE GARAGIOLA
Before I get in to talking about the book, I'll explain why I chose this one for my first review. I was at the office one day with KMOX on in the background during spring training. Because the station can't broadcast baseball online, they aired an interview with former Cardinal and Hall of Fame broadcaster, Joe Garagiola.
The interview was one of the funniest things I had ever heard, so that evening I hopped on Amazon and ordered the book. As funny as the interview was, the book is a step even farther. I can't count the number of times
Garagiola, in his own punchy style, has the uncanny ability to bring out the humor in any situation. Being a career catcher, he takes the opportunity to share a more in-depth look at what goes on behind the plate.
Aside from recalling what it was like playing with Musial and others, he also devotes an entire chapter to the umpire and some stories that shed some light on the least- liked man on the field (Pay special attention to his story about the umpire who re-thought his decision...I nearly cried.)
The stories that are likely the most telling of baseball in the mid-twentieth century center around Brank Rickey and Garagiola's first contract. He also talks extensively about his close relationship with New York Yankees great Yogi Berra and their childhood friendship growing up on The Hill in St. Louis.
The stories are utter treasures to any true fan of the game and were collected by him for many, many years before he finally made the decision it was time to piece them into a book. He said that over the years he would scribble them on scrap paper and had a drawer full.
This is one book you absolutely can not go wrong with.
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Welcome to Corey's Book Shelf. I'm quite the book junkie, which is a nice trait for someone who earns a living writing. I was thinking the other day about how I don't have people to share my love for stories with and thought what better way than to begin doing book reviews and discussions. So, enjoy a rainy day and I'll keep you posted on what I'm reading and share my thoughts. Feel free to email with any questions, suggestions, complaints, winning lotto numbers, etc.