by Roger Angell
Roger Angell always looks to baseball to tell about more than hits, errors and final scores.
In this collection of articles, most culled from earlier books, Angell explores such topics as a special friendship that began thanks to baseball (“In the Country”), the arrival of the split-finger fastball (“The Arms Talks”) and St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame pitcher Bob Gibson (“Distance”).
Angell takes baseball beyond its standard confines. Of Gibson’s retirement, he writes, “Even those of us who have not been spoiled by any athletic triumphs of our own…are aware of a humdrum, twilight quality to all our doings of middle life, however successful they may prove to be. There is a loss of light and ease and early joy, and we look to other exemplars—mentors and philosophers; grown men—to sustain us in that loss.”
This volume then should fit quite snugly next to Angell’s other pennant winners: The Summer Game, Five Seasons and Season Ticket. (Ballantine, $18.95)