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Dropping the Ball: Baseball's Troubles and How We Can and Must Solve Paperback – March 1, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner (March 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439170495
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439170496
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,700,633 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Still a gamer, Dave Winfield's play was compelling -- and so, it turns out, are his opinions." -- The New York Times (Play Magazine)

"This is a must-read book and one that I feel has something for everyone." -- Hank Aaron

"An eloquent plea for decency and loyalty from one of today's premier ambassadors of the game." -- The Boston Globe

"If you love the game of baseball as much as Dave Winfield does, attention must be paid to his poignant and heartfelt words...full of common sense and wisdom." -- New York Daily News --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Dave Winfield is best known as a New York Yankee and won a World Series ring with Toronto in 1992. Currently an executive with the San Diego Padres, he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2001. He lives in Los Angeles, California.

Michael Levin writes and ghostwrites in Orange County, California, where he runs www.Business Ghost.com.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Dave has hit another grand slam!
Faye
This book deals with specific problems, and proposes specific solutions.
Indiana Jeff Reynolds
There's not a laugh to be found.
WDX2BB

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. Jones on March 22, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I've grown tired of all the baseball scandals...from BALCO to Pete Rose, etc. I've been a fan of the game all my life, but have kind of lost touch from the strike on up until now. It just seems like MLB and its players are out of touch with the concerns of the average fan and parent. I was surprised to find that this book, written by Hall of Famer Dave Winfield, is a positive and throughly researched look at the game and how to make it better. I sincerely hope that the suggestions he's made in these pages are acted upon by MLB execs at the top level and by community leaders and youth baseball coaches at the bottom.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Music Mogul on March 5, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I thought this was going to be another baseball bashing book focusing on the hot-button steroid issue. I was pleasantly surprised that Winfield discusses all the issues that we fans bring up on the various sports radio shows. It's nice to know someone on the "inside" is listening. But the kicker is... he offers solutions -- from the grass-roots little league level to upper management. I was shocked to see George Steinbrenner's most flattering endorsement right on the cover. If these two can make peace, I suppose anything is possible.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kirk J. Mckinley on July 19, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This book did what I expected it to. It laid out some good ideas that Winfield feels would both improve the game of baseball and improve the image of baseball. In these times of steroids (allegedly, of course) and poorly behaved athletes, a clear, "UNITED" manifesto and direction for baseball is something the game clearly needs. Winfield delivers this.

Another reviewer points out that there are no "A-ha!" moments in this. I have to agree with him, HOWEVER, I think that is really actually the point. What Winfield proposes in this book is not earth-shattering, but one must believe that implementing these changes, the game will be better, both on and off the field. What is so shocking, to me, is that implementing a lot of these changes should really be so simple that the true "A-ha!" is that they aren't already being done!

What muddles the book, though, is that the book does get to be a bit rambly. It is hard not to feel like this is a beefed-up transcription of a monologue that Winfield gave one afternoon. It seems to me, though, that any type of book, whether about baseball or politics or knitting, in which the author is making a proposal, or making a pitch to a certain way of thinking, that there will be some extent of "ramble".

I would take Winfield to task, though, in that he at times seems to ignore the white elephant in the corner of the room. He, at times, lets people off the hook a little too easily and does not take them to task. But you should kind of expect that from him. I'm not questioning his integrity, but, as others have pointed out, he has one foot in both sectors of the game- as the former player and the current executive. His allegiances are, unfortunately, prone to being a bit murky.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Ink & Penner on May 17, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Former Yankee slugger, Dave Winfield's put together a thoughtful, from-the-heart analysis of what's wrong with today's major league baseball...but it's a softball (if you will) approach to improving baseball's public image. It's heavily lacking in direct quotes. Anecdotes are few and far between, and fiery criticisms are just not there.

Apparently, Dave told himself one day: "I gotta' write down what's wrong with baseball." -And this is the result. Dropping The Ball is a nice, over-coffee review of everything about the game and what needs improvement and what to do about it. He makes some good points, but very few are of the "Ah-hah!" eye-opening variety one might expect of someone on a mission of change.

One of the forever-recurring themes of the book is that "[MLB] isn't doing enough to market [baseball] properly" hence, he says, the drop-off in fan interest across the board. He gently complains about the inferior abilities of some players, but doesn't address league over-expansion, which may be the cause of it. Too, Winfield could have zeroed-in on the hows and whys of over-priced tickets...and the major-league out-of-pocket costs for game-day hot-dogs, beer, pizza, parking and Pepsi. He didn't. Dave, what about the new pasteurized, kid-friendly, Disney-land-like stadiums that waterdown youngster interest in the game? [Didn't Las Vegas learn that pandering to the under-12 crowd just didn't work?] -And how come corporate elements can easily get playoff tickets while the average fan doesn't have a chance? Dave doesn't say. He (only in passing) mentions the crazy-high player salaries, but our author doesn't attribute big-time fan disinterest in and detachment from the game to them.

--But one thing is clear.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By D. Quincy on March 5, 2007
Format: Hardcover
When Dave came to Toronto in 1992, he not only brought his bat, but he brought experience and a positive attitude that led the Jays to the pinnacle -- the World Series. Once again, his experience and hope for the game he obviously loves comes thru. This is a good read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By mistermaxxx08 HALL OF FAME on July 22, 2007
Format: Hardcover
off the Bat when George Steinbrenner is the doing the introduction then you know anything can be resolved. Brother Dave Winfield is a down to earth cat who pulls no punches and wants to see More Young Black Players respecting and knowing the what the Negro League,Jackie Robinson,Larry DOlby and other Black Ball Players who paved the way through Blood,sweat,tears to play this National past time. Dave Winfield has alot of strong concepts at making the game even better and also a strong future. this is a must read book.
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