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Pen Men: Baseball's Greatest Bullpen Stories Told by the Men Who Brought the Game Relief Hardcover – March, 1992

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 413 pages
  • Publisher: St Martins Pr; 1st edition (March 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312070608
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312070601
  • Product Dimensions: 1.4 x 5.7 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,601,627 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ron Kaplan on February 4, 1998
Format: Hardcover
When Rollie Fingers was inducted to the Hall of Fame, Hoyt Wilhelm, the first relief pitcher to be so honored, was in attendance. "Uncle Hoyt" represented the rest of the clan of "Pen Men," whose collective chests swelled with pride. One of their own had achieved lasting recognition, like a child of poorly- educated parents being graduated from college with distinction.
The stories of some of these ancestors is the basis of Bob Cairns' book, recollections not only of relief pitchers, but catchers, coaches and other inhabitants of that special world.
In the infancy of baseball, pitching staffs were smaller. Starters was expected to complete their jobs, regardless of how hard they were being pasted. From 1876-1904, over 90 percent of all games were route-going efforts. These days, it is common to see several pitchers in a single inning. According to a former manager: "It used to be...that we called on relievers to give the starters a rest. Now...we hope for complete games from starters in order to rest the bullpen."
There was no contingency for one hurler replacing another. The early rules allowed for substitution only in the event of illness, injury or with the permission of the opposition. In such a case, the pitcher had to trade places with a fielder who had warmed up prior to the contest for just such an emergency.
There wasn't even a designated place to warm up in those early years. The name "bullpen" was derived from the roped-off areas alongside the field into which latecomers were "herded" at reduced admissions.
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