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A Great and Glorious Game: Baseball Writings of A. Bartlett Giamatti Paperback – CLV, January 4, 1998
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By far the most literate of baseball's commissioners, the late Bart Giamatti, former president of Yale, was the game's most unashamedly vocal fan both before and during his tenure as chief executive. The child of immigrants, he embraced baseball's very Americanness, and ascribed to its simple goal--coming home--a far-reaching, overall metaphor. His ardor was unguarded and unabashed, his approach sentimental and as expansive as a pair of foul lines diverging in the distance. Giamatti's oversized passion infuses everything in this slim volume, from his wistful elegy to Tom Seaver and his admonition to fans to clean up their act, to his pained public statement banning Pete Rose from the game for life. Best of all, his seductively lyrical essay "The Green Fields of the Mind" leads off the lineup. The latter alone--it begins by poignantly observing of baseball, "It breaks your heart. It's designed to break your heart"--is worth the price of admission.
From Publishers Weekly
In the baseball pantheon, Giamatti occupies an unusual place: leaving the presidency of Yale University, he became the president of the National League and then, for the five months before his death in 1989, the commissioner of baseball. Although his writings on the subject were few, all radiated a love for the game as well as an appreciation of it as a metaphor for American life and, indeed, life in general. He saw baseball as quintessentially American because it combined individual achievement with successful teamwork and because, in a country where rootlessness appears to be a pervasive national characteristic, there is always the quest to go home. Yale clinical professor Robson has collected nine Giamatti writings, including the often-anthologized essay "The Green Fields of the Mind" and the statement banning Pete Rose from baseball for life, in which he notes that "no individual is superior to the game." The collection will appeal primarily to the most diehard baseball fans.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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It is simply a beautiful book and I look forward to picking it up again each spring to refresh my perspective on the great and glorious game.