- ISBN-10: 034552327X
- ISBN-13: 978-0345523273
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (152 customer reviews)
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Imperfect: An Improbable Life Hardcover
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So what does that have to do with the book? Well, nothing, I guess, other than to point out what type of man Jim is. But anyway, back to the book. To sum it up, this is a well-written, interesting, and inspiring story of a man who didn't give up.
Like all of us Jim had his ups and downs, both before he became a major league player and during the times he was one. At one point in his career the big league basically gave up on him. But he didn't give up, and he came back to pitch again. That is what is inspiring. The guy just didn't give up. And because of my son, I know what Jim means when he talks about hiding his hand in his pocket. I know it is not easy being someone who is different than others. However, really Jim, why pick on the Cleveland Indians when pitching that no-hitter? Man, we have enough sports problems in northeast Ohio without something like that. That's right, I'm a Cleveland sports fan. That isn't easy you know.Read more ›
I haven't done that for years, decades.
I hugged this book.
I have always been intrigued by Jim Abbott and was pleased when he played briefly for my beloved White Sox. It is amazing to me, as to so many others, that he could become a one-handed Major League pitcher.
It wasn't until I read this book that I realized - and it seems so obvious now - that Jim Abbott wanted more than anything not to be known as the one-handed guy. He just wanted to play baseball.
He is so unstinting in telling his story. He grew up in Flint, Michigan, where times were tough and sports were everywhere. His family life was complicated. He knew from a very young age that he loved baseball, and he worked hard to become a baseball player. Along the way he attended the University of Michigan which had always been his dream; played for the U.S. Baseball team and won a gold medal at the Olympics in Seoul; played for several major and minor league baseball teams; and on September 3, 1993, he threw a no-hitter at Yankee Stadium. And then there were the children. He always found time for the challenged children and their families who looked up to him.
Jim Abbott is incredibly humble and repeatedly thanks the people who have supported him throughout his life, from his dad who wrote him a note that said "Proud of you, son," to his teammates and coaches, to the teacher who taught him how to tie his shoes. Jim Abbott walked away from Major League Baseball when he was just 31 years old.
So now you know the plot of this book. You need to read it yourself to find out how beautifully written it is. The writing team of Jim Abbott and Tim Brown (a Yahoo!Read more ›
To his chagrin, many know Jim Abbot as the "one-handed pitcher". Giving this label trivializes his life's work including throwing the 234th no-hitter in major league history. Focusing on the number of hands neglects his professional abilities. Even as some might see the disability as a burden, Abbott notes that it might have given him the ultimate drive for his success. In turn, the book is so much more than a book about a "one-handed pitcher".
The chapters of the book alternate between the innings of Abbott's no-hitter and his growth from birth to his major league career. The book climaxes with the final out of his best game. Abbott credits his parents for not allowing him to feel sorry for himself. But further credit goes to fellow players and many others along his path. Abbott is also refreshingly honest and humble about his career. Known as a kind person, this trait is particularly refreshing in a professional athlete.
Being an avid follower of baseball during the years of Abbott's career, I enjoyed reliving many of these baseball moments. It was certainly fun to revisit many names I had forgotten. It was even better to be inspired and entertained by this book.
"Imperfect" is Abbott's autobiography and, while baseball fans--especially those of us with fond memories of Abbott--will enjoy it, this is truly a book for most readers. As Abbott notes in his introduction, this book is not just about baseball; it's about overcoming the burdens and challenges of life. In a breezy style, Abbott describes growing up with one hand and there are moments that simply heart wrenching--he hides his arm in his pocket, other kids bother him about it.
Abbott also describes his years in baseball in some depth--his years at the University of Michigan and his stint in the 1988 Summer Olympics where he won the gold medal. He also offers some insight into his ten years in the majors.
It's an amazing story and Abbott tells it well. This book was more than entertaining and instructive--it was inspiring. While Abbott made the College Hall of Fame, he's probably not headed to Cooperstown anytime soon. But there are more important things to life--as Jim Abbott reminds us in "Imperfect." He may never make it Cooperstown but if humanity had a Hall of Fame, Abbott would make it on the first ballot. Highest recommendation.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Listened to this while driving to spring training. Perfect. Compelling and inspiring. Great story for a kid that might be discouraged because they are different.Published 2 months ago by M. Lynch
This is one of the most inspirational and poignant sports memoirs I've ever read. I remember watching Jim Abbott pitch when I was a kid and investing in his rookie baseball card... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Sugafoot
This was for my grandson for a school project. The price was right and we got the last used one.Published 4 months ago by Anne1944
Interesting read on a fascinating sports and real life hero from my home town.Published 9 months ago by mbulmash