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Three Finger: The Mordecai Brown Story Paperback – October 1, 2008
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Top Customer Reviews
Brown is the hero, but his success and abilities are underplayed, if anything. That's a relief next to several current books about players whose authors are trying to get them into the Hall of Fame. A pleasurable, easy read. The baseball stats are reliable except in one instance where the authors must have had a petite mal seizure. Page 78 states that Brown's 213 innings pitched in 1908 were "more than any other single year in his career." The number is a typo for 312, but anyway, as the authors later note, Brown pitched 343 innings the following year. But not to worry, this is a unique lapse, and pointed out here only to help readers, or correct any future edition. Thanks for this book!
Sporting a lifetime MLB record of 239-130, with 1375 strikeouts and an amazing 2.06 ERA, Brown is oftentimes more known for his main nickname, which was due to a farm-machinery accident as a youth, losing parts of two fingers. His other nickname came from his work in the Indiana coal mines before baseball became his profession.
His is truly an American story, as Brown sparked the Chicago Cubs to victories over the Detroit Tigers in the 1907-1908 Fall Classics, turned away from threats by mobsters in 1908 to throw a game and attempted to end the MLB monopoly on the pro game by joining the "outlaw" Federal League.
But its in retirement where Brown gave back to the sport - and to the local fans who followed his pro career - that made him a household name. When back home again in (Terre Haute) Indiana, he played in the minors, participated in exhibition games and also coached. Brown also operated a gas station in Terre Haute.
Like home plate being dusted off after a long winter, the biography brings to life a legend who was buried under yellowed pages of newspapers that had been weathered by time and neglect.
Bison Books out of the University of Nebraska must be the finest baseball press in the United States. I have read several of their books and each one is excellent. If it's a Bison Book and it's on baseball, I put it on my "to read" list. This book is no different: it is a rather standard biography of a great player, but that is precisely what I enjoy about it. Mordecai Brown was no Rube Waddell. He was a player I would want as a friend; I can imagine his gas station days in the 30s and 40s, and can imagine myself hanging out there, just enjoying the presence of "Three Finger." The more I read, the more I appreciated Brown's accomplishments (six seasons of twenty games plus wins! --- not to mention the complete games, which is even more impressive!). I also came to realize that he was a fine man as well as a great player.
This biography is well-written, provides great photos and, most important of all (and many baseball books fail miserably at this) the authors have provided his statistical record to accompany the narrative tale of Brown's life. It was a great life; an American life and, in some ways, a morality tale with a happy ending and real-life fairy-tale [true] years of the Cubs as big-league champions. Who knows when we shall experience a player and a time like that again.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It was a good read. Some errors (saying that Ty Cobb lead the AL with a .315 average when it was .350), but the facts on the main character were on point.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Cub Legend Mordecai Brown used a deformed hand to his advantage in developing an amazing curveball. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Bud O'Baer
This is a great, easy to read book about Mordecai Brown, the ace of the Chicago Cubs' last World Series championship. It is very interesting and I couldn't put it down. Read morePublished on December 15, 2012 by Justin
This is a very pleasant biography about an almost forgotten pitching great from the ear;ly days of baseball. Read morePublished on August 26, 2012 by Ron B.
Three Finger provides a solid if unspectacular look at one of baseball's more compelling figures. It is particularly good at turning a page of statistics into a human being and... Read morePublished on May 8, 2012 by A. Scop