There are some great baseball writers. Roger Kahn and Pat Jordan come to mind.
Roger Angell is the very best of them all. This book is as much a part of my youth as family vacations. I have read this book numerous times, often just picking up random pages and reading for hours until sleep overtook me. There is something about New York City, the 1950s, and the Brooklyn Dodgers that contributed to the axiom that the best sportswriting is baseball writing. Angell is it, in its purest form. Jaques Barzun, a French writer, visited America around the turn of the century to discover what de Toqueville had found some 70 years earlier. Barzun concluded that, "In order to know America, you have to know baseball." To a current generation of young baseball enthusisasts who want to grasp what an older generation felt about this game, I recommend "The Summer Game" above all others. "Five Seasons" might be next, but "The Summer Game" is the best of the lot. It carries forward from Angell's 1950s experiences, and is part of his reportage for The New Yorker. Somehow he infuses the high art literacy necessary for a publication of this sort with the most lyrical, dead-on anlaysis of baseball ever. He starts with the 1962 Mets, and covers them over several Casey Stengel Polo Grounds seasons. No description ever conveys the wackiness of those lovable losers better, or the old-style devotion of New York fans of the by-gone era. This is the Brooklyn Dodger contingent transferred to Polo and Shea. Angell covers the '67 Red Sox, the '68 World Series (McClain vs Gibson overshadowed by Lolich), the Amazin' Mets, the Bay Area in their season of two division champs (1971), and other events, always including the World Series' played between '62 and '71. His writing about Dodger Stadium and Dodger fans in 1966 demonstrates the best of the "new age" Los Angeleno baseball enthusiasts, the modernists if you will. It describes vividly how an era has turned. He paints a picture of a beautiful new stadium bathed in Califrnia sunlight that is pure romanticism. To a young California reader, as I once was, it was the most perfect imagery.
Causes Steven Travers Supports
Conservative, Christian, USC, American patriotism