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Question time: Tell us about you favorite baseball books of the year?

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2020 World Series Media Day Photo by Alex Trautwig/MLB Photos via Getty Images

Yet another morning with no baseball news, there should be some news this afternoon, with the deadline for teams to tender contracts for the 2021 season at hand.

But, until then, I thought I’d ask a question, tell us about your favorite baseball books of the year.

I’ll list a couple:

If These Walls Could Talk Stories from the Toronto Blue Jays Dugout, Locker Room, and Press Room: Bob Elliott

Bob Elliott is likely the best baseball storyteller in Canada, and he has a ton of them here. He has stories on almost anyone who has worked for or played for the Blue Jays. It rambles a bit in places, but it is filled illed with great stories.

The Wax Pack: Brad Balukjian

Brad opens a 1986 pack of Topps baseball cards and then searched town the players found within.

The players in the pack were Al Cowens, Carlton Fisk, Don Carman, Dwight Gooden, Garry Templeton, Gary Pettis, Jaime Cocanower, Lee Mazzilli, Rance Mulliniks, Randy Ready, Richie Hebner, Rick Sutcliffe, Steve Yeager, and Vince Coleman. That’s a pretty decent group of players. For Blue Jays fans, Rance Mulliniks leads off the book. He’s the first player that Balukjian tracked down.

For someone my age, who bought baseball cards in that era, it was a fun read. I remember the players, and it is interesting to see where they are now. And the Mulliniks chapter is enjoyable.

Doc: The Life of Roy Halladay: Todd Zolecki

This book and the ESPN special about him came out at nearly the same time. You do have to be in the right mood to get through it. This year has been depressing enough; looking for more ways to get depressed is not a great idea. Though, I didn’t find it as sad as the TV special.

In the non-baseball book side:

One Summer, America 1927: Bill Bryson

So this has a bit of a story behind it. We were on holiday in Morocco when the world changed. Our holiday ended suddenly. The tour guide got a call and was told to take us to Marrakesh and, well, leave us there. We spent the next couple of days making flight reservations and watching the flights get canceled.

In the middle of the night, we got a call from someone who was a friend of our tour guide who told us we had to go to the airport the next morning. 7:00 in the morning our group, went to the airport and stood in line for 10 hours. It wasn’t a great place to spend a day at the start of a pandemic. It was beyond crowded. While we were in line our hotel closed, we were lucky to get another pace.

To pass the time, we talked to people in line around. One guy was reading this book, so we got talking, and it sounded like something I’d enjoy.

The book tells about all the things that happened that year. Babe Ruth hit 60 home runs, Charles Lindbergh flew across the Atlantic, Al Capone, the rise of Eugenics, Mount Rushmore, Calvin Coolidge, and tons of other stuff.

It was a fun read, with an excellent sense of humor, and it quickly gave an overview of, mostly, American history from the early part of the last century.


Tell us about your favorite baseball reads (or any other reads) of 2020.