Archive for June 8th, 2009

June 8th, 2009

Did you hear the one about the three-fingered pitcher? Crazy ’08- a review

by Gwen

Okay, I admit it, I don’t have a punch line for that one. Cait Murphy’s book, Crazy ’08, will keep you entertained and then some though. Yes, it centers on the turbulent and see saw baseball season of 1908, but it gives you so much more. The early 1900’s weren’t just baseball’s coming of age, it was also when America was coming of age as well.

Think about it, in 1908 ……
*Henry Ford produces his first Model T automobile.
*There was no radio, at least not in the sense that you could listen to ballgames
*The first year that the ball was dropped from Times Square, signaling the New Year.
*Frenchman Henri Farman pilots the first passenger flight.
*Teddy Roosevelt is President.
*Robert Perry Arrives at The North Pole
*First True Skyscraper Built

A lot was going on, yet half of the country was glued to newspapers, ticker tapes and just plain word of mouth to see how their team was doing. Boy, were they in for a ride. With spitballs still legal, metal cleats being used as weapons, tool sheds out in the in fields, players that spent the off season working as miners, dentists, bar owners and more, baseball is nothing like the sport that we know now. It was still sewing it’s oats, trying to entice women fans and just plain trying to become respectable. The players give it their all, playing multiple games a day, battling hoodoo curses, getting to know their equipment and themselves.

Crazy ’08 brings you ringside…..make that baseline side. You will find yourself rooting for the game, the shenanigans, the future and more. You don’t have to be a fan of baseball, just a fan of history and America to enjoy it. I found myself glued to it, rooting them on. It was gripping non fiction, two terms that seldom go together!

And just in case you were wondering…..There was actually a pitcher with three fingers. He was Mordecai “Three Finger” Brown and he was a good pitcher and entertaining philosopher.

Crazy ’08
Cait Murphy

* ISBN-10: 0060889381
* ISBN-13: 978-0060889388

400 pages
$14.95 List