Dad of Divas' Reviews: Book Review - The Baseball Hall of Shame

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Book Review - The Baseball Hall of Shame

About the Book
The game of baseball has seen its share of memorable postseason mishaps, but Babe Ruth's World Series base running blunder tops the list, according to Bruce Nash and Allan Zullo, authors of THE BASEBALL HALL OF SHAME: THE BEST OF BLOOPERSTOWN (Lyons Press 2012). Nash and Zullo have chronicled more than 125 years of outrageously funny moments in the major leagues in the latest installment of their best-selling Baseball Hall of Shame series. The newest edition includes the most mind-boggling goofs and gaffes of the postseason committed by some of baseball's greatest players, headlined by the Sultan of Swat himself.

Ruth made the biggest boneheaded play of his stellar career in the top of the ninth inning of Game 7 of the 1926 World Series. With his Yankees trailing, 3-2, Ruth drew a two-out walk to bring up cleanup hitter Bob Meusel. Batting .315 for the year with 81 RBIs, the hot-hitting Meusel had success against Cardinals reliever Grover Cleveland Alexander the day before, notching a double and a triple. But Meusel had the bat taken out of his hands by Ruth, who defied logic when the lumbering Bambino tried to steal second base with the game on the line. Never known for his speed, Ruth took off for second only to be thrown out by five feet for the final out of the Series, handing the title to St. Louis. "He didn't say a word," Cardinals second baseman Rogers Hornsby recalled after tagging Ruth to end the game. "He didn't even look at me. He just picked himself up off the ground and walked away." Ruth later explained that he tried to catch the Cardinals by surprise, thinking no one would ever expect the steal. No other World Series has ever ended on a player being caught stealing.

Some of the other memorable miscues in postseason history featured in THE BASEBALL HALL OF SHAME: THE BEST OF BLOOPERSTOWN include:

  • Herb Washington proved that the idea of a designated runner - the brainchild of Oakland Athletics owner Charlie Finley - was way off base when the former college track star was picked off first base, snuffing out a ninth inning rally in Game 2 of the 1974 World Series.
  • During a heated argument in Game 4 of the 1933 World Series, Washington Senators base runner Heinie Manush snapped umpire Charlie Moran's elastic bowtie into his throat, leaving the arbiter momentarily speechless. When the ump regained his voice, the first thing he said was, "You're out of the game!"
  • While celebrating the Minnesota Twins' 2002 Division Series championship, utility man Denny Hocking ended up at the bottom of the raucous pileup, injuring his hand so badly that he couldn't play in the ALCS.
  • In Game 2 of the 1917 World Series, Chicago White Sox pitcher Red Faber tried to steal third base only to discover that teammate Buck Weaver was still on the base. After Faber was tagged out, Weaver asked him, "What the hell are you doing here?" Dusting himself off, the embarrassed hurler replied, "I'm going out to pitch, of course."
  • Never in Fall Classic history have two teams displayed such amazing incompetence as the St. Louis Browns and the Chicago Cubs (then known as the White Stockings) when they made six more errors than hits in the 1885 World Series. The blundering players racked up an astonishing 102 errors while collecting only 96 hits.

The original Baseball Hall of Shame, first published in 1985, was an instant hit with fans of all ages, becoming one of the most popular sports humor books of all time. It spawned a Hall of Shame publishing franchise, with additional volumes on baseball, as well as football, basketball and other sports. The series has sold over 750,000 copies. For Nash and Zullo, their motto has always been, "Fame and shame are part of the game."

The book is available for purchase on Amazon.

For more information visit Bruce Nash's website


My Take on the Book
This book had so many great stories within it, that for a true baseball fan will just draw you in and will make you not want to let go. This was a great book, and with the stories being as short as they were you come out of reading the book so much more informed about some great stories. Some of the stories were ones that I had heard of in the past, but there were so many that were new. After I was done reading this I passed it on to another baseball fan as I knew that they too would simply love this book! The authors do such a great job at transporting the reader to the field and in many cases right into the game itself. I know that while I was reading this, I could close my eyes and see everything that was happening - a true mark of a well written book!

All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by the company.  Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer or provider. Please refer to this site's Disclaimer  for more information. I have been compensated or given a product free of charge, but that does not impact my views or opinions.

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