Bottom of the 33rd: Hope, Redemption, and Baseball’s Longest Game (Barry)

I remember hearing about this game, but I had no idea until I read this book that participants included Cal Ripken, Jr., Wade Boggs, Bruce Hurst and others I knew of later in the Major Leagues. I really liked how Barry wove in a narrative of the game, the stories of particular participants (players, administrators, coaches, managers, fans, etc.), and the story of Providence (including incredible details about the stadium as well as an inevitable stop at Dunkin’ Donuts).

The book made me think of a long ago edition of Sports Illustrated. The cover was simply a copy of a random day’s list of transactions, and the authors followed the human beings who’d been traded, injured, released, etc.. It, like this book, was a good reminder that as easy as it can be to dismiss professional athletes, everyone has a story and some of the stories do not end in dreams or even positively. I think Barry makes a good choice to spend so much time on Dave Koza; his is a very human story. I am looking forward to getting to more minor league games next season.

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