Museum’s Authors Series Programs Bring Latest Baseball Stories to Cooperstown
Lectures, Book Signings Held Throughout the Summer at Hall of Fame’s Bullpen Theater
Our National Pastime connects generations through countless stories dating back to the game’s earliest days. This summer, the very stories that make the game so unique will be celebrated, through the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum’s Authors Series program.
The Hall of Fame will host 11 Authors Series events throughout the season, bringing noted baseball authors to Cooperstown for special lectures and book signings. Among the highlights of the 2016 Authors Series is an appearance by former major league pitcher Ron Darling, a standout on the 1986 World Championship-winning Mets. Topics to be covered in other Author Series programs include the impact of analytical thinking on modern-day baseball and what it was like playing in Ty Cobb’s shadow – from his teammates’ perspective.
Unless otherwise noted, the Authors Series programs are held in the Museum’s Bullpen Theater at 1 p.m. and are included with Museum admission.
Authors will discuss their work and take questions from the audience in the program, then sign copies of their books for fans in the Atrium. Seating in the Bullpen Theater is available on a first-come, first-served basis.
The schedule for the summer includes:
June 22 – Game Seven, 1986: Failure and Triumph in the Biggest Game of My Life, by Ron Darling and Dan Paisner
Published to coincide with the 30th anniversary of the 1986 New York Mets championship season, this new book by Mets broadcaster and former pitching standout Ron Darling breaks down one of baseball's great forgotten games – a game that stands as a thrilling, telling, and tantalizing exclamation point to one of the best-remembered seasons in major league history. *This program will be held in the Grandstand Theater, and the signing will take place directly afterward in the Library Atrium.
June 22 – A Single Happened Thing: A Novel, by Dan Paisner* (program at 3 p.m., signing at 3:30 p.m.)
In this historical novel, part of which is set in Cooperstown, 19th century star Fred “Sure Shot” Dunlap steps out of time and into the life of an unknown book publicist. Dunlap, an early baseball legend who died penniless and obscure, needs something from the publicist. Or perhaps it’s the other way around?
July 6 – The William Hoy Story, by Nancy Churnin
Targeted to readers ages 5 to 8, The William Hoy Story examines the life of a young deaf player, his successes in the face of adversity, and his efforts to change the game. Charmingly illustrated and well told, the book is authored by Nancy Churnin, theater critic for the Dallas Morning News.
July 13 – Ballpark Mysteries, by David A. Kelly
Part of the popular Baseball Mysteries series, the latest installment from David A. Kelly tells the tale of two young adventurers who encounter a crook at a Texas Rangers game. Geared to children ages 6 to 9, the book reveals how Mike and Kate help a police ranger find the culprit.
July 20 – When Braves Ruled the Diamond: 14 Flags Over Atlanta, by Dan Schlossberg
Former Associated Press sportswriter and prolific baseball author Dan Schlossberg covers the record-breaking era that transformed Atlanta from the “Bad-News Braves” to “America's Team.” With chapters on Hall of Fame manager Bobby Cox, fabled pitching coach Leo Mazzone, and Hall of Fame pitchers Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, and John Smoltz, this new book also highlights the contributions of Andres Galarraga, Andruw Jones, Chipper Jones, Brian Jordan, Terry Pendleton, and others.
July 22 – The Real McCoy: My Half Century with the Cincinnati Reds, by Hal McCoy
In a near unprecedented sportswriting career covering half a century, Hal McCoy crowns his own Spink Award-winning career with a telling behind-the-scenes memoir of the Cincinnati Reds that is brash, hilarious, and unusual. (Hal McCoy will be signing books in lieu of presenting, at 1 PM in the Bullpen Theater)
July 23 – Ahead of the Curve: Inside Baseball’s Revolution, by Brian Kenny
MLB Network host and commentator Brian Kenny uses stories from baseball’s present and past to examine why we sometimes choose ignorance over information, and how tradition can trump logic, even when contradicted by evidence. Forget batting average. Kill the “Win.” Say goodbye to starting pitchers. And please, please stop bunting. In Ahead of the Curve, Brian Kenny shows how baseball has been revolutionized – not destroyed – by analytical thinking.
August 3 – God Almighty Hisself: The Life and Legacy of Dick Allen, by Mitchell Nathanson
Veteran author Mitchell Nathanson presents the career and life of slugging star Dick Allen against the backdrop of organized baseball's continuing desegregation process. Nathanson shows how Allen’s career exposed the racial double standard that had become entrenched in the game and the forces that were bent on preserving the status quo. In the process, God Almighty Hisself unveils the career of a man who somehow managed to fulfill and frustrate expectations all at once.
August 10 – Cuba’s Baseball Defectors, By Peter Bjarkman
A noted Cuban baseball expert reveals the complete truth behind the wave of Cuban big league talent coming to Major League Baseball. Given rare access to Cuba and its ballplayers, Peter C. Bjarkman has spent over 20 years traveling to all corners of the island getting to know the top Cuban stars and witnessing their struggles and triumphs. Bjarkman tells the stories of colorful and controversial Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig, American League Rookie of the Year José Abreu, Home Run Derby champion Yoenis Céspedes, and flame-throwing reliever Aroldis Chapman.
August 17 – In Cobb’s Shadow, by Dan D’Addona
Considered one of the greatest baseball players of all time, Ty Cobb cast a shadow over the game with his daring style of play and his status as one of the game’s finest pure hitters. His shadow was never darker than when it fell on his teammates. Sam Crawford, Harry Heilmann and Heinie Manush were three of the greatest players in history, good enough to become members of the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Each of these stars played in the Tigers’ outfield alongside Cobb, though their fame never reached the level of his. Crawford (the all-time leader in triples), Heilmann (the last right-handed batter to hit .400), and Manush (a batting champion) each made his own mark on the game. Their stories are detailed by Dan D’Addona, a graduate of the Hall of Fame’s Steele Internship program.
August 20 – One Year Dynasty, by Matt Silverman
After being knocked out of contention the previous two seasons, the New York Mets blasted through the National League in 1986. They won blowouts, nailbiters, fights, and a 14-inning game that ended with one pitcher on the mound, another in right field, and an All-Star catcher playing third base. Going beyond the partying and excess, veteran author Matt Silverman recounts step by step the Mets’ meteoric rise in 1986, when they captured their first division title in over a decade, shattered the franchise record, and then won it all.
For more information on Hall of Fame programs, please visit www.baseballhall.org/events.
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