The Forever Boys: The Bittersweet World of Major League Baseball as Seen Through the Eyes of the Men Who Played One More Time

Peter Golenbock, Author
Peter Golenbock, Author Carol Publishing Corporation $19.95 (391p) ISBN 978-1-55972-034-2
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Golenbock displayed his talent for oral history in his books on the Brooklyn Dodgers ( Bums ) and New York Yankees ( Dynasty ). Here he profiles the first year of the Senior Baseball League, a competitive league of former professional players over age 35. Golenbock, who followed the pennant-winning St. Petersburg Pelicans through tryouts, winning and losing streaks, injuries and bus rides criss-crossing Florida, conveys vivid portraits of individuals determined to extend their declining but still formidable talents. Some, like St. Pete manager Bobby Tolan and his pitching coach Dock Ellis, were controversial stars in the major leagues. All describe the family hardships, organizational politics, racism and personal disillusionment that accompany the joy of playing the game. Briskly written and entertaining, the book also records, perhaps for the first time, a well-known player tradition: the hilariously biased proceedings of a ``kangaroo court''--a cherished opportunity to hound teammates about misplays on the field, gluttonous eating habits or anything else that amuses the court ``judges''--an experience not to be missed. Photos not seen by PW. (Feb.)
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