Willie Stargell: A Life in Baseball

Overview

This book brings to life one of baseball's greatest sluggers, Willie Stargell. It examines the factors that shaped him as a man growing up in the tumultuous racial times of the 1950s and '60s, and then recreates the major moments in his Hall of Fame baseball career. His various endeavors during the post-playing days are fully explored as well.

Interviews with more than 80 people—family members, childhood friends, teammates, opponents, front ...

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Willie Stargell: A Life in Baseball

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Overview

This book brings to life one of baseball's greatest sluggers, Willie Stargell. It examines the factors that shaped him as a man growing up in the tumultuous racial times of the 1950s and '60s, and then recreates the major moments in his Hall of Fame baseball career. His various endeavors during the post-playing days are fully explored as well.

Interviews with more than 80 people—family members, childhood friends, teammates, opponents, front office workers and others—combined with dozens of newspaper and magazine articles shed light on the iconic patriarch of one of baseball's last great "families," the 1970s-era Pittsburgh Pirates.

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Editorial Reviews

Erie (Pa.) Times-News - Doug Rieder
In his chapter notes, Garland sources more than 430 footnotes, more than a quarter of them original material derived from his interviews. The rest is all of the gumshoe research Garland did in Pittsburgh, Cooperstown, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Davis, Calif. After all, what's a sports book without a wheelbarrow full of stats? But it's those fresh interviews that tell the story of a man who turns out to be surprisingly hard to pin down on the page.
Tony Norman - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
"Mr. Garland conducted more than 80 interviews for a thorough, yet engaging profile of a remarkable athlete and Hall of Fame inductee who embodied the best things about the team, major league baseball and the city he proudly represented for decades."
Charlie Deitch - Pittsburgh City Paper
"Garland's book reads more like a textbook for a college course on Stargell. That's not a bad thing — far from it. Garland's book has as much baseball content as Peterson's, but also explores his personal life — the good and the bad. Garland, for example, discusses Stargell's stint following retirement as the narrator for a touring symphony show based on the writings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. But he also talks about the controversy."
Library Journal
Willie “Pops” Stargell, who died in 2001, was a gentle giant of a player, truly Ruthian in his literal and figurative proportions. Although he published an autobiography in 1984 a couple of years after his retirement, he has never received his biographical due—until now, with two biographies coming out this Spring. [Richard Peterson’s Pops: The Willie Stargell Story (Triumph) was not available in time for this roundup]. Here, Garland not only brings to life the story of a great player, a career-long Pittsburgh Pirate, but also considers the era and its culture, including the tumultuous race relations of the 1950s and 1960s and players’ tendency to stay on the same team for most of their career.
VERDICT The stories and accounts (by friends, family, players, personalities, etc.) will light corners of your old baseball collection and rehash old debates, such as whether Stargell’s stats were a victim of his home stadium’s size: his 475 career home-run total should be much higher. Especially for Pirate and Stargell fans. —BM

(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786465347
  • Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
  • Publication date: 4/22/2013
  • Pages: 280
  • Sales rank: 996,572
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Frank Garland, a native of Pittsburgh, worked for more than 25 years as a reporter at several northern California newspapers and is now the journalism communications program director at Gannon University in Erie, Pennsylvania.

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