A celebration of the Golden Age of Baseball through the movie-house newsreels that once presented the game’s great plays and players to fans across the country.
Reel Baseball is an enchanting look back at baseball from 1932 to 1965, a time when major league teams were franchised only in America’s biggest cities in the East. Back then, most Americans who witnessed baseball did so in local theaters, where game highlights were shown in the newsreels before the feature film. This handsomely illustrated volume traces the seminal role of newsreels in making baseball the national pastime, before major league teams expanded to the South and West and television brought the game into homes across America. A one-hour DVD accompanies the book and presents the most thrilling moments from these original newsreels.
A grand compilation of baseball at its best, Reel Baseball invites fans to both read about and watch on the accompanying DVD such landmark moments as:
Lucky Ducky, 1934: Detroiters pelt Ducky Medwick with rotten fruit, but the Cardinals win the World Series
Today...Today...Today, July 4, 1939: A doomed Lou Gehrig brings Yankees fans to tears with his “luckiest man” speech.
Four in a Row, 1939: The latest Yankees juggernaut wins the World Series for its fourth straight title.
Old Rivals, August 25, 1942: Babe Ruth and Walter Johnson play in Army-Navy baseball games.
One-Armed Outfielder, June 15, 1945: Pete Gray of the St. Louis Browns fields with ease and drills line drives—without a left arm.
Sweet Perfection, October 8, 1956: The Yankees’ Don Larsen throws the only no-hitter—a perfect game, no less—against the Dodgers in the World Series.
One Last Hurrah, September 26, 1960: Ted Williams caps his epic career with a home run in his final at-bat.
One-Upping the Babe, October 1, 1961: His hair falling out because of all the pressure, the Yankees’ Roger Maris breaks Ruth’s home run record of 60 on the last day of the season.
The Eighth Wonder of the World, April 17, 1965: Baseball moves indoors, as Houston unveils the Astrodome, marking the end of the Golden Era.
The book and DVD (hosted by baseball and broadcasting legend Joe Garagiola) brilliantly capture the magic of “Joltin’ Joe” DiMaggio, the “Say Hey Kid” (Willie Mays),” “Stan the Man” Musial, and other legendary players who elevated the boys of summer to the pinnacle of American popular culture.
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Les Krantz is the head of Facts That Matter, Inc., a publishing company near Chicago. He is the author of Dark Horses and Underdogs, The World’s Worst and Not Till the Fat Lady Sings, among many other books. In addition to his books, he has written articles on the everyday significance of statistical information for various print media, which have included Readers Digest, Fortune, and the Wall Street Journal.
An American icon, Yogi Berra has delighted the nation for sixty years with his baseball heroics and insightful humor. The Hall of Fame catcher won three American League MVP Awards and led the Yankees to 10 World Series titles.
Baseball hall of famer Joe Garagiola played for the St. Louis Cardinals, Pittsburgh Pirates, Chicago Cubs, and New York Giants before his highly successful career as a baseball broadcaster and “Today” show host. He lives in Phoenix, Arizona.
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