noun: logrolling; noun: log-rolling
the practice of exchanging favors, especially in politics by reciprocal voting for each other's proposed legislation.
a sport in which two contestants stand on a floating log and try to knock each other off by spinning it with their feet.
Kirkus is a notable independent review site within the publishing industry. The other quotes are the usual pre-publication logrolling by people that know the author/subject (non-objective sources) and appear on dust jackets of books that haven't been independently reviewed yet.
The man hasn't had a winning season yet and the subtitle of the book is: "How Sandy Alderson Revolutionized Baseball and Revived the Mets". Doesn't that strike you as kind of presumptuous?
As for Alderson's military service, the reason the media asks him about it (and not Kiner, for example) is because it's part of press bios they receive about him. Most writers, especially outside Oakland and San Diego wouldn't have known the difference between Alderson and you without them. The ultimate source of info for the bios is always the subject himself.
Alderson has chosen to use his brief non-combat service in the military - which most draft age men of his generation can boast of - to form a persona for public consumption. Most draft age men of his generation have not done this. I view it as a method of shifting focus from his background as a slimeball lawyer to something more heroic. Sort of like he shifted "payroll kill" into "payroll flexibility".