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Any good book about the 1951 Shot heard 'round the World?

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  • Any good book about the 1951 Shot heard 'round the World?

    I was going to buy "The Echoing Green" but some bad opinions about it (people said that there is overstuffed text with too many facts not always attached with the main story) stopped me from buying it.

    Did anyone read "Miracle Ball: My Hunt for the Shot Heard 'Round the World" by Brian Biegel and Pete Fornatale?

    Thank you in advance if you can recommend another book about the matter.



  • #2
    I would get "Echoing Green" because frankly there's no other book out there that gets into the heart of the matter of one of the most important elements of the story of the pennant race, which is Durocher's sign stealing scheme.

    "Miracle Ball" is good from the standpoint of following a trail to see what happened to the HR ball and I commend the author for his dilligence in coming up with what looks like a plausible answer to what happened (but don't expect a slam dunk 100% answer on it).

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    • #3
      Originally posted by epaddon View Post
      I would get "Echoing Green" because frankly there's no other book out there that gets into the heart of the matter of one of the most important elements of the story of the pennant race, which is Durocher's sign stealing scheme.
      Have you read Rudy Marzano's New York Baseball in 1951: The Dodgers, The Giants, The Yankees & The Telescope? I haven't read it (so cannot recommend it), but from the title alone I have got to believe that the sign stealing scheme is discussed.
      Last edited by Phils V. Pirates; 01-18-2013, 06:49 PM. Reason: Typo Fix
      "You can hate a man for many reasons. Color is not one one of them."--Pee Wee Reese

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      • #4
        Yes, I read it and I hated it. It takes a very schizoid approach in which it veers from being straightforward to unnecessary personal memoir to a bitter Dodger fan's rant. There are digressions into meaningless subjects, one of which is an occasion for him to settle a score with Dick Schaap, and he also takes a cheap shot at Roger Maris to defend Ford Frick's asterisk. The only good thing about the book was that it did pay attention to what the Yankees did that season in a little detail but as far as being comprehensive goes, this isn't it (I have an Amazon review up there).

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        • #5
          Thanks Eric, I had read your review there at Amazon.


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          • #6
            I have read both "The Echoing Green" and "Miracle Ball". Both of them are excellent publications.

            I actually convinced Mr. Thomson to sign the front cover of "The Echoing Green" which I thought was neat since the book questioned the Giants sign stealing. Also Josh Prager has signed the title page as well. That is one of my cherished pieces of sports memorabilia.

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            • #7
              Speaking of the "Shot Heard Around the World" in the miniseries by Ken Burns called "Baseball" it mentions that there was a rookie player in the on deck circle waiting to bat after Thompson......................it was Willie Mays!

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              • #8
                The Echoing Green was an excellent book. The guy did a great job of investigative journalism. It's pretty well written also. I have seen some of the criticism but I would say if you really want to know the whole story, not just "The Giants win the pennant, the Giants win the pennant" read this book and decide for yourself.
                Also, it has some good stuff about Branca and Thompson and how it affected their careers (and the rest of their lives) and raises some good questions for the reader to decide about cheating as you define it and where to draw the line (is it OK if you steal signs from the dugout or coaches box, but it's wrong to use a telescope and electric buzzers?) and exactly how much it helped them (ultimately Thompson had to hit the ball over the fence).

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                • #9
                  YES...exactly, whether you like it or not, he did actually hit the ball over the fence for the home run. I have a lot of memorabilia from the "Shot" event, my most prized item is a Mitchell Ness 1951 half Giants half Brooklyn Jersey, signed by all the living Giants and Dodgers in 2001 and mine is #1 of 23. I have been a Giants fan all my life, enjoyed all the books mentioned....and had a GREAT 2012 this past year. Those guys played like the Giants of old! Mike

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                  • #10
                    I just got my Miracle Ball book back from the author signed on the title page!!! #winning

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                    • #11
                      Years back I read a book called The Giants Win the Pennant! The Giants Win the Pennant! and I thought it was pretty good. It actually devotes a lot of time to discussing how Leo Durocher built the Giants, Bobby Thomson's career before and after the 1951 season, and the 1951 pennant race itself. I believe it was published back in the '90s, so there's nothing about the sign-stealing scandal (that I can recall), but if you just want an enjoyable read that includes memories from the players themselves, it might be worth checking out.

                      I've also read Miracle Ball, and I liked it a lot.
                      Baseball Junk Drawer

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                      • #12
                        It's not a book, but there was a recent film called Branca's Pitch that was released.
                        http://www.amazon.com/Brancas-Pitch-...anca%27s+pitch
                        Baseball Journeyman

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                        • #13
                          The Echoing Green is very good- buy it, read it.

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