Saturday, December 05, 2009

Cal Ripken Jr. / Billy Bean book find

I ended up at an outlet book store and found an autographed copy of one Cal Ripken's books - I wasn't going to buy anything at the book store, because I was sort of saving the $20 I had in my pocket for a 2009 Upper Deck Series I/Series II/Update blaster box, but broke down because the copy I had was a-u-t-o-g-r-a-p-h-e-d.

Ripken maybe signing his way onto Bob Feller territory, but still commands a hefty fee [maybe around $100 for a flat] to sign anything - through Ironclad Authentics for example.

On a related, but other end of the spectrum - I picked up a paperback copy of that Billy Bean's memoir as well, which is a poor man's Ball Four from a closeted ex-player's perspective.

What resonated, the first time I read bits and pieces of it is hunger of a ballplayer to stick in the pros and really the desperation he realizes - to play for himself instead of others.

The struggle to be a professional may not be the most important part for people to identify with and the obvious topic in the memoir besides a former baseball player talking about his professional career - is as compelling, maybe even more so, considering the facts in-hand.

Besides Bean dealing with his double life - his memoir gives the average person a real, unadulterated look [no matter how unflattering] at baseball players [particularly as they climb up the ladder].

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