Book Review: The Baseball Hall of Shame: The Best of Blooperstown

If the first four renditions of books about baseball bloopers weren’t enough to tide you over, have no fear, a fifth one is on the way. Authors Bruce Nash and Allan Zullo are back to their blooper ways. After already publishing The Baseball Hall of Shame…Volumes 1-4, the two authors have now come out with their fifth book in the series. This one comes with a twist as it is not just number five in the series, but titled The Best of Blooperstown so readers can relive some of the bloopers they already experienced in volumes one through four while also learning of some of the more recent blunders in baseball.

As you may have guessed, the book is filled with short blurbs of baseball bloopers. Most of the mistakes include well known players, and since many of them didn’t actually happen on the field, probably the only reason they became known is because the player involved had a big name. Any fan who followed baseball over the last decade is familiar with the phrase “Manny Being Manny” in regards to the antics of outfielder Manny Ramirez. Well, his stint of going to the bathroom in the left field wall during a game, has allowed him to be inducted into the Hall of Shame.

Here are some of the oldies, but goodies, that will be returning in this go round of bloopers, but were already featured in one of the first four editions:

A story featuring pitcher Burleigh Grimes who once was so anxious to throw at a batter that he couldn’t wait for the man to get to the batter’s box and targeted him while he was still in the on deck circle.

The tale of outfielder Ping Bodie whose antics off the field earn him a spot on the list. He is featured because he out-ate an ostrich named Percy for the spaghetti eating world championship.

Another classic would be Lou Novikoff who forced his wife to heckle him from the stands during games as he thought it made him focus and produce better when someone was yelling at him. No word on whether it helped him get his house chores done too.

President Franklin D Roosevelt, already immortal by being the only four term President, can add the accolade of being featured in this book to his list of accomplishments. The  book claims that President Roosevelt threw perhaps the worst first pitch ever. Not so funny when one considers how much trouble the former Head of State had just walking.

If those oldies, but goodies, aren’t enough to appease your need for blunders, have no fear because this round has some new bloopers, including:

Usual fan favorite Ken Griffey Junior has made this edition for a time when he paid off a bet for a steak dinner by leading a cow into the manager’s office instead of actually taking him out to eat.

David Ortiz also joins the list for not checking his underwear. Seriously, Big Papi is mentioned in these pages because he wore underwear with peanut butter in them. Those Red Sox teammates can be such pranksters!

Steve Bartman, while not a player, sees his name pop up on this list as well for his potential blunder during the 2003 NLCS. Many will remember this as the play that Moises Alou immediately blamed the fan for interfering with the ball. It is good to know that eight years later, Alou said he was wrong to have done that. Good thing Bartman’s life wasn’t altered at all by his previous statement during that time period.

With the book being built around blurbs, instead of lengthy stories, it is a quick read and would be something that is easy to browse through. One might even call this a good book to read while using the bathroom as it doesn’t take long to complete one of the blunder stories.

Overall Rating: 2.25/5

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply