Sports Illustrated, 294 pages, $29.95
“A family photo album,” SI scribe Tom Verducci calls this hefty and handsome volume in his introduction. He’s right. These timeless legends in cleats and caps, these omnipotent millionaires smiting baseballs deep into the night, do sometimes seem closer to us than they should. Not just because love for the game is passed down by fans through the generations, inextricably woven through our own family lives, not just because we spend a few hours with these players 162 times a year. But because baseball evokes “an intimacy unmatched in sports, partly because the ballplayers, without masks, padding or oversized bodies, and often captured in the honest warmth of broad daylight, look like members of the family.” (And in Boston, of course, our family is louder, more passionate, and occasionally more dysfunctional than most.) This book — chock-a-block with dramatically blown-up photographs from the magazine’s archives; classic column excerpts from pages past; lingering looks at the timeworn equipment used by the game’s greats; and decade-by-decade breakdowns of trivia, lists, and assorted arcana — is a worthy addition to the library of anyone who has too many baseball books. These days, that’s saying something.
, Media, Magazines, Tom Verducci