Rick Telander, the guest editor of a collection of the best sportswriting of 2016, describes how even his own voracious reading habits were stretched by the task of selecting longform pieces for the book.
In addition to preferring stories that “get to the essence of the human struggle,” he tells sports media writer Ed Sherman that much of what he chose from “all had the sense of possibility.”
I think that’s a terrific approach to what could have been a predictable process for the latest edition of the “The Best American Sports Writing” anthology, and Telander’s credentials are impeccable.
The announcement this week of retired Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig as a 2017 inductee into the Baseball Hall of Fame didn’t come as a surprise, and it has sparked a renewed discussion about the inclusion of players in the so-called Steroids Era.
Selig was selected with longtime Atlanta Braves executive John Schuerholz by the newly formed Today’s Era Committee, which votes on non-playing contributors from 1988 to the present.
Selig, the first owner-turned-commissioner, presided when performance-enhancing drug use in baseball was on the rise. His induction, with more than 90 percent of the vote, is prompting several voting members of the Baseball Writers Association of America to reconsider their refusal to vote for players they believe were aided by steroids. Continue reading
The year 2016 figures go down as a memorable one for chroniclers of the art of the sports photograph, and what these images reflect about the cultures and eras they depict.
Earlier this summer, Gail Buckland’s “Who Shot Sports” was hailed as the companion catalog to her curated Brooklyn Museum exhibit about some of the luminaries of sports photography, and some of their best work.
At the end of the year, Australian author Gideon Haigh’s new book about a famous photograph of cricket legend Victor Trumper was being celebrated well before its official publication. Continue reading
Fidel Castro’s impact on Cuban sports was among the topics of discussion in the wake of his death Friday at the age of 90, as retrospectives poured in about “The Last Cold Warrior,” and his legacy on his country and global affairs.
Injecting sports into his country’s Communist identity was one of Castro’s initial and enduring actions, affecting far more than his beloved béisbol.
In his 2015 book “The Domino Diaries” (Sports Biblio review here), author Brin-Jonathan Butler wrote:
“Sport wasn’t an opium for those people; their culture was an opium for sport.” Continue reading
One of the great joys of doing this blog and newsletter is hearing from authors as well as readers. As another Thanksgiving holiday approaches in the United States, I want to thank all of you for reading, subscribing and getting in touch.
This is a passion project, and I’m grateful I get to do this every week. Lately I’ve been limited with my Sports Biblio project, as I’ve taken on several freelance assignments. I have a number of blog posts lined up that I will be publishing soon, an assortment of book reviews and book-related topics that are long overdue.
I’ve been very thankful to hear from authors offering to send me copies of their book, and recently I got a couple of very nice surprises. Continue reading
There’s no over-arching theme to this week’s newsletter, but so many great longform and magazine pieces to share—a few good autumn reads, to repeat the headline. Some are seasonal and topical, fitting the rhythms of the fall that’s finally arrived here in North America; others are not.
I think of this as a dip into serendipity, and if you see anything that you’d like to share here, please let me know. Reader contributions are always welcome! Several books I’ve been reading will be reviewed here soon, and some meatier topics I’ve wanted to explore are also on the horizon.
My friend Mike DeCourcy of The Sporting News wrote of his nephew, who’s winding down his final season of Division III—non-scholarship—football at Ferrum College in Michigan:
When Arnold Palmer died last month, the finishing touches were being made for what had long been planned to be his final book.
In “A Life Well Played,” published Tuesday by St. Martin’s Press, Palmer admits he never cared for the nickname “The King,” long bestowed on him by fans, writers and his legions of gallery admirers, “Arnie’s Army.”
In a statement issued by St. Martin’s upon the release of the audiobook version, Palmer said his final book was difficult for several reasons: Continue reading