Book Report – The Boys of Summer by Roger Kahn

The Boys of SummerThe Boys of Summer by Roger Kahn

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Roger Kahn was a newspaper journalist who covered his beloved Brooklyn Dodgers for two years in the early 1950s. This book is part biography part auto-biography. In the first part he writes about his childhood and his period of time covering “Dem Bums”. Unfortunately, he left his post just before the year the Dodgers finally won the World Series.

Seeing baseball from the inside is very interesting; especially from the time when sportswriters were closer to the players they covered. When he tried to describe to his father what the players were really like, the father couldn’t believe the players swore: “I did not want to tell my father that. Here he had been imagining major league baseball for fifty years and now his son, not yet twenty-five, had found out the imaginings were fluff.” [Loc 1934]

Kahn continually walked the fine line between what he could and couldn’t write. His paper didn’t support writing about the racial tension among the team members.

In the second part he interviews the players almost 20 years later, in the early 1970s. I gained an appreciation for just how difficult baseball is and the toll it takes on the body. The pitchers especially were a collection of aches and pains.

This was a good book, but not great.

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