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Bottom of the 33rd: Hope, Redemption, and…

Bottom of the 33rd: Hope, Redemption, and Baseball's Longest Game (edition 2011)

by Dan Barry

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Title:Bottom of the 33rd: Hope, Redemption, and Baseball's Longest Game
Authors:Dan Barry
Info:Harper (2011), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 272 pages
Collections:Your library

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Bottom of the 33rd: Hope, Redemption, and Baseball's Longest Game by Dan Barry


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I've long been aware that Pawtucket's McCoy Stadium hosted the longest professional baseball game in history, a 33-inning affair between the Pawtucket Red Sox and the Rochester Red Wings in 1981. I knew that the game featured two future Hall of Famers, Wade Boggs and Cal Ripken. Barry's book fills me on a lot that I didn't know. For example, the game was played well into Easter morning and the weather was so miserably cold that the players burned broken bats in barrels to keep warm. The game was allowed to play so long due to a misprint in the International League rule book that left out the paragraph about curfews. Thus a rather stubborn umpire continued the game until receiving word from the league president at 4:09 am. I also didn't know that when the game was completed in June of that year, it received international attention boosted by the fact that Major League baseball players were on strike at that time.

Barry tells a compelling story of the game, building tension in the relentless procession of pitches, hits, and outs. He draws on recordings of the Red Wings' radio broadcast and interviews with players, managers, coaches, media, players' wives, umpires, spectators, and even the bat boy who were present for the game. If the book were about only the game it would fall apart quickly, but Barry weaves in the lives and careers of many of the participants before and after that game. It makes for a lively bit of sportswriting at it's best. ( )
  Othemts | Apr 27, 2015 |
I'm going to read this first, then register it at bookcrossing.com, then give it to my young adult sons to read & then release. This is a Galley/Uncorrected Proof. It does not have the printed endpapers or the photos promised in the finished edition. :(

It's quite good. Fine for non-sports fans as it's mostly about dreams, disapopointments, obsessions... and somewhat about friendships and anecdotes. Better for baseball fans who can follow the action better. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Apr 14, 2015 |
Who knew that a story about the Red Sox would be this interesting. To be 100% forthcoming, the story is about the Pawtucket Red Sox and not that team from Boston.

This story is about a minor league (Triple A) baseball game played in April 1981 between the Pawtucket Red Sox and the Rochester Red Wings that turned out to be the longest game ever played in professional baseball, stretching to 33 innings played over two days when the game was halted after the end of the 32nd inning on the original date played.

Dan Barry has done a fantastic job in researching the details, the people and the back story of this historic baseball game. I can recommend this to anyone who loves the game of baseball... ( )
  ConalO | Sep 21, 2014 |
An interesting book about an interesting 8+ hours. I picked up this book about Baseball's Longest Game for a couple of reasons. I like the Pawtucket Red Sox as much as their parent club. I recognized some of the players who played in the game. Boggs, Ripken Jr., Ojeda, Gedman and one of my favorite players who I never really got to see play, but boy do I have tons of his major league cards, Marty Barrett.

I liked how the author wove the players' (and mangers and Ben Mondor, the Paw Sox's owner) stories throughout the narrative of the game.

But, I will say that it sort of dragged on, just as the actual game must have. But, it was also an easy book to pick up and put down as I got time to read it, so that helped in the reading of it.

It had a lot of good stories and it had a great behind the scenes look at the minor leagues, a topic I think is always interesting.

Oh, and it's very much P'tucket, not PAW-tucket. ( )
  DanieXJ | Apr 2, 2014 |
Baseball is my favorite sport, I am counting the days until it starts again. I’m not kidding, I have a countdown clock on my phone and every morning I look at it and get all excited about how many days until pitchers and catchers report for spring training. It therefore should not be surprising that when I was at the library and walking past the non-fiction section my eyes were drawn to the baseball books.

On September 22, 2012 the Yankees played the A’s, that game lasted 14 innings, 5 hours and 43 minutes. The longest game for the Yankees since 2006. I was there for that game. I stayed for every inning, watched every pitch, every hit. The longest major league baseball game was 25 innings, but that isn’t the longest professional ball game every played, that honor goes to a minor league game between the Pawtucket Red Sox and the Rochester Red Wings. This record still stands: 33 innings, 8 hours 25 minutes.

There is a rule that a new inning cannot start after midnight, however the rule book the home plate umpire had did not have that paragraph in it, so play continued until 4 in the morning when the president of the league finally returned a phone call to the ball park. Play was halted at the 32nd inning. The next time the Red Wings were in town the game resumed. It took 1 inning and 18 minutes to finish the game. Two names you might recognize in this book are Wade Boggs, Pawtucket Red Sox and Cal Ripken, Jr., Rochester Red Wings.

This book is more than just an account of a baseball game, we learn about life in the minor leagues, what players and managers and reporters had to put up with. We learn some of the history of the players, how their lives progressed after, who went to the major leagues and so on. Well written and interesting. ( )
  BellaFoxx | Mar 31, 2013 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 006201448X, Hardcover)

On April 18, 1981, a ball game sprang eternal. What began as a modestly attended minor-league game between the Pawtucket Red Sox and the Rochester Red Wings became not only the longest ever played in baseball history, but something else entirely. The first pitch was thrown after dusk on Holy Saturday, and for the next eight hours the night seemed to suspend its participants between their collective pasts and futures, between their collective sorrows and joys—the ballplayers; the umpires; Pawtucket's ejected manager, peering through a hole in the backstop; the sportswriters and broadcasters; a few stalwart fans shivering in the cold.

With Bottom of the 33rd, celebrated New York Times journalist Dan Barry has written a lyrical meditation on small-town lives, minor-league dreams, and the elements of time and community that conspired one fateful night to produce a baseball game seemingly without end. Bottom of the 33rd captures the sport's essence: the purity of purpose, the crazy adherence to rules, the commitment of both players and fans. This genre-bending book, a reportorial triumph, portrays the myriad lives held in the night's unrelenting grip. Consider, for instance, the team owner determined to revivify a decrepit stadium, built atop a swampy bog, or the batboy approaching manhood, nervous and earnest, or the umpire with a new family and a new home, or the wives watching or waiting up, listening to a radio broadcast slip into giddy exhaustion. Consider the small city of Pawtucket itself, its ghosts and relics, and the players, two destined for the Hall of Fame (Cal Ripken and Wade Boggs), a few to play only briefly or forgettably in the big leagues, and the many stuck in minor-league purgatory, duty bound and loyal to the game.

An unforgettable portrait of ambition and endurance, Bottom of the 33rd is the rare sports book that changes the way we perceive America's pastime, and America's past.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:18 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

From Pulitzer Prize-winning "New York Times" columnist Dan Barry comes the beautifully recounted story of the longest game in baseball history--a tale celebrating not only the robust intensity of baseball, but the aspirational ideal epitomized by the hard-fighting players of the minor leagues.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 2 descriptions

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