HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Last Real Season: A Hilarious Look Back…
Loading...

The Last Real Season: A Hilarious Look Back at 1975 - When Major Leaguers…

by Mike Shropshire

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations
242443,774 (3.8)None

None.

None
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

Showing 2 of 2
Something of an eulogy for the lost, pre-multi-millionaire game of professional baseball, Shropshire documents the trials, tribulations, and anecdotes of the zany, and somewhat disturbing, 1975 season of the Texas Rangers. This is highly recommended for those still interested in our “National Pastime.” I might also offer this to those who attempt to chew tobacco, chain-smoke, consume massive quantities of booze, skirt-chase, bar-brawl, and speak without filter in the early Twenty-First Century. For those unfortunate souls, this might not prove fascinating but certainly other-worldly. Imagine, if you will, a time when you could go to an airport, get trashed, get paranoid, and boisterously accuse some random businessman of sneaking a bomb into his briefcase, thus eliciting mere giggles from the other passengers and gate attendants. The Golden Age indeed.

In addition to paltry salaries (though I could get some architects of the era – if not our own era – to disagree), the author belabors the point that steroids weren’t an issue during the heady 70s. As I’m certain Lyle Alzado had been abusing the stuff for years (as were, according to his estimate, 90% of other football pros) I can’t help but speculate that perhaps it’s less a question about some purported purity of the game that rapidly dissipated with free-agency and gargantuan salaries, than one about how serious players and managers might have been then versus now. Or, to put it another way, was the game more exciting when there was more variability? Referring to a point once expressed by the late Steven Jay Gould, currently the margin between the top players and the others is – with occasional exceptions – very slim. This begins to explain why there will likely never be another .400 season batting average in the MLB. It also, perhaps, makes the game less engaging to the potential fan. But doesn’t it also make the game more “professional”? In addition to a wider variation in skill levels during earlier eras, I would also imagine that, assuming I follow Shropshire’s narrative correctly, if every player shows up to every game with a massive hangover, and pops out for smoke breaks between innings, that might have to add to a certain irregularity of performance. I’m not saying current players don’t booze it up – or worse – but something about $12,000 per pitch payoffs or having a limb insured by Lloyds of London has to add a certain level of seriousness that, if less colorful, is at least more “professional” in many ways. Perhaps the game is more sterile these days, but I do know that Fenway Park no longer suffers from meager attendance and I haven’t noticed too many fans tossing Frisbees – or firecrackers – around in the bleacher seats of contemporary baseball. ( )
  mjgrogan | Jun 14, 2010 |
Something of an eulogy for the lost, pre-multi-millionaire game of professional baseball, Shropshire documents the trials, tribulations, and anecdotes of the zany, and somewhat disturbing, 1975 season of the Texas Rangers. This is highly recommended for those still interested in our “National Pastime.” I might also offer this to those who attempt to chew tobacco, chain-smoke, consume massive quantities of booze, skirt-chase, bar-brawl, and speak without filter in the early Twenty-First Century. For those unfortunate souls, this might not prove fascinating but certainly other-worldly. Imagine, if you will, a time when you could go to an airport, get trashed, get paranoid, and boisterously accuse some random businessman of sneaking a bomb into his briefcase, thus eliciting mere giggles from the other passengers and gate attendants. The Golden Age indeed.

In addition to paltry salaries (though I could get some architects of the era – if not our own era – to disagree), the author belabors the point that steroids weren’t an issue during the heady 70s. As I’m certain Lyle Alzado had been abusing the stuff for years (as were, according to his estimate, 90% of other football pros) I can’t help but speculate that perhaps it’s less a question about some purported purity of the game that rapidly dissipated with free-agency and gargantuan salaries, than one about how serious players and managers might have been then versus now. Or, to put it another way, was the game more exciting when there was more variability? Referring to a point once expressed by the late Steven Jay Gould, currently the margin between the top players and the others is – with occasional exceptions – very slim. This begins to explain why there will likely never be another .400 season batting average in the MLB. It also, perhaps, makes the game less engaging to the potential fan. But doesn’t it also make the game more “professional”? In addition to a wider variation in skill levels during earlier eras, I would also imagine that, assuming I follow Shropshire’s narrative correctly, if every player shows up to every game with a massive hangover, and pops out for smoke breaks between innings, that might have to add to a certain irregularity of performance. I’m not saying current players don’t booze it up – or worse – but something about $12,000 per pitch payoffs or having a limb insured by Lloyds of London has to add a certain level of seriousness that, if less colorful, is at least more “professional” in many ways. Perhaps the game is more sterile these days, but I do know that Fenway Park no longer suffers from meager attendance and I haven’t noticed too many fans tossing Frisbees – or firecrackers – around in the bleacher seats of contemporary baseball. ( )
  mjgrogan | Jul 17, 2009 |
Showing 2 of 2
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
Quotations
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0446401544, Hardcover)

There are baseball books and there are baseball books.

But for the baseball cognoscenti, there are just a few "must-have" classics: BALL FOUR by Jim Bouton. THE LONG SEASON by Jim Brosnan. WILLIE'S TIME by Charles Einstein. And SEASONS IN HELL by Mike Shropshire, which was a hilarous first-person account of Mike's travails serving as a daily beat writer covering the hapless 1972 Texas Rangers.

Now, in The Last Real Season, Shropshire captures the essence of a different time and different place in baseball, when the average salary for major leaguers was only $27,600...when the ballplayers' drug of choice was alcohol, not steroids...when major leaguers sported tight doubleknit uniforms over their long-hair and Afros...and on July 28th, 1975, the day that famed Detroit resident Jimmy Hoffa went missing, the Detroit Tigers started a losing streak of 19 games in a row. On the day that the Tigers blew a 4-run lead in the bottom of the ninth, Shropshire recalls: "I drank three bottles of Stroh's beer in less than a minute and wrote that 'Jimmy Hoffa will show up in the left field stands with Amelia Earhart as his date before the Tigers will win another game.'"

And so it goes. Filled with just the kind of wonderful baseball stories that real fans crave, this is the funniest baseball book of the year.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:13:30 -0400)

"A rollicking and ribald first-person account of the 1975 Major League Baseball season - the last year before free agency took over and changed the National Pastime forever -- for better or for worse!"--Provided by the publisher.

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
9 wanted3 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.8)
0.5
1
1.5
2
2.5
3 1
3.5 2
4 1
4.5
5 1

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 119,992,546 books! | Top bar: Always visible