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My Favorite Time of the Year

Springtime in Pittsburgh is, in my opinion, the most wonderful time of the year.  This is for two reasons: playoff hockey and the start of baseball. Some of my favorite memories from my youth involve being at the ballpark or the ice rink. I was at the Civic Arena the night Mario Lemieux scored his 600th goal and the night he came out of retirement to return to the ice. I was at Three Rivers Stadium the night Francisco Cordova and Ricardo Rincon pitched the only combined, extra-inning/no-hitter in baseball history. Although I love seeing hockey and baseball in person, I also enjoy reading about these sports just as much. There are a number of great books about hockey and baseball to improve your knowledge and history of the games or remind you of some of the great moments from your favorite team’s history. Here are just some of those books that you can order from Carnegie Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped.

I recommend to any baseball fan to check out one of my all-time favorite baseball books: Jim Bouton’s classic Ball Four.

Ball Four Plus Ball Five
By Jim Bouton
The author tells of his efforts to make a comeback as a professional baseball pitcher in the late 1960s and gives a candid, often humorous account of what ball players, coaches, and managers are really like. Includes a post publication update that summarizes the author’s later life and career. Some strong language

100 Things Pirates Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die
By Steve Ziants
With listings ranked in importance from one to 100, the book includes everything from Bill Mazeroski’s World Series–winning homerun in 1960 and PNC Park, arguably baseball’s finest stadium, to legendary broadcaster Bob Prince. This guide touches upon all of the team’s nine National League pennants and five World Series titles, as well as legendary players such as Honus Wagner, Roberto Clemente, Willie Stargell, Barry Bonds, and Andrew McCutchen. 2014.

99: Stories of the Game
By Wayne Gretzky
A history of hockey and the NHL by the man considered by many to be the greatest hockey player in history. Includes his own story of his years on the ice, a history of the game, and a look at hockey’s pivotal moments and star players. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2016

The Boys of Winter: The Untold Story of a Coach, A Dream, and the 1980 U.S. Olympic Hockey Team
By Wayne Coffey
Sportswriter explains how coach Herb Brooks of the University of Minnesota devised a plan using his amateur players to defeat the professional Soviet hockey team at the 1980 Olympics in Lake Placid. Includes play-by-play descriptions and biographical sketches of the participants in the surprising upset during the Cold War. 2005

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