Milwaukee's Baldassaro takes a swing at Italian-American baseball stars
Milwaukee's Larry Baldassaro is the author and/or editor of a number of great books about baseball history, including "Beyond DiMaggio: Italian Americans in Baseball," "Ted Williams: Reflections on a Splendid Life" and co-editor of "he American Game: Baseball and Ethnicity."
You may also recognize Baldassaro's name from his work for the Milwaukee Brewers' Gameday magazine, to which he has contributed since 1990.
Now, he's got a new one, called "Baseball Italian Style: Great Stories Told by Italian American Major Leaguers from Crosetti to Piazza," published by Skyhorse, and Baldassaro appears at Boswell Books, 2559 N. Downer Ave., at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, March 26 to talk about and sign copies of it.
In his new book, Baldassaro traces Italian-Americans through nine decades of baseball, from the 1930s to today, via first-person accounts. There are stories of managers, coaches, umpires, front office bigwigs and, of course, players like Yogi Berra, Ron Santo, Craig Biggio, Joe Torre and Mike Piazza.
"Baseball Italian Style is a wonderfully written book and a tribute to the great game of baseball," said former commish Bud Selig. "From the legendary Joe D. to Joe Torre to Mike Piazza, it covers the important impact that Italian ballplayers have had on baseball and why the game will always be the National Pastime."
Baldassaro is professor emeritus of Italian and former director of the Honors College at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee.
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