A profile of a previously unknown rookie pitcher for the Mets who dropped out of Harvard, made a spiritual quest to Tibet, and somewhere along the line figured out how to throw a baseball much, much faster than anyone else on Earth.
Human emotions and contact in the far future.
"Ethan begins moonlighting at the touch center on weekday mornings. Off-peak hours. He robo-cabs it there and back alone. Still, working there is a leap from the isolation of his apartment, and it’s the first time he’s felt inspired in years. He knows he’s not handsome by conventional standards, but he can give a mean hug and they never have enough guys to work at places like this anyway."
A story of a playoff at-bat, a franchise, and a spectator couple.
"Coco has watched every home game with her husband from these seats since the ballpark opened in 2008 while listening to the game play by play on 106.7 FM. She has endured horrible seasons, but 2009 when her beloved team lost 108 games, and 2010 when they lost 93 more, are distant memories. Now she feels like a winner. This is the playoffs. After marriage, and kids, and grandkids, after retirement and their dream trip to Dubrovnik, this is what she has been hoping for. It is the last of her major life events. Something to retell at family dinners. Remember the World Series of 2012?"
The beginning of Don DeLillo's Underworld, in memory of Andy Pafko.
"Pafko is out of paper range by now, jogging toward the clubhouse. But the paper keeps falling. If the early paper waves were slightly hostile and mocking, and the middle waves a form of fan commonality, then this last demonstration has a softness, a selfness. It is coming down from all points, laundry tickets, envelopes swiped from the office, there are crushed cigarette packs and sticky wrap from ice-cream sandwiches, pages from memo pads and pocket calendars, they are throwing faded dollar bills, snapshots torn to pieces, ruffled paper swaddles for cupcakes, they are tearing up letters they've been carrying around for years pressed into their wallets, the residue of love affairs and college friendships, it is happy garbage now, the fans' intimate wish to be connected to the event, unendably, in the form of pocket litter, personal waste, a thing that carries a shadow of identity -- rolls of toilet tissue unbolting lyrically in streamers."
Billy Dillon was about to sign a contract with the Detroit Tigers. Instead he was convicted–wrongly–of first-degree murder and spent the next 27 years in prison.
How pitching phenom Steve Carlton became a yoga-loving conspiracy theorist who calls a concrete bunker his home.
A Major League umpire learns that his children share the same deadly genetic disease.
The brilliant, tragic life of Hall of Fame second baseman Johnny Evers.
Baseball legend Lenny Dykstra’s on-field brilliance and private-life disasters, from drunk driving to failed investment and publishing ventures.