Books

Deadball, A Metaphysical Baseball Novel

Available from amazon.com and these fine retailers:

Sports Legends Museum Gift Shop at Camden Yards, Baltimore MD
Babe Ruth Birthplace Museum Gift Shop, Baltimore MD
The Ivy Bookshop The Ivy Bookshop, 6080 Falls Road, Baltimore MD
The Book Escape, 805 Light Street, Baltimore MD
Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C.
Greetings and Readings, Hunt Valley Towne Centre, 118-AA Shawan Road, Hunt Valley MD
Turn the Page Bookstore, 18 North Main Street, Boonsboro MD
Discovery Station, 101 West Washington Street, Hagerstown MD
Sweet Pea Dessert and Gifts, 10 W. Baltimore Street, Greencastle PA


Former minor-league baseball player Byron Bennett has a deep and spiritual connection to the game of baseball and its history. He sees things in a way others cannot and believes in things others would not. He thinks the old men working the menial jobs in the diners, dives, and graveyards he frequents are not what they seem. They try to fit in, go unnoticed, but Byron suspects they are not your typical second-career working stiffs.

Part pilgrimage and part road trip, Deadball visits vanished ballparks like Baltimore’s Union Park, Pittsburgh’s Forbes Field, Cleveland’s League Park, Detroit’s Tiger Stadium, and Brooklyn’s Ebbets Field in Byron’s attempt to bring the past back to life. As visions of baseball’s golden era appear around him with greater frequency and intensity, he must question everything he believes about life, himself, and the game he loves. Are the flickering images he sees real, or are they all in his head? His friends, his ex-wife, and his former teammates don’t believe what he tells them he sees. At times, neither does he.

Deadball will appeal to baseball fans and history buffs, but it also will appeal to anyone who knows what it means to be driven by a passion that others can neither appreciate nor understand.

    • Paperback: 344 pages
    • Publisher: Huntington Park Publications, Inc. (November 23, 2011)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 0983668906
    • ISBN-13: 978-0983668909
    • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.9 inches
    • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds

The Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts 15th Anniversary Yearbook

By Richard O’Connor and David B. Stinson
tboltcover

Available from:
amazon.com
The Blair HS Baseball Stadium Concession Stand (during T-Bolts Season)


Follow the first 15 seasons of the Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts, a summer wooden bat baseball team playing in the Cal Ripken Collegiate Baseball League.

Huntington Park Publications
June 2014
Softcover


United States Court of Federal Claims Handbook and Procedures Manual

Published by the Bar Association of the District of Columbia, the United States Court of Federal Claims Handbook and Procedures Manual, 2nd Edition, is available at:  http://www.badc.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageID=3369

Cited in Wikipedia (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Court_of_Federal_Claims) and other Internet cites discussing the Court of Federal Claims, this book looks really good sitting on a bookshelf.  Be sure to get yours from BADC before they are all gone.  Last I heard, they had less than 20 left.

12 Responses to 'Books'

  1. Pat Kearney says:

    Hello, David!

    I think the last time we saw each other in person may have been 1987– so, it’s been a while! My wife Peggy and I have enjoyed reading your Christmas cards over the years, and now comes your fine novel, a sort of Christmas card to people with a strong emotional attachment to the game of baseball.

    I enjoyed the times we spent together in the ’80s before I moved out of the D.C. area. Surprisingly, in the times we visited, I don’t think the subject of baseball ever did come up. So, you will be pleasantly surprised to know that I have several personal stories to share about baseball in the Pittsburgh area.

    When I was very young, my parents would take me to games at Forbes Field. In those days, the playing field was in superb shape. I don’t know when it started, but the infield was infamous for how quickly ground balls would skip through to the outfield.

    The grounds were very well maintained. In contrast, the grandstands were dirty– “grimy,” was the word used by Time Magazine in its coverage of the 1960 World Series. Many people remember that it was not unusual for paying fans to be stuck behind pillars in the lower level of the grandstands.

    My family lived more than an hour away from the ballpark. So, attending a game really was quite an occasion. My parents liked to attend Sunday double headers. Unfortunately, back in the 1950s, Pennsylvania statutes known as blue laws prevented games from being played after 7:00 p.m., as I remember. So, the nightcap game of a Sunday doubleheader was routinely stopped before the completion of the game, and then concluded at a future date.

    Parking close to Forbes Field was problematic. On one occasion, a man accosted my Dad and claimed that he had been authorized by the Pittsburgh police to rent out curbside parking spaces in spots marked with a yellow line. I am happy to say that Dad did not accept his offer! Another time, I think my parents parked beyond the outfield, in Shenley Park. We arrived late for that game, and just as we were walking along the outfield wall, a home run came sailing over the wall. Of course, you could hear the jubilation of the fans in the ballpark.

    Before 1958, the Pirates had few successes. One headline story was Dale Long’s 1956 streak of eight consecutive games in which he hit a home run. On the day when Long hit his eighth home run, my future mother-in-law was attending a class on one of the top floors of the Cathedral of Learning at the University of Pittsburgh. The fans at Forbes Field made so much noise that the Cathedral of Learning seemed to shake. The unsuspecting students thought that it might be an earthquake.

    I was ten years old at this time. I bought my first baseball glove. Of course, I wanted to be like Dale Long. So, my first glove was a first baseman’s mitt.

    I think it was in the spring of 1966 or 1967 that I attended a game with some friends– we were all students at Duquesne University. (I think the game was against the Phillies, and that Richie Allen was on their team.) During the game but before sunset, a huge meteor fireball could be seen sailing across the horizon, far beyond the outfield wall. It was an astonishing sight– after the game, there was a lot of wild speculation about just what it was. It actually did look like the descent of a Martian spaceship in the 1953 classic movie War of the Worlds.

    In 1970, when we had been married for just over a year, my wife Peggy and I attended the last game at Forbes Field and the first baseball game at Three Rivers Stadium. At the Forbes Field game, our seats were in the right field stands. My big memory of that occasion is of Roberto Clemente, standing near the right field wall, tossing a few balls to the fans in the stands. I had grown up watching The Great Roberto.

    So, there are a few memories of Forbes Field. I loved all of the detail about old parks and old ball players in your novel. It is very interesting how some physical places become infused with memories of people and events connected with those places. Reading your book, more than once I thought of a visit I once made to Antietam Battlefield, in Maryland. On land in front of Bloody Lane, in the center of the battlefield, a farmer had just plowed the privately owned ground. A man with a metal detector was finding bullets in the loose dirt. It was as if the battle had taken place the day before– very spooky.

    On a happier note, when Peggy and I walk on quiet hiking trails at a local state park after the end of vacation season, when thousands of travelers visit the park, I often say to her that the place is haunted, in a very pleasant way, with happy vacation memories.

    So, David, you have produced a wonderful book, although maybe not so nice as your Christmas cards!

    • David Stinson David Stinson says:

      Hello Pat

      Has it been 25 years? I guess since we exchange holiday letters each year I still have a feel for your life somewhat off the grid. Thanks so very much for your thoughtful post about Forbes Field. Did anyone in your family ever take pictures at Forbes Field or Three Rivers? If so, and you are willing to share them, it would be wonderful if I could post some on my baseball website deadballbaseball.com. I am glad that you enjoyed Deadball and the idea, as you put it, that “physical places become infused with the memories of people and events connected with those places.” I wish I had written that. Well said! I do believe that it is true. Not that I claim to actually have seen any ball-playing ghosts, but I do believe that old buildings and places have a sense of history which is more than just the brick and mortar of the buildings. If you are ever interested in a trek to the new Pittsburgh ballpark, let me know. It is one of the finest MLB parks in the country and just a day trip away from where I live. DBS

      • Pat Kearney says:

        Unfortunately, I have no pictures. A visit to PNC Park sounds like a great idea. Let’s try for next season– hopefully, at some point before the Pirates begin their annual death spiral.

  2. Roger Mooney says:

    David,

    Picked up your book at The Book Escape during a September trip to Baltimore.
    Just finished reading it.
    Wanted to let you know I thoroughly enjoyed it.
    Great story.
    Great history.
    Great job.

    - Roger Mooney

    • David Stinson David Stinson says:

      Hello Roger

      Thank you very much for the kind words and for taking the time to post a comment. I am glad you enjoyed Deadball. If you like reading about old ballparks (and I suspect you do) please be sure to check out deadballbaseball.com – it is a companion site to the book “written” by Byron Bennett. Thanks again. DBS

  3. Kirk Ordway says:

    David,

    I met you in DC while I was taking 20 middle school students to visit the east coast.

    After having played in the minor leagues with the Tigers, I had a small connection with Byron. I was stationed in Niagara Falls at an old football stadium, Sal Magilie.

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading Deadball. The section where Byron visits Detroit brought me back. I went to the old ball park several times in ’94 to work out in the locker room while I was nursing a back injury. While I was there, I could feel a sense of history and a presence of old players watching me as I worked out. After the workouts I would sit up behind home plate and look out over the field. I wish I could’ve met some old players like Byron did but I’ll never forget the feeling sitting there by myself.

    Great story and I was glad to see Byron find his calling.

    Kirk Ordway

    • David Stinson David Stinson says:

      Hello Kirk

      Thank you for your post. I remember meeting you at the Smithsonian and am glad to hear that you enjoyed Deadball. When I was writing the novel, I deliberately placed the story in 1999 so I could include the final season at Tiger Stadium. I had taken my family there that season so we could see a game at the stadium and, like you, I could sense the history and the presence of the past there.

      I see that you, like Byron, played third base, and played in an antique stadium that may soon be gone. Hmmm.

      Although Tiger Stadium is gone now, I am glad the field remains. Hopefully Detroit will find a way to honor the field so that future baseball fans (and former players?) can visit the site as well.

      DBS

  4. Jeff says:

    Hi David!

    My friend Kevin and I met you at the Baltimore Book Festival this past Sunday. We were from Rochester, NY. You showed us the opening pages of the book about Silver Stadium. I just finished the book and really enjoyed it. I loved all the history and enjoyed the characters and story as well. You have inspired me to look into more history of the game, and your companion website is really great and fun to read. It was great to meet you!
    Jeff

    • David Stinson David Stinson says:

      Hello Jeff

      It was a pleasure meeting you and Kevin in Baltimore. Thank you very much for taking the time to let me know how much you enjoyed Deadball. You might be glad to hear that there is now a movement to place a marker at the old Silver Stadium home plate site. Having a maker there would certainly allow fans to get a sense of where the stadium once sat. I hope you will consider contacting the City of Rochester and letting them know you think a marker should be placed there. Thank you again for taking the time to contact me and be sure to pass the book on to Kevin.

      DBS

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