By Mike Steffanos
The Best New York Sports Arguments:
The 100 Most Controversial, Debatable Questions for Die-Hard New York Fans
Author: Peter Handrinos
Paperback, 272 pages, Sourcebooks, Inc.
I've always loved books, so it was a natural for me to start reviewing them on this blog. At first it was fairly straightforward, I bought a book that interested me, read it and then reviewed it. But then a pretty cool thing happened: some authors and publishers realized that it might be a good idea to get their books reviewed by bloggers, since we cater to an audience that likes to read about sports. Now I'll get the occasional free book in the mail to review for this site. The best part of this is when one of these books is a very pleasant surprise. Such was the case of The Best New York Sports Arguments.
I received this book not very long after reading and reviewing Roger Rubin and David Lennon's The Great New York Sports Debate, and to be honest I feared that I might be in for a very similar read. As I delved into the book, it quickly became apparent this wasn't the case. While Handrinos shares the same facility for taking a lively stand on these "arguments", he makes the choice to be more wide-ranging in subject matter, going back 100 years for some of them while tackling others as current as today's sports section. It's the melding of the old and new in the book that made it work for me.
New York is, at heart, a baseball town, so it was fitting that more than one third of the 100 arguments in Peter Handrinos' book was devoted to baseball. Even better was the author's choice to devote space to the departed Dodgers and Giants as well as the Mets and Yankees. To talk New York baseball without acknowledging those two teams is to ignore much of this town's baseball tradition. Handrinos' baseball arguments run the gamut from an infamous play by Fred Merkle of the Giants in 1908 to today's Jeter vs A-Rod debate. You're going to be entertained, and you're going to learn a thing or two along the way, too.
The topics include:
- Who've been the greatest fans in New York Sports history?
- Who was the biggest Yankee hater if them all?
- Did Brooklyn abandon the Dodgers?
- What were the coolest nicknames of all time?
- Who was to blame for "The Fumble" at the Meadowlands?
- Was Willis Reed the hero of Game 7 of the '70 finals?
- Is hockey a major sport?
- Was Mike Tyson ever a great heavyweight?
- What was the "golden decade" in New York sports?
The Best New York Sports Arguments was a very satisfying read, and the excellent baseball chapters will help you get through that long, cold winter until pitchers and catchers report.
Buy The Best New York Sports Arguments on Amazon.com