“Genuine and raw…a heartfelt work of despair, triumph, and redemption.”
The critically acclaimed Heart of the Game—subtitled “Life, Death, and Mercy in Minor League America”—explores the pure roots of a sport that is stained by scandal at its highest level. S.L. Price, award-winning writer for Sports Illustrated and author of Pitching Around Fidel, gives a tragic but ultimately uplifting account of the death of minor league baseball coach Mike Coolbaugh, and in doing so, illustrates the many reasons and myriad ways in which baseball still has a hold on America. A Friday Night Lights for baseball fans, Heart of the Game reveals the classic heart of small-town America.
About the Author
S. L. Price, a senior writer at Sports Illustrated since 1994, has written two other books—Pitching Around Fidel, which was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and Far Afield, which Esquire named one of the top five books of 2007. He lives in Washington, D.C., with his family.
“Price brilliantly takes the reader through life in the minors, and as such it is also a portrait of small-town America. . . . Heart of the Game is a piece of literary excellence.”
— Trenton NJ Times
“A superb storyteller. . . . S. L. Price has done a masterful job.”
— Chicago Tribune
“It’s a story of hard luck in a hard game but, in the lives of two minor leaguers, Scott Price reveals the code of baseball. This is one of the baseball books that will endure as long as the game is played.”
— Richard Ben Cramer, author of "Joe Dimaggio: The Hero's Life"
“S.L. Price has become a powerful force in giving readers a front-row seat to the spectacular. Through his unique gifts of observation and prose, the veteran journalist has painted compelling portraits of the special people, places and moments that define the games we play and watch.”
— San Antonio Express-News
“S.L. Price’s work, “Heart of the Game: Life, Death, and Mercy in Minor League America” is more than just another baseball book being released. It’s a legacy, an heirloom that can be handed from a father no longer here to his children.”
“Hear the heartbeat of America and feel its breath in this beautifully-told tale of love, fate, and forgiveness. The best sports book I’ve read in many seasons.”
— Robert Lipsyte, former New York Times sports columnist
“I was reminded, as I read HEART OF THE GAME, what baseball has meant to me. The story of Mike Coolbaugh’s life and death will break your heart – and you won’t ever look at the game in quite the same way.”
— Darryl Strawberry
“[A] superbly written book . . . a story that’s both heartbreaking and uplifting, much like baseball itself.”
— Dave Barry
“The best baseball book I have ever read...Dazzling...a welcome antidote to the poisonous steroid sleaze that hogs the headlines and crams the bookshelves...If you read only one baseball book this year, make it ‘Heart of the Game.’”
— Stan Hochman, Philadelphia Daily News
“[V]eteran Sports Illustrated writer S.L. Price weaves his magic. Genuine and raw, Heart of the Game is a heartfelt work of despair, triumph, and redemption.”
— Boston Globe