Cover image for Baseball forever : reflections on 60 years in the game
Baseball forever : reflections on 60 years in the game
Kiner, Ralph.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Chicago, Ill. : Triumph Books, [2004]

Physical Description:
xv, 240 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Personal Subject:
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GV865.K53 A3 2004 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Most fans know Ralph Kiner as the New York Mets' long-tenured color commentator, but as a player he was one of the most feared hitters in the game; this autobiography allows Kiner to reveal his life story and to share his learned opinion about many topics affecting the game today.

Author Notes

Danny Peary has written and edited 18 books on sports and film. He is the writer and researcher for The Tim McCarver Show on the Madison Square Garden Network and the New York correspondent for the Australian magazine FilmInk. He lives in New York City and Sag Harbor

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ralphiner is the only player to ever lead the National League in home runs over seven consecutive seasons. He's also been a Mets broadcaster since 1962. Add it all up, andiner has been involved in the game for nearly seven decades, giving him a unique perspective with which to discuss his favorite sport. In fact, on one level, this memoir functions as an anecdotal history of baseball since WWII. Interwoven among the games is an endlessly entertaining personal memoir of a celebrity's life. He hobnobbed with Bing Crosby and Bob Hope--often through their shared passion for golf--and even dated movie stars Elizabeth Taylor andanet Leigh. Baseball fans will be most interested in his relationships with other players, such as Hank Greenburg; his views on baseball's early years of integration; and his thoughts on the influx of Latin players in the fifties and again in the nineties.iner and coauthor Peary adopt a conversational style that will keep fans of a certain age turning pages well into extra innings. --Wes Lukowsky Copyright 2004 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

Hall-of-Famer Kiner, a New York Mets announcer since their inception, offers an informal autobiography, chock-full of anecdotes, opinions and laughs. Kiner grew up in Southern California and was signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates before WWII. In 1946 he tied for the league lead in home runs. It was his great fortune to be joined the following season by future Hall-of-Famer Hank Greenberg, who not only helped Kiner become the predominant power hitter in the National League over the next few years but became his best friend for the rest of his life. The book covers many aspects of the 64 years Kiner has been involved in the game. He is blunt in his assessment of the modern player: "Of current batters only Barry Bonds ranks with Musial, Greenberg, Williams, and Joe DiMaggio. There have been no better all-around players than DiMaggio and Willie Mays.... Jackie Robinson remains the best base runner and competitor the game has ever known." One of the most interesting chapters is on how Robinson integrated baseball in 1947. Kiner firmly believes that Branch Rickey integrated the Brooklyn Dodgers for monetary reasons, not moral ones. Kiner, who was with the Pirates when Rickey became their general manager, shrewdly opines that Rickey "was in no hurry to bring in any black players to integrate or upgrade our team." Kiner was also instrumental in the formation of the baseball union and recalls how once he was called a "communist" for asking for a raise. Kiner, a handsome man-about-town in his younger days, also has some hilarious anecdotes about dating actresses Elizabeth Taylor and Janet Leigh, plus some wonderful stories about his days broadcasting for the Mets with Hall-of-Fame announcers Lindsey Nelson and Bob Murphy. In the end, this is a joyful and thoughtful book by one of baseball's good guys. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Longtime New York Mets announcer Kiner was known for his mammoth home runs during the 1940s and 1950s. As a Pittsburgh Pirate he set a record for leading the National League in home runs during his first seven seasons. Kiner's book is no slight tale of baseball memories, however. It is a detailed and insightful examination of how baseball has changed in the last half century. His coauthor, a noted baseball scholar, has helped Kiner flesh out the times. Hank Greenberg, Jackie Robinson and other greats are ably profiled. With a foreword by Tom Seaver, the serious fan will appreciate this story. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Tom Seaver
Forewordp. v
Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Introductionp. ix
Chapter 1 The Playersp. 1
Chapter 2 At the Ballparkp. 31
Chapter 3 From Integration to Internationalizationp. 65
Chapter 4 Labor Unrestp. 93
Chapter 5 Yankee Dynastiesp. 117
Chapter 6 Chasing Babe Ruthp. 139
Chapter 7 The Celebrity Connectionp. 161
Chapter 8 Ralph Kiner, Broadcasterp. 181
Chapter 9 The Future, Then and Nowp. 211
Indexp. 235