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A Moment in Time

An American Story of Baseball, Heartbreak, and Grace

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Description

A first-hand account of the golden era of baseball from Jackie Robinson’s friend, former teammate and featured player in the 2013 biopic "42."


Ralph Branca is best known for throwing the pitch that resulted in Bobby Thomson’s “Shot Heard ’Round the World,” the historic home run that capped an incredible comeback and won the pennant for the New York Giants in 1951. Branca was on the losing end of what many consider to be baseball’s most thrilling moment, but that notoriety belies a profoundly successful life and career.

A Moment in Time details the remarkable story of a man who could have been destroyed by a supreme professional embarrassment—but wasn’t. Branca came up as a young phenom, playing for the Brooklyn Dodgers during their heyday. He was a staple of the Dodgers’ teams in the late 1940s, dominating the National League. It’s no stretch to say that New York baseball was the center of the sporting universe and that the players were part of the fabric of the neighborhoods, of the city itself.

A Moment in Time offers a rare first-person perspective on the golden era of baseball, opening a window on an amazing world populated by legendary characters such as Jackie Robinson, Pee Wee Reese, Gil Hodges, Leo Durocher, Branch Rickey, and Walter O’Malley. Ralph Branca sits us down and tells us an entertaining, deeply inspiring, classic baseball tale.

***

I LOVE BASEBALL.

“Baseball is the reason I am writing this book, the reason I’ve led a life worth reexamining and dissecting. Baseball is the passion that carried me from childhood to manhood. It is how I fought my way from the working class to the middle class. Were it not for baseball, I would not have met Ann, my wife, the mother of our daughters, and my dearest friend for the past sixty years. Baseball has excited my mind, stirred my soul, and brought out the best in me. I look at baseball deeply. Most of us whose lives have been defined by baseball do. Of course, it’s principally a sport—a beautiful sport based on a poetic geometry. It is a game played outside of time. You play it not until the clock runs out, but until there is a clear winner. That takes as long as it takes. It is a pastoral game usually set inside a city. You play in a pasture—an urban pasture—where an expanse of grass calls you to the competition. Of course, you can also play on the dirt field of a farm, a sandlot, or a concrete street. Wherever you play, though, time is suspended. Like millions of other kids, I lost track of time whenever I played—playing through breakfast, lunch, dinner; playing until the very last rays of daylight disappeared; playing under the glow of a street lamp or a full moon; playing with the hope that the game would never stop and that real time—any time but baseball time—would never resume. The dream was to turn life into a baseball game.” —from the Introduction

From Publishers Weekly

12 September 2011 – Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher Branca tells the story behind the shot heard round the world that has been called the most dramatic moment in sports history. He is unfortunately best known as the pitcher who gave up the home run to Bobby Thomson that won the pennant for the 1951 Giants. He endured ridicule and threats, but later learned that Thomson was aided by an elaborate sign-stealing scheme devised by Giants manager Leo Durocher. He chose to remain silent, but struggled with anger and resentment for years. The book represents the resolution of that resentment and the dissolution of the rage. Aside from the story surrounding the infamous home run, Branca offers a fascinating tale of a golden age of baseball dominated by the three New York teams that included the breaking of the color barrier by Jackie Robinson. Acclaimed author Ritz (Divided Soul: The Life of Marvin Gaye) maintains focus and pace without subduing Branca s voice or personality to render a story with appeal to all sports fans.
A Moment in Time
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  • 129,00 kr
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Baseball
  • Published: 20 September 2011
  • Publisher: Scribner
  • Print Length: 240 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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