Johnny Pesky. It follows the magical 2007 season from the signing of the new ace, Daisuke Matsuzaka, through the hoisting of the World Championship trophy. Along the way Pesky gives his unique insight into the goings on with the Red Sox. He relates the events of the day with events from his own career. He tells stories from the point of view of someone with more than 65 years in baseball. It is a combination of the old with the new. It brings the season to life in a whole new way.
The fact that this book involves the 2007 season raises a question. I have already talked about Faithful, which is a chronicle of the 2004 season. So, that’s two diaries of two World Championship seasons. Are there diaries of the 2006 season out there that the authors scrapped after the team didn’t make the playoffs? Or is it just luck that they both started this project at the start of championship runs. In this case, since it suggests it is from Pesky’s personal diary, it’s possible that he’s been doing this all his life. Maybe he just copied the pages from this season because someone felt it was the most interesting. It’s not a day-by-day account. It does have frequent entries, though. So, you can still follow the season along just by reading the entries. If I had a complaint, it is that the entries are too short. It does, though, give the feel that these really are journal entries. In comparison to Faithful, it feels less like these entries were written with a book in mind. It reads like someone just jotting down some thoughts he happened to have. It gives it it’s own special quality. There are multiple references to Pesky’s career, and his teammates. This, again, adds to the feeling that you’re just sitting and talking to Pesky. I can just imagine him seeing Ellsbury steal a base, and think about himself running the bases with Dom DiMaggio. There aren’t many people who would be able to add the type of insight that Pesky does. It’s a wonderful read.
Rating: 3 bases