One of DeSilva's six favorite books about sports:
Waiting for Teddy Williams by Howard Frank MosherRead about the other books on DeSilva's list.
Ethan Allen hails from mythical Kingdom Come, Vt., where the town common is a baseball diamond and those who don't play show up to watch. Here, every boy dreams of growing up to play for the Boston Red Sox, but most end up working lathes at the Green Mountain Rebel baseball bat factory, where the scores from Boston are faithfully posted on a wall that resembles Fenway Park's Green Monster.
Ethan, a lonely, fatherless child, has two dreams. One, of course, is to play for the Sox someday, and the other is to discover who his father is. He shares his dreams with a statue of his ancestor, Revolutionary War hero Ethan Allen, and does not find it remarkable that the statue talks back.
Ethan looks forward to every spring, when a drifter with the legendary name Teddy Williams mysteriously appears out of the mist to teach him the finer points of the baseball.
In the boy’s 17th year, the creep who owns the Boston Red Sox sells off all the team's stars and plans to move the franchise to Hollywood after the end of a dreadful season. But the team's manager, The Legendary Spence, somehow has his collection of journeymen on the brink of winning the pennant.
All he needs to pull off a miracle is one more pitcher, for which the creep has approved the ridiculously small salary of $30,000. Enter Ethan, an unknown teenager with a fair fastball and a knee-buckling change-up.
The result is a funny, wise, lyrical novel about baseball, coming of age and dreaming out loud.
Mosher has often been compared to Mark Twain, but his humor is gentler, his vision of America sweeter. Waiting for Teddy Williams is a modern classic that should be read and reread for generations.
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