July 16 2014

“Big Red” with Ken Griffey


A special All-Star evening in the Clubhouse...

"Big Red: Baseball, Fatherhood, and My Life in the Big Red Machine" by Ken Griffey and Phil Pepe

Reflecting on an outstanding 19-year major league career, Ken Griffey's autobiography details his decision to venture into the baseball business, documenting his time as a player, scout, coach, and manager along with his accomplishments as a father, raising two other major league ballplayers: Craig, who played briefly for the Seattle Mariners, and future Hall of Famer Ken Griffey Jr.

Capturing Griffey's time with the Big Red Machine, this book details his days playing alongside Johnny Bench, Joe Morgan, and Pete Rose, highlighting the Reds' two consecutive world championships in 1975 and 1976.  Finally, the ultimate thrill of his career is featured: playing in the same outfield in 1990 with his son, Ken Griffey Jr., during the game where they hit back-to-back home runs -- the only father-son combination to do so in the history of Major League Baseball.

We spent the night of the All-Star Game with someone who played in it.  Listen in to Ken Griffey's behind-the-scenes stories of what it’s like when baseball really does run in the family...

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June 30 2014

“Stars and Strikes” with author Dan Epstein


America 1976.  Colorful. Complex. Combustible.  

A year of Bicentennial celebrations and presidential primaries, of Olympic glory and busing riots, of “killer bees” hysteria and Pong fever.  For both the nation and the national pastime, the year was revolutionary.

It was the craziest season of baseball’s most colorful decade.  A year which witnessed the “Big Red Machine,” the rise of the “Bronx Zoo”-era New York Yankees, the dismantling of the Oakland A’s dynasty, the onset of full-scale free agency, the outrageous antics of team owners Bill Veeck, Ted Turner, George Steinbrenner, and Charlie Finley -- all set against the star-spangled backdrop of America’s Bicentennial.

Listen in as author Dan Epstein visited the Clubhouse for this highly entertaining trip back to 1976...

Dan Epstein is an award-winning journalist, pop culture historian, and avid baseball fan who has written for Rolling Stone, SPIN, Men’s Journal, the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, MOJO, Guitar World, Revolver, LA Weekly and dozens of other publications.  He is the author of the acclaimed Big Hair and Plastic Grass: A Funky Ride Through Baseball and America in the Swinging ‘70s.  A Detroit Tigers fan since the mid-70s, he adopted the Chicago Cubs as his National League team in 1980, for better and (mostly) worse.

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June 18 2014

NY Giants Preservation Society Presents: “1954″ with Bill Madden


On June 17th, the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse hosted the NY Giants Preservation Society's summer meeting.  Their special guest: Bill Madden.

The 2010 recipient of the Baseball Hall of Fame's J.G. Taylor Spink Award, Bill Madden has covered baseball for the New York Daily News for more than 30 years.

Listen in as Bill discussed his outstanding new book -- 1954: The Year Willie Mays and the First Generation of Black Superstars Changed Major League Baseball Forever...

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June 10 2014

“Wrigley Field” with Pulitzer Prize-winner Ira Berkow


On a June evening, a Pulitzer Prize-winner returned to the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse.

This stunning tribute to Wrigley Field, written by journalist Ira Berkow, coincides with the 100th anniversary of “the one and only.”  Wrigley Field brilliantly and beautifully documents the stadium’s entire career through a decade-by-decade account, a priceless collection of historical photographs and memorabilia, and vivid first-person reminiscences of the people to whom this great place has meant so much.

Notable fans interviewed for this book include Barack Obama, Scott Turow, Joe Mantegna, Sara Paretsky, Jim Bouton, and George Will, among others. With a foreword by former major leaguer Kerry Wood and a preface by former U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, this is a keepsake book for all baseball fans.

Ira Berkow, a sports columnist and feature writer for The New York Times for 26 years, shared a Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting and was a Pulitzer finalist for Distinguished Commentary.  The author of 20 books, Ira was born and raised in Chicago, but has called New York home for many years.

An evening of storytelling in the Clubhouse with Pulitzer Prize-winner Ira Berkow.  Listen in...

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May 31 2014

“The Fight Of Their Lives” with John Rosengren


“John Rosengren extraordinarily depicts how two men long since retired taught the world a valuable lesson -- that it is okay to forgive.”

-Andre Dawson, member of the Baseball Hall of Fame



The moment is immortalized by an iconic photo: Juan Marichal’s bat poised to strike John Roseboro’s head.


But that moment is merely a flashpoint in an extraordinary story about fierce baseball competition and culture, an era of great conflict and change, and two men who were determined to turn an ugly incident from their past into a beautiful friendship.


One Sunday in August 1965, when baseball’s bitter rivals, the Giants and Dodgers, vied for the pennant, the national pastime reflected the tensions in society and nearly sullied two men forever.  Marichal, a Dominican anxious about his family’s safety during the civil war back home, and Roseboro, a black man living in South Central L.A. shaken by the Watts riots, attacked one another during a fight -- uncharacteristic of either man -- that linked the two forever and haunted both.


In The Fight of Their Lives, award-winning author John Rosengren explores the American culture of the time.  Through interviews with Roseboro’s surviving family and Marichal himself, contemporary and remembered accounts of teammates like Sandy Koufax and Willie Mays, and dogged research, Rosengren unpacks a story that transcends the game.  Listen in...

John Rosengren is the award-winning author of eight books, including Hank Greenberg: The Hero of Heroes.  His articles have appeared in more than 100 publications, ranging from Reader’s Digest to Sports Illustrated to the Utne Reader.


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May 9 2014

“Babe Ruth’s Called Shot” with Ed Sherman


The Myth and Mystery of Baseball's Greatest Home Run


Game Three of the 1932 World Series between the Cubs and Yankees. Some 50,000 fans had gathered at Wrigley Field that bright October day, but above their roar Babe Ruth heard insults pouring from the Cubs dugout. He watched a fastball from Cubs pitcher Charlie Root set the count at 2-2.  Agitated, the Bambino made a gesture, holding out two fingers -- but what did it mean? In the on-deck circle, Lou Gehrig heard him call out: “I’m going to knock the next one down your goddamn throat.” Then the game’s greatest showman pounded the next pitch. The ball whizzed past the centerfield scoreboard and began its long journey into history.


In an instant, the legend of the Called Shot was born. The debate about what Ruth actually did still divides fans and sports historians alike more than 80 years later. Deftly placing the homer in the social and economic contexts of the time, veteran sportswriter Ed Sherman gives us the first full-length, in-depth look at one of baseball’s most celebrated, debated, and enduring moments -- including the incredible stories of two handheld films taken by fans and rediscovered decades later -- and answers the question: Did Ruth really call his shot?


Pull up a seat and listen in to our Clubhouse discussion as we learn the answer...



Ed Sherman, a longtime Chicago Tribune writer, reports on sports media for his highly acclaimed website, ShermanReport.com


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April 21 2014

“Down To The Last Pitch” with Tim Wendel


“The star of Down to the Last Pitch is Tim Wendel, one of our game’s must-read writers.”

-John Thorn, official historian of Major League Baseball



Never before in baseball history had a team finished last and rallied to take the pennant the following season. Yet in 1991, lightning struck twice as the Minnesota Twins and the Atlanta Braves both reached the World Series.  Four of the games between the Twins and Braves were settled by “walk-off” runs.  Three of them, including the climactic Game Seven, went into extra innings.  And all seven games had memorable moments.


In Down to the Last Pitch, award-winning writer Tim Wendel brings to life these seven memorable games, weaving contemporary interviews with discussions decades later about this classic World Series, and teasing out fact from legend.


Tim Wendel was a founding editor of USA Today's Baseball Weekly, which was in its inaugural season when the 1991 Twins-Braves Series played out.  The highly acclaimed author of 11 books is currently writer-in-residence at Johns Hopkins University.


The first three-time author in the Clubhouse, Tim was previously here with High Heat and Summer of '68.  Listen in to this discussion of Down to the Last Pitch with one of the game's must-read writers... 


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April 14 2014

“NY Giants Preservation Society event with the children of Dusty Rhodes”


On April 10th, the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse hosted the NY Giants Preservation Society's spring meeting.  Their special guests: Dusty Rhodes's children, Helane and Jeffrey.


They spoke, answered questions, mingled, exhibited one-of-a-kind memorabilia.

A special night in the Clubhouse.  A standing-room-only crowd.  Pull up a chair and listen in...


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April 2 2014

“The Kid: The Immortal Life of Ted Williams” with Ben Bradlee Jr.


Ted Williams wanted to be an immortal.  He arrived in Boston in 1939, a cocky 20-year-old phenom eager to become, in his words, the “greatest hitter who ever lived.”  Just two years later, his .406 batting average -- a mark that has never again been met -- backed up that claim.  In The Kid: The Immortal Life of Ted Williams, Ben Bradlee, Jr., draws on numerous untapped sources to take us inside the clubhouse, the batter’s box, and beyond.  He reveals new details about Williams’s feelings of shame over his Mexican heritage, his war service, the rages that fueled his brilliance on the field but severely damaged his private life, and the bizarre family drama that played out after Ted’s death, when his body was cryonically preserved.  The Kid is the story of a man as big as his myth, the story of an exceptional, tumultuous and epic American life -- an immortal life.



Ben Bradlee Jr. spent 25 years with The Boston Globe.  As a deputy managing editor, Bradlee oversaw the Globe's Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of the sexual abuse scandal in the Catholic Church.  He also reported overseas for The Globe from Afghanistan, South Africa, the Middle East, Latin America and Vietnam.  Bradlee has written three previous books: “The Ambush Murders,” “Prophet of Blood,” and “Guts and Glory: The Rise and Fall of Oliver North.”



To celebrate the start of Baseball Season 2014, a .400 hitter and a Pulitzer Prize-winner.  Join The Kid and Ben Bradlee Jr. in the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse...



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January 29 2014

“The Sabermetric Revolution” with Andrew Zimbalist


Leading off our first author event of 2014, the country's preeminent sports economist...


The Sabermetric Revolution with Andrew Zimbalist


From the front office to the family room, sabermetrics has dramatically changed the way baseball players are assessed and valued.  Rocketed to popularity by the 2003 bestseller Moneyball and the film of the same name, the use of sabermetrics to analyze player performance has appeared to be a David to the Goliath of systemically advantaged richer teams who could only be toppled by creative statistical analysis.  The story has been so compelling that, over the past decade, team after team has integrated statistical analysis into their front offices.  But how accurately can crunching numbers quantify a player's ability?  Do sabermetrics truly level the playing field for financially disadvantaged teams?  How much of the baseball analytic trend is fad and how much fact?


The Sabermetric Revolution sets the record straight on the role of analytics in baseball, correcting common misinterpretations and developing new methods to assess the effectiveness of sabermetrics on team performance.  While the conclusion is optimistic, there is also caution that sabermetric insights will be more difficult to come by in the future.


Spend an hour with the country's preeminent sports economist.  Listen in to our fascinating Clubhouse discussion with Andrew Zimbalist...




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January 10 2014

New York Giants Preservation Society - Winter 2014 meeting with special guest Ken Davidoff


On Wednesday, January 8th -- the evening of the Hall of Fame announcement -- baseball columnist Ken Davidoff joined the New York Giants Preservation Society winter meeting for a fascinating discussion/Q&A at the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse.

Pull up a seat and listen in...



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January 4 2014

“The Groundbreaking History of WFAN” with author Tim Sullivan and special guest Rich Ackerman


Before we closed the book on another year of extraordinary events in the Clubhouse, we had one more for the fans...


The Groundbreaking History of WFAN with author Tim Sullivan and special guest Rich Ackerman


A behind-the-scenes look at the most powerful voices on New York’s AM dial, this is the all-encompassing history of WFAN.  Created in 1987, WFAN was the nation’s first 24-hour, all-sports radio station and this work recounts how, a quarter-century later, it is the highest-rated station in New York and the home to many unforgettable radio personalities. 


On December 18th, seasoned journalist Tim Sullivan -- along with special guest Rich Ackerman -- took us through the history, impact, egos, fans, and stories of WFAN.  For your listening pleasure...



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“Inside the Clubhouse Look at Baseball Scouting”


On December 12th, three noted Major League Baseball Scouts returned to the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse for a fascinating insider's conversation/Q&A...


Billy Blitzer - Pro Scout, Chicago Cubs

Joe Rigoli - Pro Scout, St. Louis Cardinals

Dennis Sheehan - Northeast Area Supervisor, Atlanta Braves


Panel Moderator: Lee Lowenfish


It was, once again, an enchanting evening.  Listen in...




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“Willard Mullin’s Golden Age of Baseball” with Hal Bock


“A beautiful compilation of the finest work of a uniquely talented artist.” -Bob Costas


Willard Mullin’s Golden Age of Baseball: Drawings 1934-1972 collects for the first time Mullin’s best drawings devoted to baseball.  From Babe Ruth to the Baby Mets, Willard Mullin, “Sports Cartoonist of the 20th Century,” was there.  Beautiful, tearful, insightful, morally charged, and outrageously hilarious cartoons.  Gehrig, DiMaggio, Musial, Berra, Mantle, Mays, the Brooklyn Bum, and hundreds more make history anew in this astounding collection.


Join Hal Bock from his December appearance in the Clubhouse and learn why millions of baseball fans from the ‘30s to the ‘70s looked forward to Willard Mullin’s cartoons in their daily paper.


Hal Bock, an Associated Press sportswriter for over 40 years, specialized in baseball.  He covered more World Series than any AP sportswriter in history.  A New York City native, Hal’s passion for sportswriting was cultivated by boyhood trips to the ballpark with his father, a postal worker and sports enthusiast who sometimes wrote poetry.


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November 11 2013

“Smoky Joe Wood” with Gerald Wood


Smoky Joe Wood.

He impersonated a woman, had one of the most dominating seasons in major league history, and coached the Yale University baseball team.


With details culled from interviews and family archives, this biography, the first of this rugged player of the Deadball Era, brings to life one of the genuine characters in baseball history.


Listen in to a fascinating Clubhouse discussion led by Gerald Wood... Smoky Joe Wood.


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October 22 2013

“Beyond Home Plate: Jackie Robinson on Life After Baseball” with Michael G. Long


One of the most revered public figures of the 20th Century, Jackie Robinson is remembered for both his athletic prowess and his strong personal character.  The world knows him as the man who crossed baseball's color line, but there is much more to his legacy.  At the conclusion of his baseball career, Robinson continued in his pursuit of social progress.  Beyond Home Plate, an anthology of Jackie Robinson's columns in the New York Post and the New York Amsterdam News, offers fresh insight into the Hall of Famer's life and work following his historic years on the baseball diamond.


Robinson's syndicated newspaper columns afforded him the opportunity to provide rich social commentary, while simultaneously exploring his own life and experiences.  He was free to write about any subject of his choosing, and he took full advantage of this license, speaking his mind about everything from playing Santa to confronting racism, from loving his wife Rachel to despising Barry Goldwater, from complaining about Cassius Clay's verbosity to teaching Little Leaguers how to lose well.


Jackie wrote to prod and provoke, inflame and infuriate, and sway and persuade.  With their pointed opinions, these fascinating columns reveal that the mature Robinson was a truly American prophet, a civil rights leader in his own right, furious with racial injustice and committed to securing first-class citizenship for all. Jackie believed that his life after his baseball career was far more important than all of his baseball exploits.  Beyond Home Plate shows why he believed this so fervently.


Listen in to a fascinating Clubhouse discussion led by Michael G. Long...




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September 20 2013

Peter Magowan & the NY Giants Preservation Society


A night to remember.


The Bergino Baseball Clubhouse hosted the NY Giants Preservation Society for their final meeting of 2013.  The featured guest speaker: none other than Peter Magowan.


In a packed, yet relaxed, Clubhouse, Peter told stories about his life as a Giants fan, the Polo Grounds, AT&T Park, Barry Bonds, Willie Mays, Horace Stoneham, Stan Musial, and more.


Listen in to one of the great night’s in Clubhouse history, featuring the guys & dolls of the NY Giants Preservation Society and Peter Magowan...




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August 2 2013

All-Star Scouts Round Table — Part Two


Part Two of the All-Star Scouts Round Table...

On the morning of the All-Star Game, Baseball Prospectus hosted an All-Star Scouts Round Table in the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse.

The panel was moderated by Joe Hamrahi, president of Baseball Prospectus.  Joining Joe on the panel:

*Don Welke, senior special assistant to the GM & Scouting for the Texas Rangers

*Dennis Sheehan, northeast area supervisor for the Atlanta Braves

*Jason Parks of Baseball Prospectus

Listen in as these legendary gents discussed the art of scouting and then took questions from our VIP audience.  A fascinating morning in the Clubhouse.  Here's the conclusion, part two...



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All-Star Scouts Round Table — Part One


On the morning of the All-Star Game, Baseball Prospectus hosted an All-Star Scouts Round Table in the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse.

The panel was moderated by Joe Hamrahi, president of Baseball Prospectus.  Joining Joe on the panel:

*Don Welke, senior special assistant to the GM & Scouting for the Texas Rangers

*Dennis Sheehan, northeast area supervisor for the Atlanta Braves

*Jason Parks of Baseball Prospectus

Listen in as these legendary gents discussed the art of scouting and then took questions from our VIP audience.  A fascinating morning in the Clubhouse...
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July 12 2013

“The DiMaggios” with author Tom Clavin


The DiMaggios: Three Brothers, Their Passion for Baseball, Their Pursuit of the American Dream

In The DiMaggios, Tom Clavin draws on a wealth of source materials, interviews with family members and teammates, and in-depth reporting to reveal how three kids from an immigrant family of eleven found their way to the upper echelons of American sports and popular culture.  A vivid portrait of a family and the ways in which their shifting fortunes and status shaped their relationships, it is also a transporting exploration of an era and a culture, using baseball as a lens to view and understand American society in the twentieth century.

Listen in to a fascinating discussion from the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse, as Tom Clavin brings to life the great American story of three brothers -- Joltin' Joe, Dom, and Vince DiMaggio -- and the great American game, baseball, that would consume their lives...

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