"Baseball Comes Home: A History Of The Baseball Hall Of Fame Game" by Dan Valenti
Baseball Comes Home traces the Baseball Hall of Fame Game beginning in 1939 - the year the National Baseball Hall of Fame opened in Cooperstown, NY - to the final scheduled contest in 2008 between the Chicago Cubs and San Diego Padres. The classic series began with a pickup game to mark Major League Baseball's Centennial on June 12, 1939. That game featured Babe Ruth, Lefty Grove, Honus Wagner, Eddie Collins, and other Hall of Famers and All Stars. The final game of the series had been set for historic Doubleday Field on June 16, 2008, but an apocalyptic storm produced torrential rain, pelting hail, howling winds, and a funnel cloud. The game was never played. In the book's final chapter, Valenti describes why this was the most fitting way to end such a glorious tradition.
More than just an account of the Baseball Hall of Fame Game, Baseball Comes Home tells an underlying story that's never been told before. The book paints a unique, year-to-year portrait of the ever-changing yet ever-constant tidal forces that drive the National Pastime. Baseball Comes Home documents in evocative text and compelling photos the game that annually paid tribute to baseball in the village that bears the honor of "Birthplace of Baseball." This keepsake book features more than 150 photos, most from the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum archives. Many are published here for the first time. Valenti tells the intriguing tale of a cherished tradition whose time came, went, and will never come again. In writing this book, the author has provided a missing piece of baseball history and has fashioned an invaluable contribution to American cultural history.