An inning later, Andrew McCutcheon rocketed one back about six inches over my head, hit the back wall and bounced back in my direction. A souvenir! The Pirates centerfield camera showed a shot of my back as I went for the baseball. Steve Blass, doing color, announced me as his co-author of his upcoming book Steve Blass: A Pirate For Life. A perfect segway to show the book jacket shortly thereafter. And when Tim Neverett, the play-by-play announcer, announced that the new book could be pre-ordered on Amazon.com, there was a significant bump in sales. And the fact that Steve's interview on the Tim McCarver Show earlier that morning aired also helped.
This is just the start. Local, national, and international media are starting to pick up on the anticipatioin of this upcoming book and the "Steve Blass Disease" story that Steve waited almost 40 years to tell in an intimate and detailed manner.
Oh, and the rest of Steve's life and how he overcame his inexplicable loss of control in the prime of his career is pretty inspiring as well. And add an entire chapter devoted to Game 7 (the most complete of that all time great game ever written) and another chapter devoted to a Roberto Clemente never before written about in such a familiar way, and this is no longer a regional book, but one that anyone in any sport in any part of the world can enjoy.
Fifth inning. Another shot back through the Pirates TV booth almost decapitates Steve. Tim picks up the ball, continues broadcasting, and flips me my second souvenir. Perfect. One for each of my kids.