Welcome to the Circus of Baseball: A Story of the Perfect Summer at the Perfect Ballpark at the Perfect Time

Books on Tape. Apr. 2023. 8:48 hrs. ISBN 9780593666678. $66.50. SPORTS
ESPN senior writer and radio cohost McGee smacks one out of the park with his memoir about the 1994 minor-league baseball season, recalling glory days complete with Dairy Queen Blizzards and a brief but spectacular mascot brawl. Fresh out of college in 1994, McGee interned for the Asheville (NC) Tourists, earning $100 per week. At historic McCormick Field, one of the oldest minor-league ballparks and a filming location for Bull Durham, McGee developed relationships with a rich cast of characters, including Grady Gardner, the head groundskeeper (who couldn’t work Tuesdays because that’s line-dancing night), James the Mountain Man (ball-retriever exemplar), and Julio, the ballpark cat. Listeners will be transported to the ballpark, soaking up a game on Thirsty Thursday or catching some entertainment from Captain Dynamite and his Exploding Coffin of Death—perhaps even glimpsing Michael Jordan or Macaulay Culkin. With his congenial Carolinian accent, the author’s narration heightens the listening experience and provides a behind-the-scenes look at minor league team management.
VERDICT This audiobook is an easy score worth the ticket price and a special treat for those yearning for bygone-era baseball or 1990s nostalgia.
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