The Dad Report by Kevin CookThe Dad Report by Kevin Cook

The Dad Report

byKevin Cook

Paperback | June 28, 2016

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An unforgettable look at how baseball families share our national pastime.

Baseball honors legacies—from cheering the home team to breaking in an old glove handed down from father to son. In The Dad Report, award-winning sportswriter Kevin Cook weaves a tapestry of uplifting stories in which fathers and sons—from the sport's superstars to Cook and his own ball-playing father—share the game.

Almost two hundred father-son pairs have played in the big leagues. Cook takes us inside the clubhouses, homes, and lives of many of the greats. Aaron Boone follows grandfather Bob, father Ray, and brother Bret to the majors—three generations of All-Stars. Barry Bonds and Ken Griffey Jr. strive to outdo their famous dads. Michael Jordan walks away from basketball to play minor-league baseball—to fulfill his father's dream.

In visiting these legendary families, Cook discovers that ball-playing families are a lot like our own. Dan Haren regrets the long road trips that keep him from his kids. Ike Davis and his father, a former Yankee, debate whether Ike should pitch or play first base. Buddy Bell leads a generation of big-leaguers determined to open their workplace—the clubhouse—to their kids.

Framing The Dad Report is the story of Kevin Cook's own father, Art Cook, a minor-league pitcher, a loveable rogue with a wicked screwball. In Art's later years, Kevin phoned him almost every night to talk baseball. They called those nightly conversations "the Dad Report." In time, Kevin came to see that these conversations were about much more than the game. That's what this book is about: the way fathers and sons talk baseball as a way of talking about everything—courage, fear, fun, family, morality, mortality, and how it's not whether you win or lose that counts, it's how you share the game.

A former senior editor at Sports Illustrated, Kevin Cook is the author of Titanic Thompson, Tommy's Honor, Kitty Genovese and The Dad Report. He lives in New York City.
Title:The Dad ReportFormat:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 8.2 × 5.5 × 0.7 inPublished:June 28, 2016Publisher:NortonLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0393352854

ISBN - 13:9780393352856

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Read from the Book

"Dad and I didn't talk much for years. What was there to say? We weren’t about to discuss our feelings, our health, politics, or religion. In time, though, we learned that we could always talk baseball. 'Randy Johnson 15 Ks!' can be another way to say hello. We wound up talking on the phone almost every night, almost always about baseball. We talked baseball as a way of talking about everything else, and we named our nightly call the Dad Report."—from the Introduction

Editorial Reviews

[Cook] deftly interweaves sports and family stories…the book works on the same level the game does: as a time machine shuttling between childhood games of catch and wobbly video of Babe Ruth hitting a homer.—Kate Tuttle, Boston GlobeWhat makes Cook special as a sportswriter is that he is able to balance the joy and pain of being a fan with the investigative and analytical skill of a professional journalist…. Cook’s prose has the perfect conversational style for combining baseball’s childlike dreams and grown-up realities into a satisfying narrative.—Publishers WeeklyLyrical…an affectionate look at the diamond dads and their (mostly) sensational sons.—David M. Shribman, Wall Street JournalKevin Cook, the son of a minor-league screwball pitcher, has just the right voice to explore how baseball connects fathers and sons. The Dad Report is a smart, fresh take on a timeless topic.—Tom Verducci, Sports Illustrated and Fox Sports[T]he ultimate Father’s Day book, albeit one the sons will want to read, too.—Allen Barra, Dallas Morning NewsA book both about baseball families and for baseball families. But most of all, it is perhaps the best book ever on how baseball creates family. A great piece of sports literature.—Allen Barra, author of Yogi Berra: The Eternal YankeeThe part baseball plays in the bonds between fathers and sons has enduring appeal. Still, even worthy subjects can be exhausted. But wait—Kevin Cook finds a different way in. The distinctly different stories of fathers and sons who played in the big leagues—with just enough of the Cook family’s own connections to the game—make The Dad Report such an enjoyable and informative read.—Bob Costas