A GREAT view of the field at AT&T Park in Chattanooga during their pre-season open house!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Book: The Catcher was a Spy- The Mysterious Life of Moe Berg

This is another fun, well researched book about one of the many great characters who have been part of baseball, but his notoriety relates more to what he did outside of ball.

The title alone is eye catching. How can you not read a book about a a spying catcher?

The book is jam packed, and long, but it reads like a much shorter book. It has a great flow.

Berg, an intelligent guy in general, floats around baseball, and gets a bit of a following because he is Jewish. He spends time between law school and baseball, often a bit torn between the two.

He seems to read constantly, and even has rituals relating to how he reads the various daily papers. He speaks several languages too!

On a trip through Japan (he goes through Japan teaching baseball, and playing on an All Star team) he makes a trip to the top of a hospital and films the city. He is a bit sneaky about it, saying that he is at the hospital to visit a friends daughter.

Later, he shows his film footage to military officials who may have used the information from it during the Doolittle Raid.

The most interesting Moe Berg story involves his trip to Switzerland with orders to kill physicist Werner Heisenberg if Berg suspected the Germans were close to making a bomb. This part of the story gets complicated, but "The Catcher Was a Spy" does a great job covering the situation.

Moe Berg seems exciting and mysterious to some, but he also seems rude and strange to others. He spends time living with friends and family drifting around much of his life.

Berg is a great character in baseball history, and this book does justice to him. I read this book some time ago, but I still think about the book, and about Moe.

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