Danny Tartabull

Position: Right Fielder

Teams:

  • Seattle Mariners (1984-1986)
  • Kansas City Royals (1987-1991)
  • New York Yankees (1991-1995)
  • Oakland Athletics (1995)
  • Chicago White Sox (1996)
  • Philadelphia Phillies (1997)

Notables:

  • Was a top rookie in 1986, hitting .270 with 25 HR and 96 RBI for Seattle
  • Best season was 1987 with Kansas City (.309, 34 HR, 101 RBI)
  • 1x All-Star (1991)
  • Signed by the Yankees after the 1991 season for over $5 million a year
  • Hit 31 HR’s for the Yankees in 1993
  • Made two appearances on the TV show Seinfeld (“The Chaperone” (Season 6, Episode 1), and “The Pledge Drive” (Season 6, Episode 3))

ALL IN THE FAMILY

Tartabull’s dad, Jose, also played in the Majors. He played from 1962 to 1970 with the Kansas City A’s, Boston Red Sox, and Oakland A’s. Jose is best remembered for a play he made while with the Red Sox. During the 1967 AL pennant race, Jose threw out Ken Berry at home plate to win a key game against the Chicago White Sox. The play has been immortalized in the novel, Tartabull’s Throw, by Henry Garfield.

If the book wasn’t already on your summer reading list, it certainly will be after you read this review:

This story begins in the late summer of 1967, as Cyrus Nygerski, a .175 hitter, is released from his minor league baseball team in Beloit, WI. However, the novel’s focus soon shifts, as Cyrus meets Cassandra, a girl fresh from the Summer of Love in San Francisco, whom he is convinced he has met before, and who may be a werewolf. After this meeting, readers are propelled on a wild ride from Maine to New York to Chicago and California. Along the way, they encounter a time portal that allows for parallel lives lived in alternate time lines, and shifts in narrative voice and point of view, with a few fairly graphic sex scenes and some gruesome encounters with violent humans and werewolves thrown in. It becomes a little confusing until the extremely dense and detailed explanation comes at the end. However, the parallel stories are put together with the intricacy of an elaborate jigsaw puzzle, and the author evokes the feel of the country in the late `60s, the uniting spirit of a tight pennant race, the coast of Maine, and the scruffy life in the lower minor leagues. And fans of the two other books about Cyrus Nygerski (Room 13 [1997; o.p.] and Moondog [1995; o.p., both St. Martin’s]) will enjoy this prequel. It’s an unusual and challenging mix for fantasy/sci-fi and sports fans. (Reviewed by School Library Journal)

Uhh…what?

Danny Tartabull’s son, Zach, is also worth mentioning. Just a few weeks ago (July 13, 2008), Zach was the subject of an article in the L.A. Times sports section. Apparently, 16 year-old Zach is one of the top wide receivers in Southern California. He participates in football and track at Valencia High School, but does not play baseball because “It’s a little too boring for me,” he says. I wonder if he has read Tartabull’s Throw.

Wow, I bet when you started reading this blog you didn’t think you would be reading about werewolves, time travel, and high school football. And now you have a sudden urge to go to the library, don’t you?

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3 Responses to “Danny Tartabull”

  1. Tartabull’s Throw is without question the best baseball novel I have ever read.

  2. I am a huge Danny Tartabull fan. He will never be forgotten. FYI, Danilo also appeared on the TV show “Married With Children”. I know many facts about “Bull”. Just figured I would post to give you some more info.

  3. Wow. Sounds like a great book. Not every baseball player gets his name in the title of a werewolf/time travel novel.

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