Allen Barra
March 16, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

Prophet of the Sandlots: Journeys with a Major League Scout

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Mark Winegardner
publisher
Atlantic Monthly Press
genre
Sports, Nonfiction

We gave it an A+

This is an irresistible book. Mark Winegardner, the author of the delightfully whacked-out book Elvis Presley Boulevard, joins the legendary scout Tony Lucadello (discoverer of Fergie Jenkins and Mike Schmidt, among 47 other major leaguers) for his final seasonnon the road. Winegardner finds poetry in Lucadello and in small-town sporting life-American Legion games, town ballparks, 80-year-old scouts who play fungo with 13-year-old batboys. Prophet of the Sandlots is the real cloth of which Field of Dreams is just a polyester version. Imagine a real-life story in which the scout, nearly 80 years old, dies just after completing his last road trip; three weeks later, his star pupil, Mike Schmidt, ”the one he was proudest of, not only for being the best third baseman in baseball history, but, more so, for living up to the scout’s standards of character,” sits in front of his locker, announcing his retirement and talking about his beginnings in pro ball when he was signed by Tony Lucadello. Myself, I see Tom Hanksnksd Art Carney in the leads. Whaddaya think, Ken Wahl as Mike Schmidt? A+

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