Photo Credit: Jewish Press

Yet Klima repeatedly describes the ballpark during the Greenberg era as having “baby blue bleachers,” “pretty blue bleachers,” and “that little bomb shelter of a blue dugout.”

I enjoyed the book but I must offer a caveat. I heard plenty of foul language during my time in the military in the 1960s and on the baseball beat starting in the 1970s, but I never liked it. And I certainly don’t like seeing those words in print – especially the overuse of a certain four-letter word. And for that reason, I can’t recommend the book for youngsters.


For the oldsters among us who don’t mind salty language, you will get a fairly accurate picture of baseball during the war years from Klima and you can tell the stories to your grandchildren.

Klima relates none of the war exploits of former Jewish big leaguer Moe Berg and others. Berg, as many of you know, spoke several languages and infiltrated enemy territory on several occasions, bringing back valuable information while working for the OSS, the forerunner of the CIA.

The saddest and most patriotic war story, in my opinion, belongs to another former Jewish big leaguer. I’ll tell you his story next month.


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Author, columnist, and public speaker – worked for the Detroit Tigers (doing marketing and public relations) from 1983-1992 during which time he became the first Orthodox Jew to earn a World Series ring. He can be reached at