TCR Correspondent Coverboy

Since season's bitterly abrupt end I have been busy putting finishing touches on my first book, Far From the Trees: The Troubled Sons of an American Neighborhood. If nothing else the gang hereabouts should like the cover design. You can check that out without even buying the book, though it goes without saying that I hope you do both.

Copies can be ordered through either Amazon or Barnes & Noble online; hopefully a wider distribution is forthcoming - the book has gotten off to a tremendous start here in Des Moines. The local independent bookstore where we held a launch party immediately sold out of its hundred copies and has a waiting list of more than 200 and counting in anticipation of their next shipment. Amazon quickly sold out of its first batch.

Far From the Trees is a composite memoir from the neighborhood where I grew up; sort of a before/after the wild '60's seasoned with Cub angles throughout - forgive this shameless self-promotion offered for your consideration.

Happy holidays everybody - here's to a healthy 2009!

MW...

Comments

Interesting subject, Mike. I'm ordering a copy now. I've heard your essays on Iowa Public Radio (though I don't live in Iowa) and have really enjoyed them. Keep writing, sir. And best of luck on your new release.

Thanks Andrew! Hope you like the book. I'll tell you this much about it: one of the old neighbors from my childhood just had his life sentence commuted yesterday by President Bush. His story is part of the whole. Feel free to comment here after you've had a chance to read; appreciate your patience in getting a copy!

Mike -- Congrats on the book. I'll be ordering my copy right away. Best of luck.

Thanks to you too, Sweet Lou, and in advance to anybody else who seeks out the book. I'm heading for Christmas Eve church; can't wait to hear 'Silent Night' @ end of the service by nothing but candlelight; merry Christmas everybody; talk to you soon...MW

Thanks mike. Putting a copy on my amazon wish list...good writing

Congratulations, Mike, and the very best of luck.

Most of us here think we can make better moves than Hendry. Here's our chance to do it. Well sort of...

http://2ksports.com/games/mlbmanager

neat.

i hope it's as robust as it looks...and the navigation menus aren't clumsy.

Congrats, Mike!!!

Congrats. Sounds like interesting reading. I'll be visiting Des Moines this weekend, is it in stock at any of the bookstores there? Just curious, are you part of the family that owns Wellmans on Ingersal. I lived a year across the street from that joint and helped keep it in business.

Hey Sonicwind! Yes, I owned the pub until I sold it a couple years ago. The book is out-of-stock on local shelves temporarily due to better than anticipated initial demand, but can be ordered online as mentioned in my original post. Hope you get a copy - if/when you do lemme know your impression[s]...

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  • Old news, sorry if it's 3/44-

    J-Hey being classy by repaying an old teammate:
    http://www.foxsports.com/mlb/story/chicago-cubs-ja...

    Ryno 23 min 58 sec ago view
  • Sigh.

    Ok... maybe.

    Ryno 50 min 7 sec ago view
  • With Paredes moving to 3B, how do you see playing time shaking out between him and Galindo? Do you think Galindo gets starts at 1B? Galindo is more of a prospect than Paniagua, right?

    bradsbeard 52 min 9 sec ago view
  • Phil, your knowledge of the Cubs Minor League system is unbelievable.

    Hagsag 55 min 14 sec ago view
  • This kid would be a key piece in a trade for a pitcher, imo.

    The E-Man 58 min 28 sec ago view
  • This might be old news but Hammel was on ESPN 1000 and said that he changed his diet and workout routine over the off season and tweaked his delivery so it'd be more repeatable so he'd have a better second half. So...some cause for optimism anyway.

    johann 2 hours 18 min ago view
  • CHILDERS: RHSP Dylan Cease and LHSP Bryan Hudson are probably the top two SP prospects in the organization right now. 

    LHSP Jose Paulino has electric stuff (91-94 MPH fastball with sinking action and a mid-80's slider), but he also has trouble commanding it.  

    RHP Jose Albertos (2015 IFA - Mexico - $1.5M bonus) just turned 17 in November, and his fastball already sits at 95-96. He also throws a curve and a change-up, and is fairly advanced for a kid his age.   

    Arizona Phil 2 hours 27 min ago view
  • AZBOBBOP: Most of 2016 draft picks will get assigned to either Eugene or AZL Cubs, but the Opening Day Eugune roster will probably be almost 100% from the Extended Spring Training squad roster (pending the arrival of draft picks).

    I think I can probably tell you which pitchers and players at EXST are in contention for roster slots at Eugene and which are in contention for slots with the AZL Cubs - AS THINGS STAND RIGHT NOW - (listed alphabetically):  

    * bats or throws left 
    # bats both

    Arizona Phil 2 hours 55 min ago view
  • Eloy Jimenez atop the leader board for minor-league home runs in the Cub system, with seven. Tied with Balaguert and Vogelbach, two 24-year-olds. Jimenez won't be 20 until late November. Leads the Midwest League in SLG and OPS. Maybe he'll get promoted to the Myrtle Beach squad that visits Woodbridge, VA, in June or Frederick, MD, in August.

    Watched two Pelican games at Frederick the other week. Was most impressed by Stinnett and Happ. Happ may swing harder than Javier Baez, though more compactly. (Also got to see Brockmeyer hit a bomb.)

    VirginiaPhil 3 hours 17 min ago view
  • E-MAN: Jose Paniagua isn't a string-bean, but I wouldn't say he necessarily bulked-up during the 2015-16 off-season  either, He led the DSL Cubs in HR and doubles in 2014, and he showed XBH power when he arrived in Mesa last year, leading the AZL Cubs in HR, doubles, and RBI in 2015. It's just that he has taken his HR power to a new level this year.

    Paniagua displayed plus-HR power in Cactus League Minor League Spring Training games in March, and that got him a slot on the South Bend Opening Day roster. But he was sent to EXST after only six MWL games.  

    Arizona Phil 3 hours 23 min ago view
  • Rob Richardson 3 hours 52 min ago view
  • Martinez is one of my least favorite pitchers in baseball. I'd love to see a game like yesterday's against him.

    Send Soler down!

    Old and Blue 4 hours 46 min ago view
  • Awesome thanks AZ

    Old and Blue 4 hours 48 min ago view
  • Great report, Phil! This organization has so many hitters to be excited about.

    John Beasley 5 hours 38 min ago view
  • Ben Zobrist is very enjoyable to watch!!!!!!

    Hagsag 8 hours 26 min ago view
  • given that he seems to only be throwing low 90s these days rather than the 93-96mph he used to throw, along with his wildness issues this year, he may end up passing through.

    i dunno if something is wrong with him physically or his past shoulder issues has rendered him what he currently is, but he's been throwing a lot of sliders he can't control well and his fastball isn't as sharp. even when his slider wasn't working in a game he was still throwing a lot of them.

    crunch 9 hours 39 min ago view