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Class A  : baseball in the middle of everywhere
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Fiction/Biography Profile
Minor league baseball
Minor league baseball teams
Small town life
Sports fans
American culture
Clinton, Iowa - Midwest (U.S.)
Time Period
2010 -- 21st century
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  Library Journal Review

This is a hard-hitting examination of minor league baseball and some of the major issues of life in small-town America, in this instance, Clinton, IA. At the hands of Iowan Mann (writer-in-residence, Univ. of Iowa, Iowa City), we confront the town and its team, the Lumberkings. Clinton was once home to more millionaires per capita than any other place in America, but is now a dull image of its past; its Class A team in the Seattle Mariners organization is one of around 200 U.S. minor league teams. In this compelling book Mann seeks to humanize not only the players but also the fans who comprise the family of this small-town field of dreams. Overshadowing much of the story is the decline of Clinton, a once proud, mighty union town. At bottom, this work examines honestly, seriously, and at times comically dreams dashed, dreams deferred, and perhaps dreams yet to be realized. VERDICT Like a mixture of Bull Durham, American Gothic, a Coen brothers film, and a Springsteen song. Highly recommended for any serious lover of baseball, small-town America, contemporary American popular culture, or just plain good nonfiction.-SKS (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
<p>An unforgettable chronicle of a year of minor-league baseball in a small Iowa town that follows not only the travails of the players of the Clinton LumberKings but also the lives of their dedicated fans and of the town itself.<br>  <br> Award-winning essayist Lucas Mann delivers a powerful debut in his telling of the story of the 2010 season of the Clinton LumberKings. Along the Mississippi River, in a Depression-era stadium, young prospects from all over the world compete for a chance to move up through the baseball ranks to the major leagues. Their coaches, some of whom have spent nearly half a century in the game, watch from the dugout. In the bleachers, local fans call out from the same seats they've occupied year after year. And in the distance, smoke rises from the largest remaining factory in a town that once had more millionaires per capita than any other in America.<br>  <br> Mann turns his eye on the players, the coaches, the fans, the radio announcer, the town, and finally on himself, a young man raised on baseball, driven to know what still draws him to the stadium. His voice is as fresh and funny as it is poignant, illuminating both the small triumphs and the harsh realities of minor-league ball. Part sports story, part cultural exploration, part memoir, Class A is a moving and unique study of why we play, why we watch, and why we remember.</p>
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