Brooks: The Biography of Brooks Robinson

The Definitive biography of Brooks Robinson, the greatest fielding third baseman in baseball history, icon of the Baltimore Orioles, Hall of Famer and hero of the 1970 World Series.

Named as a finalist for the 2014 CASEY Award as the best baseball book of the year.

"I've known Brooks for more than 40 years and this is the most thorough and detailed biography of him I've ever read. And I've read them all." Roy Firestone, Emmy-award winning broadcaster and former Oriole spring training batboy. 

Growing up in Little Rock:

 Brooks Robinson grew up in this house in Little Rock, Arkansas, within sight of the capital dome. His father was a fireman.
His teams were successful even at an early age. Below is the Boys' Club team that won the State Championship in 1948. Brooks, 11 years old at the time, is in the back row, second from the right.

Junior high picture, 8th grade:

 1951, Junior High Student Council Officer:

Brooks spent most of his youth playing baseball at Lamar Porter Field in Little Rock. An impressive field, built during the 1930s by the WPA, it was the first baseball field in Arkansas that had lights. It has been renovated and is now a National Historic Landmark and is still used by high school and RBI teams.

Little Rock had the best American Legion team in the region. They regularly won the Arkansas state championship and often had 7 or 8 kids who signed professionally. Below is the 1953 team that won it's second consecutive state championship. Brooks, back row, third from the right, was the team's second baseman.

Off the field, Brooks was a regular guy, below top photo (bottom right corner) and lower photo in the middle with his arms around his friends.

Brooks attended Little Rock Central High School, at the time one of the largest high schools in the country.
In addition to being a star athlete, he was one of the most popular kids in school, He was voted Best All-Around in the school's yearbook.

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There was never a doubt about Brooks' ability with a glove. After his first workout at Baltimore's Memorial Stadium in front of manager Paul Richards, the Orioles first baseman Eddie Waitkus walked over to a group of reporters and said of the skinny 18-year-old, "I know this sounds crazy, but that kid has the best hands I've ever seen."

Over the next 22 years, no one would ever see any better.

Just seeing if you're paying attention. This picture is reversed. He never played left-handed. But, interestingly, he was left handed in almost everything besides baseball. He even writes left handed. Some felt this may have helped his fielding as he was able to wear his glove on his dominant hand. 

Review in Washington Post


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