Cardboard Gods and Our Baseball Obsessions

Wilker has written an extraordinarily honest book about growing up and forging adult lives and adult relationships which, while not really about baseball, still made me feel like I was back at an almost empty Candlestick Park watching the Giants lose, playing ball in the Presidio, reading yet another baseball magazine or book and, yes, buying a pack of baseball cards and giving the gum to my brother.

Reading Willie Mays, Reflecting on San Francisco and Willie McCovey


During his time in San Francisco, Mays rapidly became integrated into that city’s civic leadership becoming a fixture at fundraising events and in the media while becoming close with San Francisco’s political, financial and cultural elite. The San Francisco in which Hirsch describes Mays as living is one about which little is written. It was a San Francisco beginning to undergo substantial change, but one that was still, after a fashion, a prosperous post-war middle class American city. Hirsch’s descriptions of that world should be interesting to San Franciscans who do not even like baseball.