Heroes, Scamps, and Good Guys: 101 Colorful Characters from Cleveland Sports History

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9781886228672: Heroes, Scamps, and Good Guys: 101 Colorful Characters from Cleveland Sports History

“This book tells the story behind the story in Cleveland sports. You really get to know the players as people.” — WERE AM Radio

A veteran sportswriter profiles the most interesting Cleveland athletes ever.

It takes all kinds to fill out the sports pages. Heroes, like Jim Brown and Rocky Colavito. Scamps, from “Shoeless” Joe Jackson to Albert Belle. Good guys, like Bernie Kosar and Mark Price. And a few special cases like Gaylord Perry, who were a little bit of each.

Sportswriter Bob Dolgan coverd them all during six decades on the sports beat for The Plain Dealer. This book collects his best short profiles of the most interesting athletes ever to grace the fields, courts, and rinks of Cleveland.

Most of the big names are here. But Dolgan also shares the tales of some special people who deserve to be remembered as more than just a few statistics in a record book. Kevin Rhomberg, for instance, the Indians outfielder best known for his extraordinary superstition about being touched. And Eddie Klep, the only white player in the Negroe Leagues. And jovial Honest Yockim, diminutive denizen of Cleveland’s notorious Short Vincent sports gambling scene.

These stories will rekindle memories in any Cleveland sports fan and introduce some remarkable characters from the past who are worth getting to know. Look back on any era, and dozens of wonderfully memorable people stand out, sparkling like diamonds in the grass.

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From the Inside Flap:

It takes all kinds to fill out the sports pages.

Colorful characters crowd the world of sports, and we’ve certainly had our share in Cleveland. Look back on any era, and dozens of wonderfully memorable people stand out, sparkling like diamonds in the grass.

There have been heroes, like Rocky Colavito and Jesse Owens. Scamps, from Joe Jackson to Albert Belle. Good guys, like Lou Groza and Mark Price. And a few special cases—legendary greaseballer Gaylord Perry, for one—who were a little bit of each.

Sportswriter Bob Dolgan has written about them all while covering the sports beat for The Plain Dealer during the past six decades.

This book collects for the first time Dolgan’s best short profiles of the most interesting athletes—stars, bench-jockeys, and everyone in between—ever to grace the fields, courts, and rinks of Cleveland.

Dolgan recalls the onfield glory but looks beyond it, too, for the telling details that reveal the person behind the athlete.

Most of the big names are here. But Dolgan also shares the tales of some special people who deserve to be remembered as more than just a few statistics in a record book. Kevin Rhomberg, for instance, the Indians outfielder best known for his extraordinary superstition about being touched. And Eddie Klep, the only white player in the Negroe Leagues. And jovial Honest Yockim, diminutive denizen of Cleveland’s notorious Short Vincent sports gambling scene.

Heroes, scamps, and good guys. Their stories will rekindle memories in any Cleveland sports fan and introduce some remarkable characters from the past who are worth getting to know.

About the Author:

Bob Dolgan wrote thousands of columns, articles, and feature stories about sports for The Plain Dealer over six decades. His writing has also appeared in the Sporting News, Baseball Digest, and Golf Digest. He was named one of the top 10 sports columnists in America by the Associated Press Sports Editors in 1985, and has won many other national, state, and local sportswriting awards. He wrote frequently about sports history for The Plain Dealer, including contributions to a nationally recognized 1997 series on black baseball players and a 2001 series on the 100th anniversary of the Cleveland Indians. In 1999 he was inducted into the Cleveland Journalism Hall of Fame. He is also author of The Polka King, with Frank Yankovic. A Cleveland native and a graduate of John Carroll University, he lives in Willoughby Hills, Ohio.

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