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Book details
  • Genre:FICTION
  • SubGenre:Sports
  • Language:English
  • Pages:296
  • eBook ISBN:9798350956603
  • Paperback ISBN:9798350956597

Pitching to Giraffes

by Tom Puszykowski

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Pitching to Giraffes follows a rambunctious college baseball team in 1972 chasing a championship. Their well-meaning coach is a fish out of water trying to corral their hijinks. They need leadership from their top pitcher, but John Light is distracted by the excitment and turmoil of the world around him and his own developing sense of morality, newly at odds with so much that he encounters. When a dorm room discussion reveals to John the apparent absence of a universally accepted basis for ethics, John feels compelled to accept the quest on humanity's behalf and pursues it through reading, art, nature, and self-examination. This warmhearted novel expands beyond baseball to explore how we determine the right thing to do and why we should do it. 


John Light, desperate to escape his introverted ways and more fully experience life, reluctantly goes out for his college baseball team in 1969. An unintended change in mechanics soon makes him his team's best pitcher. Major League scouts are coming around. But at the same time, an awakening appreciation and involvement with the cultural and political landscape weakens his engagement with baseball, and he is distracted by a need to legitimize his moral commitment by actively participating in the counterculture's quest to demand a better world. His team needs his help. They are chasing a championship over their arrogant rivals, but lingering past mistakes and hijinks threaten to undermine their goal. Their coach is organized and well-meaning but a fish out of water trying to corral their antics. A student activist with militant connections offers John the action he desperately seeks to legitimize his commitment, but at a cost. John grapples with the complications of losing oneself in a just cause. As the season counts down to its climactic final game, John, his girl friend, and several friends and teammates confront decisions that dig deep into who they are and who they want to be. This warm-hearted novel expands beyond baseball to explore how we determine the right thing to do and why we should do it. Can John discover within himself a second fastball, a  moral basis that promises a struggling humanity the ability to move through life with joy, nobility, and evolutionary grace?

"Pitching to Giraffes is a compelling novel with fascinating social and political commentary...I enjoyed the perfectly rendered first-person narrative voice, the beautiful prose, and the complex setting."--Readers' Favorite five stars

"Puszykowski is an adept writer, particularly about baseball."--"Kirkus Review"

About the author
The author played college baseball 1968 through 1972 and was enthusiastically engaged in the life-changing excitement and turmoil that flourished through those years.