In the summer of
1973 Joe Castle was the boy wonder of baseball, the greatest rookie anyone had
ever seen. The kid from Calico Rock, Arkansas dazzled Cub fans as he hit
home run after home run, politely tipping his hat to the crowd as he shattered
all rookie records.
Calico Joe quickly
became the idol of every baseball fan in America, including Paul Tracey, the
young son of a hard-partying and hard-throwing Mets pitcher. On the day that
Warren Tracey finally faced Calico Joe, Paul was in the stands, rooting for his
idol but also for his Dad. Then Warren threw a fastball that would change their
In John Grisham’s
new novel the baseball is thrilling, but it’s what happens off the field that
makes Calico Joe a classic.
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