Rick Dempsey’s Caught Stealing: Unbelievable Stories From a Lifetime of Baseball
by Johnathon Schaech
Free Excerpt From The Introduction!
To celebrate opening day of the 2014 MLB season, here’s a free excerpt from Rick Dempsey’s Caught Stealing: Unbelievable Stories From a Lifetime of Baseball by Johnathon Schaech for your reading pleasure:
FROM THE INTRODUCTION:
When I grew up in Maryland, the Baltimore Orioles were a serious force in baseball. They played the Orioles Way, which was a belief that hard work and fundamentals were the key to winning and success.
Growing up with the Orioles in the 70s and 80s I learned to believe in magic—that anything is possible. Orioles’ magic became a part of me. That magic allowed me to become a dreamer and encouraged me to leave Baltimore for Hollywood to become an entertainer.
I was thirteen years old when the Orioles won the World Series—they did it with a lot of come-from-behind victories, with a new hero every game, and with a team philosophy of never quitting. All those things embody Rick Dempsey and that’s why he became the MVP of the ’83 World Series. He just never quit, no matter what.
I wanted to write a book about never giving up in a way that made the reader’s experience better as they read it.
My friend and fellow actor/entertainer, Josh Charles, says best what this book is all about: “When I was growing up in Baltimore, Rick Dempsey was my favorite Oriole because he always seemed like he was having so much fun between the lines. As a kid, that resonated with me in a profound way. His infamous Babe Ruth impersonations on the tarp during rain delays will forever be etched in my mind. He understood that this game is ultimately here to entertain people. Well, this book does that satisfyingly well and helps me remember, as an adult, why I love this beautiful game and the characters associated with it.”
When my childhood hero Rick Dempsey invited my writing partner, Richard Chizmar, and me to Camden Yards to watch an O’s game in 2002, you can imagine my excitement. Just before the game, Rick spotted us in the stands and gestured for us to come down on the field. It was the first time I had ever stepped onto a Major League playing field and I felt like a thirteen-year-old boy all over again.
Rick guided us to the dugout and began to tell us about a story that needed to be made into a movie. Chizmar and I were blown away by his story and began writing the screenplay. Spending so much time with Rick while pitching the screenplay, I found he was a great and charismatic storyteller and had more than just one unbelievable story to tell. Thus, this book.
I called up Chizmar and a bunch of other friends who love baseball as much as I do to help me put together this book.
As Tom Hanks would say, “There’s no crying in baseball.” But there’s certainly room to laugh. That is what this book will do. You won’t believe these stories are true, but by some sort of Rick Dempsey magic, they are.
I asked my buddy and fellow baseball lover, David Duchovny, to give it a read and this is what he said: “Caught Stealing manages to walk the fine line between fan and fanatic without straying too far into foul territory. It’s everything about baseball that you were afraid to ask. A perfect book to pick up again and again. Even though Johnathon is obviously an Orioles fan, I doff my aging Yankees cap to him.”
Thank you all—enjoy.
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