Join us at the Ewald Branch Public Library (15175 East Jefferson Ave. Grosse Pointe Park, MI 48230) on Saturday, May 31 from 1:00-3:00pm to welcome Doug Wilson, author of the Michigan Notable Book Award-winner The Bird: The Life and Legacy of Mark Fidrych. He will be speaking as well as signing copies of his book, which will be available courtesy of Book Beat. This event is free and open to the public. Registration is required here. If you have any further questions, please contact Danis Houser at (313) 343-2074.
“Solid, understated prose allows both the happy and sadder moments to shine through on their merits. He [Wilson] has a fine ear for anecdotes—which he has collected from friends and family, teammates and secondary sources—and he never strangles the subject with too much inside baseball…The Bird is a well-written, definitive book about a good guy with a great story.”
—The Wall Street Journal
“Mark Fidrych exploded onto the scene in the summer of 1976 with the Detroit Tigers, capturing the hearts of Americans from coast to coast. Lanky with a curly mop, a nickname born of his resemblance to Sesame Street’s Big Bird would only hint at the large personality that was about to take baseball in a new direction. Known for wildly endearing antics such as throwing back balls that “had hits in them,” manicuring the mound of any cleat marks, talking to himself (and the ball for that matter), and shaking hands with just about everyone from groundskeepers to cops after games, The Bird infused each game with the fun, All-American spirit of 1970s baseball. A two-time All-Star player, Fidrych won nineteen games, along with the Rookie of the Year Award, becoming one of the biggest individual drawing cards baseball has ever seen.
Recreating the magic of an unforgettable era of baseball, The Bird shows how Fidrych was the player that brought a smile to your face, becoming a crossover pop culture icon and household name. Through meticulous research and interviews, Doug Wilson vividly recounts Fidrych’s struggles and final shining moments in the Minors, the tragic injury that signaled the beginning of the end of his career, through to his sudden death in 2009.
The Bird gives readers a long overdue look into the life of the refreshing rookie the likes of which baseball had never seen before, and has never seen since.”
Doug Wilson is an ophthalmologist who spent his youth memorizing the backs of baseball cards and dreaming of the big leagues. A member of the Society for American Baseball Research, he has written three books, the most recent is Brooks: The Biography of Brooks Robinson. He and his wife, Kathy, have raised three children and live in Columbus, Indiana. For more pictures and info about Brooks Robinson visit the facebook page “Brooks: The Biography of Brooks Robinson.”