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The Ball
The Ball

The Ball

Mark McGwire's 70th Home Run Ball and the Marketing of the American Dream


144 Pages, 6 x 9

Formats: Trade Paper, EPUB

Trade Paper, $9.99 (CA $12.99) (US $9.99)

Publication Date: May 2019

ISBN 9781625361431

Rights: WOR

Doppelgang Press (May 2019)


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Originally published in 1999, Daniel Paisner's THE BALL: Mark McGwire's 70th Home Run Ball and the Marketing of the American Dream was hailed as "one of the great quirky masterpieces of baseball journalism" by the editors of, and named an "Top Ten Sports Book of the Year." THE BALL is a wistful parable about our national pastime. It chronicles the distinctly American path of Mark McGwire's record-setting seventieth home run ball—from the moment it was stitched in a Rawlings factory in Costa Rica and shipped (eventually) to St. Louis; to the moment it left the hands of Montreal rookie hurler Carl Pavano and collided with McGwire's "Big Stick" bat; to the moment it was "caught" by a researcher working on the heralded Human Genome Research Project; to the moment it was won at auction for $3.08 million dollars by a comic-book maven. Shot through with colorful characters, high drama and rich baseball history, it is must-reading for anyone interested in what drove our various marketplaces—and collective fantasies—at the end of the twentieth century. As baseball fans commemorate the twentieth anniversary of the historic home run race of 1998, they look back as well to a more innocent time in the game—a time before the taint of steroids and the reliance on sabermetrics that has transformed the way the game is played and the way it is remembered.

Author Biography

DANIEL PAISNER is well-known to readers as the author of more than sixty books, including sixteen New York Times best-sellers. As a ghostwriter, he has written more than fifty books in collaboration with athletes, actors, politicians, business leaders and ordinary individuals with extraordinary stories to tell, including tennis great Serena Williams; Ohio governor John Kasich; football legend Ray Lewis; Academy Award winners Whoopi Goldberg, Denzel Washington and Anthony Quinn; and former New York Mets pitcher Ron Darling. His baseball-themed novel A SINGLE HAPPENED THING was published in April, 2016 by Relegation Books—the third "first novel" from Paisner, who prefers the enthusiasm and benefits-of-the-doubt that attach to first-time novelists over the grudging disinterest that seems to greet mid-list writers upon publication.