Little Joe Cronin’s dream was to play big league baseball. In 1916 he played on his first organized baseball team; he was a fifth grader. As a young adult, he watched players such as Ty Cobb and learned from them. It was almost unbelievable to Joe when he became the starting shortstop against the World Champions. He proved to be a fantastic shortstop. Clark Griffin hired Joe to be the manager of his ball team, because he “thinks baseball all the time. He’s smart and he’s a fighter.”
Bob Gorman begins the introduction to In Your Face In Your Heart with a disclaimer, “Do not read this book unless you enjoy baseball.” I admit I know more about Little League than I do Major League, yet I enjoyed this book. Baseball was Cronin’s life; he breathed baseball. He played, managed, and eventually became American League President. However, he was more than that he was a man of great passion, a passion for life. As “ Rev. Joseph Scannell, of the Roxbury Mission, reminded more than a thousand mourners that “Joe Cronin should be remembered as a man with a great heart who warmed the lives of those he touched.” You do not have to know everything about baseball to recognize a great man. Bob Gorman has does a wonderful job sharing The Joe Cronin Story. He paints a picture of Joe, his life, his family and of course baseball. Fans of nonfiction, biography, and baseball will not want to miss this one.