Boys of Summer Head to Cape Cod

Eddie McElroy ‘15
EE Contributor

The Last Best League, by Jim Collins, provides a detailed look into the Cape Cod baseball league: one of the best amateur baseball leagues in the country. For the course of one summer author Jim Collins follows players and coaches from one team, the Chatham A’s, as they compete against other top talent. Collins also spent a summer as a part of the Chatham A’s team before an injury ended his career, so there is no one better to write about the highs and lows the players experience during the long summer on the Cape. The book is a great read for any baseball fan or young player with dreams of playing professionally. It is also recommended for Trumbull athletes as one of the star players on the team was from Trumbull.

In my opinion The Last Best League is a very good book, and I enjoyed reading it from beginning to end. Jim Collins did a great job describing the whole league and not just the baseball part of it. He made sure to include the players experiences outside of the game to give readers the true feel of what the league is like. I also liked how Collins decided to focus more on certain players than others. This gave me a better idea of what the League means to the players and it helps the reader feel closer to the players during this very important summer in their lives. Danny Ruchalski, a sophomore at Trumbull High School, also really enjoyed this book. He said, “I loved reading this book. Since I play baseball I really liked to see how these players became so successful and how hard they had to work to get to where they are. The fact that one of the players on the team, Jamie D’Antona, was from Trumbull made the book even more interesting”.

The story starts off by describing the Cape Cod Baseball League: A ten team league made up of some of the best amateur baseball players in America. Throughout the course of the story Jim Collins follows the Chatham A’s in their pursuit of winning the League championship. He tells you about the players and coaches and the different stories behind all of their backgrounds, as well as documenting the actual games the A’s played. The Author does a great job showing the highs and lows the players and coaches go through during this very important summer in their lives. He also shows the passion and love of the game that is shared by all the athletes in their drive to make it to the professional league. In The Last Best League, Jim Collins shows you what the Cape Cod Baseball League is really all about, and what it takes for these players to reach their ultimate goal.

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