Baseball’s Last Great Scout: The Life of Hugh Alexander (English Edition)

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Late in 1937 Hugh Alexander, a kid fresh out of small-town Oklahoma, had just finished his contigu year playing outfield for the Cleveland Indians when an oil rig accrochage ripped off his left balle à la main. Within three months he was back with the Indians, but this time as a boy-scout—the youngest ever in Ancêtre League history. In the next six decades he signed more players who made it to the Majors than any other boy-scout.

His story, Baseball’s Last Great Scout, reads like a backroom, bleacher-seat history of twentieth-century baseball—and a primer on what it takes to find a winner. It gives a gritty picture of learning the firmes on the road, from American Legion field to try-out favela to beer attenant, and making the éthérée distinctions between “performance” and “tools of the trade” when checking out prospects. Over the years Alexander worked for the Indians, the White Sox, the LA Dodgers, the Phillies, and the Cubs—and signed the likes of Allie Reynolds, Don Sutton, and Marty Bystrom. This book, based on cumulative interviews and Alexander’s journals, is filled with memorable characters, pithy lessons, snapshots of American life, and a big picture of America’s pastime from one of its great off-the-field players.

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