You love baseball. You're here, reading this, so that's an easy assumption to make. Well, I love baseball, too. I'm lucky to be able to do what I do for a living, and I hope no one ever realizes how much fun I'm having while working, lest the privilege be taken away.
My love for baseball goes beyond the stars on the field, though. It's not just the Hall of Famers and their accomplishments that I sit and think about. I'm in awe of their abilities, of course, but I tend to turn my mind towards those who aren't as appreciated as they should be. Players who were highly capable and highly productive, but who weren’t recognized for their worth in their own era or treated as well by the passage of time as those inducted into Cooperstown.
We all have favorites like that—players who tend to be thrown into a hypothetical "Hall of Very Good." Thanks to Sky Kalkman and over three dozen contributors, the Hall of Very Good won't be hypothetical starting this summer:
The Hall of Very Good is an e-book meant to celebrate the careers of those who are not celebrated. It's not a book meant to reopen arguments about who does and does not deserve Hall of Fame enshrinement; rather, it's meant to remember those who, failing entrance into Cooperstown, will unfairly be lost to history. It's for the players we grew up rooting for, the ones whose best years led to flags and memories that will fly together forever. Players like Bret Saberhagen, Will Clark, Dwight Evans, Tim Salmon, Wilbur Wood, Orel Hershiser, and literally hundreds of others.
We're hosting a Kickstarter to raise money for this e-book, to be released this summer. While we've hit our initial goal, we promised to add more writers and invest more money into the book's creation if people would continue to donate. We've added new authors every week since we started the fundraiser and now boast a lineup with 40 of our (and hopefully your) favorite writers.
There will be at least 50 essays on “Hall of Very Good” players. We've lined up the likes of Rob Neyer, Joe Posnanski, Craig Calcaterra, Christina Kahrl, Steven Goldman, Jeff Passan, Will Leitch, King Kaufman, Jonah Keri, and more to tackle this project. We've tried to combine the best of the established writing world with the up-and-coming talent the Internet houses—we even got Old Hoss Radbourn to stop carousing long enough to write about his contemporaries—and we think this is going to be an amazing project that any baseball fan will enjoy. Given the lineup, I'm looking forward to reading it, too.
As I said, we've hit our initial goal, but a $10 donation now is the same as a pre-order and will cost you less than if you wait to purchase when it's released. You'll not only get the finished book a week early, but your name will be added to the donors page, noting your support of this project. You guarantee yourself a copy cheaper, earlier, help us complete the project, and get to point out that you helped it get made in the first place. I'm biased, but that sounds like a deal. The Kickstarter ends on Saturday, March 24, at 9:32 am, so there's still time—though not a whole lot of it—to get that pre-order in.
There are loads of details about the Hall of Very Good at the Kickstarter page, and you can follow Sky Kalkman, the official Hall of Very Good account, and myself on Twitter for updates. We appreciate any and all support for this project, and I hope we can make something that you will all love.
The Hall of Very Good will include contributions by current BP authors R.J. Anderson, Cee Angi, Tommy Bennett, Jonathan Bernhardt, Jay Jaffe, Matthew Kory, Ben Lindbergh, Sam Miller, Jason Parks, Bill Parker, and Jason Wojciechowski, as well as popular BP alums like Christina Kahrl, Jonah Keri, and Steven Goldman.