An unforgettable story of insight, inspiration, and faith
Growing up in a small town in the Panama Canal Zone, Rod Carew and his friends spent the long, temperate days hitting bottle caps with broomsticks, outfitted with mitts molded from paper bags, cardboard, and string. Each broomstick bat was customized by its owner; Carew's, slathered in black paint with yellow trim, bore in orange the number 42—that of his idol, Jackie Robinson. It was in this fashion, years before he would move to New York City in search of a better life, Carew honed the skills that would one day turn him into a perennial All-Star.
For 19 seasons, Carew was a maestro in the batter's box. Uncoiling from his crouched stance, he seemed to guide the ball wherever he wanted on the way to a whopping seven batting titles and a spot in the Baseball Hall of Fame.
If only everything in life had been as easy as he made hitting look.
In One Tough Out: Fighting Off Life's Curveballs, Carew reflects on the highlights, anecdotes, and friendships from his outstanding career, describing the abuse, poverty, and racism he overcame to even reach the majors. In conversational, confessional prose, he takes readers through the challenges he's conquered in the second half of his life, from burying his youngest daughter to surviving several near-fatal bouts with heart disease.
He also details the remarkable reason he's alive today: the heart transplant he received from Konrad Reuland, a 29-year-old NFL player he'd met years before. Carew explains how that astonishing connection was revealed and the unique bond he and his wife, Rhonda, have since forged with his donor's family. As Robinson once said, "A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives." As Carew recounts his story, Robinson's words take on an even greater resonance.