Thursday, December 8, 2016
Jim Endaro Kentucky Travels.blogspot.com
UnCORKED! Kentucky Sports Legend Corky Withrow by Sherrill Williams and Charles Thurman
I used to really enjoy following baseball. I still do, but not as much as I did before. I still enjoy a good book about a former pro baseball player.
AND, I love books about guys who, well, didn't exactly go on to be Hall of Famers. I think we all know the stories of Ruth and Mantle. I love hearing stories about guys struggling through the minors. I want to read about someone who had his cup of coffee in the Majors, and then had a career in something else later on in life.
UnCORKED! Kentucky Sports Legend Corky Withrow by Sherrill Williams and Charles Thurman is one of those books.
PLUS, it is a book about a guy who grew up in Kentucky. He hung out in some of the same areas I did (just, many years earlier).
UnCORKED! tells about Central City Kentucky's Corky Withrow. Most of the first part of the book follows Corky through his super star high school basketball career. I especially enjoyed reading about his encounters with schools I am familiar with in Western Kentucky. Horrible (and hysterical) pranks are played- Corky is the victim of a terrible one himself. He is a member of some very exciting teams, including one that could almost be called perfect.
Eventually he is able to play some college basketball though his college basketball career gets very complicated as Corky signs a professional baseball contract after high school.
The second part of the book deals mostly with his baseball career. He has a long and interesting career in baseball, mostly in the minors though he does get to play at the highest level with the St. Louis Cardinals!
Characters you might expect pop up, including the Everly Brothers, James Best, Stan Musial, Hank Aaron, and many Kentucky basketball legends.
I want to mention again that the part covering Corky's high school basketball days was much more interesting than I expected. The authors obviously did a ton of research into specific seasons, games, stats, etc.
This is easily one of my all time favorite Kentucky sports books.
The Acclaim Press sports stars, authors and entourage holding court at the Kentucky Book Fair in Frankfort recently. L–R: St. Louis Cardinal veteran Corky Withrow, Ky Basketball legends Jerry Fultz and J.R. VanHoos, author Charlie Thurman, WWF star Hillbilly Jim Morris, and authors Sherrill Williams and Gary P. West.
“In the 1950s, Central City’s Corky Withrow was as big as it got. ... His name took on rock star status, even to the point of upstaging two other local boys of notoriety, Don and Phil Everly.” – Gary P. West, author