I just want to say I really enjoy your book "Baseball Letters." I just transferred to Texas A&M Kingsville from Santa Rosa Jr. College to play baseball, and your book is the only one I brought with me from California. Since reading your book for the first time 4 or 5 years ago, I have written a bunch of letters myself, and received quite a few awesome responses. I just wanted say that. Good luck to you and I look forward to future books!
Posted by: Dan Rogers
at September 1, 2008 2:01 PM
I just read your book - Every Pitcher Tells A Story - and loved it. I am ordering your other two books now and will tell everyone I know how great your book is.
Posted by: Jim
at December 25, 2007 11:54 AM
Hi Seth: I have to say your site is fantastic. I have enjoyed your books very much, they have brought the spirit of baseball back into today's times. I recently purchased your dvd, the "Last Giant". I will purchase "Beatle Stories\" when it comes out. Hope to see more wonderful books and movies. P.S. Have you thought about doing a book on the singer songwriter\'s on the stories behind the songs. Cheers aaron
Posted by: Aaron Campbell
at November 15, 2007 12:15 PM
Seth, My name is Nate Smigel, born Sept. 20, 1934 in South Philadelphia. I'm a retired high school teacher and Head Baseball Coach at Simon Gratz High School in North Phillie (most famous Gratz baseball player was Roy Campanella.
I found your book "Every Pitcher Tells a Story" in Scottsdale, AZ (now live there). What a find! I could not do anything but peruse the book and reflect on some of my cherished life experiences growing up with baseball:
*My first baseball game I saw...Sunday, May 5, 1945 - St. Louis vs. Phila A's. I went just to see one-armed Pete Gray. The picture in your book took me back in time.
As a college student at Temple University (Phila), I wrote a poem for my English literature class about a baseball pitcher. Your poem had me dig out my poem and again visit back in time - approx. 1956.
In 1996 I met one of my baseball idols, Max Patkin "The Crown Prince of Baseball" which is the name of his book- which you must read and develop into a movie. I'd love to talk to you about it, and Jim Carey might be a good "Max." I saw Max perform and he truely was the greatest baseball and any other kind of clown you could mention.
Posted by: Nate Smigel
at November 7, 2007 8:52 AM
Seth I enjoyed your book "Every Pitcher tells a story". I'm 60 years old live in Canada. I began writing to former big league baseball players in 1981. I've been fortunate enough to have contacted 952 former players who appeared in a big league box score during the 1950's. I have also had letters from over 300 former players who played in the late 30's and 40's. Most of the players I've heard from answered a questionnaire that I had included in the envelope. It would be nice to hear from you sometime Seth.
Posted by: Barry McMahon
at June 18, 2007 11:16 AM
I hope you're ready to read a little bit, because I have a lot to say! I'm a teacher in Sioux Falls, SD. I've read through your "Baseball Letters" books and got inspired. I was struck by the fact that you were a song writer. I've actually toured around for about 10 years, but never made any good money on the deal. So I resorted to teaching (which ironically doesn't pay well either!)
Anyway, long story short, I've always had my students interview other people. Each other, teachers, parents, people in the community, etc. When I read your book, I was inspired to write my own heroes to ask advice and such to use as examples in my class (walk the walk). I now have exactly 250 (as of yesterday) interviews both from sport stars (John Wooden, Bob Cousy, Tom Watson, George Blanda, Bud Selig, Bowie Kuhn, etc.), former cabinet members, and historical figures such as Harry Houdini's last assistant, a Titanic survivor, the man who interrigated Lee Harvey Oswald, and World War One veterans.
I've never had more fun in my life. In fact, it's way cheaper than collecting cards like I used to. All my interviews are scrapbooked and saved.
Thanks for your inspiration. Since starting my own collection of history, I've had students write their own interviews. Even more success ensued. I attribute this much to you, Seth. You gave me a dream, and it's been a true adventure! Keep in touch! Enjoy those kids of yours while they're still young! Blessings!
Christian Center Elementary
Posted by: Kyle Wigg
at March 23, 2007 8:24 AM
I remember when I wrote to you a while back because of letter writing. I remember writing to you because I got frustrated that every time I wrote "a baseball question" letter to famous people like your books, I would never get a reply back.
Then, I remember that you sent me a hand-written letter of your favorite moment at the All-Star Game with Bernie Williams.
Well, quite a few months after that, I got a letter from Justice Samuel Alito. I asked him for his opinions on "Phillie shortstop Jimmy Rollins hit streak" and he wrote back this summer on a letter saying what he felt. I was grateful and lucky because this letter wasn't one of those "Thanks friend, ...can't reply now, but thanks for the support".
Posted by: Steven
at December 20, 2006 12:44 PM
Seth - Happy Holidays to you & yours. There isn't a day gone by that I haven't enjoyed your songs, read a few letters from "Baseball Letters", or envied your collection.
I've taken to asking different questions than the norm when writing to older ball-players. It means a lot to me when I get a response. My uncle's grandfather was the home plate umpire for Babe Ruth's called shot in the '32 World Series, George Magerkurth. It is a delight to get responses about him from players who played under his "colorful" eye - although none of the living Brooklyn Dodgers have responded.
My latest has been writing to the A's and Red Sox players that were present for Satchel Paige's final game at the age of 59. Today's mailbox yielded a response in regards to Satchel's stuff that day from his catcher - "change up, change up, change up, change up off, change up." Love it!
Thanks for your time. While I'm a restuarant manager & bartender who meets new people every day, I have yet to come across one that could appreciate my love for the game & it's history. Thanks for letting me share & sharing yours.
My best to you - Drew Davis
Posted by: Drew Davis
at November 17, 2006 7:53 PM
Dear Seth...just finished your book, "Every Pitcher tells a Story." (OK, so I'm seven years late...) I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed it, and wished it were longer. What a fantastic idea to write to so many major leaguers--and gain their personal thoughts, and more importantly, their stories, that many of us never get to hear. Great work.
A few really stand out...the Carl Mays story was very touching, Palmer's story of Weaver is priceless, and I laughed out loud at Krukow's story.
I will be sure to read the other two books as well.
Posted by: Dan
at November 3, 2006 1:53 PM
Hi Andy -- flattered that you reference my books in your classroom.
In answer to your question: When I write to someone, it's because I'm truly interested in them. I usually try and think of the one or two questions I really want answered -- not a generic question they've asked a million times. Of course, you would like the person your writing to talk about the thing that made them notable, i.e. Buzz Aldrin talking about what it was like to walk on the moon. But, you know he's been asked that so many times, he is not likely to answer that question. He's also written a number of books, so he probably talks about it there. The trick is to ask them something that relates to the event that no one may have asked him. For instance, does he remember the first time he told his wife about his experience on the moon. I would want to know that!
Also, the letter should start out very complimentary, in a sincere way -- you are writing to them because something they did impressed or inspired you --let them know that. It's nice to hear compliments and even nicer to give them.
The question should be short and to the point and, as I said, unique. If it's just a generic question, they feel -- rightfully, in most cases -- that you just want an autograph or something. Tell them why you're interested in the answer.
And , of course, always have a self-addressed, stamped envelope included in your letter. Anything to simplify things for them.
I hope this helps. I've enjoyed writing to people over the years and have ongoing writing "realtionships" with many interesting people. I was fortunate to have made three books from my correspondences and I'm very glad you enjoyed them and felt inspired to have your students take up this extremely rewarding exercise. Please feel free to ask me any more questions about this process if you wish.
Posted by: Seth
at October 4, 2006 10:11 AM
I have much to say and even more to ask you about your books of baseball letters. However, I will try to keep this short. I am a life long baseball fan and have read all three of your books about baseball and your correspondence with your heroes. I have read each one several times and find them just as interesting as if I were reading them for the first time.
In fact, they have inspired me to use them in my classroom. I am a 9th and 10th grade English teacher in NJ. Your books inspired me to have my students write to their heroes. Our goal is to "correspond" with them, not just write a fan letter. I have been doing this for about 5 years. My students love the assignment, however, we don't get very good results in the way of receiving letters back. My question to you is: do you have any advice for my students and I that would increase our chances of receiving responses from our heroes?
I would appreciate any words of wisdom you could offer
Thank you and I look foward to your reply.
Posted by: Andy Cecala
at October 4, 2006 9:52 AM
Dear Mr. Swirsky,
A friend and I have been working on an oral history, collecting the memories of great bike racers. After reading some of my interviews, another friend thought I would enjoy your book, "Baseball Letters". Boy was he right! I ended up reading a lot of them to my father, whose eysight has mostly failed.
Reading your book has renewed my enthusiasm for my project. Thanks so much for sharing your letters.
Posted by: Bill McGann
at September 23, 2006 11:26 PM
Seth, I don't write many fan letters but so many things you've done resonate with me I wanted to say hi. I'm sort of a neighbor (Glen Head), Baseball nut, dedicated Beatles fan (Mac's new album is terrific), was just at the former Tiki Studios to see the contsruction now that Alicia Keys owns it. Found you're site after just reading May Pang's book and then Googling her name. I had dinner recently with two members of the Taylor Dayne team that produced your songs (Rick Wake and David Barratt) at Dave's house. I work long days doing voice overs for all the networks, including the local Mets promos on Channnel 11. I just wanted you to know I ordered all 3 books today and wish you continued success. Cheers from Glen Head,
Posted by: Jim Cutler
at September 16, 2006 3:34 PM
I spent time looking through your site. ESPN and ABC interviews? Published author? I'm impressed! I'll be forwarding your link to quite a few of my baseball friends.
I also thought you'd like to know that I immediately thought your song Theres Nothing Like The Game of Baseball was equally as touching as my two favorite baseball songs; "Baseball" by Sam Baker and "Rightfield" by Peter, Paul & Mary. Both songs can be found on iTunes.com. I'm a sap for music that brings me back to my youth.
I've already burnt a copy of your song and will make a point of including a credit on the video. Hopefully the handful of kids and parents that will receive the video will appreciate your talent.
I've also ordered a copy of Every Pitcher Tells a Story and two copies of Baseball Letters. My best friend spent 25 years sitting in the rightfield stands at Shea Stadium and another 10 at Veteran's Stadium. He'll be thrilled to receive BL come Christmas time. I'll probably get teary eyed at his expected response.
Keep up the beautiful work.
Posted by: Jeff McKenney
at September 4, 2006 1:09 PM
I just finished reading "Something to Write Home About". I found it to be very interesting, a definite read for any baseball fan. Plus your collection of baseball memorabilia is astonishing! Thank you for sharing. Now, on to "Baseball Letters"!
Posted by: Scott Carlson
at October 4, 2005 10:25 AM
My son, who is 5 1/2 told me this morning he had a webpage. He has quite the imagination. So I said, "What is the address?" and he said, "Well, it's www.seth.com. Of course," so I typed it in for him to prove there was no webpage, and to our surprise, it's yours -- and quite good one I must say. Just a note to say hi, from the McDowell's in Granite City, Illinois. Have a nice day.
Posted by: Dan and Rhonda McDowell
at July 23, 2005 4:09 AM
For a baseball fan, I am certainly WAY behind times. I just got a copy of your book, Baseball Letters, and enjoyed every page of it. As a native of Pittsburg, KS, I was particularly impressed that you included Don Gutteridge. I knew of that name from the time I was a small child. I have even had the pleasure of meeting him. And, in case you would like to know, he was a very delightful man, quite interesting and nice. I plan to write to him and request that he autograph my copy of the book.
In Pittsburg, I grew up a neighbor and friend of Bill Russell, who also was in Baseball Letters, and played for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Thanks for the insight into the past.
Posted by: Blaine Smith
at May 18, 2005 9:19 AM
I usually wrote to a particular player through the team he was most associated with. For instance, Bobby Thomson is thought of as a New York Giant. They became the San Francisco Giants. Thus, a letter to him, should be addressed to the public relations department of the San Francisco Giants.Try to keep your letters short, to the point and typed. Good luck!
Posted by: Seth
at May 15, 2005 6:59 AM
I am an avid baseball fan and have always loved your book Baseball Letters. I have recently had the desire to write some old Mariners players coaches. What was your trick in finding addresses of the players? I have been trying to find Jim Lefebvre for weeks and have had no luck. Is there any insight you could give me on how to find contact info on players that are retired or no longer coaching?
I would appreciate any help you can give me. Thank you again for the wonderful book you compiled.
Posted by: Eric Haffner
at May 13, 2005 8:55 AM
I've long admired your work and it was indeed a pleasure and honor to meet you at the BHLL Snack Stand today. I will have my son Dillon, or as they call him around the Little League, Moose, send you a note about his lack of success in contacting some of his baseball heroes. Perhaps, as you said, you can give him a few pointers. Thanks again and I look forward to the opportunity to visit with you again soon.
Posted by: Robbie Curtis
at May 8, 2005 10:15 AM
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