Book Review: Harvard Boys

Harvard Boys

I’m in the middle of reading Harvard Boys: A Father and Son’s Adventures Playing Minor League Baseball, right now.  I think it might appeal to some TBZ readers.  It is co-authored by a father-son duo, Rick and John Wolff. 

Harvard Boys is mostly the story of John and what happens as he chooses to play baseball after graduating from Harvard.  John (who played in the New York Mets organization) writes about living the sometimes not-so-glorious life of a minor leaguer.  He gives us a detailed look of both his on-the-field endeavors but also life outside the ballpark. 

What sets this book apart is the commentary from his father.  After designated breaks in the chapters, his father Rick, also a Harvard alum who had gone on to play pro baseball for the Tigers in the mid-70’s, responds to what John has written.  His comments speak with experience as someone who has gone through all of the same trials and tribulations that John is going through right now.  Rick doesn’t hesitate to point out the generational differences, too.  Personally, I enjoyed some of the historical anecdotes by Rick. 

John Wolff isn’t a superstar and probably will never will be.  To me, it makes this book that much more appealing. 

If you’re interested in Harvard Boys, you can get it through the publisher, SkyHorse Publishing or through

Followup:  I just found out that co-author Rick Wolff hosts a radio show Sundays at 8-9am on WFAN 66AM out of New York.  Fortunately, WFAN streams its broadcast if you’re interested in listening to Rick’s show.  Here is the show description from WFAN’s web page: 

The Sports Edge:

This lively show focuses on contemporary issues that confront the parents of athletes of all ages, from kids who are just starting out in sports, to experienced athletes on the high school varsity and beyond. Wolff’s forum usually includes a guest who is an expert in a particular area of sports parenting, and listeners are encouraged to call in with their opinions and questions on specific topics.

Recent shows have focused on high school hazing; the enforcement of “Athletic Codes of Conduct;” mandatory sportsmanship training for parents; holding athletes accountable for their deliberately violent acts during a game; and whether Creatine is healthy or hazardous for youngsters.

You can find out more from WFAN’s web site where you can also find the streaming link. 

(thanks to Joe for the heads up!)

2 Responses to “Book Review: Harvard Boys”

  1. Fun book to read. Having known Rick as a teammate and friend for years, then seeing his son play, makes reading the book fun. The book brought an entirely new light to the father/son relationship.

  2. Hi Joe! Good to hear from you again.. thanks for the comments..

    The input from Rick was a different angle I’ve never seen in a book before.

    Knowing one or two college and minor league ballplayers (and hearing their stories), it was interesting to “compare” John’s and Rick’s anecdotes.

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