Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sports Illustrated Writing: from Alan Shipnuck, Chris Ballard, Tim Layden

There's been a few excellent pieces from Sports Illustrated in recent weeks that stood out as solid.

From the October 17 issue came The Invisible Fastball by Chris Ballard and Owen Good. The piece chronicles the life and 1950s era career renaissance of minor league pitcher (Kelly) Jack Swift in rural North Carolina. It's a solid read on baseball as I wrote about it here and reminds me again of how hockey is my favorite sport, football the one I'm most easily entertained by and baseball the one I find to be the best.

For the November 7 edition of SI, Tim Layden wrote The Forgotten Hero on former Williams College football player Mike Reily and why his jersey has been retired since the 60s. Excellent piece that combines together a thorough reporting job with profound story.

Finally, the recent Nov 28 issue had Tim Tebow's Wild Ride by Alan Shipnuck. Tebow's story is fascinating given how polarizing he is to both the media and general public and Shipnuck uses the tactic of writing the piece through quotes in and by the media. It's the same approach as was taken in a recent book on the history of ESPN (which I reviewed here) and seems to perfectly fit the breathlessly reported on overall Tebow story.