Added to the mix of things after we went to press, highly regarded journalist (The Nation, New York) Lucas Mann is here with a winning first book about baseball, aspiration, and much more. Class A: Baseball in the Middle of Everywhere (Pantheon) also has great local resonance, for it's the story over a whole season of the Class A, Midwest League's Clinton (Iowa) LumberKings, part of the Seattle Mariners' farm system. Players with Seattle (Tom Wilhelmsen), or near Seattle (Erasmo Ramirez, Nick Franklin), and others feature in this smart, insightful book. "Mann could have fallen for the easy, Bull Durham style clichés of the minor-league game ... but instead offers an affecting and authentic portrait of the hard times of most minor leaguers set in a shrinking town with hard times of its own. Mann focuses on two LumberKings Nick Franklin and Erasmo Ramirez with the most potential for catching on with the Big Club, and also on those bubble players whose latest bad swing or errant pitch could be their last ... A surprising book, in the best sense." - Booklist, joined by David Shipler, David Shields, Jeff Sharlet, John Beckman, Honor Moore, and John D'Agata in early praise.