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Play Hungry

The Making of a Baseball Player
By: Pete Rose
Narrated by: Mark Deakins
Length: 7 hrs and 30 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (28 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A New York Times best seller

The inside story of how Pete Rose became one of the greatest and most controversial players in the history of baseball.

Pete Rose was a legend on the field. As baseball’s hit king, he shattered records that were thought to be unbreakable. And during the 1970s, he was the leader of the Big Red Machine, the Cincinnati Reds team that dominated the game. But he’s also the greatest player who may never enter the Hall of Fame because of his lifetime ban from the sport. Perhaps no other ballplayer’s story is so representative of the triumphs and tragedies of our national pastime. 

In Play Hungry, Rose tells us the story of how, through hard work and sheer will, he became one of the unlikeliest stars of the game. Guided by the dad he idolized, a local sports hero, Pete learned to play hard and always focus on winning. But even with his dad’s guidance, Pete was cut from his team as a teenager - he wasn’t a natural. Rose was determined, though, and never would be satisfied with anything less than success. His relentless hustle and headfirst style would help him overcome his limitations, leading him to one of the most exciting and brash careers in the history of the sport.

Play Hungry is Pete Rose’s love letter to the game and an unvarnished story of life on the diamond. One of the icons of a golden age in baseball, he describes just what it was like to hit (or try to hit) a Bob Gibson fastball or a Gaylord Perry spitball, what happened in that infamous collision at home plate during the 1970 All-Star Game, and what it felt like to topple Ty Cobb’s hit record. And he speaks to how he let down his fans, his teammates, and the memory of his dad when he gambled on baseball, breaking the rules of a sport that he loved more than anything else. 

Told with candor and wry humor - including tales he’s never told before - Rose’s memoir is his final word on the glories and controversies of his life and, ultimately, a master class in how to succeed when the odds are stacked against you.

©2019 Pete Rose (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

“The title says it all. This is how a hungry kid became one of the greatest ball players of all time. Essential reading for baseball fans, controversy and all.” (Booklist, starred review)

“A bitingly candid reflection on his life in baseball...he’s witty and brash, but he also displays unexpected earnestness.... With this frank, no-holds-barred narrative, Rose just might win new fans.” (Publishers Weekly

“[Rose’s] recollections about baseball - and life off the field - yield rewards for readers. In a baseball memoir filled with plenty of strikes and balls, Rose offers abundant evidence of why he has become a touchstone of controversy.” (Kirkus Reviews)

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  • Overall
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very smartly written, and welcome.

A lot of insight into the game. Pete is a very smart man. I have more respect for him after reading.

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Great Pete Rose Book

I grew up watching Pete Rose and was a huge fan. This book have me an even greater insight to the ball player I loved watching. I highly recommend this book of you are a Pete Rose fan or have a child playing sports. Have your child read it.

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Bittersweet Pete

Loved Pete Rose the Hit King, he was my favorite Player as a kid and still today a big boy. The book is easy to listen to , like your on road trip with Pete in the back seat telling you stories of his life. I found the characters to be very short and a gloss over of seasons and a scan of his many records and achievements. Pete's gambling on baseball chapter still breaks my heart. With all of Pete's respect and love of the game and his father's values, I still don't get why he did it. Pete didn't talk about his sex scandal with a under age girl that took him off post season Fox Sports. The narrator did a good job.

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impressed <br /><br />

Better than I anticipated. I enjoyed Pete's account of his career. Great contain. Will listen to it again and get the hardback copy.

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Bigger Fan of Pete Now

I grew up playing like Pete. My grandfather played football with Pete's Dad. I could listen to Pete talk baseball all day.