Legendary Lumber: The Top 100 Player Bats in Baseball History by Joe Orlando, with Tom Zappala and Ellen Zappala

Ordering Information

Hardcover, $30.00, 240 pgs, 9.5”x11.5”, full color illustrations
ISBN 978-1-937721-41-1
Copies are available from: amazon.com

Legendary Lumber: The Top 100 Player Bats in Baseball History

by Joe Orlando, with Tom Zappala and Ellen Zappala

Readers’ Comments

“Legendary Lumber makes baseball come alive by honoring the actual tools that made these men into legends. Beyond the stories we all know, Lumber goes into incredible detail about the finer points of the collecting trade, unlocking entirely new levels of information about the players and the game we love.”

— Chris Meiman, curator, Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory

“Hitting a baseball is one of the most difficult tasks in sports. To accomplish that task, you need a bat that feels just right. The exact weight and length of the lumber and shape of the handle are so important to every hitter. The bat is almost like an extension of ourselves. Legendary Lumber is filled with the stories behind the greatest hitters in the history of the game and the bats that helped make them famous. This book will help collectors and baseball fans alike appreciate this iconic piece of sports equipment more than ever before.”

— Rico Petrocelli, Red Sox Hall of Famer and All-Star shortstop

“For fans of our National Pastime, Legendary Lumber is a must read. The sticks featured in this beautiful book were touched and used by the greatest players of all time. These weapons won games, made legendary players famous, and are truly a part of baseball history.”

— Lou Blasi, senior baseball analyst, Insiderbaseball.com; host, Fantistics Insider Baseball Show, SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio; writer and author

“I love this book. It appeals not only to bat collectors, but to others that enjoy baseball and appreciate its rich history. While other bat books are primarily research tools, this is the first book to visually display the beauty of bats used by the best players of all time …while also providing useful information. Thanks for making this book a reality!”

— Scott Foraker, owner of one of the most comprehensive and finest professional model bat collections in the world

About the Book

Legendary Lumber: The Top 100 Player Bats in Baseball History showcases the most desirable professional model bats in the history of our National Pastime while detailing the story behind the professional and personal lives of the men who became famous for swinging the lumber.

For each player featured in the book, you will find both a narrative highlighting a significant offensive accomplishment, as well as the story about the bat itself. Learn about the interesting characteristics of each gamer along with specific player ordering habits, the distinct bat preparation, and the relative scarcity of the gamers featured. These bat stories are brought to life with brilliant images and information, and along with the narratives of the players, make for a fascinating and fun read.

Selected by highly regarded experts using criteria including historical importance, rarity, popularity of the player and bat, visual appeal, market value, and more, this book features the most sought-after bats in the hobby. These are the prized gamers any collector would love to have. The absolute pinnacle of this grouping is featured in chapter 3, “The Top 25,” which showcases the 25 most desirable professional model bats in the hobby. You will also find a brief history of the baseball bat, and tips about collecting professional model bats. The players selected for this book represent a cross section of baseball history, from the early days to the present—Nap Lajoie, Hank Aaron, Roberto Clemente, Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, and the ultra-popular stars of the post-1980 period such as Cal Ripken, Jr., and Derek Jeter.

About the Authors

Joe Orlando is president of Professional Sports Authenticator and PSA/DNA Authentication Services, the largest trading card and sports memorabilia authentication service in the hobby. Editor of the nationally distributed Sports Market Report (SMR), and an advanced collector, Orlando authored The Top 200 Sportscards in the Hobby and Collecting Sports Legends, and contributed to The T206 Collection: The Players & Their Stories, The Cracker Jack Collection: Baseball’s Prized Players, and The 100 Greatest Baseball Autographs.

Tom Zappala, a businessman in the greater Boston area, is passionate about maintaining the traditions and historical significance of our National Pastime. He co-authored The T206 Collection: The Players & Their Stories, The Cracker Jack Collection: Baseball’s Prized Players, and The 100 Greatest Baseball Autographs. In addition to his popular Boston area radio talk show, Zappala co-hosts The Great American Collectibles Show, which airs nationally every week. He enjoys collecting vintage memorabilia for the love of the sport.

Ellen Zappala is president of ATS Communications, a multimedia marketing and consulting company. Co-author of The T206 Collection: The Players & Their Stories, The Cracker Jack Collection: Baseball’s Prized Players The 100 Greatest Baseball Autographs, and Nardo: Memoirs of a Boxing Champion, Zappala is a former newspaper publisher and a former president of the New England Press Association. She enjoys bringing the stories of Deadball Era and Golden Age players to life.