Andrew White is 10 years old; Ransom Jackson 89. Despite their age difference, they have a common interest in baseball.
Ransom played 10 years in the majors with the Chicago Cubs, the Dodgers in both Brooklyn and Los Angeles, and the Cleveland Indians. He played with Ernie Banks, Jackie Robinson, Duke Snider, Gil Hodges and Roy Campanella and against such greats as Ted Williams, Stan Musial and Henry Aaron.
Andrew has heard a lot about these baseball icons from his grandfather, Gaylon White, who recently teamed with Ransom to write a book, Handsome Ransom Jackson: Accidental Big Leaguer. The Rowman & Littlefield book, to be released May 2016, chronicles Ransom’s life growing up in Arkansas, playing college football and pro baseball as well as what happened to him after baseball.
Ransom now lives in Athens, Georgia, with his wife, Terry.
Andrew recently went to Athens to see his first college football game (University of Georgia versus Southern University) and meet his first big-league baseball player – Ransom.
He did his homework, looking up Ransom’s career statistics (103 home runs, 415 runs batted in and a .261 batting average). He learned that Ransom was a two-time National League All-Star with the Cubs. But he still had some unanswered questions.
“Why don’t you ask Ransom these questions?” Gaylon suggested. “You can use my digital recorder to interview him.”
Ransom showed Andrew photographs from his baseball career displayed in the family room where he spends most of his time and, then, fielded Andrew’s questions as smoothly as the ground balls hit to him at third base.
“What was it like to interview a big-league ballplayer?” Andrew was asked.
“Cool!” he said.
You can listen to audio clips from Andrew’s interview with Ransom by clicking on the icons below.
In audio clip one, Ransom discusses baseball greats Yogi Berra, Ted Williams, Jackie Robinson, Don Drysdale, getting hit in the head with a baseball, and the longest home run he ever hit.
In audio clip two, Ransom tells Andrew about the power of chocolate donuts and Andrew decides he’ll start eating them so he can hit like Ransom:
Audio file three has been broken into two separate audio files to make downloading and listening quicker. Ransom covers his induction into the University of Texas’ cherished Longhorn Hall of Honor; playing in two straight Cotton Bowl classics for two different schools, TCU and Texas; playing football and baseball at Texas with Bobby Layne, the legendary NFL quarterback; the first time he played left field for the Cubs; what it was like to play under the lights in Macon, Georgia; and golfing.
In audio clip four, Ransom talks about hitting and playing third base, and recalls the no-hitter Sad Sam “Toothpick” Jones pitched for the Cubs in 1955.
Handsome Ransom Jackson can be pre-ordered by clicking on the following link:
The Bilko Athletic Club is a book published by Rowman & Littlefield about the 1956 Los Angeles Angels, a team of castoffs and kids built around a bulky, beer-loving basher of home runs named Steve Bilko. The book features a delightful foreword by John Schulian, former sports columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times and Philadelphia Daily News and longtime contributor to Sports Illustrated and GQ.
The book can be ordered by clicking on any of the website links below:
- Rowman & Littlefield
- Sales Spider
- Tower books
- Powell’s Books
- Rakuten.com Shopping
- BetterWorld Books
- The Book Depository
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