Hitting the Books with Gary Thorne: “A Thousand Days”

Richard Griffin is a highly respected baseball columnist for the Toronto Star. He has covered baseball for decades beginning with the Montreal Expos in 1973. He became the public relations director for the Expos in 1978.

Since 1995, he has been a columnist and beat writer for the Toronto Star covering the Blue Jays.

I have known Richard since his Montreal days. He was an outstanding PR director. He knows the game and its people from the inside out.

His quiet, quick sense of humor is never far away, but don’t mistake it for negating the seriousness with which he takes his work, but not himself.

We sat down to chat in Toronto recently about his favorite book, “A Thousand Days” by Arthur Schlesinger. This is the inside story of the presidency of John F. Kennedy, how it began, how it worked and how it ended.

Schlesinger was an historian who was special assistant to President Kennedy. The book was published in 1965 and won a Pulitzer Prize in 1966.

For those of us whose lives were forever changed by this presidency, this book has long been the touchstone of our memories.

How it affected Richard’s life is clear from listening, so let’s do so.

Richard won the Jack Graney Award, presented by the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame to a member of the Canadian media for their contributions to the game of baseball in Canada. The award is not presented every year, but rather when the committee believes there to be a worthy candidate. Richard Griffin is surely worthy.

This is the final “Hitting the Books” for 2017. My deepest thanks go to videographer Olivia Witherite and editor Pete Kerzel. They have provided the foundation that made this site possible and the support to make it work. I love working with them.

Thanks to all who have taken a look at “Hitting the Books.” I hope some book caught your attention and that it led to a worthwhile reading experience and a new and/or expanded insight into our lives.

I am humbled by the kind comments so many of you have passed along. As in broadcasting, if the audience is receiving some measure of reward from tuning in, then the effort is worthwhile.

Many thanks.

Gary Thorne is the play-by-play voice of the Orioles on MASN, and the 2017 season is his 11th with the club and 32nd covering Major League Baseball. His blog will appear regularly throughout the season. The Orioles and Sarasota County have partnered on the Big League Reader Program, which rewarded kids who read three books in February with tickets to a Grapefruit League game at Ed Smith Stadium in March.

* Hitting the Books with Gary Thorne. © Copyright 2017 Gary F. Thorne. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Gary F. Thorne and MASNsports.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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