Osborne, Ben 1974–
Osborne, Ben 1974–
PERSONAL: Born 1974.
CAREER: Writer and editor. Slam magazine, New York, NY, editor.
The Brooklyn Cyclones: Hardball Dreams and the New Coney Island, New York University Press (New York, NY), 2004.
Contributor of articles to HipHopDX.com, King, and XXL. Also author of Stars of Today, Legends of Tomorrow, a book of NBA player profiles.
SIDELIGHTS: In The Brooklyn Cyclones: Hardball Dreams and the New Coney Island writer Ben Osborne celebrates the return of minor-league baseball to Brooklyn, New York, after a four-decade hiatus following the Dodgers' departure from the city for Los Angeles in 1957. Osborne's "happy-ending story," as Paul M. Kaplan and Robert C. Cottrell described the book in Library Journal, documents the rise and success of the Cyclones, whose tickets have been sold out even before the baseball season begins. Affiliated with the Major-League New York Mets baseball team, the Cyclones came to Brooklyn in 2001, and it is that "magical first season," as Jesse Serwer dubbed it on Brooklyn Skyline Online, that Osborne documents through the lives of Cyclones catcher Brett Kay and Coney Island teen Anthony Otero, who organizes local baseball games.
Osborne, a transplant to Brooklyn and to Coney Island where the Cyclones' games are played, had to learn baseball and local lore for his book. Serwer observed that because of this "newcomer angle," his book "lacks the authoritative tone expected of good nonfiction." However, Serwer also noted that the book's "earnestness and matter-of-fact style make it an easy read, and the enthusiasm for its subject reflects the feel-good vibes of the 2001 season." Reviewing the same title for ElitesTV.com, Samuel Rubenstein found that Osborne "has created a quick read that is both entertaining and educational." For Booklist reviewer Wes Lukowsky, Osborne "simultaneously captures baseball as a business, as a passion, and as a dream," and creates a "thoroughly satisfying baseball book."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, March 1, 2004, Wes Lukowsky, review of The Brooklyn Cyclones: Hardball Dreams and the New Coney Island, p. 1121.
Library Journal, February 1, 2004, Paul M. Kaplan and Robert C. Cottrell, review of The Brooklyn Cyclones, p. 97.
New York Times, May 16, 2004, review of The Brooklyn Cyclones, p. 14.
Brooklyn Skyline Online, http://www.brooklynskyline.com/ (May 10, 2004), Jesse Serwer, review of The Brooklyn Cyclones.
ElitesTV.com, http://news/elitestv.com/ (June, 2004), Samuel Rubenstein, review of The Brooklyn Cyclones.
HipHopDX.com, http://www.hiphopdx.com/ (June 24, 2004), Ben Osborne, "Mirror Image: Hip Hop and Sports."
New York University Press Web site, http://www.nyupress.org/ (July 6, 2004).