Book Review – The American Dream: From Perth to Sacramento
The American Dream: From Perth to Sacramento is the tale of a ballplayer who grew up surfing and playing cricket with his father who finds baseball. The player, Damian, turns out to be a fine player and signs on with an American team to play in the minor leagues.
It’s an interesting story of an Australian traveling to the USA to play ball. The story shows a young boy struggling to find his way in the world of baseball. Seen as an outsider, he has to work hard to impress and move up the ranks to reach his goal of making the major leagues one day.
The story takes place in the early 1990’s before the Australian Baseball League was formed. So Damian learns the ropes of the game through the tournaments around Australia. He rises fast in the ranks of the Australian players and is soon signed to a minor league deal with one of the fictitious Sacramento Sea Lions’ minor league teams.
Damion travels around the US playing in small towns in Louisiana, Texas, Tennessee, and others getting a good dose of small town America which is very different than what he is used to back home in Perth, Australia. You get to ride along with Damion as he learns a few new things in life like driving a stick shift.
The book focuses not only on the baseball side of life for Damion, but also the trials he has in his love life. He leaves a girl back home and the long distance relationship is too much to handle for the two of them.
There is humor in the book as well. Anytime you get a bunch of young guys together for long periods of time funny things are going to happen. Thrown in some alcohol and things can get out of hand for a few of the ballplayers. It’s a lighter side of the life of a ballplayer that the author shows here. Letting loose is something every player has to learn to do at some point to help deal with the stress of the job. Thus hilarity ensues as each player deals with the stress in their own way.
The story doesn’t stop with Damion in the minor leagues but follows his story to retirement and beyond. I don’t want to give away just how far he gets or how long he plays because I think it would take away from the story. However, I will say that he is not a one year flame out.
This is a story for any baseball fan. You get to see the game from the perspective of another country. The language used to describe certain parts of the game are different than what an American might say which makes it that much more interesting. Even a casual sports fan would enjoy the journey of this young boy because it’s about more than simply baseball. So go out and pick up a copy today.