Al Stump

Book cover image

Narrated By: Ian Esmo

Duration: 19 hours and 40 minutes

What to expect

As a boy in the 1890s, he went looking for thrills in a rural Georgia that still burned with the humiliation of the Civil War. As an old man in the 1960s, he dared death, picked fights, refused to take his medicine, and drove off all his friends and admirers. He went to his deathbed alone, clutching a loaded pistol and a bag containing millions of dollars' worth of cash and securities. During the years in between, he was, according to Al Stump, "the most shrewd, inventive, lurid, detested, mysterious, and superb of all baseball players." He was Ty Cobb.

Al Stump has redefined America's perception of one of its most famous sports heroes with this gripping look at Ty Cobb, a man who walked the line between greatness and psychosis. Based on Stump's interviews with Cobb while ghostwriting the Hall of Famer's 1961 autobiography, this account of Cobb's life and times reveals both the darkness and the brilliance of the "Georgia Peach".


Biography: sport, Biography: general, Sport: general, Baseball

Listen to a sample

Cobb is a big, raw, rough-cut diamond of a book and the most powerful baseball biography I have read. More than a baseball story, it is an account of life and death. Strong as the baseball scenes are, it is Cobb in his last days—defiant, angry, drunken, prayerful, brave, and desperate to be remembered—that is so haunting and so memorable and so terrifying.”

Roger Kahn, New York Times bestselling author of The Boys of Summer

“The most revealing account we are ever likely to get of a man who is on every sports historian’s short list of baseball’s greatest players.”

New York Times Book Review

“Stump has resurrected Cobb in all his terrifying malevolence…Spellbinding.”

Washington Post

“The most gripping, appalling biography of an athlete I have ever read.”

Washington Times, editorial review

“Cobb was monomaniacal, and he paid the personal price. But we might say of him, ‘This was a ballplayer!’”

New York Review of Books

Cobb: A Biography will stun readers with its brutal candor.”

Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Ranks as one of the best baseball biographies of recent years.”

Booklist (starred review)

“The definitive biography of this mercurial man. Highly recommended.”

Library Journal

“An extraordinary achievement in sport biography.”