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Curveball at the Crossroads, a baseball novel by Michael Lortz, up for local award

Michael Lortz, the voice behind the attendance tracking twitter account @TBBaseballMkt and occasional contributor at DRaysBay, Fangraphs, and The Hardball Times, has written a novel that is in the running for “Best Book by a Local Author in the Last 12 Months” at Creative Loafing’s Best of the Bay 2021.

The book is called Curveball at the Crossroads. Jay Busbee of Yahoo! Sports and author of “Earnhardt Nation” described the book in the following manner:

“Baseball and the blues, two American originals, come together in this striking — no pun intended — tale of faith and perseverance. Like baseball and the blues, CURVEBALL AT THE CROSSROADS is enticing and seductive, a story that will stay with you long after the last pitch.”

If you’re looking for a copy, you can frequently find Lortz at Ferg’s with copies on hand, or check his website for more information.

Here is the link to the contest, and some reviews from a couple names you might recognize:

Ben Montgomery, author, “A Shot in The Moonlight”, “Grandma Gatewood’s Walk”; writer, Axios Tampa Bay:

“There are few writers who can make baseball as compelling as Michael Lortz, and this book is a swing for the fences.”

Bill Chastain, sportswriter and author:

“Michael Lortz combines a touch of “The Natural” with a little “Damn Yankees” in “Curveball at the Crossroads”, a fun read for any true baseball fan.”

Jason Collette, columnist for Rotowire, podcaster at

“I am normally not a big fiction guy, but I really did enjoy reading your story. It took a surprising turn late I was not expecting!”

You can find more information about the book here.