INSCRIBED BY RON SANTO
SANTO, Ron and MINKOFF, Randy. Ron Santo: For Love of Ivy. The Autobiography of Ron Santo. Chicago: Bonus, (1993). Octavo, original half black cloth, original dust jacket. $350.
First edition, second printing, of this biography of Cubs legend Ron Santo, boldly inscribed to the family of a Black basketball player and Northwestern coach who was murdered: “To Ricky Byrdsong family. Ricky will be remembered Today. Many thanks. Your Friend, Ron Santo #10. 10/10/99.”
Chicago Cubs player Ron Santo "was unique in baseball history, a third baseman who hit like a left fielder while playing excellent defense at the hot corner" (Joe Sheehan). Published the same year as the first edition. This copy is inscribed to the family of Ricky Byrdsong, just three months after he was tragically murdered. Byrdsong was an Iowa State basketball player who made his reputation as a captain, rather than as a player. At graduation, Byrdsong's Iowa State coach scouted Byrdsong as a future coach. After a lengthy period working as an assistant, he became head coach at University of Detroit-Mercy (1988-1993) and assistant coach at the University of Arizona (1982-1988), Eastern Illinois University (1980-1982), Western Michigan University (1979-1980) and Iowa State University (1978-1979). His final basketball coaching position was at Northwestern, which he was fired from in 1997 after Northwestern decided to change the direction of their coaching. Just two years later, he was murdered by a white supremacist while jogging. Included is a manuscript notecard in an unknown hand relating part of Santo's story and belief that this was a "condolence gift" from Ron Santo to the family.
A fine inscribed copy with notable provenance.