I just sent the following email to the former president’s personal aide:
Dear Mr. [name]-
I’m writing a baseball book for Random House (scheduled to be published in March 2011), and I have a quick question for George H. W. Bush.
The book is about the historical and cultural significance of baseballs. I have a chapter called “Foul Balls in Pop Culture,” which includes a section about celebrities who have caught foul balls at major league games. Jimmy Carter caught one in Atlanta in 1996. Billy Crystal once caught one, too. So did Jermaine Jackson and a number of Hall-of-Fame athletes. Charlie Sheen once bought 2,600 seats at an Angels game to increase his odds of catching a home run ball. (He failed miserably, but he’s still gonna be in the book.)
Anyway, while researching these other stories, I learned that President Bush snagged a foul ball as a kid at Yankee Stadium. I couldn’t find any additional info about it, however, so if possible, I’d love to get a few details so that I can include his story in the book. (What year was it? Where was he sitting? Who hit it? Did he catch the ball on the fly? Was he wearing a glove? What did he do with the ball? How did it feel? Etc.) I don’t even need to speak directly to him. All I really need are some details (and ideally a quick quote) so if you think you could get that from him and forward it to me, that would be incredible.
If it would help convince you that I’m legit, I can put you in touch with my agent, as well as my editor at Random House.
Thanks very much for your consideration,