Brett Samuels isn't the kind of pitcher that strikes fear in the hearts of opposing players. At not quite 6'0", not quite 175 pounds, he looks more a member of the grounds crew than of the pitching corps. With a semi-nimbus of curls emanating from his cap, he cuts a figure that is equal parts defiant and hilarious, like a Napoleonic Max Patkin gazing angrily in at the signs. And he throws a fastball scarcely more stirring to dustmites than to minor league batters. But he has a broad-sweeping curve and an off-the-table forkball, the kind of out-pitch most hitters say just isn't fair. And they're right.
Breaking Balls is the story of a sharp-tongued junkball pitcher from New York who, surrounded by vastly superior athletes and thriving on guile, wisecracks his way through the Northwest timber towns of the low minor leagues.