I was in Carnegie-Stout Library over my lunch hour today, working on some baseball research (for the Tri-County Historical Museum) when another patron, a man in his mid-20s to early 30s, spied baseball photos spread on the desk in front of me.
He mentioned that he had just finished reading a book about Moe Berg. He asked if I had heard of Moe Berg.
Indeed I had. Berg is one of the most interesting, intelligent and complex men to have ever worn the uniform. Just a backup catcher for the Chicago White Sox and some other major league teams over 15 seasons, Berg was a genius and a spy for the U.S. Government. He is the subject of at least two biographies.
Berg and Red Faber, the subject of my biography, were teammates on the White Sox from 1927 through 1930.
A player of modest abilities, it was said of Moe Berg, "He could speak seven languages -- but couldn't hit in any of 'em." That wasn't exactly true. He knew 12 languages.
(Photo courtesy of the Tri-County Historical Society, Cascade, Iowa)