Roger Angell

Arguably one of the best writers on the subject of baseball in the 20th century, Roger Angell brought literary depth to the study of popular sports in the pages of iThe New Yorker/i and other publications, which in turn ... Read more »
Born: 09/19/1920 in New York, New York, USA


Actor (3)

James Thurber: The Life and Hard Times 1999 - 2000 (TV Show)


Baseball 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)


Bill Moyers' World of Ideas 1988 - 1989 (TV Show)

Writer (1)

The Scout 1994 (Movie)

(Source Material (from article))


Arguably one of the best writers on the subject of baseball in the 20th century, Roger Angell brought literary depth to the study of popular sports in the pages of <i>The New Yorker</i> and other publications, which in turn had a significant impact on the quality and scope of sports writing. Born September 19, 1920, he developed his love of sports and writing from his parents: his father was lawyer Ernest Angell, a one-time president of the American Civil Liberties Union and a diehard fan of sports and in particular, baseball, which he played at Harvard University. His mother, Katharine Sergeant Angell, was the first fiction editor at <i>The New Yorker</i>, a position Angell himself would take over in later years. His parents divorced in 1929, and Katharine married essayist and children's author E.B. White, whom Angell would have a fond relationship. Following graduation from the Pomfret School in 1938, Angell attended Harvard University, and after graduation, was drafted into the Army Air Force. He spent the duration of World War II in America, including a year in Honolulu as managing editor of a magazine for servicemen. Following his discharge in 1945, Angell contributed freelance articles to magazines before joining the staff of the travel periodical <i>Holiday</i>, where he would remain until 1956, when he left to work for <i>The New Yorker</i> as a contributing writer and fiction editor. Angell's first assignment to cover baseball came in 1962, when editor-in-chief William Shawn sent him to Florida for spring training. The piece, "The Old Folks Behind Home," viewed the sport from the perspective of the fans - in particularly, the retirees who congregated to watch exhibition games - and established Angell as a unique observer of human nature as filtered through the prism of America's pastime. Angell's pieces on baseball made him one of the most popular bylines in <i>The New Yorker</i>, and led to a slew of books, from 1972's <i>The Summer Game</i> to <i>A Pitcher's Story: Innings with David Cone</i> (2002). In addition to his writing on sports, Angell wrote works of fiction and criticism, as well as an annual Christmas poem for <i>The New Yorker</i>. For his exemplary body of work, Angell was honored on numerous occasions, most notably a fellowship in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2007, the PEN/ESPN Lifetime Achievement Award for Literary Sports Writing in 2011, and the highest honor bestowed upon baseball writers, the J.G. Taylor Spink Award, from the Baseball Writers Association of America. Three years later, he wrote "This Old Man," a moving observation of his life at the age of 93 and recollections of his family, including his two marriages and the death of his daughter, Callie, in 2010.  The piece won the National Magazine Award for Essays and Criticism.


E.B. White Book as Source Material



Harvard University


Pomfret School




Wrote award-winning biographical essay," This Old Man"


Penned <i>A Pitcher's Story: Innings with David Cone</i>


Issued first collection of sports stories, <i>The Summer Game</i>


Published first sports piece for <i>New Yorker</i>


Served as fiction editor - his mother's job - at <i>The New Yorker</i>


Joined the staff of <i>The New Yorker</i>


Became senior editor and contributor to <i>Holiday</i>


Wrote first contribution to <i>The New Yorker</i>

Bonus Trivia


He was not fond of his frequent label, the "Poet Laureate of baseball."


As a fiction editor for The New Yorker, he helped to bring such authors as Garrison Keillor and John Updike to the magazine.


His receipt of the J.G. Taylor Spink Award includes a permanent exhibit in the Baseball Hall of Fame.


With the encouragement of his father, played numerous sports in high school, including baseball, golf, swimming and sailing.