Dunbar: ‘Spy Behind Home Plate’ details unbelievable story of baseball star turned spy

From Denise Dunbar at the Alexandria Times on November 19, 2019, with mention of SABR member Aviva Kempner:

Moe Berg was a brilliant man, and Aviva Kempner is an amazing filmmaker. So it’s unsurprising that Kempner’s movie about Berg’s life resulted in an excellent documentary, “The Spy Behind Home Plate.”

Berg is best known as a light-hitting, good-fielding Jewish major league catcher in the 1920s and ‘30s, an era when there weren’t many Jewish big leaguers. But he was so much more.

The son of Ukrainian immigrants, Berg excelled in the classroom and on the ballfield from a young age. He graduated from Princeton, where he caught the eye of both the New York Giants and Brooklyn Dodgers, who thought his heritage had the potential to draw fans from New York’s large Jewish community into their stadiums.

Berg signed with the Dodgers, where he played in 1923, before moving to the American League for the remainder of his baseball career. He spent three years with the Washington Senators from 1932 to 1934 and retired in 1939. An excellent defender and mediocre hitter, Berg had a lifetime batting average of .243, with six home runs and 206 career runs batted in.

Read the full article here: https://alextimes.com/2019/11/the-spy-being-home-plate-review/

Originally published: November 21, 2019. Last Updated: November 21, 2019.