The Phenomenon

  • by Rick Ankiel
  • Narrated by Rick Ankiel
  • 6 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Rick Ankiel had the talent to be one of the best pitchers ever. Then, one day, he lost it.
The Phenomenon is the story of how St. Louis Cardinals prodigy Rick Ankiel lost his once-in-a-generation ability to pitch - due not to an injury or a bolt of lightning but to a mysterious anxiety condition widely known as "the Yips". It came without warning in the middle of a playoff game, with millions of people watching. And it has never gone away.
Yet the true test of Ankiel's character came not on the mound but in the long days and nights that followed, as he searched for a way to get back in the game. For four and a half years, he fought the Yips with every arrow in his quiver: psychotherapy, medication, deep-breathing exercises, self-help books, and, eventually, vodka. And then, after reconsidering his whole life at the age of 25, Ankiel made an amazing turnaround, returning to the Major Leagues as a hitter and playing seven successful seasons.
This book is an incredible story about a universal experience - pressure - and what happened when a person on the brink had to make a choice about who he was going to be.


What the Critics Say

"Revealing, vulnerable, and triumphant, Rick Ankiel and Tim Brown provide a poignant reminder in this age of statistics- and computer-driven analysis that it is real people who play the game. Real people, carrying family history, huge expectations, and lifelong dreams along for the ride. This book will change how you watch the game and those who play it." (Jim Abbott, former MLB pitcher and best-selling author of Imperfect)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Huge fan, narration was choppy

I am a bit bias. I have only owned one professional player's jersey in my life and it is the authors. I love the story and how he came back. That said his reading was a bit choppy, in 3-4 word burst. Of course I really like it when an author reads his own story because it makes it "personal." I would recommend this book (and already have).
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- hunger games GC

Fantastic Story, Told Extremely Well!!!

Always been a fan of Rick Ankiel, but I had no idea of what the real story was. If you love baseball, sports, psychology, or just a great, honest tale about life, this book is for you. I was surprised by his honesty and loved all the insights to life in the Minor and Major Leagues. Would recommend to anyone and everyone!
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- Andy McAdams

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-18-2017
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio