A former star hurler for John McGraw's brawling Giants, Luther Dummy Taylor was also one of Major League Baseball's first deaf players. Havana Heat follows Taylor's life and fortunes when, after a strong season in the bushes in 1911, he comes to believe that he has one last shot at returning to his old dream. He works his thirty-six-year-old arm into shape by pitching to his brother in the evenings and, after wrestling with the decision to leave his wife to pursue his dream, becomes determined to hunt down McGraw and ask for ather chance. Allowed to accompany the Giants on a barnstorming trip to Cuba, Taylor gets far more than he has bargained for as he faces the rewned Havana teams and a profound challenge thrust upon him by a deaf Cuban youngster. During quieter moments in the trip's turbulent course, Taylor takes a long look at his career, his marriage, and his life. As he meets unexpected trials on the island, Taylor gains insight into what he can still offer the world besides his pitching arm.
Darryl Brock authored the highly acclaimed novel If I Never Get Back, as well as articles on Mark Twain, baseball, and other subjects in numerous publications. Havana Heat won the Dave Moore Award for the most important book on baseball in 2000. Brock lives with his wife and daughter in Berkeley, California.