These are the ""confessions"" of a minor league pitcher, Jerry Kettle, who spent about five years working his way up to play with the Philadelphia Phillies--then missed out. Ex-rookie Kettle loudly admits that he's pressing sour apples, and has a clothesline full of excuses to wave. Bitter though he may be about the big money he's not making, he does admit to a fatal error regarding his pitching career. That is, he ripped his shoulder playing tackle football without protective -- equipment, thus racking up a horrible season with his ball club. Kettle attacks the inequities of the game vigorously, mainly from the point of view of money. Clubs scrimp on salaries for players who are the efficient mainstays of the club, while handing out fabulous sums to glamour stars. There is something perversely fascinating about Kettle's zooming transfers up and down the professional ladder while he never quite makes the majors. He has quite a few raw anecdotes of the locker room variety, and reveals some tricks for dirty pitches, spitballs, beanballs, etc. Aspiring ball players can learn something from Kettle's mistakes and the color of his jaundice.