S.L. Price

S.L. Price's prose has graced the pages of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED since 1994. Of Price's work, The New York Times said, "The seasoned reporter -- is a master of the new journalism developed by Hunter Thompson, Gay Talese and Price's personal paragon, Pete Hamill. Whenever he writes about sports -- or about the craft of writing -- he hits it over the fence."

Price has covered a variety of subject matters during his time at SI. He cites pieces on the late minor league baseball coach Mike Coolbaugh, tennis great Pancho Gonzalez and paralympic sprint champion Marlon Shirley as his most memorable SI stories. In Dec. 2007 he wrote about playing basketball with then Democratic candidate, Barack Obama.

A graduate of the University of North Carolina, where he covered the 1983 Tar Heels team featuring Michael Jordan, Price has received multiple honors for his journalism, including two Associated Press Sports Editors awards, two National Headliner awards and awards from the National Association of Black Journalists and the Women's Sports Foundation. Price's work has been featured in The Best American Sports Writing anthology on eight occasions, including the Gonzalez, Shirley and Coolbaugh pieces, and SI stories on Bobby Orr and Iroquois lacrosse. He is the author of Pitching Around Fidel: A Journey into the Heart of Cuban Sports (2000), which was a finalist for The Los Angeles Times Book Award, Far Afield: A Sportswriting Odyssey (The Lyons Press 2007), and Heart of the Game: Life, Death and Mercy in Minor League America (Harper Collins 2009). Esquire magazine tagged Far Afield as "one of the year's five best reads" while the Chicago Tribune called the book "a masterpiece." Price wrote the book while living in France for 15 months during 2003 and 2004, a journey that took him to the cricket fields of Pakistan and the gut-busting hills of L'Alpe d'Huez among other exotic locales. Before SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, Price was an award-winning columnist and feature writer for The Miami Herald and a columnist and NBA beat writer for The Sacramento Bee. Asked his favorite sport to cover as a sportswriter, Price says, "Anything people are passionate about."

Born in Stamford, Ct., Price resides in Washington D.C., with his wife Fran, a journalist, sons Charlie and Jack and daughter Addie. Of his wife, Price says she is "smarter, funnier, more gifted and kinder than I am."


  • Favorite SI Vault story: Hello, Trouble, I'm Dale Brown (Nov. 18, 1985)
  • Hobbies/Interests: "Tennis, running and basketball."
  • Writers Who Have Inspired My Work: "William Nack, Gary Smith, Richard Ben Cramer, Robert Caro, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Jack Kerouac, Bruce Springsteen, Steve Earle, Joseph Conrad, and hundreds more. Because they're incredible. Because they always tell you something new."
  • Favorite book: "Path to Power, by Robert Caro (non-fiction) and the U.S.A. trilogy (The 42nd Parallel, Nineteen Nineteen and The Big Money) by John Dos Passos (fiction)."

Updated 29 January 2010

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