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Weekend Reading: Watching Baseball Smarter

OK, I will admit that I have come late to baseball. I didn't really "find" the sport until my nephews became obsessed with the game. I will admit that I am also "late" in the sense that I don't really start to pay attention to the teams standings until mid August.

I may not be the best fan or the most loyal fan. I may not be the most knowledgeable about the history or lore of the game, but after reading Watching Baseball Smarter by Zack Hample, I at least know how to watch the game. The book's subtitle A Professional Fan's Guide for Beginners, Semi-experts, and Deeply Serious Geeks really lets the reader know that Zack is talking one fan to another. He is like your very own cheerleader and coach for your personal journey to baseball fandom. It is nice to know he is rooting for you.

Hample spells out the basic like rules, history, traditions, and jargon - the book is kind of like having an English/Baseball bilingual dictionary. He also explains many of the nuances of the game, like why players hold onto their batting gloves after they have gotten on base. Holding the gloves keeps their hands in a fist and this protects their fingers if they should need to slide into the next base. These facts, both big and small, are presented in a very entertaining and funny manner.

Did reading this book help me to become a much cooler aunt in the eyes of my baseball loving nephews? You betcha it did. And that is priceless.

Buy it from Amazon for $8.37, in paperback.

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