Who's on First?: Books About Baseball to Excite Young Readers (page 3)

— Parents' Choice Foundation
Updated on Jan 8, 2010

Backyard Baseball 2005 for PCBackyard Baseball 2005 for PC and Playstation 2
Ages: 7 - 12 yrs.
Atari, Inc. - MA, $19.99 (Windows 98/ME/2000/XP, Playstation2)

Like baseball returns each spring, so does the newest version of this kid-friendly fun-and-strategy baseball game. Will yet another upgrade of its engaging arcade-like mix of playground and professional baseball action be worth it? The prospect report: This one is a hit. There's all the fun power-ups such as the fireball pitch and the lightening bat that were there before. And the neighborhood kids are back waiting to be you drafted onto your ball club--a strategic decision based on their abilities, skills (players are rated from one to 10 in power, contact, pitching, running, and defense) or just unusual personalities.Is it worth buying if your young ballplayers already have a previous version? Ask yourself, how much do they love baseball?

Play Ball Like the Pro's
Ages: 8 - 12 yrs.
Author: Steven Krasner
Peachtree Publishers, LTD, $12.95

This is a great instructional book filled with useful and insightful tips aimed at kids working at honing their baseball skills--all in the words of 20 of the game's top major-league ballplayers. Separate chapters cover basics such as catching, pitching, each infield position, playing the outfield, hitting, and base running.

Baseball for Everyone: Stories from the Great GameBaseball for Everyone: Stories from the Great Game
Ages: 8 - 12 yrs.
Author: Janet Wyman Coleman & Elizabeth V. Warren
Harry N. Abrams, Inc., $16.95

This colorful tour of baseball's history, illustrated with folk art and collectibles, shows why the sport is called "America's Pastime". From pick-up games played by children, Civil War soldiers, firemen, and college students, to the formation of the first professional leagues, this is a democratic look at the sport illustrated with early baseball cards, paintings, quilts, signs, carved bats, and more. Book Description

Jackie and Me
Ages: 8 - 12 yrs.
Author: Dan Gutman
Avon, $5.99 (Paperback)

Joe can travel through time via baseball cards. Inspired by a classroom report, he travels back to 1947 to meet Jackie Robinson, who was the first African-American to play major league baseball. A sometimes funny, yet serious and totally involving take on history.

Circa Classics Baseball
Ages: 8 & Up
Front Porch Classics, $49.99

Circa Classics Baseball is a finely crafted, old-wood styled throwback of an actual baseball game. Like its big brother, the award-winning "Old Century Baseball" game which is about twice the size and cost of this smaller version, this table-top ballpark brings a pre-electric pinball style of play to America's pastime.

Harry's Grand Slam Baseball
Ages: 8 & Up
Out of the Box Publishing, Inc Price: $14.99

Imagine being able to play a complete baseball game on your kitchen table. A reproduction of Harry Obst's original card game from 1962, the game includes 54 illustrated play cards, a baseball “diamond”, an outfield scoreboard, both updated and original rules, a card reference sheet, and a history of Harry's Grand Slam Baseball Game, all conveniently housed in a sturdy tin.

A Strong Right Arm
Ages: 10 & Up
Author: Michelle Y. Green  
Penguin Putnam Inc./Dial Books for Young Readers, $15.99 (Hard Cover)  

This five-foot-two, ninety-eight pound young woman's strong right arm led her all the way to three years of professional baseball play with the Negro League's Indianapolis Clowns. Her struggles against the injustices of racism and sexism are told as matter-of-fact asides to her joy in playing baseball.

Fodor's Baseball Vacations
Ages: All Ages
Author: Margaret Engel    Author: Bruce Adams
Fodor's Travel Publications, $20.00 (Paperback)

For many hardcore baseball fans, the field of dream extends to the many Major League Baseball and minor league stadiums. So when on vacation, catching a game in another town becomes a wonderful pastime. This great book is THE travel guide for families of baseball fans--reviewing the authors' experiences on the road at during 34 well-planned baseball pilgrimages across the nation.

Ballpark: The Story of America's Baseball FieldsBallpark: The Story of America's Baseball Fields
Ages: All Ages
Author: Lynn Curlee   Illustrator: Lynn Curlee
Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing/Atheneum Books for Young Readers, $17.95 (Hardcover)

In this informed overview of America's ballparks, veteran nonfiction writer Lynn Curlee provides an historic and cultural look at baseball and of the ball fields that mark the game's evolution. His love for the game and for its parks is clear.


Don't MissPlaymakers Part III: Wiffle Ball

In 1952, 13-year-old David A. Mullany had an unquenchable need to play baseball but was faced with the friendly confines of his own backyard. Not content to give up on his game, David and his friends devised a way to play using a broomstick and perforated plastic golf ball. Learn how that backyard game evolved into a new national pastime.

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