Is This a Great Game, or What? From A-Rod's Heart to Zim's Head—My 25 Years in Baseball

Tim Kurkjian, Author . St. Martin's $24.95 (258p) ISBN 978-0-312-36223-2

ESPN commentator Kurkjian waxes nostalgic about baseball and his career covering the major leagues. Much in the style of a broadcaster's chatter during a game or the baseball notes columns in newspaper sports pages, Kurkjian peppers the reader with a succession of stories, many no longer than a paragraph. He argues that baseball is the "ultimate skill sport," far superior to football, basketball and all other sports, as well as being the game where players have the most fear of being hurt (by the ball, in this case). He goes on to say that baseball is the funniest game, its stats are the most significant, it has the best preseason, and it is the best game for kids. His rapid-fire stories in support of baseball deification sometimes come at an ad nauseam pace, but there are many entertaining ones in the bunch, including a player who confused the words "erudite" and "hermaphrodite" and another player who brought a live ostrich into a team meeting. His chapters on scouts, stats and spring training are among the best, while the behind-the-scenes chapter about ESPN's Baseball Tonight will be too much insider baseball for most readers. For a book that covers almost all angles of the major leagues, Kurkjian writes only briefly in his final chapter about the recent steroids scandals, a glaring oversight when discussing the modern game. (May)

Reviewed on: 03/05/2007
Release date: 05/01/2007
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 276 pages - 978-0-312-36224-9
Open Ebook - 272 pages - 978-1-4299-0033-1
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