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What I'm Into This Week - Baseball Books
It happens about this time every year.

Little League season starts and our world revolves around the diamond.  From  lessons to practices to games, we are constantly shuffling off to some baseball related activity.

So, it should come as no surprise that America's Pasttime has worked its way into my reading as well.

Truth be told, I never intended for it to happen like this.  I was updated my Amazon Wish List and saw a couple of older entries that were baseball related.  I didn't really want to buy them anymore, but I thought "self, if the public library has those, you could get them for free."

A quick check and request later and both were in my queue.

Of course, they both showed up on the same day.

So what, you may ask, did I read?

I'm glad I asked.

Management by Baseball by Jeff Angus

From the author's website -

Through Management by Baseball learn how Hall of Fame baseball managers like Connie
Mack and John McGraw have more in common with today's business leaders than you may think. Find out why baseball managers like Joe Torre and Dusty Baker are better role models for business, government and non-profit management than even the most respected corporate giants.

Any interesting management take.  By applying business theory to baseball and baseball theory to management, Angus gets you to look at your workaday issues from a different perspective.

He does not, however, advocate kicking dirt on your boss.

Feeding the Monster by Seth Mnookin

This one takes a look at how the Red Sox used sabermetrics to rebuild their team around a bunch of castoffs and win a World Series.  Then it follows the teams efforts to keep the team in place and repeat.

I can hear you.  Yes, it's Moneyball featuring the Red Sox in place of the A's.  Feeding the Monster is lighter on the math and heavier on the personalities that drove the team to one of the most memorable World Series wins in history.

Recommended for stat heads and general sports fans alike.

The Curious Case of Sidd Finch by George Plimpton

Back in the 1980s, in the letter column of his fantastic run on DC's The Question, Denny O'Neill always included a piece of recommended reading.  Over the years, I've read quite a few of them, but for some reason I never got around to the one that involved baseball.

Thanks, once again, to the local libary, I can scratch Sidd Finch off my list.

This began as an April Fool's Day article in Sports Illustrated in which Plimpton introduced the world to the New York Mets pitching phenom, Sidd Finch, a Buddist monk who could hit speeds upwards of 160 mph.

Needless to say, once the prank was exposed, many people, mostly in New York, were pissed off.

Here Plimpton fleshs out the story to novel length and fleshes Sidd out more fully.

It's a fun read as we get ready for opening day.

I didn't mean to read three baseball themed books in a row.  It just sorta worked out that way.  That's how obsessions can be.  They just sneak up on you.

So there you have it.  That's what I'm into this week.
Posted in: Gonzo
Geeks






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