Whether you’re rooting your team on to the World Series or discovering the sport for the first time, now is the perfect time to pick up a book on baseball!
If you are brand new to the sport, you may want to consider dipping your toes in with some starter books. Baseball has a unique culture and language all its own that How to Speak Baseball: An Illustrated Guide to Ballpark Banter by James Charlton will introduce you, too. This small book breaks down the phrases and terms you’ll hear surrounding the sport. And it works great as a cheat-sheet reference guide if you’re just passing the evening watching the game.
If you’re interested in passing yourself off as more knowledgeable, however, Watching Baseball Smarter: A Professional Fan’s Guide for Beginners, Semi-Experts, and Deeply Serious Geeks by Zack Hample might be more suited to you. Instead of a simple glossary, this book takes you more in depth to the workings of baseball, explaining some of the finer points with a touch of humor. While the really serious geek might not find it as in depth as they like—this book will work well for most casual baseball fans!
Baseball is rich in history, though, and October 1964 by David Halberstam looks at the history of the social impact and history of the sport in surveying the New York Yankees and St. Louis Cardinals teams as they meet in the World Series. Just as today’s baseball sees saber-metrics and traditionalism clash heads, the Yankees represented an older way of thinking and the Cardinals a newer more diverse brand of baseball. The resulting battle, as Halberstam records it, was intense.
Mariano Rivera’s recent book, The Closer, is an in depth autobiography of one of baseball’s greatest closers. As an international prospect and player, his story is similar to the backgrounds many of today’s young stars have. His story is full of the ups and downs of having played for one of the greatest teams in baseball.
This is just the tip of the iceberg! Enjoy the discovering the world of baseball through books!