If you are a fan of baseball, or just a fan trying to widen your knowledge about the game, then you should consider reading about the best baseball books of America’s National Pastime.
The best baseball books tell the history of our game so well because it was our first game ever. There are thousands of baseball books about success, how to play the game, and even books on the best players in the game, there is bound to be a baseball book for everyone. Baseball is America’s Pastime and is THE sport for kids to play all around the nation. Baseball is the perfect venue for little kids to fall in love with something, from the smell, to the sights around the park, to the crack of the bat, and the ball hitting the glove.
No matter how boring the game may seem, it has always withstood the test of time. From wars, to depressions, to national tragedies, baseball has always been the backbone of our nation, and everyone still seems to support it. There is always some type of thrill to the game. Although you may not always be on the edge of your seat during a game, baseball will always offer something different each game and each series for each and every team.
Baseball can be looked at as better times coming along, with it comes spring and summer. Each season comes optimism and everyone gets a new clean slate. Last years successes can be relished in, while the failures can be brushed on by. As long as the baseball season may be, it is seen as a marathon rather than a sprint. The season is long with many times to show your worth, or even more times to redeem yourself from failure.
Ironically, baseball is a team game based solely on everyone’s individual statistics. The game is solely won by who is in the batter’s box, and who is on the pitcher’s mound. It is just one big game of chess, especially when it comes down to the nitty gritty in the playoffs.
Top 10 List of Best Baseball Books of All Time
The history of baseball will live on forever and so will the legends that came before us all. These baseball books will take a look into the history of the game, statistics, individual players, and so much more. For many decades, the sport of baseball has lived through the test of time, there is bound to be a book for everyone. Here is the list of the 10 Best Baseball Books of All Time.
10. Cardboard Gods, by Josh Wilker
At number 10 on the top 10 Best Baseball Books of All Time, is Cardboard Gods by Josh Wilker. The fact that it is a book solely on collecting baseball cards is pretty cool. It is different from all the other Baseball books because it focuses on card collecting rather than any part of the game.
9. Baseball in the Garden of Eden, by John Thorn
John Thorn spent nearly 30 years trying to complete this book that goes back to the game’s origins. This book not only tells you all the premises when it comes to baseball, but it begins to tell you as a baseball fan everything that you think you know about baseball, is actually wrong.
8. The Boys of Summer, by Roger Kahn
As a Brooklyn Dodger beat writer in the 1950’s, Roger Kahn used his experiences and connections to turn The Boys of Summer into a classic narrative. This classic baseball book should be on every baseball lover’s shelf.
7. The Last Boy: Mickey Mantle, by Jane Leavy
With over 600 interviews and her own experiences, Jane Leavy brings in her own experiences with the famed Mickey Mantle. Leavy follows Mantle around to transcend the image of Mantle. Leavy is really trying to figure out who the real Mickey Mantle is, American hero, or aging ballplayer?
6. The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract, by Bill James
At his best, Bill James can research any topic to its end and back. In this 2001 work, James offers his comments on over 900 players and recounted 13 decades of history for those history buffs out there.
5. The Numbers Game, by Alan Schwarz
Schwarz’s baseball book on the advanced stats of the game reign supreme over all others. Schwarz is able to add so much information into this book and turn it into a great narrative. Only some baseball books are lucky if they can even do so.
4. Baseball, by Geoffrey C. Ward
Baseball by Geoffrey Ward is the perfect book to introduce to someone of they want to learn more about the game as it recounts 150 years of the sports history. Not only does it tell the history of the game very well, it is a must read for anyway in Baseball 101.
3. Lords of the Realm, by John Helyar
John Helyar details how the Major League Baseball Players Association executive director, Marvin Miller, led a successful fight in the 1960’s and 70’s to bring down the reserve clause and bring free agency to baseball. After reading this baseball book, everyone should have a good idea about why the 1994 strike occurred, and why labor strikes can always threaten baseball seasons.
2. Ball Four, by Jim Bouton
Ball Four by Jim Bouton is a playing diary that compiles his story in 1969 with the Seattle Pilots, and following a late season trade, the Houston Astros. This novel recounts Bouton and much of his career. Considered by many to be one of the most important books about the sport ever written. At the time, Bowie Kuhn, Baseball’s Commissioner, called it detrimental to the sport, saying that it was all fictional.
1. The Glory of Their Times, by Lawrence Ritter
Columbia University professor Lawrence Ritter drove all over the United States interviewing the veterans of the sport. Long before the days of the media as we know it today came this great gem of a baseball book. Ritter helped these aging players by giving them new life in the game they grew up loving.