Saturday, April 16, 2005


Jerry Remy has done a terrific job throughout his baseball life, from an extensive major league career and 1978 All-Star appearance to broadcasting since 1988. Watching Baseball gives Remy´s insights into how to watch and anticipate the daily race that comprises baseball´s annual marathon.

He reviews a number of fundamentals about hitting, pitching, fielding, and baserunning. He also shares a little bit about the psychology of the game, the rise through the minors, and the relationships that players and management have.

Occasionally, he gives great insight into ´behind the scenes´insight such as Dick Allen saying รก slump is only as long as your last at-bat´or that Cal Ripken didn´t have great positional play early in his career. But most of the time he paints with broad strokes, yielding information best suited to your novice to intermediate fan.

For those who have played higher level baseball (college or semi-professional) there probably isn´t enough meat to go on the ample bones about the framework of the game. For example, if you know the difference between run-and-hit and hit-and-run, then you might not get a lot out of this book. If you want to know about the physics of the curveball and the Bernoulli principle, then this is not your read.

He does present some good statistical tables supporting arguments about pitchers versus hitters counts, and how various contemporary Sox players fare under those situations.

This almost feels like a prequel to something bigger, work that could bridge the gap between superficial knowledge and the clubhouse intrigue of Ball Four. If you´re a baseball diehard or lifer, then you probably better with Men at Work or The Head Game. This isn´t a knock on Remy, but rather a comment on his target audience. If you want a broader overview of the fundamentals of baseball situational and positional play, then Watching Baseball might work for you.

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