Friday, May 20, 2016

A BwM Book Review: "50 Moments That Defined Major League Baseball" by Rocco Constantino 5/20/16

Hey baseball fans!

As you can probably tell from my posts, I love lists, which is why I was so excited when I was asked to read and review the book, "50 Moments That Defined Major League Baseball" by Rocco Constantino. Constantino is an NCAA athletics administrator at Bloomfield College and baseball historian, but he also does some freelance writing and this book shows how good of a writer and journalist he really is.

"50 Moments That Defined Major League Baseball" is a book that does exactly as advertised: tells the reader 50 moments in baseball history that were so iconic, that they changed the way America's pastime is perceived and played. The book includes all of the regulars, like Jackie Robinson, Babe Ruth, and Hank Aaron and their respective milestones, but it also includes some pretty obscure names and moments that the average young baseball fan probably wouldn't know, like Dave Stieb's numerous attempts at pitching a perfect game or Mark "The Bird" Fidrych's quirks that made him a national superstar on the mound. But no matter what the topic is, Constantino does a great job at narrating the scene, telling the reader why the moment is so captivating and why it has altered baseball's future. One of my favorite chapters in the book is about Mike Schmidt's 500th home run because Constantino eloquently captures what Schmidt, who is my favorite player in baseball history, meant to the city of Philadelphia, the city in which the Hall of Fame third baseman played his entire career, and how he saved the Phillies' franchise.

One of the ways that Constantino conveys his messages about each moment is via interviews. The book has a lot of them and each contribute to the telling of any of the 50 stories in their own unique ways. Some of the interviews are with a subject's teammate or rival or even an umpire that witnessed the story firsthand. The perspectives that the reader is given while reading the book are both fun to read and interesting. The reader gets a better view on the magnitude of the event, which I enjoyed a lot.

Overall, I'd definitely recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn more about baseball, wants to relive past memories of the game, or anything in between. The 50 stories are great on their own and collectively they show why America has loved baseball for over a century. Thanks for reading this book review. If you'd like to pick up the book on Amazon, click here. Check back soon for more of "all the buzz on what wuzz."

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