The Book of Mike

"This is no junior college. This is the notorious University of Miami.” -- Marlins starter Dontrelle Willis, after getting knocked around for six runs in 2 1/3 innings by the Canes.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Weekend Baseball

Despite taking a hearty break to watch the Miami - North Carolina college baseball game on Saturday night, I was able to watch a fair portion of Saturday afternoon, evening, and late night's game between the Cardinals and Mets. Fox probably didn't intend to sign up for a 20-inning marathon, but that's what they ended up with.

You could argue a lot about the game. Some called LaRussa's performance the "Mona Lisa" in his career of over managing. There were plenty of strategies to doubt and calls to dispute (like the should-have-been stolen base that wasn't, right before Albert Pujols' double off the wall in the 19th). Overall, it was a fun baseball game to watch.

As I watched it, I couldn't help but think of one of my all time favorite books, W.P. Kinsella's "The Iowa Baseball Confederacy". It's a book that I've read a handful of times over the years. If you like a good baseball story, you'll probably like it too. If you like a "real" life story, masquerading as a baseball story (a la "The Natural"), you'll almost certainly like "The Iowa Baseball Confederacy".

In "The Iowa Baseball Confederacy" there's a very long baseball game between a small town team and a big league club. The game goes on for day's and makes Saturday's Cardinals-Mets tilt look more like a sprint than a marathon. Plus the novel includes time travel and a love story. What could be better?

By the way, if the name W.P. Kinsella is familar to you in a baseball sense, it's probably because you're thinking of Ray Kinsella, the hero from "Field of Dreams". That movie was an adaptation of W.P. Kinsella's "Shoeless Joe".


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