From Publishers Weekly
"Whenever you run into me, wherever it is that we are, and whatever it is that we are supposed to be doing, it is wise to remember that I would generally rather be at the ballpark." Benson (Living Prayer) recounts his experiences in baseball, his family and life during this whimsical, flowing account of a minor league baseball game between the Iowa Cubs and the Nashville Sounds. The book is constructed in nine chapters, each prefaced with a quote from late Major League Baseball
commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti, to match the nine innings of a baseball game, but the structure is rather loose, permitting the author to muse on a variety of subjects, including the Chicago Cubs, his relationship with his wife and a book tour. Although overtly self-conscious, Benson tries his hardest to write in the tradition of high-class baseball writers (think Giamatti and George Will, rather than W.P. Kinsella or Bull Durham), and at times he succeeds: "Those who do not frequent baseball diamonds do not know about the cosmic principle known as If They See It, They Will Slide. If you are a kid, and you are running toward a base on a baseball diamond, and there is absolutely no reason to slide, you will slide anyway. Just for the joy of it. Just for the pretend of it. Just for the dust and the dirt of it. Just for the fact that some cosmic force requires it. It may well be how, if not exactly why, the game of baseball was invented in the first place." He does say some things that will rub a certain type of baseball fan the wrong way, such as that he roots for both the Braves and the Yankees. Literary-minded fans who believe that baseball is a mirror for life will enjoy this book. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.