October 04, 2010
October is the time for one of America's 'ultimate' classics. You sports fans know what I mean. It's the fall classic, or better known as the "World Series"! In case you somehow missed it, Ken Burns added a new segment to his outstanding documentary on Baseball. It's called the 10th Inning, and ran on channel 19 recently. If you haven't seen Burns's initial 10-part Baseball series, then 'run' to your closest Mid-Continent Library branch and request it, or simply place it on hold from our website. The beauty of this PBS documentary is that you don't even have to be a sports fan to enjoy it. Sure it has some great old photos and action clips, but perhaps more fascinating are the interviews it contains. These are taken from such people as Bob Costas, Doris Kearns Goodwin, and even Kansas City's own Buck O'Neil. Moreover, this documentary does an excellent job of explaining why the game means so much to people as well as the country as a whole.
Of course, MCPL has some fine feature films on baseball, including The Pride of the Yankees, The Natural, and the comedy/musical Damn Yankees. Furthermore, we have some outstanding books in our system about baseball. One of my favorites is 100 Years of the World Series: 1903-2004 by Eric Enders. You might also try some of our excellent baseball biographies, like Luckiest Man: the Life and Death of Lou Gehrig by Jonathan Eig, or Satchel: the Life and Times of an American Legend by Larry Tye. We also have an online database that contains biographies of notable baseball players called Biographical Dictionary of American Sports: Baseball. In addition to these biography resources, our collection includes books about ball teams in other cities, such as St. Louis, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, etc.
Did I mention that baseball is a thinking man's game? The game certainly has plenty of statistics, records, etc. to back up that argument. So naturally, we have lots of resources on that aspect of the game, like the book, The Baseball Maniac's Almanac: The Absolutely, Positively, and Without Question Greatest Book of Baseball Facts, Figures, and Astonishing Lists Ever compiled, by Bert Randolph Sugar. You might also try the following online periodicals, Baseball Digest and Baseball Research Journal. You can access these directly from our website. Besides baseball, our library includes resources on many different sports and sports related topics. Furthermore, we "especially" have good books about sports for younger readers. So, we'll help you find all these things, and wave you on to home plate!
In addition, the reference staff at North Independence love sports trivia questions, and has excellent sports reference books. One of the staff members here even tries to kid himself that he has a great mind for baseball. OK, I'm the guy. However, I'm at least a lifelong ball fan, and grew up following the old Kansas City Athletics. The old K.C. Athletics never had a winning season, but they still provided us with lots of thrills. I remember one summer afternoon years ago when they were being pounded by the Yankees, but rallied back and eventually won the game in the 12th inning.
How about you? Do you have any great baseball memories to share with us??
North Independence Branch