One of the first presents Max got was a wiffle ball and bat set. It took a little time, but he adores swinging that bat (he doesn’t discriminate about what he hits – people, toys, furniture – we’re working on it). Also, judging by the amount of sand he flung on our beach vacation last week, he’s no slouch at throwing, either.
Being a former softball player and the daughter of a high school pitcher (a hopeful walk-on at Purdue, but they already had a leftie pitcher that year), I’m expecting my little one to enjoy tee-ball, coach’s pitch, little league, and all the other levels of play as much as my brother and I did. (Max’s aunt Ashley primarily enjoyed playing in the infield dirt.)
So, because I love baseball and am so looking forward to cheering Max on in whatever jersey his team wears (Daddy would vote for the Yankees, while Grandpa would rather see him a Cub), I’m looking ahead a little and read a book for when Max is a little older. Actually, a lot older, since it’s recommended for 8-12 year olds, but I’m so excited!
At the start of the 87 page chapter book, main character Dusty and his devoted dad show us their devotion to the game as well as each other. The pair practice fielding straight into dinner-time, talking about their baseball hopes and dreams.
Reminiscent of the Red Sox’s Curse of the Bambino, the book’s major league New Jersey Force makes the mistake of angering “The Greatest Baseball Player That Ever Lived” by trading him, therefore incurring his wrath with decades of no championships.
Though Dusty faces emotional stress, he eventually is discovered by a scout and leads the Force to breaking the curse. Even more important than the win, however, are the lessons he learns along the way:
- working toward your goals;
- believing in yourself;
- the power of having a mentor
When Max is old enough to sit still for 87 pages, he’ll definitely enjoy “Tale of a Baseball Dream”, which deserves 4 snacks: