Baseball Great (Baseball Great Series #1)

Baseball Great (Baseball Great Series #1)

by Tim Green


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From New York Times bestselling author and former NFL player Tim Green comes a baseball book pulsing with action. Baseball Great offers a baseball story attuned to today’s headlines, a totally involving, character-driven, sports-centered thriller. Perfect for fans of Mike Lupica. As a young reviewer on said: “Great book with many exciting, surprising events that make you want to keep reading."

When the school paper calls him “Grant Middle’s best hope for its first-ever city-wide championship,” Josh feels like he’s starting to get noticed—in good and bad ways. Seeing Josh’s talent, his father drags him out of the school baseball tryouts and gets him in the running for the Titans, the local youth championship team coached by Rocky Valentine.

All Josh really wants to do is play ball, but now Rocky wants him to gulp down protein shakes and other supplements. Suspicious, Josh and his new friend, Jaden, uncover a dangerous secret—and catch the attention of one man who will do anything to keep them from exposing it.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061626883
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 02/23/2010
Series: Baseball Great Series , #1
Pages: 250
Sales rank: 77,971
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.50(h) x 0.70(d)
Lexile: 840L (what's this?)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

About the Author

Tim Green, for many years a star defensive end with the Atlanta Falcons, is a man of many talents. He's the author of such gripping books for adults as the New York Times bestselling The Dark Side of the Game and American Outrage. Tim graduated covaledictorian from Syracuse University and was a first-round draft pick. He later earned his law degree with honors, and he has also worked as an NFL commentator for FOX Sports and NPR.

His first book for young readers, Football Genius, inspired in part by his players and his own kids, became a New York Times bestseller and was followed by Football Hero, Football Champ, The Big Time, and Deep Zone. He drew on his experiences playing and coaching Little League for Rivals and Pinch Hit and two more New York Times bestsellers: Baseball Great and Best of the Best.

Bestselling author Jon Scieszka called Tim Green's Unstoppable, a book about a boy's struggle with cancer that debuted at #2 on the New York Times bestseller list, "Absolutely heroic. And something every guy should read."

Tim Green lives with his wife, Illyssa, and their five children in upstate New York.

Read an Excerpt

Baseball Great

By Tim Green
Copyright © 2009

Tim Green
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-0-06-162686-9

Chapter One Josh wondered why every time something really good happened, something else had to spoil it. It had been like this since he could remember, like biting into a ruby red apple only to find a brown worm crawling through the crisp, white fruit. For the first time since he'd moved to his new neighborhood, he had been recognized, and his unusual talent had been appreciated. So why was it that that same fame had kicked up the muddy rumor that got a high school kid looking to bash his teeth in?

For the moment, though, riding the school bus, he was safe. The school newspaper in Josh's backpack filled his whole body with an electric current of joy and pride, so much so that his cheeks burned. He sat alone in the very front seat and kept his eyes ahead, ignoring the stares and whispers as the other kids got off at the earlier stops. When Jaden Neidermeyer, the new girl from Texas who'd written the article, got off at her stop, Josh stared hard at his sneakers. He just couldn't look.

After she left, he glanced around and carefully parted the lips of his backpack's zipper. Without removing the newspaper, he stole another glance at the headline, baseball great, and the picture of him with a bat and the caption underneath: "Grant Middle's best hope for its first-ever citywide championship, Josh LeBlanc."

The bus ground to a halt at his stop and Josh got off.

As the bus rumbled away, Josh saw Bart Wilson standing on the next corner. The tenth grader pitched his cigarette into the gutter and started toward him with long strides. Josh gasped, turned, and ran without looking back. A car blared its horn. Brakes squealed. Josh leaped back, his heart galloping fast, like the tenth grader now heading his way, even faster. Josh circled the car-the driver yelling at him through the window-and dashed across the street and down the far sidewalk.

He rounded the corner at Murphy's bar and sprinted up the block, ducking behind a wrecked station wagon at Calhoon's Body Shop, peeking through the broken web of glass back toward the corner. Breathing hard, he slipped the straps of the backpack he carried around his shoulders and fastened it tight. Two men in hooded sweatshirts and jeans jackets burst out of Murphy's and got into a pickup truck; otherwise, Josh saw no one. Still, he scooted up the side street, checking behind him and dodging from one parked car to another for cover.

When he saw his home, a narrow, red two-story place with a steep roof and a sagging front porch, he breathed deep, and his heart began to slow. The previous owner had three pit bulls, and so a chain-link fence surrounded the house and its tiny front and back lawns, separating them from the close-packed neighbors on either side. The driveway ran tight to the house, and like the single, detached garage, it was just outside the fence. Josh lifted the latch, but as he pulled open the front gate, a hand appeared from nowhere, slamming it shut. The latch clanked home, and the hand spun Josh around.

"What you running from?" asked Bart Wilson, the tenth-grade smoker.


Excerpted from Baseball Great by Tim Green Copyright © 2009 by Tim Green. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Customer Reviews

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Baseball Great 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 75 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was so addicting! I couldn't put it down! You need to get it! I'd give it 10 stars if I could! I fell in love with the main characters, especially Jaden. I loved and was surprised with the ending though. If you like baseball, this is a must read. If you hate baseball, this is a must read. Why? Because you might fall in love with baseball. This book doesn't just talk about baseball, it deals with bullying, adolecense, dugs, and friendship, making this book a must read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book, I reccomend this book to people who are interested with mysteries and sports like myself
Rebecca_Tomlin More than 1 year ago
I was, and still am to some degree, worried about the content matter of this book for the age group for which it is specified. Drugs are an issue that need to be addressed early, but I am worried that a discussion of steroid use to an 8 year old is pushing the envelope a bit. I think children who learn the lingo of drug abuse may find themselves tempted to use it. I ertainly would not have wanted my 8 or 9 year old to know what "gym candy" is. This book is however, geared towards boys, a population of readers that is often reluctant to pick up a book on their own. The baseball action, the detective-like subplot, and the subplot of the bully after Josh's girlfriend will keep a male reader involved in the book. I think some discretion should be used when suggesting it to readers, and it would be better suited for the 11 to 13 year old readers.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Read it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was pretty good not one of his best books. I wood read tho
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Amazing book so far
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was a quick read that had my heart pumping in the ending. Great job Tim Green. Recommend to anyone who enjoys Jonh Feinsteim books, this is along the same idea.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was the greatest book Tim Green wrote so I'm sure his other books are great!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is amazing. I just could not stop reading it! I could not wait to get my hands on the second book: Rivals.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a must read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is to good to be true if you are a baseball fan or play baseball this book will realy speak to you especially if your a big dude wow hits the ball a mile yet can play shortstop at the same time
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So good
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Baseball Great was a very good book. The story told about how you can be an underdog on an older team. I highly recomend this book. I could not put this book down.
Andrew Meyer More than 1 year ago
just amazing i cant say anything else
DanielSS More than 1 year ago
Palatine, IL, October 11, 2008 --( Courage to Win by Steven Sutherland Andrew has developed a mental toughness and heart with that won't quit and will only succeed. Through his journey he will take you through total days where he learned the game and the game became him and completed him. You see a young man with courage strike out to make seven stops at second base. His teams and coaches would be saying did you see that? You can't judge a kid by his size or talent but you can judge him by his gift if you can visualize that. What you see with Andrew is not what you get, unless you know his heart. He not only loves baseball, lives baseball, but baseball completes him. ISBN#978-0-615-25662-7 (121 pages) Paperback: $19.95 Download: $18.95
shannonkearns on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
another fun baseball book, this time with a dash of mystery thrown in. a good read.
Wrighty on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
All Josh really wants to do is play ball, but as he gets in deeper with youth championship team the Titans, there are questions he just got to ask! Together with school reporter Jaden, Josh investigates his suspicions of steroid use - until the two friends find themselves in a desperate struggle with a dangerous man who doesn't want them to expose the nasty secrets they uncover.This story involves an adult issue that has unfortunately become prominent in the sport's world. And even more unfortunate is the fact that this behavior has been passed on to younger athletes. This story's tackles that issue for a middle school baseball team. Tim Green writes with great detail and knowledge of sports without being too technical to be good. Each chapter ends with a bit of a cliff hanger that makes you want to read more although some of the chapters end rather abruptly mid-scene. The topics are timely as this twelve-year-old boy and his family deal with financial difficulties, bullying, peer pressure and illegal steroid use. Although Josh and his friends have very mature conversations for their age they are dealing with serious subjects.Josh's father is a minor league baseball player who has recently lost his job. While it creates hardship for the family it also allows Josh to settle down in one town, Syracuse, NY (near me!) and play ball with the school team. But his father is eager for him to have advantages that he didn't have as a child so he pressures him into joining the travel team with older kids where he has recently found a new job. The school teammates feel let down and the new teammates aren't very welcoming. To make matter worse, the coach is very intense and wants to win at any cost. When Josh becomes suspicious of a new sports drink and pills that are being passed around the team to help make them bigger and stronger he isn't sure where to turn. He doesn't want to jeopardize his father's job or their fragile relationship. He looks to his two friends to help him do the right thing. This was a good read that will keep you interested until the end.Tim Green has previously written adult novels, middle-grade books about football and now has branched out into baseball. He knows his subject matter. As a previous coach of baseball and football and a professional athlete, he's lived through the sports experience. And as a father of five children he has certainly lived through the kid experience!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
- I am the Kirkus Reviews secret reviewer.
jahJH More than 1 year ago
This book was rally good. I couldn't put it down. MUST READ !!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kiss your hand 3 times then post this on 3 diffrent books look under your pillow
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It is awesome
Anonymous More than 1 year ago