25 Greatest Baseball Players of All Time

25 Greatest Baseball Players of All Time

4.0 3
by Len Berman
     
 

Discover the greatest baseball players of all time!

Len Berman hosts the popular Spanning the World segments on NBC's Today show. He is a former sports anchor at WNBC New York/ He has won eight local Emmy Awards and has been voted New York Sportscaster of the Year six times. His daily Top 5 email is featured in The Huffington Post and is received by

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Overview

Discover the greatest baseball players of all time!

Len Berman hosts the popular Spanning the World segments on NBC's Today show. He is a former sports anchor at WNBC New York/ He has won eight local Emmy Awards and has been voted New York Sportscaster of the Year six times. His daily Top 5 email is featured in The Huffington Post and is received by thousands around the country.

Editorial Reviews

St. Louis Jewish Light
The book features a bright, colorful layout, with several pages devoted to each star. It is less stats and more biography. Fun and informative, the book tries to cover all the bases in sparking young fans' interest.
Sports Illustrated For Kids
Explore the stories behind baseball's biggest stars.
Booklist
Emmy Award—winning sportscaster Berman offers a lively and informative collection of baseball greats, past to present... Conversational prose, abundant photos, and exciting accounts of particular plays keep the tone upbeat and engaging...Berman's knowledge and enthusiasm is evident, and this will likely provoke discussion among young fans, who may come away inspired to compile their own lists of greats.
From the Publisher
"The awesome feats of Ruth, Mantle, the Gibsons Bob and Josh, Hank Aaron, Ty Cobb and the rest are always worth a recap." - Kirkus

"Emmy Award—winning sportscaster Berman offers a lively and informative collection of baseball greats, past to present... Conversational prose, abundant photos, and exciting accounts of particular plays keep the tone upbeat and engaging...Berman's knowledge and enthusiasm is evident, and this will likely provoke discussion among young fans, who may come away inspired to compile their own lists of greats." - Booklist

"The book features a bright, colorful layout, with several pages devoted to each star. It is less stats and more biography. Fun and informative, the book tries to cover all the bases in sparking young fans' interest." - St. Louis Jewish Light

"This can serve as a springboard for discussion and allowing students to create their own top twenty-five list." - VOYA

"Explore the stories behind baseball's biggest stars." - Sports Illustrated For Kids

"A fantastic book for baseball lovers of all ages." - Bourne Enterprise

"Berman's lively title should win a wide audience of fans young and old." - School Library Journal

Len Berman's "The Greatest Moments in Sports" and "The 25 Greatest Baseball Players of All Time" (Sourcebooks, $16.99, 136 pages, coffee table size) are two for your sports bookshelf. Penned by one of the most affable and informed sportscasters of all time, the two tomes terrifically tell tales of players and moments that hold special places in sports history. For browsing, for research, for reading - these titles have what it takes.

VOYA - Steven Kral
Who are the best players to have ever played baseball? This question arises whenever groups of baseball fans gather. Drawing on a panel of baseball players and journalists, Emmy-winning sportscaster Berman attempts to find an answer. Initial balloting selected forty players, and the panel eventually settled on twenty-five players to profile. Each player is given two to three pages devoted to their career. The profiles include photos (both in color and black and white), the players' lifetime statistics, and graphics and callouts with trivia about the player. The conversational text details the highlights of the player's career and explains why they were chosen. While it is not an in-depth treatment of baseball history, players seem to be selected to represent a particular era of baseball. Although its appeal to reluctant readers is obvious, some of the choices seem purposely debatable. This can serve as a springboard for discussion and allowing students to create their own top twenty-five list. Reviewer: Steven Kral
School Library Journal
Gr 4–8—As he did in The Greatest Moments in Sports (Sourcebooks, 2009), Berman offers a readable collection of facts and anecdotes. This time, he introduces 25 baseball players in short chapters that highlight their career accomplishments and milestones. Though a "blue ribbon panel" of sports writers and players helped narrow his list, sportscaster Berman colors this collection with his personal opinions. His enthusiasm is infectious, and observing that statistics only tell part of the story, he personalizes each account with memorable incidents and accomplishments. The colorful design adds to the appeal. There are few surprises among those chosen; most are Hall of Famers and include Ty Cobb, Lou Gehrig, Babe Ruth, Joe DiMaggio, Jackie Robinson, and Berman's hero, Mickey Mantle. The notables also include Pete Rose, Josh Gibson, and Alex Rodriguez. Jeff Kisseloff's well-written Who Is Baseball's Greatest Hitter? (Holt, 2001) and Who Is Baseball's Greatest Pitcher? (Cricket Bks., 2003) were crowd-pleasing favorites. Like those earlier books, Berman's lively title should win a wide audience of fans young and old.—Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills Public Library, CA
Kirkus Reviews

In no particular order and using no set criteria for his selections, veteran sportscaster Berman pays tribute to an arbitrary gallery of baseball stars—all familiar names and, except for the Yankees' Alex Rodriguez, retired from play for decades. Repeatedly taking the stance that statistics are just numbers but then reeling off batting averages, home-run totals, wins (for pitchers) and other data as evidence of greatness, he offers career highlights in a folksy narrative surrounded by photos, side comments and baseball-card–style notes in side boxes. Readers had best come to this with some prior knowledge, since he casually drops terms like "slugging percentage," "dead ball era" and "barnstorming" without explanation and also presents a notably superficial picture of baseball's history—placing the sport's "first half-century" almost entirely in the 1900s, for instance, and condescendingly noting that Jackie Robinson's skill led Branch Rickey to decide that he "was worthy of becoming the first black player to play in the majors." The awesome feats of Ruth, Mantle, the Gibsons Bob and Josh, Hank Aaron, Ty Cobb and the rest are always worth a recap—but this one's strictly minor league. (Nonfiction. 10-12)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781402238864
Publisher:
Sourcebooks
Publication date:
09/01/2010
Pages:
144
Sales rank:
878,021
Product dimensions:
10.30(w) x 10.10(h) x 0.80(d)
Lexile:
910L (what's this?)
Age Range:
10 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt

So I thought this was going to be easy. Who can't pick the 25 greatest baseball players of all time? I immediately wrote down my list. It totaled 31. Uh-oh. And that list of 31 left out some of my favorite all-time players, like Tom Seaver and Jim Palmer.

Then it struck me. I couldn't do this by myself. So I recruited a special "Blue Ribbon Panel" to help me decide-and they couldn't agree on 25 either. So I tallied up all the votes, and the top 25 made it.

There are still some major omissions. Yankee catcher Yogi Berra may have won 10 World Series and three Most Valuable Player (MVP) Awards, but he didn't make the cut. And neither did fellow Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan, despite his record seven no-hitters. Sandy Koufax was one of the all-time great pitchers, and Mariano Rivera may be the best reliever ever, but neither of them made it either. That's how tough this was.

So out of thousands of major leaguers, we have somehow whittled the list down to 25. They are the greatest of the great. See if you agree.
My Blue Ribbon Panel

My Blue Ribbon Panel consists of former players, a long-time baseball executive, and various members of the media.

  • Four-time World Series champion, Yankee center fielder Bernie Williams
  • Three-time All-Star pitcher for the Brooklyn Dodgers in the 1940s and 1950s, Ralph Branca
  • Long-time major league executive Roland Hemond
  • Emmy and Peabody Award—winning journalist Frank Deford
  • Red Sox fanatic, television/film critic, and author Jeffrey Lyons
  • Radio talk-show host extraordinaire Chris "Mad Dog" Russo
  • Emmy Award—winning producer of This Week in Baseball Steve Fortunato

And special thanks to Baseball Hall of Fame president Jeff Idelson for his guidance on this project.

Forty different players received votes, and only 11 players were unanimous choices. Panelist Bernie Williams was partial to the players of his era. He voted for pitcher Pedro Martinez, saying, "The best I ever faced. In his prime...three un-hittable pitches." Ralph Branca said, "Pretty tough to leave out some of the great players. Can't we make it 30? It still would be tough to choose."

And that's the fun of it. How do you com­pare players from different eras? You really can't. But somehow we got it down to 25. And at the end of the book, you'll get your chance to vote for your favorites.
So here we go. Play ball!

BEFORE YOU GET STARTED, HERE ARE SOME BASEBALL ABBREVIATIONS EVERY FAN SHOULD KNOW!
1B = First Base
2B = Second Base/Doubles
3B = Third Base/Triples
AB = At Bats
AL = American League
AVG = Batting Average
BA = Batting Average
C = Catcher
E = Errors
ERA = Earned Run Average
G = Games Played
H = Hits
HR = Home Runs
K = Strikeouts
L = Losses
MLB = Major League Baseball
MVP = Most Valuable Player
NL = National League
OF = Outfield
P = Pitcher
R = Runs
RBI = Runs Batted In
SS = Shortstop
W = Wins

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