Diamonds around the Globe: The Encyclopedia of International Baseball

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Overview

Baseball is increasingly popular throughout the world, as evidenced by the many talented players (such as Ichiro Suzuki, Miguel Cabrera, Albert Pujols, and Hideki Matsui) coming to the Major Leagues from around the globe. The influx of such players is testament to the many high-quality professional and amateur leagues that thrive throughout the world. In this reference book—the first of its kind— narrative chapters trace the history of baseball in Australia, Canada, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Japan, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, and throughout the rest of the world. Bjarkman profiles the teams and leading players from each country. He also covers the history of tournament play throughout the world, including Olympic baseball. This volume provides an invaluable and unprecedented source on the growth of America's national pastime into a global phenomenon that one day might feature a true World Series. Backmatter includes a chronology of important events, an annotated bibliography, and contact information for official baseball federations throughout the world.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Bjarkman, the prolific author of more than 30 books on baseball (e.g., The New York Mets Encyclopedia) and basketball (e.g., The Biographical History of Basketball) who is also a noted expert on Cuban baseball, now turns his attention to international baseball. Devoting each chapter to a different country or region-including Cuba, Canada, Japan, the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Europe, Africa, and the Pacific Rim-Bjarkman profiles teams and leading players through wonderfully detailed narratives, accompanied by a photo or two and clearly organized statistical information. He also covers the history of tournament play throughout the world, chronicling, for example, Great Olympic baseball activities and examining the Caribbean World Series. A useful international baseball time line is provided as well, along with a listing of the member countries of the International Baseball Federation. Bottom Line Truly a triumph of research and good writing, this gem should be on the reference shelves of any library boasting a serious baseball collection.-Paul Kaplan, Lake Villa Dist. Lib., IL Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313322686
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 12/1/2004
  • Pages: 652
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 1.38 (d)

Meet the Author

PETER C. BJARKMAN writes extensively about baseball, basketball, and travel-related topics. He has published two previous books on Cuban baseball, plus a history of baseball in Latin America and more than three dozen other titles treating major league baseball, NBA basketball, and NCAA basketball. His recent work includes team history encyclopedias on the New York Mets, Cincinnati Reds, Boston Celtics, and New York Knicks. A fluent Spanish speaker, Bjarkman has twice been featured on Cuban national television discussing Cuban League baseball and the Cuban national team, the only American to claim this distinction during the 40-plus years of the Cuban Revolution.

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Table of Contents

Introduction : birth of the international pastime
Ch. 1 Cuba : Beisbol Paradiso 1
Ch. 2 Canada : diamonds of the frozen north 69
Ch. 3 Japan : Besuboru becomes Yakyu in the land of Wa 119
Ch. 4 The Dominican Republic : cradle of big league shortstops 159
Ch. 5 Venezuela : stepchild of Latin American baseball 199
Ch. 6 Puerto Rico : big league launching pad 231
Ch. 7 Mexico : traditions of outlaw baseball 265
Ch. 8 The Caribbean Basin : baseball's hidden sandlots 319
Ch. 9 Europe, Africa, and the Pacific Rim : rounding the global bases 349
Ch. 10 Baseball's Olympic movements : world amateur competition 409
Ch. 11 The Caribbean and baseball's real World Series : the heyday of Latin winter ball 485
App. A International baseball timeline : greatest moments in world baseball history 525
App. B International Baseball Federation : 2003 membership roster 561
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