Pecorino Plays Ball

Overview

Do you know Pecorino Sasquatch? The boy who got stuck inside a tuba at his first concert? Well, he's about to play in his first game of baseball. You see, his mother just signed him up for Little League, and Pecorino can't wait to play, even though he doesn't really know what baseball is. But by the end of this spring day, Pecorino will have learned all there is to know about bowling pin-shaped coaches, burbling bubble gum, yodeling umpires, oxen for sale — everything that makes America's pastime great. He might ...

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Overview

Do you know Pecorino Sasquatch? The boy who got stuck inside a tuba at his first concert? Well, he's about to play in his first game of baseball. You see, his mother just signed him up for Little League, and Pecorino can't wait to play, even though he doesn't really know what baseball is. But by the end of this spring day, Pecorino will have learned all there is to know about bowling pin-shaped coaches, burbling bubble gum, yodeling umpires, oxen for sale — everything that makes America's pastime great. He might even maage to catch a baseball too.

Pecorino, the silliest kid in the world, is in for nine innings' worth of madcap misadventure, featuring words from Alan Madison and art from AnnaLaura Cantone (the second- and third-silliest kids in the world).

Pecorino Sasquatch proves that he is still the silliest boy in the world when his first day of Little League arrives and he realizes he has never hit or caught a baseball before--nor even chewed bubblegum.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The fellow introduced in Pecorino's First Concert catches baseball fever in Pecorino Plays Ball by Alan Madison, illus. by AnnaLaura Cantone. The coach assigns Pecorino to right field. "There was one problem, thought Pecorino as he rambled to right-he had never actually caught a baseball." Hilarious teammates traverse the field and kooky parents stand at the sidelines to witness Pecorino's first catch. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
One fine spring Saturday Pecorino's mother wakes him up and tells him today is the first day of Little League. Off they go to the field where the coach gives Pecorino his baseball shirt, an "Xtra-Xtra-large" that goes down to his sneakers. Unlike the other shirts that say "Malone's We Sell Boxes," Pecorino's shirt appears to say "Alone," which is just how he feels in the outfield. Interestingly he makes friends with the member of the opposing team who also plays right field and whose shirt appears to say "hit me." Madison captures the insecure feelings of children just learning the game and presents the story in vivid language with lots of humor. Lovely lines, such as "trees were singing and the birds were budding," will keep listeners on their toes. Alliterations such as "tipped, tapped, or touched the ball with their bats" and "caught, corralled, or clipped the ball with their mitts" make this a delight to read aloud. The illustrations combine collage with pen, pencil, and acrylic drawings. The offbeat style (the people are shaped like bowling pins) suits the quirky tale. Only seven players are shown on the baseball field instead of nine but one is a girl. In the end Pecorino makes the catch that wins the game, and he makes a new friend. This book is just right to calm the nerves of new T-ball and Little League players. 2006, Anne Schwartz/Atheneum, Ages 5 to 8.
—Sharon Salluzzo
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-Pecorino Sasquatch, who got stuck in a tuba in Pecorino's First Concert (S & S, 2005), is about to play his first baseball game. When his mother announces that it's his first day of Little League, he springs out of bed, but then remembers that he hasn't a clue what Little League is. No matter. Out to the field he goes where Coach Credenza issues the uniforms. With only an Xtra-Xtra-large shirt left, Pecorino finds that his chest reads, "Alone We Sell Oxes." The youngster lifts his arms out to his side and discovers that the sponsor is Malone's, a store that sells boxes. He is assigned to right field, and when the opposing team's right-fielder arrives, he is wearing a shirt that says "hit me ear." Upon raising his arms, the writing becomes clear: "White's Women's Wear." The innings progress, and Malone's is ahead by one run. Pecorino's back in right field and White's right-fielder is at bat. He manages to lob one right toward Pecorino, who has never actually caught a ball-until now. Cantone's acrylic, pen, and collage illustrations add to the general silliness of this book. The characters' features are exaggerated and humorous. Pecorino still has his trademark bug-eyes and oversized nose, and his mother is a chinless creature with a wild beehive hairdo, elongated neck, and the same eyes as Pecorino. Lighthearted nonsense, good for a laugh or two, this book would pair nicely with Willy Welch's Playing Right Field (Scholastic) or Robert Kraus's Mort The Sport (Orchard, both 2000).-Roxanne Burg, Orange County Public Library, CA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Having attended his First Concert (2005), young Pecorino Sasquatch now moves on to Little League, where, drowning in an outsized jersey and with the threats of massive Coach Credenza ringing in his ears, he struggles to at least look like he has a clue about how to play. But not only has he never hit or caught a ball, he doesn't even have bubble gum to "burble," like everyone else on the field does. Happily, that last problem is solved by a gift left in distant right field by Pecorino's (almost) equally clueless opposite number-and thanks to that gooey glob, he's even able to make a spectacular, game-ending catch. Popeyed, wiener-nosed figures in Cantone's scribbly mixed-media pictures impart a properly goofy air, and also reflect Madison's delight in jokes and silly words, with which he's liberally salted his tale. Read this aloud, and set children, athletically gifted or otherwise, to laughing. (Picture book. 6-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689865220
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 3/28/2006
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.70 (w) x 9.60 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Alan Madison was once voted the single silliest Little League player in the state of New Jersey. Now he is extremely happy to sit in the park and watch his son play. He and his family attend minor- and major-league games wherever they travel, except in Italy. They live in New York and have a special place in their hearts for the Yankees. The Pecorino books are Alan's first for children. Visit him on the Web at www.madisonia.com.

AnnaLaura Cantone is the illustrator of many silly children's books, including My Favorite Thing (According to Alberta) by Emily Jenkins, as well as the two Pecorino books. She lives her husband in Milan, Italy.

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