Thorn, editor of The National Pastime, and journalist Holway join in a salute to pitchers, ``that sensitive caste of egomaniacs.'' They trace the evolution of pitching through changes in rules, equipment, and player physique. With an often overwhelming array of statistical analyses culled from many sourcesthey give their picks of the leaders of the past and present big leagues. They also rate ballparks, managers, catchers, and coaches. A cross between The Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract (LJ 1/86) and Martin Quigley's The Crooked Pitch (5/1/84), this will appeal to pitching students and fans of statistics as well as their libraries. Morey Berger, Monmouth Cty. Lib., Manalapan, N.J.
John Thorn was named the Official Baseball Historian for Major League Baseball by Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig in 2011. Thorn founded and edits Base Ball: A Journal of the Early Game, a semiannual scholarly publication. He was the coauthor of Total Baseball, a well-known baseball book, and many other baseball books, notably The Hidden Game of Baseball. He often appears on ESPN, the History Channel, and the MLB Network.