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Best of the Best (Baseball Great Series #3)
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Best of the Best (Baseball Great Series #3)

4.8 65
by Tim Green

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Josh is still flying high from his team's tournament win at Coopers­town when his parents start talking about a divorce. Now his dad is challenging him to play the best of the best at the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. But does he just want to get Josh out of the way? Two things are sure: His father's new girlfriend, Diane, is


Josh is still flying high from his team's tournament win at Coopers­town when his parents start talking about a divorce. Now his dad is challenging him to play the best of the best at the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. But does he just want to get Josh out of the way? Two things are sure: His father's new girlfriend, Diane, is looking to change things, and Josh is determined to get her and her terrible son out of his life.

With the help of Benji and Jaden, Josh races to get the facts that can keep his family together—but it's ever harder to concentrate on the game and make the winning plays that will lead his team to victory.

In his compelling style, Tim Green delivers great sports action and more—a fast-paced adventure about friendship, the power of becoming a team, and finding a way to get what you need when you can't have what you want.

Editorial Reviews

Whether he's writing about baseball (Rivals; Baseball Greats) or the gridiron game (The Big Time; Football Champ), Tim Green knows how to keep young fans riveted. This Baseball Great Novel possesses grand slam excitement.

Children's Literature - Paula Rohrlick
In this sequel to Baseball Great and Rivals, 12-year-old Josh, a champion hitter, joins the Lyncourt all-star Little League team, in a long-shot effort to help them make it to the Little League World Series. His coach father points out it's a rare opportunity to play teams from around the world, and when Josh's wisecracking friend Benji is permitted to join the team too, Josh's enthusiasm grows. However, another member of the team causes Josh some consternation: obnoxious Zamboni is the son of Josh's dad's new girlfriend, and Josh is both irritated by Zamboni and upset over his parents' separation. He also starts to suspect that there may be a scheme afoot to bilk his father out of some money, and enlists the help of his clever friend Jaden in a rather unethical plan to come to his father's aid, in the weakest and least believable part of this otherwise winning tale. Josh must somehow surmount all these distractions if he's to play his best game, and learn to become a leader and help his teammates. With lots of baseball action, this story will appeal to sports fans, and those who have enjoyed the previous volumes will want to follow Josh's adventures. Green writes realistic, detailed baseball scenes, and Josh's quandaries and the lively characters will keep even reluctant readers turning the pages. Reviewer: Paula Rohrlick
VOYA - Sean Rapacki
A former first-round NFL draft pick for the Atlanta Falcons and an avid Little League baseball player and coach, Tim Green knows sports. What is more important from the perspective of a reader is that Green also knows how to tell a great sports story that has people at its heart. For readers tired of the typical sports cliche in which an underdog goes all the way to the top to grab the glory, this novel instead takes a nuanced look at the challenges faced both on the field and off. Green focuses on a young baseball great who has to learn that in life beyond the diamond what it takes to win and lose is not clearly defined. Josh LeBlanc knows exactly what it takes to succeed in baseball, but when his father moves out on the family to pursue a relationship with a sexy divorcee, Josh is angry, worried about his mother, and frustrated at how powerless he is to deal with the situation. Baseball fans will enjoy Josh's detailed descriptions of the games and plays that help his team along the way to the Little League World Series, but what is really impressive is how Green captures the emotions of a kid who wants more than anything to keep his family together, a "game" he might not be able to win. A bit of the plot leans toward the implausible, particularly the Nancy Drew—like efficiency in which Josh's friend Jaden is able to dig up dirt on the bad guys and the maturity in which Josh is able to deliver coaching advice to his teammates, but all in all this is an extremely winning tale. Reviewer: Sean Rapacki
Kirkus Reviews

Another episode in the life of 12-year-old baseball phenom Josh LeBlanc, introduced in Baseball Great (2009). While still a superstar on the field, off the field Josh has problems.His father is investing money from Nike in what seems like a questionable deal, and the realtor, perky Diane, is turning his father's head with more than real estate. As his parents' marriage falls apart, Josh and his good buddy, Benji, are finagled onto a local team with a chance at winning the Little League World Series.His dad still wants to be his coach, but Josh is rebellious and frustrated with him. Compounding his woes are his demanding lawn-mowing business, trying to support his mother and little sister in this hard time and the need to stay on top of his game. His best friend, Jaden, a girl with dreams of becoming a reporter, helps out.Plenty of baseball-insider detail and knowledge of the game is imparted as the run to the championship unfolds. The slightly dishonest proceedings that allow both boys to play parallel the equally suspect shenanigans in the adult world. The money involved in sports, even at the kid level, is carefully emphasized, as is the pressure to win. Ethics in sports lifts this above the usual sports saga. (Fiction. 10-14)

School Library Journal
Gr 5–8—As this installment opens, Josh LeBlanc's father is in the process of abandoning his family for femme fatale Diane Cross. It is eventually revealed that he has also become involved in her sketchy gas-drilling lease operation, endangering future earnings from a lucrative Nike contract he secured in a previous book. Phenomenally talented Josh, meanwhile, has been chosen to join an all-star Little League team that he hopes to lead to the national championship. In a transparently artificial plot device, the 12-year-old is assigned Diane's son, Marcus Zamboni Cross, as a roommate. Zamboni is a nasty piece of work who taunts Josh, smokes cigarettes on the sly, and flicks boogers to express his disdain for the world at large. He undergoes a change of heart (and personality), however, when Josh gives him some tips on improving his game. Incredibly, Zamboni agrees to help unmask his divorced parents' plan to cheat Josh's father. While fans will enjoy the sports action and the interaction between Josh and series characters Jaden and Benji, they may well be put off by the adult themes.—Richard Luzer, Fair Haven Union High School, VT

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Baseball Great Series , #3
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)
790L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet 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 adult books 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 kids he's met while reading in classrooms, became a New York Times bestseller and was followed by Football Hero, Football Champ, The Big Time, and now Deep Zone. He drew on his experiences playing and coaching Little League for Rivals and for two more New York Times bestsellers: Baseball Great and Best of the Best.

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

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Best of the Best 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 65 reviews.
Jane Romberger More than 1 year ago
i love this book. it really opens up the eyesvof a real baseball fan !
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a must read. It is amazing!
lilfella More than 1 year ago
Highly recommended. Excellent books for sporty kids. My son is 8 and reads Tim Green voraciously, this was his favorite so far. Broad vocabulary, strong narrative, characters he can identify with. He says the action is dramatic, and I hear him laugh out loud frequently when reading these books. He and I also recommend Mike Lupica and Fred Bowen - excellent kids sports fiction writing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tim green puts out another show stopper!! I loved this book you gotta get it!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Awesome book love it
Darian Gambelli More than 1 year ago
this book is so awesome!!!!!!!!! I loved the first and sevond book in the series. By Anonymus
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Amazing book must read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thought this book was very entertaning and interesting i loved it and felt as if this actually was happening in real life
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What are the books going in order in the baseball great series? Respond to Tyler. ( . ) ( . )
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is the best book ever, I loved it, Josh was an amazing character in the book. If you're a baseball player you should definitely read this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pretty good, can be slow moving at times but worth reading if you are a sports fan :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best books ever i love this series i highly recomend these books
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You got to read this book it is realy good it is about a pro baseball player anda dad ho is devorsed it is realy good i hope you like it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Never really liked basball untill this book
Anonymous 4 days ago
A good book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good if you like books about sports
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jesus said to them, "Amen I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the son of man and drink his blood, you shall not have life within you!!!" JOHN 6:53 JESUS IS THE REAL THING
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Really great book "but read them in order to get the book" wish there were more. 3rd is the best one. Just REALLY GREAT BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!