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Planet of the Umps: A Baseball Life from Behind the Plate
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Planet of the Umps: A Baseball Life from Behind the Plate

3.48 of 5 stars 3.48  ·  rating details  ·  61 ratings  ·  8 reviews
After calling balls, strikes, and outs for thirty-six baseball seasons and more than 3000 major league games, umpire Ken Kaiser finally called it a career. From the first day he hit a minor league catcher with a pool table to the fateful day baseball called him out on a strike, Kaiser was one of the game's most popular and colorful characters. And in this autobiography-wri ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published April 19th 2004 by St. Martin's Paperbacks (first published April 19th 2003)
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(showing 1-30 of 91)
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Todd Stockslager
Classic baseball autobiography by an umpire who served 13 years in the minors before a 23-year major league run that ended abruptly with the 2002 umpire lockout/strike/resignations that ended badly for some, including Kaiser.

Funny, fast-moving and full of stories, within the genre this is a classic. Kaiser was a high-school graduate (barely--as he said "I didn't know the meaning of the word intimidation. Of course, I didn't know the meaning of a lot of other words either.") joining a friend on a
This is fun for it's behind-the-scenes take on the game from the minor leagues to the Big Time. The problem, of course, is it's a bit out date. Still, Kaiser is a character; and his writing seems to mirror his abrasive personality (in a fun way). I lost count how many guys he throws out of the game - including spectators! - without the slightest of care.

One thing my dad and I always hypothesized about the game turned out to be true. After bad calls, managers would run out on the field to "argue"
A really funny book! If you enjoy Baseball, then read this book, as it gives a different perspective on things! Well written!
Cory Wentzel
I read this book a few years ago and I enjoyed it a lot. It talks about the how much power the umpires have and what it was like for Ken Kaiser coming up from the minor leagues of baseball.
Joe Kapraszewski
Ken kept it real discussing being an ump and being one of the "other guys" on the field that we either love or hate depending on if the call went the right way. All fans should read this book simply to understand what goes on in the mind of an umpire and to see how difficult it really is.
Dale Stonehouse
It was OK only because I love to read about umpiring. Kaiser couldn't make a call right-handed so the umpiring rules had to be ignored for him. The book is better than his umpiring only because it couldn't be any worse.
Once I started thinking of this book as a transcription of a guy in a bar BSing about his life, I really enjoyed it. Don't look for facts or deep insight, just enjoy the tall tales Ken tells.
Michael Webb
Terrible. Very whiny. Some good stories, though.
Megan added it
Apr 09, 2015
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Rebecca Gierman marked it as to-read
Mar 02, 2015
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