Ashley's Reviews > The Baseball Codes: Beanballs, Sign Stealing, and Bench-Clearing Brawls: The Unwritten Rules of America's Pastime

The Baseball Codes by Jason Turbow
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Feb 14, 12

bookshelves: sports
Read in January, 2011

I am a big baseball fan and I had really high hopes for this book when I first picked it up. I thought to myself, “Any book about my favorite sport has to be fantastic!” but I was wrong. Initially I found it rather disappointing and I found it very hard to get in to because it is very basic and doesn’t really get in to the “meat and potatoes” of baseball.

I found myself thinking, “I already know this!” and I kept wanting something more from the book; I wanted to learn something I didn’t already know, I wanted a new perspective on the sport, I wanted inside stories and tales from the dugout and I wasn’t getting that. Instead what I was getting was information about whether or not a batter should bunt to break up a no-hitter (he shouldn’t) or whether or not it’s ok to steal signs (it’s not) and how much of a right a pitcher has to brush a batter back off the mound (a lot!) but I wasn’t getting the new perspective on baseball that I was expecting when I first started reading the book.

For the first few chapters I was feeling like it was a great book for someone new to the sport, but not for anyone with any knowledge or understanding of the game. Happily though, after the first 60 pages – 75 pages, it got better and I found myself finding beginning to get the information that I had been hoping for since I picked up the book. The book finally begins to tell insider clubhouse stories and the history of team and player rivalries and history of sign stealing and cheating and I couldn’t put it down.

If you pick it up, please don’t give up on this one because it is worth reading. By the time I reached the final pages I was wishing I had more to read simple because I was enjoying the anecdotes.
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