Baseball Jewish Sports

Jews, Baseball, and a Book

I love Jews. I love baseball. And I love books. So, I’ve really been looking forward to Jews and Baseball, Volume I: Entering the American Mainstream, 1871-1948 by Burton A. Boxerman and Benita W.Boxerman (Published by McFarland & Company, Inc.).

The Forward published a fair review of this book. This is clearly not a coffee table book. Nor is it one of those “Famous Jews in Sports”-type books that shows nice photos of Mark Spitz and a few heavyweight boxers before explaining that most Jews in sports are the owners and agents. This is a book with statistics and footnotes.

As the reviewer explains, “Although ultimately this book is about the men who played a game, it has the feel of a thesis, and that’s too bad. When you want real-life anecdotes, instead you get citations that often are merely repeats of other bobe-mayses. The book is 184 pages of text, and it also includes an additional 20 pages of notes and an eight-page bibliography.”

I’m excited to buy a copy, read it, and then use it for reference. Even if there haven’t been too many Jewish baseball players in the big leagues (an average of one per year in the past 140 years of the game), it’s fun to learn more about the MOTs (Members of the Tribe) who made it to the show… even if they weren’t Hank Greenberg or Shawn Greene.

(c) Rabbi Jason Miller | | Twitter: @RabbiJason |