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Book review: Flip Flop Fly Ball

flipflopflyballWhether you’re a baseball fanatic or a rookie to the game, you’re sure to enjoy Flip Flop Fly Ball: An Infographic Baseball Adventure by Craig Robinson.

The book begins with a personal tale - the quirky romance of a British young adult with the game of baseball. “There was something about the leisurely pace, the ebb and flow, the drama inherent in a sport where the ball is in play for such a small percentage of the total time, the unique proportions of the ballpark, the shape of the field, the uniforms. The fizzing joy in my head after seeing a swiftly turned double play, the one-on-one battles at the heart of a team sport…it all felt right.”

Robinson’s pilgrimage into the game is interwoven with art, photos, and infographics all about baseball. The author has an insatiable curiosity that results in all kinds of random and at times even educational charts. Some of the infographics are just plain fun. Others cater to the trivia buff. A few are absolutely brilliant. The opening graphic “Professional Baseball History in the United States” captures the entire history of baseball since 1855 and is alone worth the price of the book.

The only downside is a little crass language and several references to beer in his travelogue sections, but nothing you wouldn't likely encounter at an actual baseball game. Like anything else, we need to read with discernment and be able to recognize when an author does not have Christ in his life. The book could spur some good discussion on the shortness of baseball fame, even by the greatest players of the game. Also in how we should glorify God in whatever we do - whether we eat, drink, or play baseball. Both the players and the spectators make choices that can either honor or dishonor God. God wants us as Christians to enjoy the game of baseball and use our talents and love for the game as a way to give Him glory.

Crack open this oversized coffee-table book and you’ll see baseball in a whole new light. But be careful. You might just fall in love with the game like Craig Robinson has.

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