"At fourteen, Brian was a decent enough ballplayer, good enough to be the last kid picked for All-Stars this summer from Bloomfield Hills." But this summer holds more than being an all-star ballplayer. Brian Dudley is going to be a batboy for the Detroit Tigers and the news is out that Brian's idol, Hank Bishop, is going to join the team.
It's unbelievable to Brian that he will be breathing the same air as this amazing ballplayer. He'll be sharing the same dugout. He might even be able to ask Hank Bishop about the steroid use that got him kicked out of baseball for a while.
Brian's father was a major league pitcher for a short time. Now he's off in Japan and Brian lives with his mother a senior producer for radio news.
But when Hank shows up and Brian tries to tell him how he admires him, Hank's reaction is anything but positive. "I just want you to know how happy I am that you're back with us, " Brian says to Hank. "I get that," says Hank Bishop. "What I don't get is...was I talking to anybody?" Looking straight at Brian and with his smile still pasted on his face, Hank continues, "Then don't talk to me."
This summer Brian is going to come to terms with his hero, with his father's role in his life, and with his own baseball slump. And as they say, the hits just keep on coming for Mike Lupica!
272 pages 978-0142417829 Ages 10-14
Keywords: baseball, heroes, sports, father/son, perseverance, divorce, second chances, letting go, 10 year old, 11 year old, 12 year old, 13 year old, 14 year old
Recommended by: Barb Langridge, abookandahug.com