This popular sportswriter for the youngest readers has, as usual, the knack for describing junior ball in terms that are...

READ REVIEW

THE RELUCTANT PITCHER

This popular sportswriter for the youngest readers has, as usual, the knack for describing junior ball in terms that are both easy and enjoyable to read and never patronizing. This baseball story is not one of his better ones, probably because he has failed to follow through on the surprise plays he tossed in here. Wally liked to play right field, but Coach Hutter kept encouraging him to pitch. Cab Lacey, a newcomer and an ex-pro, agreed that Wally should be fielding and not pitching. But Wally felt a personal obligation to the Coach who had saved his life in an accident. Hutter's son had been killed in that same accident, and Wally knew that the Coach wanted him to take the dead boy's place. The problem of how to decide between two adults who offer variant advice is a pressing one and is illustrated here quite naturally, as is the difficulty of deciding the degree of precedence to give to gratitude and pity. Unfortunately, however, the solution, which is removed from Wally's hands, is a little too glib. At the same time the very short story becomes garbled by too many side issues--Lacey's daughter is discovered to be a deaf-mute; Wally barely rescues her and Hutter's daughter from being blown up in a quarry; Wally and a friend are locked up in a milk cooler. Fair ball, but with too much stretching between the innings.

Pub Date: March 16, 1966

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1966