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BROTHERS AT BAT by Audrey Vernick


The True Story of an Amazing All-Brother Baseball Team

by Audrey Vernick & illustrated by Steven Salerno

Pub Date: April 3rd, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-547-38557-0
Publisher: Clarion Books

At a time when local baseball was part of the American landscape, one family fielded its own team.

The Acerra family numbered 16 children, 12 of whom were brothers who all loved to play baseball. The boys played in high school and later formed their own semi-pro team. They played wherever they could get a good game and were known as highly skilled players and crowd pleasers. They shared a special closeness and loyalty, joking and teasing, but always looking out for one another. That loyalty extended to a love of country as six of them fought in World War II, which was the first time they had been separated. After the war they continued to play in local leagues, with younger brothers taking over when big brothers aged out. In 1997 they were recognized by the Baseball Hall of Fame as the all-time longest playing all-brother team. Employing descriptive, conversational language in a matter-of-fact tone that doesn’t sentimentalize, Vernick tells of a remarkable family, part of what has come to be known as "the greatest generation." Salerno’s lively drawings, rendered in black crayon, gouache, watercolor and pastel with digital color added, complement the action, striking a balance between detail and expansiveness.

A family’s love and devotion to each other and to the game of baseball, depicted lovingly.

(author’s note; artist’s note) (Picture book/biography. 5-10)