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by Leslie Tryon & illustrated by Leslie Tryon

Pub Date: April 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-689-80187-4
Publisher: Atheneum

The assortment of squirrels, kangaroos, monkeys, and ostriches running the bases is not to be confused with replacement players for major leaguers on strike. It is actually the Pleasant Valley Ducks, coached by Albert (Albert's Thanksgiving, 1994, etc.) who has little more than a cameo role here. Everyone at the park has a rollicking good time amid the ``stray balls and spray balls, curve balls and swerve balls.'' While the chaotic illustrations may be a strain on the adult eye, they exactly convey the pandemonium of a hard-fought little league contest. The ending is mildly disappointing, when the focus shifts to winning and losing, in contrast with the previous concentration on the joys of the game itself. Still, as long as baseball continues as the national pastime, this delightful offering should have a life on the shelves. (Picture book. 5-8)