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"The Arm should be required reading for youth baseball coaches and parents with a child who appears to have a gift to throw a baseball. It also should be on the list for fans who want to understand why some of most expensive athletes in sports, pitchers, are such a fragile commodity." (Chicago Tribune);
"By so thoroughly presenting a serious study of the arm — or more precisely, the elbow — Passan has written an important book. For arms, if there is Tommy John surgery, maybe we now also have Jeff Passan education." (Washington Post);
"Sportswriter Passan delivers one of the more important books on baseball of the decade, a superbly researched and detailed look at the current "epidemic" of arm injuries in the sport." (Publisher's Weekly)
If you have a son who loves to pitch and aspires to one day to play college ball or even make it to The Show, then you must understand the precepts that Jeff Passan leads out in this study. Your son is not a commodity! Unfortunately, many coaches and leagues will treat them this way. Trust me, it's not worth it! Teach your kids to play and pitch for the love of the game...don't buy into the lie of "harder and faster now." This book is a MUST READ for every youth baseball parent and coach.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
Wow, what an eye opening book. It seems like we just keep fighting nature and evolution. Luckily we have intelligent and passionate researchers who actually ask the question, "Why" instead of being content with the status quo. As mentioned in the headline, Christopher McDougall's, 'Born to Run' and Passan's, 'The Arm' have much in common; albeit different parts of the body, writing style and thesis.
Where McDougall identifies a complex problem, provides historical background, collects empirical and anecdotal data, as well as provides logical solutions to counter the initial problem set, Passan captures the problem and anecdotal information, but doesn't really present a solution. Essentially he is just stating that there is a really big problem, and nobody really knows what the solution is and unfortunately, it seems, nobody really cares. He does identify the challenges with overcoming this, but one is left feeling empty with this complex problem. It seems that Major League Baseball is in its infancy in just acknowledging the problem, but for such a profit oriented organization to simply accept Tommy John surgery as the rule rather than the exception seems counter intuitive.
The narrator was great and I had no difficulty listening at 3x speed.
I did only give four stars for the story, but that is based on a comparison to, 'Born to Run'. Christopher McDougall is a better story teller and I personally found more value in 'Born to Run' than 'The Arm' as I have not been, nor will I ever be, a MLB pitcher. However, I run daily and therefore subject to those injuries and 'fixes'.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful