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Extended Audio Sample Fair Ball, by Bob Costas Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (550 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Bob Costas Narrator: Bob Costas Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 2000 ISBN: 9780553752694
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From his perspective as a journalist and a true fan, Bob Costas, NBC's award-winning broadcaster, shares his views on the forces that are diminishing the appeal of Major League Baseball and proposes realistic changes that can be made to protect and promote the game's best interests.

In this cogent--and provocative--book, Costas examines the growing financial disparities that have resulted in nearly two-thirds of the teams in Major League Baseball having virtually no chance of contending for the World Series. He argues that those who run baseball have missed the crucial difference between mere change and real progress. And he presents a withering critique of the positions of both the owners and players while providing insights on the wild-card system, the designated-hitter rule, and interleague play. Costas answers each problem he cites with an achievable strategy for restoring genuine competition and rescuing fans from the forces that have diluted the sheer joy of the game. 

Balanced by Costas' unbridled appreciation for what he calls the "moments of authenticity" that can still make baseball inspiring, Fair Ball offers a vision of our national pastime as it can be, a game that retains its traditional appeal while initiating meaningful changes that will allow it to thrive into the next century. 

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Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dave | 2/16/2014

    " Costas takes on the problem of how to bring fans back to America's game. He made some decent points, especially about playing some playoff games during the day to lure the next generation, but for the most part his words are dated. As it was written in 2000, nowhere does the word "steriods" appear, and in the years since he wrote that has been the thing most purists find most offensive about the game. Costas' heart is in the right place but at this point there's little the game can do to save itself. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Ak | 1/11/2014

    " only got a few chapters in...his writing voice (unlike his real voice, which I enjoy) is irritating "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Elizabeth | 1/11/2014

    " Bob makes his case... but too slowly to hold the reader's interest. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Todd | 12/31/2013

    " One of the best books on sports I have ever read. Bob Costas takes some excellent topics in baseball and offers his opinion on how the handle. I thought his ideas were spot on, although I agree with him that many of them will never be considered. A must read for any baseball fan, even if you are not a big fan of him as a broadcaster. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mike Kriesel | 12/24/2013

    " A hard hitting looking into the business of baseball. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bill Shannon | 12/11/2013

    " As much as I delight in the dysfunction of Major League Baseball, Costas gives a passionate plea to make the game more equitable. It's a manifesto that may have actually had an effect on the game over the last 10 years. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mike | 9/28/2013

    " Costas is so obviously a fan of the game that it's easy to so how much it means to him. And he makes some strong arguments as to how to bring the national pasttime back to the prominence it once had. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jay Robertson | 9/24/2013

    " A good look at "fixing" baseball, focusing on the financial side of it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lew | 9/11/2013

    " Bob Costa's take on how to cure what ails MLB. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Gregory | 8/18/2013

    " One of my favorite sportscasters of all time. He knows his baseball better than just about anyone this side of Peter Gammons. The book is a little dated, but it is amazing to read his insight. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lonnie | 4/29/2013

    " not quite what I was hoping for. This book read more like a business analysis than a summer baseball read. Costas has some great ideas but the rich teams will never 'play ball'. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 J.f. | 6/24/2012

    " Classic Costas. Well thought out, ideas clearly presented, creative. I love his cases for MLB realignment, different scheduling, and revenue sharing. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Courtney | 7/27/2011

    " The book definitely doesn't stand up over time and the points could have been made in 100 less pages. Costas is a purist who likes to hear himself talk and doesn't like change. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brady | 5/24/2010

    " Excellent book about the economics of baseball, revenue sharing, and improving the competition within the leagues so that the teams with the most money (Yankees) don't win every year. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Darlis | 10/26/2008

    " Interesting look at some of the business end of baseball. The book is a little old, but still applicable. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joe Viola | 12/4/2007

    " Costas is god (lower case 'g'). If you hate the Wild Card you'll love parts of this book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kevin D. | 9/23/2005

    " I thought this was a good book and Costas makes good sense with most of his issues and solutions. Again, a 3.5. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Bethany | 9/9/2003

    " Most of what Bob Costas said I agree with. A good read for a baseball fan. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Richie C. | 8/27/2002

    " Bob Costas whines about the good ol' days of baseball, but makes a few good points along the way. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Marty Nicholas | 11/14/2000

    " $-Wildcard-$$-No pennant races-$$$...and did I mention MONEY. No wonder I've lost interest in today's baseball. And did I mention there are NO PENNANT RACES! Costas offers are great remedy, but no chance of it being implemented. Hopeless. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Bob | 10/22/2000

    " not as good as I had hoped "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ken | 10/17/2000

    " I read this one a while ago and don't remember much about it. "

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