It’s spring: the days are lengthening, pollen is in the air (and on sidewalks, cars … it’s everywhere!). After the darkness, dormancy and hibernation that mark winter, new life abounds in spring. In my neighborhood, azaleas are in full bloom: purple, shades of pink or white flowers, with bumblebees abuzz. I’ve seen fox kits, which were born under a neighbor’s shed, and a baby possum outside my backdoor. The yellow-bellied sapsuckers have left for cooler climates and other birds have returned to their summer home.
The return of spring also heralds the return of professional baseball in the United States. The Major League Baseball season began on April 5, when the St. Louis Cardinals blanked their arch-rival Chicago Cubs, 3 – 0. On April 9, minor league baseball was underway as well and Durham’s own Bulls beat the Gwinnett Braves 1 – 0.
The Durham Tech library has a number of books related to baseball. If you’re interested in learning more about Jackie Robinson–who famously was the first African-American baseball player in the Major Leagues, appearing with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947–we have two DVDs of relevance to you. Jackie Robinson: My Story is a “docudrama” (actors reenact events that actually happened) that also includes real-life footage, with Stephen Hill playing the title role. 42: The Jackie Robinson Story is a feature film starring Chadwick Boseman as Jackie Robinson.
The library also has both the film and book version of Moneyball, which portrays Oakland A’s general manager Billy Bean’s use of advanced statistics to build an excellent professional baseball team on a limited budget. If you enjoy graphic novels, we offer “21”: The Story of Roberto Clemente, a 17-year veteran of the Pittsburgh Pirates whose life was cut short in a tragic plane crash.