Looking for a book, DVD, CD, or other item? Search our catalog!

Thursday, April 07, 2016

Poetry Friday--Baseball Season

Baseball season has begun! Opening day at Fenway is scheduled for Monday.

On this day in 1974, Henry Aaron hit his 715th career home run and broke the record set by Babe Ruth in 1935. When he retired two years later, he had added 40 more! It wasn't until 2007 that Barry Bonds hit 756 to break Aaron's career home run record!

from Hammerin' Hank
by D. Roger Martin

You did it, Henry.
You took The Babe's untouchable record
and stuffed it in your pocket.
Not bad for a gangling
black kid from Mobile.
The TV cameras were set to roll,
the reporters were poised
and the stage was set
with you and Al Downing
in the multi-million dollar spotlight.
Your teammate, Tom House,
caught the home run ball in the bullpen,
which was good economics.
That could have been
and expensive ball to buy back.
"A black Babe Ruth," they said you were.

Read the rest at Baseball Almanac.

You can relive the home run record-breaking day in the Ken Burns documentary, Baseball: 1840s-2010 [DVD 796.357 BAS], or, you can read about Hank Aaron's achievement in The Last Hero: A Life of Henry Aaron by Howard Bryant [B AAR].

Maybe there will be other baseball poems shared on Poetry Friday, if so, Laura at Writing the World for Kids will be rounding them up for us.

Let's keep our fingers-crossed for the Sox. Have a great 2016 season!


  1. I'm not a baseball fan, but I do love how there's poetry on every topic, and how even poems about topics I don't care about (like baseball) can make me think about bigger topics I do care about (like racism and a gangly black kid from Mobile). Thanks for sharing!

  2. I like that poetry is a great leveler, bringing form to words on any topic. Connects, preserves and celebrates.

  3. Go, Red Sox! My dad was recruited for the Sox's farm team back before I was born, but I think the war got in the way and he enlisted instead. The war ended shortly thereafter, and he was never to go back to basesball. Well, except that we had to play baseball in our backyard every Sunday in spring and summer. I remember the days of Hank Aaron and the excitement of his record breaking homerun.

  4. What Laura said! Thanks for sharing.

  5. Ken Burns has a new documentary on Jackie Robinson coming Monday and Tuesday of THIS WEEK! Just thought you might be interested. xo

  6. Love the way the moment is celebrated in this poem. I'm not a massive baseball fan (being an Aussie) but when I do barrack, it's for the Red Sox - my sports mad husband watches every sport.