Can You Believe Spitballs Were Legal?

WOW! Did you know that it was once legal to throw spitballs? (and yes, spitballs are what they sound like.) The spit makes the ball spin in all sorts of wacky ways! Before 1934, pitchers were allowed to rub spit on baseballs to make them harder for batters to hit!

Burleigh Arland Grimes (photo: National Baseball Hall of Fame)

I decided to test it out with Kate at our local ballfield. I walked out to the pitching rubber and covered the ball in my saliva. I wound up and threw as hard as I could to Kate. The ball slipped a little and sailed WAY over her head. It nailed the metal backstop. I wasn’t too happy with my pitch. Neither was Kate (she says that she felt something wet drop off the ball when it hit the backstop).

I think everybody is glad they outlawed the spitball! I know that Kate is.

Guess who’s a fan of Ballpark Mysteries? David Ortiz!

Wow! Kate and I went to see the Red Sox play in Ballpark Mysteries book 1, The Fenway Foul-Up. We had a blast. But we had an even bigger blast last week when Mr. Kelly showed us this picture.

A baseball signed by Red Sox slugger and Ballpark Mysteries fan David Ortiz!

It turns out that Mr. Kelly knows someone who knows David Ortiz, so he sent along copies of the Ballpark Mysteries and his other book, Babe Ruth and the Baseball Curse (in which Mr. Ortiz plays a really big part!). Turns out that David’s son enjoyed the books, so he send back a signed baseball! How — Cool — Is — That??

(P.S. – The B.P. after his name stands for his nickname “Big Papi!”)

Interview with David A. Kelly

Mr. Kelly, the author the Ballpark Mysteries, asked if I could post this link to an interview he did with CONVERSATIONS Magazine. I didn’t read it myself because Kate and I are pretty busy this week looking at all the baseball stores in Coopertown, New York (our hometown). The Hall of Fame induction stuff was last weekend, and now there are all types of good bargains on cool sports things because some of the tourists have left. But Mr. Kelly said that anyone who likes the Ballpark Mysteries might like the interview, so I thought it would be good to blog about.

New Book – The L. A. Dodger

Our third Ballpark Mystery is officially on sale today! Yea!

Ballpark Mysteries #3 - The L. A. Dodger

This is such a great book, because me and Kate got  to go California to visit her father. He’s a scout for the Los Angeles Dodgers. We had a great time. I even beat Kate in bumper cars (you’ll have to take my word for it, she’ll probably make up some story about how she had me boxed into corner, but don’t believe her) at the Santa Monica Pier. We also went to the La Brea Tar Pits. That helped us figure out how to set a sticky trap for the L.A. Dodger. But read the book–you’ll never believe how we finally caught him!

Cooperstown, New York

Man, it was a perfect day for the induction ceremony for the Hall of Fame. Kate and I had a great time. We spent a lot of the day selling water to all those really hot tourists that came to town. We also spent a little time with Mr. Kelly, the writer of the Ballpark Mysteries. Here’s a picture Kate took of him with her new digital camera:

David A. Kelly signing books in Cooperstown, New York

I’ll post some more pictures later. Mr. Kelly borrowed Kate’s camera and took some of us!


Ballpark Mysteries on Tour!

Wow, it sure has been hot around here lately. Hard to believe, it was even too hot to play baseball today. So I thought I’d stay inside and catch up on some video games. But my mom had a different idea. She wanted me to catch up on cleaning my room.

It looks like Mr. Kelly isn’t going to have time to clean his room, or play video games. He seems pretty busy with the Ballpark Mysteries events. Today, he was at the Westwind Bookshop in Duxbury, Mass, in between Boston and Cape Cod. He had a crowd for his reading and book signing–see for yourself:

He’s also going on the road with the Ballpark Mysteries. He’s going to New York to give some readings (in New Hartford and Utica), and then he’s come to visit me and Kate!

Well, actually, I think he’s coming to sign books during this year’s National Baseball Hall of Fame Induction ceremonies. He’ll be in Cooperstown on Sunday morning, signing books with other authors on Main Street. (But I think he’s also excited about seeing us again, too! Kate and I are going to the ceremony. It’s really neat to live here during Hall of Fame events because the town gets so busy with people. Sometimes Kate and I set up a stand and sell water to people. Last year we made a lot of money doing that!)

Random House Loves the Ballpark Mysteries

I guess Random House loves the Ballpark Mysteries! They hung a huge poster of the front cover of book two, The Pinstripe Ghost, in the front window of their New York City headquarters!

Check out the picture:

Ballpark Mysteries in front window of Random House

Looks like the Ballpark Mysteries are right in between a New York Times “instant best seller” and a set of books that have sold 45 million copies. I guess that means the Ballpark Mysteries are going to sell a gazillion copies. Or be a New York Times bestseller.Either way, I hope that means that Kate and I can keep visiting new ballparks!

First Pitch at Portland Sea Dogs Game

Mr. Kelly (the author of the Ballpark Mysteries) got invited to Portland, Maine to throw out the first pitch at last Saturday’s game. Here’s a picture of him doing it.

Ballpark Mysteries Author David A. Kelly Throwing Out First Pitch

While he’s a pretty good writer, it certainly doesn’t look like any of the Sea Dogs pitching staff have to worry about their jobs. Maybe my Little League team should challenge him to a game. We could use an easy win!

(Kate says I should be nice to Mr. Kelly, or she’ll make me write the next book…. I guess I should also say that Mr. Kelly did make it squarely over the plate, so I guess he’s not that bad!)

(photo credit: Portland Sea Dogs; Greg Cavanaugh)

Boston Globe Features Ballpark Mysteries

Way cool!. Today’s Boston Globe newspaper has a great article about me and Kate!

Well, okay, it also mentions David A. Kelly, the author, a little bit. And the Ballpark Mysteries series. But Kate and I are in there too! And Mr. Kelly wouldn’t really have much to write about if the two of us didn’t go to all those ballparks. I’m glad Mr. Kelly spends his time talking to reporters, instead of us having to do it.

Now that the weather’s getting nice, I’d rather be outside playing catch!

Opening Day – 2011

Wow! Today is finally opening day. The first real baseball games (that count) for 2011. Today, when it comes to baseball, anything is possible. Any team has just as much chance of winning the World Series this year as any other team. At least before the games start!

L.A. Dodgers Dodger Stadium - This won't be empty after opening day!

It’s just like when Kate and I go to visit a ballpark. Anything is possible. So far, we’ve seen bats stolen, ghosts making strange noises, and even some really strange mysterious events (but more about that in book 3 – The Ballpark Mysteries L.A. Dodger!).

I’d love to write more, but I’m heading to the TV to see what opening day game I should watch…. The Yankees? The Red Sox? San Francisco? There’s too much to choose from. Batter up for a great season!