Presently, I am reading “As They See ‘Em: A Fan’s Travels in the Land of Umpires” by Bruce Weber. And, while I’m not done with it yet, I’ve read enough of it to share a review.
If you’re looking for the all-time panoptic book on umpires and what they do, “As They See ‘Em” is the one that you want to read. With this book, Weber thoroughly researched the topic. And, yet, “As They See ‘Em” doesn’t read like an encyclopedia as Weber presents his facts, stories and opinion in a very entertaining manner. If you’re looking to build the “must have” baseball library, you’ll want to have “As They See ‘Em” as part of your collection.
I’ve read books by umpires such as Durwood Merrill and Ron Luciano and they did provide some insight on their craft. However, they don’t come close to painting the picture that Weber does with his book. I’ve been a baseball fan since 1973. And, I played the game, albeit as a amateur, when I was young. As such, I had some knowledge and opinions about umpiring, the demands therein, the history and evolution of the vocation, and how umpires have been perceived and treated. And, yet, I found “As They See ‘Em” to be very illuminating.
This all said, I don’t need to wait until I’m done with “As They See ‘Em: A Fan’s Travels in the Land of Umpires” to offer this review – and share that I highly recommend this book.