Spitball Magazine

Spitball Baseball Magazine Bat

Spitball is a literary baseball magazine founded in 1981 and dedicated to poetry, short fiction, prose, art, and book reviews; all devoted to baseball. In 1983 Spitball established the CASEY Award to honor the authors and publishers of the best baseball books published each year. The CASEY was the first award of its kind, and it is widely recognized as the most prestigious award that a baseball book can be given.

 A key component of Spitball's mission is the timely publication of authoritative, lively, and appreciative reviews of quality baseball books. These reviews can be found in our Baseball Books Reviewed section. We also publish short and to-the-point reviews of current baseball books in the "Baseball Book News" column at the back of each issue of Spitball Magazine.

Spitball's Latest News

November 24, 2015

2015 CASEY Award Finalists Announced
Cincinnati, OH
The editors of Spitball are pleased to announce that the following books have been named as Finalists for the 2015 CASEY Award for Best Baseball Book of the Year:
The Betrayal: The 1919 World Series and the Birth of Modern Baseball (Oxford University Press) by Charles Fountain
Big Data Baseball: Math, Miracles, and the End of a 20-Year Losing Streak (Flatiron Books) by Travis Sawchik
Billy Martin: Baseball's Flawed Genius (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) by Bill Pennington
The Colonel and Hug: The Partnership that Transformed the New York Yankees (University of Nebraska Press) by Steve Steinberg & Lyle Spatz
The Game: Inside the Secret World of Major League Baseball's Power Brokers (Little Brown) by Jon Pessah
The Game Must Go On: Hank Greenberg, Pete Gray, and the Great Days of Baseball on the Home Front in WWII (Thomas Dunne Books) by John Klima
The League of Outsider Baseball: An Illustrated History of Baseball's Forgotten Heroes (Touchstone) by Gary Cieradkowski
Split Season 1981: Fernandomania, The Bronx Zoo, and the Strike that Saved Baseball (Thomas Dunne Books) by Jeff Katz
Swing: A Novel (Van Buren) by Philip Beard
Ty Cobb: A Terrible Beauty (Simon & Schuster) by Charles Leerhsen
Spitball congratulates the authors and publishers of all ten Finalists and wishes them the best of luck in the judging process now underway. Editor Mike Shannon had this to say about the selection process: "As usual, it was no easy task to whittle the competition down to these ten books, and we are the first to say that outstanding books which we also greatly admire got left off the list. However, it's inevitable, if the judging process is to remain a manageable proposition for the Judges who are required to read on average a book per week, and if the great honor of being named a Finalist is not to be diluted. More importantly, we are confident that the Best Baseball Book of the Year is on this list, and we look forward to the Judges' decision, whatever it may be."
    Spitball also thanks all publishers who sent the Magazine review copies of their books throughout the year, as well as all those who made Nominations for the 2015 CASEY Award.
    Please revisit this website soon for news about the site and date of the 33rd Annual CASEY Awards Banquet, at which the winner of the 2015 CASEY will be presented his beautiful blue & gold Louisville Slugger CASEY baseball bat!

November 9, 2015

Fall 2015 Issue #77 is in the Mail
... and is SOLD OUT!

The new issue of Spitball, #77, was mailed today and is currently on its way to all subscribers. The new issue will feature Mark Schraf's always-engaging "Cooperstown Report;" Mike's "Chapbook Corner" column on Tom Clark's Fan Poems chapbook; great baseball short fiction by Tim Tocher, Tim Lehnert, and Jack Smiles; thoughtful and thought-provoking baseball poetry by Mark Metzler, Steve Hermanos, Michale Kula, Ed Rielly, Kevin Miller, Sean Carroll, Alec Binyon, and Robert Cooperman; plus baseball book reviews and a whole lot more. If you are a subscriber and do not receive your issue within two weeks of this post, please contact the Spitball office.
    Issue #77 is also already SOLD OUT! Anyone ordering a sample copy will receive an earlier edition of the magazine. The only way to avoid missing future issues of Spitball is to subscribe. We invite you to do so today.

October 18, 2015

2015 CASEY Award Judges Announced

Spitball is pleased to announce that the Judges for the 2015 CASEY Award will be Brian Baughan, Dan Neville, and Dennis Snelling. Brian Baughan (Philadelphia, PA) is a freelance editor and the author of seven educational books for young readers.
Dan Neville (Cincinnati, OH) is a retiree and a former right handed pitcher who rose to the Triple A level of the Cincinnati Reds' organization. He spent one spring on the Reds' major league roster under famed manager Fred Hutchinson. Dennis Snelling (Modesto, CA) is a Senior Writer for Helmar Magazine and the author of four baseball books, including The Greatest Minor League and Johnny Evers: A Baseball Life, both of which were Nominated Finalists for the CASEY Award.

Kostya Kennedy Captivates Crowd at 32nd Annual CASEY Awards Banquet!
Another Full House at Crosley's Sports Bar & Eatery
March 16, 2015
Cincinnati, OH
The 32nd Annual CASEY Awards Banquet was held yesterday at Crosley's Sports Bar & Eatery in Cincinnati, the Literary Baseball Capitol of the World; and the 2014 CASEY winner Kostya Kennedy was on hand to captivate and delight another packed house of CASEY supporters.
    Kennedy, who won his second CASEY Award for Pete Rose: An American Dilemma, spoke for about 10 minutes after accepting his blue & gold Louisville Slugger CASEY Award, and then fielded questions from the audience for about 30 minutes before spending another half hour or 45 minutes signing copies of his CASEY-winning book. A big favorite of Spitball and CASEY supporters, Kennedy shared a number of fascinating insights into the process he went through in researching and writing the book; including the revelation that, while Rose did not officially participate in the project, shortly after the book was released to critical acclaim he did phone the author and request a signed copy!
    The Editors of Spitball thank all the loyal baseball literature enthusiasts who turned out to support the Magazine and the CASEY Award program; we once again congratulate Kostya Kennedy and Time Home Entertainment Inc. and all the Nominated Finalists for the 2014 CASEY; and we offer our sincere gratitude to our gracious hosts, Scott Schmidt and his crew at Crosley's, as well as the 2014 CASEY Award Judges Bob Cairns, Scott Ferkovich, and Andy Sturgill for their important service. 
                             The Spitball 75
January 11, 2015
Cincinnati, Ohio

The editors of Spitball are proud to present "The Spitball 75," the best 75 baseball poems published in "The Literary Baseball Magazine" over the first 75 issues of the Magazine's existence. The variety and quality on display in these 75 wonderful baseball poems are a testament to the support that Spitball has received from the very best practitioners of the art of writing poetry about the greatest game in the world for more than 30 years. Sincere thanks to all the poets who have been published in Spitball and to everyone who voted to help us editors come to the final, very difficult decisions we did. Most of all, CONGRATULATIONS to the poets of The Spitball 75!



Spitball Acquires Minor Trips Newsletter

June 5, 2014
Cincinnati, OH
Spitball: The Literary Baseball Magazine
announced today that it has purchased "Minor Trips," a newsletter devoted to minor league baseball, now in its 24th year of publication. Minor Trips will continue to be published in the same format and under the same title as before, with founder and former publisher Bob Carson remaining involved as an Editor Emeritus, contributor, and advisor. Spitball Editor-in-Chief Mike Shannon will assume the role of Editor and Publisher of Minor Trips, while relying heavily on the expertise and guidance of Carson. "There is no reason to re-invent the RV wheel (the one that takes MT readers to minor league games around the country) ," said Shannon. "Bob has created a wonderful publication that is supported by fiercely loyal and highly knowledgeable baseball fans, and we simply want to continue doing what he has been doing all these past years to give minor league baseball fans such a great forum for connecting with other fans who share their interest and passion. We have some ideas that we hope will make Minor Trips even better eventually, but we want to assure all of Bob's loyal readers that we have tremendous respect for the newsletter as it exists now and plan to introduce any changes very slowly and carefully so that readers, we hope, hardly notice any transition at all. Bob simply has too many things on his plate right now to give Minor Trips the attention it deserves, so we are thrilled to be able to continue in his footsteps." Spitball and Minor Trips will remain separate publications, although Shannon indicated that cost-saving synergies will be sought in all areas of production and fulfillment. Until an internet presence and an on-line payment option is established for Minor Trips, new subscribers should send payment of $15 for the 2014 Minor Trips newsletters to the Spitball office at: 5560 Fox Road, Cincinnati, OH 45239.

New Rate in Effect for LIFETIME Subscriptions
(See below)
New Price in Effect; Recognition for Lifetime Subscribers Coming Soon
When you invest in a LIFETIME Subscription to Spitball, you not only avoid the hassle of renewing every year, thereby saving us the trouble of reminding you to do so, you also guarantee that you will never miss an issue of the magazine. Ever. Most important of all, you help support the second oldest all-baseball periodical extant and the only one that is of a literary nature. The price for a LIFETIME Subscription has gone up $25 to $125, but that is still a remarkable value. Make yourself the envy of all your baseball buddies by becoming a Spitball LIFETIME Subscriber today! Visit the store page of this website to order your lifetime subscription.  

Lifetime Subscribers are now acknowledged on a special page on the Spitball website. In addition, each Lifetime Subscriber is presented, as a token our appreciation, with a handsome certificate, meant to be framed and hung proudly in his home or office. Thanks to all subscribers and especially to those who have made a lifetime commitment to the Magazine.