Homers of The Homer

America's three savviest baseball scholars weigh in on our national pastime. And it's still only a game

Listen to Walt Whitman on baseball. "Baseball is our game: the American game: I connect it with our national character," he said in 1888. "We are some ways a dyspeptic, nervous set: anything which will repair such losses may be regarded as a blessing to the race." Nice, isn't it? Just as compelling, in its own way, is the simple fact that Walt Whitman wrote something about baseball.

What draws intellectual types to the sport? There's something about the mere act of punishing a ball with a stick that brings about a truce in the eternal struggle between jock and nerd,...

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