Thursday, September 6, 2018

Review of "Dugout Jinx," by Clair Bee

Review of
Dugout Jinx, by Clair Bee

Four out of five stars
 This is another installment in the Chip Hilton series of sports fiction and in this one, although his friends appear, the focus is on Chip. It opens with Chip and his team participating in a baseball tournament, the timeframe is the summer between high school and college. Chip is fully committed to remaining an amateur and playing college baseball among his other sports.
 Chip’s team wins the tournament with Chip being the pitching star, totally baffling the opposition. Their victory in the championship game ends the first part where Chip is a member of the team. After that, Chip travels with the Bears, a professional baseball team. He does not play, although he throws batting practice and sits on the bench. The Bears are locked in a tight pennant race and there is significant dissension on the team, some of the players are friendly to Chip, while others are openly hostile.
 The Bears have a significant lead in the standings, but suddenly their main opponent seems to have their measure, and no one can determine why. Hitters that could not handle the top Bears pitchers suddenly begin to hit like all-stars. Chip is the one that determines what the problem is, and he passes the word along, suddenly saving the day and the pennant.
 Readers of the Chip Hilton series will find this one a bit different, for his friends play a much more secondary role. Chip is once again portrayed as a man of integrity, unwilling to speak ill of a man that generally deserves it. Since Chip is not playing in the second half, there is no big game at the end where Chip plays the role of the noble hero. Yet, it is instructive for young people to read about how Chip deals with working with adult men much older and experienced than he is. Particularly when he shows them up and remains committed to getting a college education.

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