Perfect Game USA and the Future of Baseball

How the Remaking of Youth Scouting Affects the National Pastime

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About the Book

For decades baseball scouts have beat the bushes for talent, wandering throughout the United States in search of promising young players. But technology and competition have recently brought about big changes, as potential stars are identified as early as Little League.
The largest such scouting and development service, Perfect Game USA, has become the primary pipeline to college and professional baseball, with its participants accounting for more than 70 percent of the players taken in the 2007 amateur draft. This book looks at the history, methods, and impact of Perfect Game USA, which continues to change the landscape of youth baseball.

About the Author(s)

Les Edgerton is a writing teacher and author of nine books, including Surviving Little League: For Parents, Players, and Coaches. He lives in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Bibliographic Details

Les Edgerton
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 202
Bibliographic Info: 40 photos, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2009
pISBN: 978-0-7864-3408-4
eISBN: 978-0-7864-5237-8
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vii

Foreword by Wally Lubanski      1

Preface      5

1. It’s Not Your Father’s Game Any More: The Rapidly Changing Landscape of Youth Baseball      13

2. How the Stage Was Set for the “New” Field of Dreams: A Time of Innocence      16

3. The Birth and Early Growth of Perfect Game USA Showcases      20

4. The Professional Scout’s View      26

5. High School Baseball and How It Lost Its Luster      39

6. The “If You’re Good, They’ll Find You” Fallacy      49

7. Dominican and Other Latin American Players      52

8. Steroids, HGH, and Other Performance-Enhancing Substances      55

9. The Early Years      58

10. Financial Woes      68

11. Watershed Moments      71

12. The Parts of the Perfect Game Organization      88

13. The Cultural Impact of the New Era: A New Philosophy      92

14. Select and Travel Teams: The Other Major Force at Work in the New World of Baseball      105

15. Perfect Game’s People      112

16. The Negatives      122

17. A Prescription      129

18. Perfect Game and Its Future      133

19. Developing a Sound Plan      139

20. Preparation for a Showcase      147

21. Interesting stories, interesting people      165

Epilogue: What a Journey      179

Sources      183

Index      185

Book Reviews & Awards

“convincing…revealing”—Choice; “this book is a revealing history about a youth baseball organization that has created fundamental changes in how baseball talent is exposed”—Nine.