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Spring training

Author and former Yankees pitcher Jim Bouton is visitor of Writing Program
Jim Bouton
Jim Bouton (Photo by Charles Rountree '05)

Writing students in Tom Cormen's English classes were treated to a visit from author and former professional baseball player Jim Bouton on Feb. 23. Cormen, a Professor of Computer Science and Director of the Writing Program, focused his class this term around baseball, using essays and books about the sport to fuel writing assignments and discussions.

Bouton is the author of Ball Four, a personal account of the 1969 baseball season when he was playing with the Seattle Pilots and the Houston Astros. The book was an inside look at professional baseball.

"My students read Ball Four, and I thought it would be fun for them to meet the author and ask him questions about the book," said Cormen.

During his visit, Bouton talked about his most recent book, Foul Ball, which recounts the struggle he and his business partner Chip Elitzer '69 had trying to save Wahconah Park in Pittsfield, Mass.

"The reason I write is because I want to understand my surroundings," said Bouton. "Writing gives you a perspective that you don't have when you're in the middle of it all."

By SUSAN KNAPP

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Last Updated: 12/17/08