Hello folks, I know the weather has been absolutely brutal for February so far. Well, we don’t have long to wait for pitchers and catchers to report for spring training baseball workouts the week of February 15th. Spring Training brings hope of warmer weather on the horizon. Major league spring games begin at the end of the month, and there is something about watching folks sit in the bright sunshine that makes me forget about the cold, cloudy snowing days we have here. Since we have been stuck indoors due to the pandemic and cold weather, it is a great time to grab a good book from us to stay informed and entertained.

If you are just a beginner watching baseball or a connoisseur, I recommend a great book called The Plan by David Kaplan, a Chicago writer and sportscaster. He partnered with Former Chicago Cubs Executive Theo Epstein to tell the story of how an executive builds a baseball team from the ground up—starting with the scouting of young players and accessing the talent level at the major league level. It takes you behind the curtain and teaches you a lesson on running a major league baseball team. Kaplan goes into the economics of a team along with building a culture. You learn the game isn’t always about finding the best-skilled players, as someone’s character is essential as well.

Although this book centers on the Chicago Cubs and their historic run to the 2016 World Series Championship, their strategies are being replicated by many other teams. Copying your competition happens in all kinds of businesses, where one has success with a certain blueprint, and others will definitely copy it to use elsewhere. The Chicago White Sox started this shortly after the Cubs’ victory, and we are (hopefully) getting ready to witness a baseball championship on the other side of town this year. The Sox have built and acquired some exceptional talent and people led by General Manager Rick Hahn.

So sit back, relax and get ready to enjoy some exciting baseball in 2021! And hopefully some nice weather.