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Family Ties: A Comprehensive Collection of Facts and Trivia About Baseball's Relatives Paperback – October 15, 2012
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The book "Family Ties: A Comprehensive Collection of Facts and Trivia About Baseball's Relatives" documents in intriguing detail the genealogy of baseball. It parallels observations and analyses done by sports medicine researchers and others about what makes the elite athletes. Why do two people with equal physical make up go down different paths: one becomes an elite athlete and the other becomes an office worker? Richard Cuicchi's book answers this question in an entertaining format.
Much of the influence that contributes to an individual becoming an elite athlete is familial. The renowned sports medicine researcher and charter Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine, Dr. Robert M. Malina, wrote, "The beneficial influence of instruction and practice on skill acquisition in early childhood and the transition into middle childhood is reasonably well documented. Guided instruction by qualified coaches or trained parents, appropriate motor task sequences, and adequate time for practice are essential components of successful instructional programs at young ages" (Malina 2009).
Dr. Malina documents that experiences during early growth and development, largely determined by parental influences, are a major factor. Parental and peer pressure to excel in sport contributes heavily to development of the elite athlete (Malina et al ., 2004; Malina, 2008).
Richard Cuicchi's book documents in pleasantly accessible detail the family connections in baseball. The underlying theme that Mr. Cuicchi unveils is that there are even extended family influences. If I say much more, the book will end up recounted here. Anyone with an interest in baseball should buy this book. It will bring a novel and enjoyable appreciation to the sport.
In closing, two disclosures must be made. There is a family connection here. Richard Cuicchi is my brother-in-law; both of us married DelHomme girls from Chalmette LA. In addition, Dr. Malina was my Ph.D. mentor, and is a longtime (30 years) colleague, and dear friend. He is also a baseball aficionado.
Malina RM (2008). Skill: acquisition and trainability. In: Bar-Or O, Hebestreit H (eds). The Young Athlete. Blackwell Publications, Oxford, pp 96-111.
Malina RM (2009) KEYNOTE PAPER: Children and adolescents in the sport culture: the overwhelming majority to the select few. Journal of Exercise Science and Fitness 7(2) (Suppl),S1-S10. [...]
Malina RM, Bouchard C, Bar-Or O(2004) Growth, Maturation, and Physical Development. 2nd ed. Human Kinetics Publishers. Champaign, Il.