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Mustache Gang: The swaggering saga of Oakland's A's Paperback

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 255 pages
  • Publisher: Dell (1973)
  • ASIN: B00070OEEQ
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 4.1 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #997,003 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Bill Slocum VINE VOICE on January 11, 2006
Format: Paperback
Baseball was very different not all that long ago. Take the story of the 1972 Oakland A's.

Blue Moon Odom, a solid veteran pitcher for the team, spent his off-season working at a store, where he wound up getting shot trying to stop a robbery.

Meanwhile, another pitcher on that same team, Vida Blue, who won 1971's Cy Young and Most Valuable Player awards, patiently listened as A's owner Charlie Finley told him: "You have as much chance of getting $115,000 from me as I do of jumping out of my office window." The amazing part was that Finley was right.

In 1970, a temperamental slugger named Reggie Jackson would be forced by Finley to publicly apologize for making a face in Finley's direction after slamming a game-winning home run. Bonus money that wouldn't pay for a night on the town with Derek Jeter today made everything alright again, sort of. Jackson was not only playing for Finley two years later but heroically injured himself to help his team capture the American League crown.

Ron Bergman's 1973 "Mustache Gang" is a time capsule in many ways. First, it is a deep-dish profile of the Athletics as Finley built them into the 1972 World Champions. Also, it captures the rush of excitement in that success, a feeling of being inside an exciting locomotive controlled by an entertaining madman, equal parts P.T. Barnum and Caligula, and fueled by a nutty gang of misfits who serve up a never-ending barrage of amusing zingers and fisticuffs, at their opponents and sometimes each other.

Because it was published in May, 1973, Bergman's book misses the fact the A's won the 1973 and 1974 championships, too.
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