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Sixty Feet, Six Inches: A Hall of Fame Pitcher & a Hall of Fame Hitter Talk about How the Game is Played [Kindle Edition]

Bob Gibson , Reggie Jackson , Lonnie Wheeler
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $15.95
Kindle Price: $9.99
You Save: $5.96 (37%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

Reggie Jackson and Bob Gibson offer a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to understand America's pastime from their unique insider perspective.


Legendary. Insightful. Uncompromising. Candid. Uncensored.


Mr. October and Hoot Gibson unfortunately never faced each other on the field. But now, in Sixty Feet, Six Inches, these two legends open up in fascinating detail about the game they love and how it was, is, and should be played. Their one-of-a-kind insider stories recall a who's who of baseball nobility, including Willie Mays, Alex Rodriguez, Hank Aaron, Albert Pujols, Billy Martin, and Joe Torre. This is an unforgettable baseball history by two of its most influential superstars.

Bonus Material: This ebook edition includes an excerpt from Reggie Jackson's Becoming Mr. October.  

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. In an inspired Major League pairing, all-star pitcher Gibson, 73, talks mechanics, psychology and culture with 63-year-old Reggie Jackson, one of the game's greatest hitters. Although they never faced each other on the field, they square off on everything from pitch counts and swing styles to catchers, managers and umpires, to clubhouse environments and media distractions. In lengthy discussions steered by author Wheeler (Gibson's autobiography collaborator), the two often turn conversational, sharing stories about Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, Frank Robinson, Alex Rodriguez and Albert Pujols, among others, but the book reads best when the duo discusses controversies: spitballers, hit batters, steroids, free agency and racism. Their egos and memories remain remarkably vivid; Gibson, who spent 17 years on the mound for the St. Louis Cardinals, constantly cites his own stats, and Jackson, who won the World Series with both the A's and the Yankees, takes credit for Derek Jeter's success. Fans will come away from this discussion between greats with even greater understanding and appreciation for the game.


"If you want to understand baseball’s game inside the game between the pitcher and the hitter, this is it. Two of the greats have written a classic."
--Willie Mays

“Gibby and Reggie finally share their perspectives as two of the fiercest competitors who ever played the game. Trust me…It’s a great read.”
-- Joe Torre

“Wow! Knowledge and insight into the game for players, kids and the fans. Two of the game’s greatest under pressure: Mr. October and Bob Gibson. SIXTY FEET, SIX INCHES is fun, full of information and an easy read.”
--Mariano Rivera

“For the first time Mr. October joins Mr. October.  It doesn’t get much better than this.”
--Tim McCarver

 “For a baseball fan, this breezy book is like a giant box of popcorn–once you pick it up, you can’t put it down. Insight after insight from two of the most compelling figures in the game’s history.”
--Bob Costas

"Oh to be a fly on the wall. Here is an inside look from two of the greatest competitors ever to put on a major league uniform. Both have strong opinions about that magical 60' 6" space between the hitter and the pitcher -- and they have the stats to back it up."
--Tom Seaver.

“These conversations are usually only heard in Cooperstown during Hall of Fame weekends. Two giants of baseball discussing the game they love. This is a fun book!”
--Joe Morgan

“Love it. Two of the most dominating personalities in the game, one from each side of the plate. The pitcher from the defensive side and the hitter from the offensive side. Both of these Hall of Famers had dominating approaches and felt they controlled every aspect of their game. Intimidation with tremendous concentration. The authors had both. People sometimes don't un...

Product Details

  • File Size: 1347 KB
  • Print Length: 290 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0767931106
  • Publisher: Anchor; 1 edition (September 22, 2009)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002OK2OPI
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #734,761 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WORTH EVERY PENNY November 5, 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book may be a little too technical for the casual baseball fan, but if you know and love the game, and want to learn a little more about the nuts and bolts of pitching and hitting, this is a great read. It's not great baseball literature like Roger Angell, or the best of Roger Kahn, more of an informal conversation between two hall-of-famers and World Series greats. It's a wealth of information about how the game is played, and more importantly, how it should be played.

What makes it great is that there are a lot of fascinating anecdotes from both Bob Gibson and Reggie Jackson interspersed with the technical stuff. Both men talk at some length about their early years in the game, and what they had to go through coming up as young black players in the 50's (Gibson) and 60's (Jackson). I already had great respect for Gibson, but have even more after reading this book. I wasn't as enamored of Reggie Jackson, but after reading Sixty Feet, Six Inches, I have new respect for him as well. Any serious student of baseball and baseball history would thoroughly enjoy this book.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Two Greats Talking Baseball July 19, 2010
If a World Series were on the line, who would I want to pitch and who would I want to hit? For me, there is no question that Bob Gibson would pitch. And Reggie is one of handful of truly great post-season hitters I would want at the plate (his peers include Gehrig, Ruth, Aaron, George Brett, Manny Ramirez, Clemente, Foxx, and Jeter). Bringing these two great players together to talk baseball is a stroke of genius, particularly given their very different personalities.

Given Reggie's overbearing personality, loud talk, and insecurities, and given the nature of baseball as a team game, I was not a fan of Reggie until the end of his great post-season run. It was only when he single-handedly beat the Brewers in Game 5 of the 1981 special division series did it finally dawn on me: how many times does this guy have to put a team on his back and carry it before you appreciate him as a great player? And all of the literature that has come down since then does tend to confirm that Reggie was a good team-mate. This book will also help raise Reggie in your esteem. He was a careful student of the game.

Gibson is Gibson, and this book conveys his enormous heart, skill, and fierce competitiveness. Gibson is sometimes criticized as a bean-baller, but this book does a good job of rebutting this and conveying Gibson's point of view. Gibson owned the outside of the plate. To do that he could not let players lean over the inside, and he had no problem with the brushback.

Gibson and Reggie speak eloquently on their struggles against racism in the 60s and 70s. It's not possible to understand these two without the context provided by these struggles.
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31 of 40 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars How Many Ways Can You Tell This Story? October 3, 2009
Bob Gibson and Reggie Jackson are both world-class Hall-of-Famers that need no introduction, and anything they offer on baseball is worth paying attention to - up to a point. The problem with "Sixty Feet, Six Inches," a tale of the game between the pitcher and the hitter, is that there are only so many ways to tell this story. Hitters need strength and big hands, good hand-eye coordination, good eyesight that can even read the spin on the ball, and the ability to wait out bad pitches. Pitchers need arm speed, control, and a variety of offerings. Both Gibson and Jackson agree on the importance of constant practice, that getting ahead in the count is the most important part of being a good hitter or pitcher, that it is more important to respect each other as team players than to like each other, and that the psychological aspect of the contest between pitcher and batter, though sometimes overlooked, is also important. Nothing earth-shattering there.

Nonetheless, it was still quite interesting to read Reggie's explaining how he went about achieving a psychological advantage through dictating the timing to get the pitcher out of his rhythm and sense of control, but not mad enough to get thrown at. (Gibson denies he would ever throw at a batter for psychological harassment.) Jackson would also try to intimidate the pitcher by looking at him - this, however, he admits didn't work with the best pitchers. Gibson responded that pitchers might play the same psychological game - shaking off pitches just to annoy batters, even though he did prefer to get into a timing routine and finish the game within two hours. Gibson also wouldn't talk to opposing hitters or pitch vs. National league teams in spring training - he wanted to remain a mystery.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Eavesdropping In Copperstown April 14, 2010
"Sixty Feet, Six Inches" is a spellbinding dialogue about baseball between two of the game's greatest, Bob Gibson and Reggie Jackson. Gibson gives the perspective from the mound, while Jackson gives the view from the plate. This book immerses the reader into the game to a depth that few have never known. For a casual baseball fan like me, the finer points of the game hold the interest from start to finish. Listening to them both orate on the importance of the count, the type of pitch to throw or how to pick the right pitch to hit shows the baseball to be much more of a mind game than I had ever imagined.

After leading the reader through strategy and tactics, the two stars express their views on a variety of factors affecting the national pastime. We hear their views on the stars they faced, umpires, fans, owners, managers, the press, free agency, the reserve clause, salaries, race, steroids and changes in the game since their playing days, just to name a few.

This is a great book for any baseball fan. Bob and Reggie obviously have a high respect for each other. There are no dirty secrets revealed here. It is like sitting in the lobby of the Otesaga Hotel in Cooperstown during induction week, eavesdropping on the greats as they share old times. Don't miss it. Pick up and read.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars ... of the dual between pitcher and batter does a great job of...
Jackson does a lot of self-promotion but the description of the dual between pitcher and batter does a great job of presenting the essence of the game of baseball from the point of... Read more
Published 5 months ago by harvey sherman
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay. Lot of insider info.
Okay. Lot of insider info.
Published 6 months ago by Yankee fan
5.0 out of 5 stars Old School Is Good School - Older Players and Coaches Should Read This...
If you are serious about learning baseball, especially how to pitch or hit, you need to read this book. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Virginia Shopper
5.0 out of 5 stars The Heart of the Matter
It's hard to imagine a better dialog. Baseball is the thinking man's game, and this book is almost as good as watching a pitching duel live.
Published 7 months ago by Brian P. Ahlstrom
4.0 out of 5 stars Like sitting in a room with the two legends
The style of this book is simply a conversation between the two legends. It was mostly recorded and transcribed and the result is this book about two hall of famers, known for... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Josh H.
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun to read
I enjoyed this book for the stories and recollection of other players of their era, and their opinions on some of the modern guys. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Lance and Amy
4.0 out of 5 stars a master class in baseball
Structured in the format of a conversation between two of the greatest ballplayers ever, Sixty Feet, Six Inches is a master class in anything and everything baseball. Read more
Published 16 months ago by lindapanzo
5.0 out of 5 stars Bob
listen to St Louis radio a lot -especially in the 60's - saw an excerpt on tv one night and went looking for the book
most enjoyable insight
Published 18 months ago by Bob Fraser
5.0 out of 5 stars The way it used to be!!
Gibson, and Jackson! Two giant egos going back and forth. Gibson the more subdued of the two gives a straight forward no frills view of what it took to be tough and unyielding in... Read more
Published 23 months ago by Carl DalBon
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting
Clearly, with the size of the egos of these two guys, the interviews must have been held outside. But, then, we already knew that. Read more
Published 23 months ago by KLP
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