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Damn Yankees: Twenty-Four Major League Writers on the World's Most Loved (and Hated) Team Hardcover – April 3, 2012
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From the Back Cover
Everyone has an opinion about the Yankees. More than an opinion in most cases, but an opinion at the very least.
—From the Introduction
Love them or hate them, the New York Yankees have been an American institution for nearly a century. With their rich history and colorful cast of characters, the Yankees never fail to inspire or provoke. In this exciting compendium, some of today's most acclaimed writers—including Pete Dexter, Colum McCann, Roy Blount Jr., Dan Barry, Jane Leavy, Charles P. Pierce, J. R. Moehringer, Daniel Okrent, Frank DeFord, Bill James, and many more—step up to the plate to take their cuts. The result is a collection of original essays as idiosyncratic and expansive as the team that has inspired them: ruminations on Babe Ruth's gravestone, Derek Jeter's swing, and the upper-deck vantage of the Oldest Living Yankee; dual allegiances; mortal rivalries; and every other subject that spans from the hilarious (the Yankee wife-swap of the '70s) to the sublime (the grace of Catfish Hunter).
Superbly written, deeply insightful, and full of both passion and humor, Damn Yankees is a completely fresh look at baseball's most enduring franchise by a Murderers' Row of writers as stacked as that of the 1927 Yanks.
About the Author
Rob Fleder was executive editor of Sports Illustrated and the editor of SI Books during his twenty years at Time Inc. At SI Books he edited Sports Illustrated 50: The Anniversary Book; SI: The Baseball Book; SI: The Football Book; and Hate Mail From Cheerleaders: The Best of Rick Reilly, among other New York Times bestsellers. He was also the editor of Damn Yankees: Twenty-Four Major League Writers on the World’s Most Loved (and Hated) Team. He is currently editing books and consulting on publishing projects for his company, Low Gear & Minus, Inc. He lives in Westchester, New York.
Steve Hoffman is a founding partner of the HoffmanNoli Design Studio in Brooklyn, New York. Their clients have included Time Inc., Sports Illustrated, Veranda, Brides, Lucky, Condé Nast, Workman Books, Random House and O, The Oprah Magazine. Before founding HoffmanNoli Design, Steve was the creative director of Sports Illustrated for more than twenty years. He has designed more than thirty books for the SI imprint and other clients.
Top customer reviews
The authors in this book are very skilled writers who can take a story and write it in a way to make it uniquely interesting. However, due to a few stories I didn't especially care for and the 38 pages of statistics at the end I would rate this book to be four stars which mean "I like it".
Like a great clutch hitter looking for a fastball down the middle of the plate with two outs and the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth in the seventh game of the World Series... and being fooled badly with a big-bending-slow-curve... just as fooled will be potential readers expecting hundreds of pages denigrating the guy sitting next to you because his team colors are orange and blue and yours are pure pinstripes. Don't get me wrong... there is some of that... but surrounded by the prose of... life... death... family... countries... Grandfathers... Fathers... Sons... Daughters... familial love... familial hate... immigrants on both sides of the ocean... fond... and not so fond... remembrances... from Belfast... to Massachusetts... to New York... and beyond... these highly talented writers... I firmly believe are exorcising their own spiritual tumult that they have carried within themselves for a lifetime.
Of course there is discussion of some sort of innumerable Yankees from Babe Ruth to Mickey Mantle to George Steinbrenner to Reggie Jackson to Catfish Hunter to Derek Jeter... before and after... but surprisingly... and in retrospect... happily surprising... is that none of them make a greater impact than the effect of family-love-hate-time-and-place... that may solely be linked by an All-American game of baseball played on the radio and shared with an elderly Grandparent.
The roundhouse combination of quotes that range from an Irishman at Yankee Stadium with his American son stating: "HOW CURIOUS THAT THE ONLY BASEBALL BAT I KNEW IN IRELAND WERE ONES THAT WERE USED, IN BELFAST, FOR PUNISHMENT BEATINGS: HOW QUICKLY THE WORLD TURNS." ... to business advice culled from the growth of the Yankees net worth from ten million dollars to being worth billions in a couple of decades... "THE RECIPE FOR A BILLION-DOLLAR FRANCHISE, IN THE END, ISN'T "WIN, MAKE MONEY, AND WIN SOME MORE." "IT'S WIN MAKE MONEY, SPEND MONEY, AND WIN AGAIN."
Yes... there are quotes such as "JUST AS LONG AS IT ISN'T THE YANKEES. I HATE THE YANKEES!" and... "I HAD FOUND MORE JOY IN HATING THE NEW YORK YANKEES THAN IN LOVING ANY OTHER BASEBALL TEAM" ... "AND I DON'T WANT TO BECOME A YANKEE SYMPATHIZER. BUT JETER IN SUMMER IS LIKE MY TOMATO PLANTS: I CHECK EVERY MORNING TO SEE HOW HE'S DOING."
Regardless of whether a potential reader loves or hates the Yankees... you will love this book and find yourself reminiscing about your youth... and not only how you became a fan of who you became a fan of... but more importantly... for better or for worse... you'll find yourself reliving your youth and those priceless times... and those special family members... whether you love or hate them... who helped shape who you became... in life... as well as who you root for on the radio or at the stadium.