Birdie: Confessions of a Baseball Nomad

Overview

During his 65-year career in professional baseball, Birdie Tebbetts was a player, coach, manager, scout, and executive and nobody knew the game the way Birdie did. From Hank Greenberg to Reggie Jackson, Birdie worked with all the brightest stars in baseball's constellation and this biography is a behind-the-scenes memoir to one of the more unique and engaging people to haave ever played the game.

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Overview

During his 65-year career in professional baseball, Birdie Tebbetts was a player, coach, manager, scout, and executive and nobody knew the game the way Birdie did. From Hank Greenberg to Reggie Jackson, Birdie worked with all the brightest stars in baseball's constellation and this biography is a behind-the-scenes memoir to one of the more unique and engaging people to haave ever played the game.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Red Sox great Ted Williams called his late former teammate Birdie Tebbetts "one of the greatest guys I ever met," and Tebbetts, a meticulous diarist during a nearly 50-year career as a player and manager, is undeniably a class act. The "confessions," however, are few and far between; the squeaky-clean Tebbetts shares scores of anecdotes, but his workman-like narrative is not always riveting and sometimes seems a little musty (as when Tebbetts delivers a polemic about the effect of modern catcher's mitts on players' skills). Nonetheless, there are some engrossing tales here, such as the one about playing in an impromptu ballgame after a bloody battle at Iwo Jima, or being sold for a dollar by one drunk owner to another. Perhaps most revealing of Tebbetts's character is his recollection of an umpire who suffered dizzy spells following his return from the war. Afraid of losing his job, the ump asked Tebbetts, the catcher, to help calling balls and strikes, and Tebbetts tipped him off with hand signals following each pitch. Tebbetts is also depicted as a warm, open-hearted family man in the amusing sidebars, written by relatives, which are interspersed throughout the book. All in all, Tebbetts fans will be charmed, and many baseball enthusiasts will find enough lore to hold their interest. (Mar.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
In this delightful romp, Tebbetts discusses his six-decade-long career in professional baseball. A starting catcher with the 1940 pennant-winning Detroit Tigers, Tebbetts freely shares his impressions about such teammates as Hank Greenberg and Hal Newhouser. While he reveres Greenberg, who urged him to adopt a hard-nosed approach to contractual negotiations, Tebbetts dismisses Newhouser as a World War II phenomenon who "got into the Hall of Fame by begging to get in." Later a member of the Boston Red Sox, Tebbetts also greatly admired Ted Williams, but he does complain that the Splendid Splinter ineptly tried to tell him how to call pitches. A moderately successful manager, Tebbetts later became a longtime scout for the Mets, Yankees, Orioles, and Marlins. Recommended for general libraries. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781572434554
  • Publisher: Triumph Books
  • Publication date: 4/1/2002
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 1,270,431
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 8.46 (h) x 0.85 (d)

Meet the Author

Birdie Tebbetts was a baseball player, manager, scout, and front office executive. He died in 1999, leaving behind an eight-foot long shelf of diaries as well as numerous tapes about his life and times in baseball. James Morrison, Birdie's cousin and confidant of 60 years, has brought Birdie to life in these pages—in Tebbetts' authentic and distinctive voice. An adman for 15 years, he has been an independent documentary film producer for 30 years and is the author of several books. He lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Reggie Jackson is a former Major League Baseball player who was elected into the Hall of Fame in 1993.

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