From the Publisher
* Notorious for his run-ins with the English language, baseball great Berra has become an improbably prolific author. He and coauthor Kaplan follow up 2002’s What Time Is It? You Mean Now? with this charming, if meandering, book about teamwork. In anecdote after anecdote about his legendary career with the Yankees, his not-so-legendary career as a manager, and his days growing up on the streets of St. Louis, Berra shows how respect and cooperation made him a success on the field and in life. Lessons include the importance of punctuality, owning one’s mistakes, and a positive attitude. For better or worse, nuggets of wisdom (“Never give an opponent added motivation”) are buried beneath a mountain of less-than-insightful sports ephemera (Derek Jeter is “a good leader because he always knows and does what’s right”). Still, Berra’s optimism and wry, absurdist sense of humor make it a fast read that should resonate with fans; as one would expect, Berra includes plenty of well-meaning advice in his signature, well-near-meaningless style: “Unless you have an excuse, there’s no excuse.” (May) (Publishers Weekly, June 2008)
""...[it] offers nearly half a century's distilled wisdom on the subject of teammates and the value of team play from the biggest winner (14 pennants and 10 World Series rings) in baseball history..."" (YouCanObserveSyn, April 13, 2008)
""...[it] offers nearly half a century's distilled wisdom on the subject of teammates and the value of team play from the biggest winner (14 pennants and 10 World Series rings) in baseball history..."" (Post Dispatch (St Louis), April 6, 2008)
Enjoyable, sometimes humorous, and occasionally revealing love fests to American sports' most storied franchise, these two volumes present the observations of the great former pinstriper Berra and near-great Murcer. The two ex-Yankees agree about what makes a truly successful team: concern for one's teammates and a largely selfless dedication to the task of winning. No player was more successful in that regard than Berra, whose Yankees won 14 pes and ten World Series championships during his career, in contrast to the ill-timed Murcer, who just missed out on the resurgent Yankees of the late 1970s and barely made a dent on the 1981 pennant-winning team. Berra praises star players Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle for setting an example by working "through tough times," making no excuses, striving for excellence, and passionately caring most about the well-being of the Yankees. He shares stories about Bill Dickey teaching him the art of catching, Jackie Robinson's burning desire to win, Derek Jeter's devotion to the team, Mantle's determination to be "a great teammate," Joe McCarthy and Joe Torre's confidence, DiMaggio's insistence that others play as hard and intelligently as he did, and Reggie Jackson's work ethic. Murcer, projected to be the next Mickey Mantle, never quite reached such heights but felt he had become part of the Yankees when Mick decided Murcer belonged. After exploring the ups and downs of his playing days, Murcer describes his all-Yankee team, the cancer that afflicted him, and issues ranging from steroids and asterisks to Marvin Miller, longtime union leader who devised the game's initial collective bargaining agreement. Both books are recommended for generallibraries.