Billy Martin: Baseball's Flawed Genius

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A New York Times bestseller

“Enormously entertaining . . . Explores the question of whether a baseball lifer can actually be a tragic figure in the classic sense—a man destroyed by the very qualities that made him great." — Wall Street Journal

“Bill Pennington gives long-overdue flesh to the caricature . . . Pennington savors the dirt-kicking spectacles without losing sight of the man.” — New York Times Book Review

 
Even now, years after his death, Billy Martin remains one of the most intriguing and charismatic figures in baseball history. And the most misunderstood. A manager who is widely considered to have been a baseball genius, Martin is remembered more for his rabble-rousing and public brawls on the field and off. He was combative and intimidating, yet endearing and beloved.

​In Billy Martin, Bill Pennington resolves these contradictions and pens the definitive story of Martin’s life. From his hardscrabble youth to his days on the Yankees in the 1950s and through sixteen years of managing, Martin made sure no one ever ignored him. Drawing on exhaustive interviews and his own time covering Martin as a young sportswriter, Pennington provides an intimate, revelatory, and endlessly colorful story of a truly larger-than-life sportsman.
 
“The hair on my forearms was standing up by the end of the fifth paragraph of this book’s introduction. I knew Billy Martin. I covered Billy Martin. But I never knew him like this.” — Dan Shaughnessy, best-selling author of Francona
 
“An exhaustive, detailed and fascinating look at a baseball genius whose biggest fight might very well have been against himself.” — Tampa Tribune
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About the author

BILL PENNINGTON is an award-winning sportswriter for the New York Times. A former syndicated columnist, Pennington was a beat writer who covered much of Billy Martin's tenure with the New York Yankees. A fifteen-time finalist and six-time winner of the Associated Press Sports Editors' annual writing award, Pennington lives with his family in Warwick, New York. This is his fourth book.


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Additional Information

Publisher
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
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Published on
Apr 7, 2015
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Pages
604
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ISBN
9780544022942
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Sports
Sports & Recreation / Baseball / History
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Bill Pennington
Close your eyes and picture the
Heisman Trophy. The form is easy
to conjure, a graceful, fluid pose
that is football past and football present
in one dignified figure ...
The story of the Heisman Trophy
is an american epic.
-- from the Preface

No sport in America can match the pageantry, raw emotion, and thrilling tradition of college football. It is a world in which a twenty-year-old kid can become a national sensation overnight, in which coaches are deified and rivalries burn white-hot.

And in this world, there is no individual award so revered as the Heisman Trophy. Every yearsince 1935, one player has run, thrown, or kicked his way into the pantheon of American sport. From Nile "The Cornbelt Comet" Kinnick in the '30s, West Point's legendary backfield of Doc Blanchard and Glenn Davis in the '40s, and Paul Hornung in the '50s to Ernie Davis, the Jackie Robinson of college football, miracle worker Doug Flutie, and modern-day Sunday warrior Eddie George, the history of the Heisman gives us insight into the heart of America through the lives of the heroes that entranced an entire nation for one brilliant season. Extraordinary in ways that transcend athletic ability, Heisman winners have gone on to become war heroes, Fortune 500 CEOs, and high-level politicians.

As John Heisman himself once said, the Heisman Trophy "is meant to exemplify the grandeur of a thousand men." Here within these pages are intimate portraits of some of the winners who also exemplify the grit and glory of America's beloved game and of the coaching giants such as Bear Bryant, Woody Hayes, and Red Blaik, who inspired the winners to achieve.Told in the evocative words of Pulitzer Prize–nominated journalist Bill Pennington, their heart-stopping experiences on the field and off will have Americans enthralled until the final page is turned.

Ian O'Connor
Every spring, Little Leaguers across the country mimic his stance and squabble over the right to wear his number, 2, the next number to be retired by the world’s most famous ball team. Derek Jeter is their hero. He walks in the footsteps of Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, and Mantle, and someday his shadow will loom just as large. Yet he has never been the best player in baseball. In fact, he hasn’t always been the best player on his team. But his intangible grace and Jordanesque ability to play big in the biggest of postseason moments make him the face of the modern Yankee dynasty, and of America’s game.

In The Captain, best-selling author Ian O’Connor draws on extensive reporting and unique access to Jeter that has spanned some fifteen years to reveal how a biracial kid from Michigan became New York’s most beloved sports figure and the enduring symbol of the steroid-free athlete. O’Connor takes us behind the scenes of a legendary baseball life and career, from Jeter’s early struggles in the minor leagues, when homesickness and errors in the field threatened a stillborn career, to his heady days as a Yankee superstar and prince of the city who squired some of the world’s most beautiful women, to his tense battles with former best friend A-Rod. We also witness Jeter struggling to come to terms with his declining skills and the declining favor of the only organization he ever wanted to play for, leading to a contentious contract negotiation with the Yankees that left people wondering if Jeter might end his career in a uniform without pinstripes.

Derek Jeter’s march toward the Hall of Fame has been dignified and certain, but behind that leadership and hero’s grace there are hidden struggles and complexities that have never been explored, until now. As Jeter closes in on 3,000 hits, a number no Yankee has ever touched, The Captain offers an incisive, exhilarating, and revealing new look at one of the game’s greatest players in the gloaming of his career.

Bill Pennington
Close your eyes and picture the
Heisman Trophy. The form is easy
to conjure, a graceful, fluid pose
that is football past and football present
in one dignified figure ...
The story of the Heisman Trophy
is an american epic.
-- from the Preface

No sport in America can match the pageantry, raw emotion, and thrilling tradition of college football. It is a world in which a twenty-year-old kid can become a national sensation overnight, in which coaches are deified and rivalries burn white-hot.

And in this world, there is no individual award so revered as the Heisman Trophy. Every yearsince 1935, one player has run, thrown, or kicked his way into the pantheon of American sport. From Nile "The Cornbelt Comet" Kinnick in the '30s, West Point's legendary backfield of Doc Blanchard and Glenn Davis in the '40s, and Paul Hornung in the '50s to Ernie Davis, the Jackie Robinson of college football, miracle worker Doug Flutie, and modern-day Sunday warrior Eddie George, the history of the Heisman gives us insight into the heart of America through the lives of the heroes that entranced an entire nation for one brilliant season. Extraordinary in ways that transcend athletic ability, Heisman winners have gone on to become war heroes, Fortune 500 CEOs, and high-level politicians.

As John Heisman himself once said, the Heisman Trophy "is meant to exemplify the grandeur of a thousand men." Here within these pages are intimate portraits of some of the winners who also exemplify the grit and glory of America's beloved game and of the coaching giants such as Bear Bryant, Woody Hayes, and Red Blaik, who inspired the winners to achieve.Told in the evocative words of Pulitzer Prize–nominated journalist Bill Pennington, their heart-stopping experiences on the field and off will have Americans enthralled until the final page is turned.

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