Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Mickey Said It

From the Baseball Almanac

"After I hit a home run I had a habit of running the bases with my head down. I figured the pitcher already felt bad enough without me showing him up rounding the bases."

"All I had was natural ability."

"All the ballparks and the big crowds have a certain mystique. You feel attached, permanently wedded to the sounds that ring out, to the fans chanting your name, even when there are only four or five thousand in the stands on a Wednesday afternoon."

"A lot of people wrote that Roger (Maris) and I didn't like each other and that we didn't get along. Nothing could be further from the truth."

"A team is where a boy can prove his courage on his own. A gang is where a coward goes to hide."

"As far as I'm concerned, (Hank) Aaron is the best ball player of my era. He is to baseball of the last fifteen years what Joe DiMaggio was before him. He's never received the credit he's due."

"But god-damn, to think you're a .300 hitter and end up at .237 in your last season, then find yourself looking at a lifetime .298 average - it made me want to cry."

"Every time I see his name (Dean Chance) on a lineup card, I feel like throwing up."

"Heroes are people who are all good with no bad in them. That's the way I always saw Joe DiMaggio. He was beyond question one of the greatest players of the century."

"Hitting the ball was easy. Running around the bases was the tough part."

"I always loved the game, but when my legs weren't hurting it was a lot easier to love."

"I could never be a manager. All I have is natural ability."

"I don't care who you are, you hear those boos."

"If I had played my career hitting singles like Pete (Rose), I'd wear a dress."

"If I knew I'd live this long, I would have taken better care of myself."

"I hated to bat against (Don) Drysdale. After he hit you he'd come around, look at the bruise on your arm and say, 'Do you want me to sign it?'"

"I'll play baseball for the Army or fight for it, whatever they want me to do."

"In 1960 when Pittsburgh beat us in the World Series, we outscored them 55-27. It was the only time I think the better team lost. I was so disappointed I cried on the plane ride home."

"It's unbelievable how much you don't know about the game you've been playing all your life."

"It was all I lived for, to play baseball."

"My dad taught me to switch-hit. He and my grandfather, who was left-handed, pitched to me everyday after school in the back yard. I batted lefty against my dad and righty against my granddad."

"Roger Maris was as good a man and as good a ballplayer as there ever was."

"Somebody once asked me if I ever went up to the plate trying to hit a home run. I said, 'Sure, every time.'"

"Sometimes I sit in my den at home and read stories about myself. Kids used to save whole scrapbooks on me. They get tired of them and mail them to me. I'll go in there and read them, and you know what? They might as well be about (Stan) Musial and (Joe) DiMaggio, it's like reading about somebody else."

"Sometimes I think if I had the same body and the same natural ability and someone else's brain, who knows how good a player I might have been."

"Sorry Mickey, but because of the way you lived on Earth, you can't come in. But, before you leave, would you autograph these baseballs for HIM." - Mantle quoting St. Peter at the Pearly Gates

"The best team I ever saw, and I really mean this, was the '61 Yankees.I never got to see the '27 Yankees. Everyone says that was the greatest team ever, but I think it would've been a great series if we'd have had the chance to play them."

"The biggest game I ever played in was probably Don Larsen's perfect game."

"The only thing I can do is play baseball. I have to play ball. It's the only thing I know."

"They (the Athletics) should have come out of the dugout on tippy-toes, holding hands and singing."

"Today's Little Leaguers, and there are millions of them each year, pick up how to hit and throw and field just by watching games on TV. By the time they're out of high school, the good ones are almost ready to play professional ball."

"To play eighteen years in Yankee Stadium is the best thing that could ever happen to a ballplayer."

"Well, baseball was my whole life. Nothing's ever been as fun as baseball."

"When I hit a home run I usually didn't care where it went. So long as it was a home run was all that mattered."

"You don't realize how easy this game is until you get up in that broadcasting booth."


Blogger SportPsych Detroit said...

What's with the Mick lovefest?

Am I missing something?

August 10, 2005 7:40 PM  
Blogger Air Time said...

Just getting ready for the ten year anniversary of his passing

August 10, 2005 11:08 PM  
Blogger Olah Chadasha said...

He may have had a drinking problem, but he was a gem; a true rarity in American's past-time. The game today is shameful compared to what it was back in his day. I wish he was still around. Maybe, he could have helped change it around. Do I even have to ask if you saw *61? I hate that asterisk. Do those even exist in today's record books, e.g. with Barry bond's and Mark McGuire's records? Would really like to know.

August 11, 2005 7:35 AM  
Blogger Air Time said...

I don't think the record book had an asterisk in it. I think they just talked about it.

August 11, 2005 9:16 AM  
Blogger Olah Chadasha said...

No, I'm pretty sure it has an asterisk next to it. Is there a way to find out?

August 11, 2005 12:44 PM  
Blogger Air Time said...

I just looked online. Someone said that the asterisk was there until Fay Vincent removed it, but I don't know what year that happened.

August 11, 2005 1:37 PM  

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