Publishers Weekly, 2000-01-24 From 1957 to 1973, Milt Pappas pitched for the Baltimore Orioles, Cincinnati Reds, Atlanta Braves and Chicago Cubs. His record of 209 wins and 164 losses was better than some Hall of Famers', but Pappas has not been elected because, he claims, "being nice with the media is a key factor to getting elected to the Hall of Fame." In this autobiography, Pappas is still as brash as in his playing days, offering remembrances and comments on players, umpires, owners and the media. He criticizes today's players for being pampered, overpaid and ignorant of their predecessors, but he excuses the shortcomings of players of his era (such as infidelities and illegal drug use) with boys-will-be-boys rationalizations. Despite career successes (including a no-hitter), Pappas still rankles at his near-misses: he was traded by the Orioles to Cincinnati for Frank Robinson, who proceeded to help the Orioles win the World Series; he needed one more win in the National League to have 100 wins in both leagues. Particularly sad are the details of his personal life (his alcoholic first wife was missing for years; her body was eventually discovered in a pond, still in her automobile). Although the book does not provide new revelations about the game, Pappas's pro-players' union stance and his accounts of his player-rep years and of union milestones--the hiring of Marvin Miller to head the Players' Association, the 1972 strike and Curt Flood's battle for free agency--help document baseball's important changes in the late 20th century. 22 photos. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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