OCT: THE BASEBALL GURU ARTICLE FROM
Sixteen years of ONE MORE INNING: Part One
In the 16 years that Ive published ONE MORE INNING Ive interviewed close to 500 players.
Thats the best part of doing the magazine. With the exception of two and one embarrassing moment they have all been terrific fun to do.
Here are the two that werent .and the embarrassing moment.
It was the end of a long day of interviewing players at the Yankee Fan Festival. It started with
Bob Geren and I followed up with Steve Sax, Dave Eiland, Tommy Henrich, Mel Allen and Scott Sanderson. There was about another hour to go and seeing Mike Witt drinking coffee at the end of the press room, I thought I would approach him as well. I introduced myself, asked him if we could do an interview together and he said yeah, sure, no problem and we began and it took no time at all for me to realize that there indeed was a problem.
OMI: Was there anyone who helped you during your career?
OMI: Did you have much support from your family?
OMI: Remember much from your first day in the Majors?
OMI: What would you consider to be your best season during your career?
OMI: Any comments about your perfect game?
And so it went. I tried some more questions, got the same reaction, and began to notice a bemused look on his face. Finally I said
OMI: We dont seem to be getting anywhere with this interview.
MW: Apparently so .and he got up and walked away
In talking to Jimmy Leyritz afterwards, his comment was, Witt is a putz!
And then there was Dom Dimaggio.
I must say that for the most part Dimaggio was informative, cordial,
accommodating and spent a lot, and a lot, and a lot of time with me. You
may ask why
..and Ill tell you why. Mr. Dimaggio made me make
complete rewrites four times on the copies I sent him. The most I had ever
made before and since were one change and 90 % of the time it consisted of
minor adjustments. I would get on the phone and he would insist he never
said that or I had quoted him wrong or that certain things had never happened
(they did) and I had to do the whole thing over again. And so I did
times worth. This was about ten years ago. Last year I met him at
And then there was my embarrassing moment.
At another Yankee Fan Festival. I sat down and started interviewing Johnny Blanchard, the former catcher on the Yankees 1961 team. It was going well but in the course of the interview he was having a bit of trouble answering some of my questions. Finally he said that what I had asked him never happened. I tried another question and got the same answer and I said but Johnny you ..and he stopped me and said these questions seem to be for Johnny Blanchard .Im Clete Boyer. And he was right. I must say there was no hole big enough for me to crawl in. I apologized and we ended up with a good interview.
The gist of all this is that I had interviewed Blanchard some years back and should have known better. Years later I spent time with Blanchard at the Yankee Fantasy camp, told him the story and he loved it.