Non-Fiction: Sports

Yankee for Life

Written by: Bobby Murcer with Glen Waggoner

Published By: Harper Collins

Reviewed by Dorothy Doremus

            I remember as a kid watching the great Bobby Murcer playing baseball with the New York Yankees.  He was a man of great talent and extremely good-hearted.  When I discovered one of my heroes had written a book, well, I just had to have it.

            Yankee for Life is a lifetime journey of a man who absolutely loved baseball.  I can think of no one else who knew he would be a Yankee and made that dream come true.  I still cannot listen to a broadcast without hearing the Great Mr. Murcer voice in the back of my mind.

            Bobby wrote this book when he was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer.  It was a shot in the heart to his family, friends and fans who all held him dear.  One of the things that I love about this book is the commentary he and his wife, Kay, have throughout it.  Itís a gift to read the inside scoop on Bobby Murcer from the love of his life and extremely entertaining. 

            The book covers just about the whole kit and caboodle of the Murcer baseball dynasty.  Here, a year fresh out of high school kid realized his dream of becoming a Yankee.  Now those dreams were not that simple.  There was minor league play time that had to be completed.  Murcer was slated as a shortstop, but with his powerful throwing, the ball would end up in the bleachers instead of the first basemanís glove.  So, it was decided that Bobby would become the second phenom from Oklahoma to play centerfield for the New York Yankees.

            Bobby was up to the challenge, but the Yankees had some really lean seasons during the Murcer years and soon traded Bobby to the San Francisco Giants.  Murcer goes into great detail about the trade and how he made the best of it while he was there even though he missed the Yanks terribly.  Another pit stop was made in Chicago as a Cub before he returned to New York.  Most ballplayers might not have handled the trade as gracefully as Murcer did.  It all goes back to the professionalism of the man.

            You could not read this book without enjoying the parts about the people Bobby shared air-time with, especially the Scooter.  Holy Cow, there are some really nice stories, like the seventh inning coffee run.

            Sadly, Bobby Murcer lost his battle with cancer, putting an end to any further delightful moments he could have shared with us.  If you are a Murcer fan or you are a Yankee fan who canít miss the chance to read up on their favorite team, I suggest you get your hands on Yankee for Life.  There is just something about Bobby Murcer: even though he has left us, he is never really gone.


For feedback, visit our message board or e-mail the author at g-pop@g-pop-net.