Shameless Plug


In case y’all are looking for something to read during Spring Training (or whenever) … my book will be available everywhere beginning in March. I should have a few signings, too. I’ll keep you posted on those.



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Todd: Thanks for letting us know. Look forward to reading it.

Congrats on the book Todd. Would love it if you could post an excerpt or two here at the Zone at some point…

Congratulations TODD!! We all know you’re a great writer. I look forward to buying it in the near future.

I’ll probably have to order it at Barnes and Noble or get it on-line since I live in LA. I’m sure it won’t be found on bookshelves out here.

As a kid growing up in the 1960s I saw a lot of “bad and ugly.” They didn’t get the “good” until the mid 70s.
Good: Rick Wise for Steve Carlton. 1980, 1983, 1993, 2007 to present.
Bad: The Rich Allen/Frank Thomas fight, Bob Skinner, Maddox error in game 4 of the 1978 LCS, “Black Friday” 1977.
Ugly: 1961’s 23-game losing streak, the 1964 collapse.

muleman, the seventies in general were pretty good, watching a bottom-feeder develop into on of the more competitive teams in MLB.
But ‘Black Friday’ was probably the single most bazarre sports event I ever attended. From Wendelstadt calling Garvey safe at home (Boone blocked the plate and Garvey still hasn’t touched home), to “HOOT HOOT HOOTen’, to the Dodgers booting away the game in the 8th, to Ozark panicking and not putting in Jerry Martin, to Froemming blowing the call at first (third out, game over), to the singular worst play in Phillies history (Luzinski not making the catch) and the resulting meltdown. I was riding the subway back to center city after the game and you could hear a pin drop. I guess the only play that comes close to Luzinski not making that catch was Chico Ruiz stealing home in 1964 with Frank Robinson at bat.

You haven’t been around this team long enough to rightfully expound on “… the bad and the ugly.” It would be illegal to inflict sufficient torture for you to truly grasp the profound gravitas of such. Otherwise, kidding aside, congrats on the book. Presuming the prose to be yours, e.g. not ghosted, it’s no small accomplishment. Hope it sells well and be sure to post a link to the gutenberg (free) online version.

phan: I guess the 70s balanced themselves. The early part was kind of dreary (aside from Lefty) and the latter half pretty good (aside from the Reds and Dodgers). Funny how we loved Veterans Stadium when it was built and didn’t like it as much (hated it?) when it was finally leveled.
The best thing about that ’70s run was the way it was homegrown. A couple of guys (Maddox, Cash, McBride, etc) came through free agency or trades, but the core was ours. Pete made the difference, of course, and the thing I remember about those days is how much I disliked him as a Red but when he became a Phillie I was a fan.

But as a kid growing up with those horrible mid t0 late 60s teams it took a while to wash out the memories of last place.

muleman, I got through the sixties as a kid knowing that, when I went to Connie Mack, I was going to see some of the best baseball players who ever played the game. The National Leagues was awesome and every team had great pitching and great lineups. When my Dad saw a matchup like Bunning/Marichal, we were out the door and on our way to the ballpark. Mays and McCovey were a bonus.

I remember seeing Bob Veale pitch for the Pirates and Koufax on Sunday’s with dad.

Sunday morning sometimes, dad would wander downstairs and ask, “So who’s pitching today?” We’d check the newspaper and stop at a ticket place in Oaklyn (some sporting goods store on the White Horse Pike) and hope that we weren’t sitting behind a pole. The kids in the old neighborhood would “watch your car for a quarter” and I’d get a pennant and a program.

One of the games we went to was a 14-8 loss to the Braves on September 27. Callison hit 3 HRs and we were on our way out of the ballpark in the bottom of the ninth when #3 went over the fence. We heard a roar and asked someone with a radio what had happened. “Callison hit another one,” came the reply; but the Phils would still lose it and 3 more to cough up their lead. Bunning pitched 3 putrid innings.

Hank Aaron and Eddie Matthews played for the Braves that day, but frankly, as a kid, I couldn’t have cared less.

Love listening to you “old-timers” (mule, phan52) talk story about the Phillies in the 60’s and 70’s and relive some of those memories since it sounds like I’m about the same age (maybe a little younger :)…except we lived way out in the suburbs in Bucks County so didn’t get in to the ballpark much and when I did it was usually in the nosebleed section…I remember watching the home games on black and white TV and listening on my transistor radio when they were away. A young kid in the area, still wet behind the ears, was beginning to work his way through the Little League and Legion clubs at that time. He now stands as one of the most winningest lefties of all time and a swell guy to boot — #50 — Jamie Moyer. I hated the Vet too and love being able to enjoy a game or two at CBP now when we come visit family in the area. Looking forward to reading your book, Todd. I am so ready for the season to begin again!

libertybelle: I’m glad you put “old timers” in quotes. For the record (if there is one) I was 7 in 1964. Do the math.😉

I also enjoyed reading the nostalgia. Great stuff. It’s nice to see phans that had to suffer for so many decades who can enjoy the recent success more, while NEVER taking it for granted.

I also enjoyed reading the nostalgia. Great stuff. It’s nice to see phans that had to suffer for so many decades who can enjoy the recent success more, while NEVER taking it for granted.

mule: re: “OT” – didn’t want to ruffle your feathers too much😉

the belle turned six during the summer of ’64 and was just beginning her baseball card collection (which one of my brothers probably ended up with) and lifelong love of the game….

this discussion has made me want to pick up a copy of David Halberstam’s book, “October 1964” and give it a read before spring training begins….and Todd’s book, “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly” hits the shelves.

Thanks for the support, everybody. I’ve already got a book signing scheduled for April 17 at the Borders on Broad Street in Center City. I should have more scheduled, too. But for now I’m off to spring training on Monday.

libertybelle, “October 1964” is a great read and I highly recommend it. Except for one section about the last couple of weeks of the NL regular season…

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