Book review: Steinbrenner


The Last Lion of Baseball
by Bill Madden
A Baseball Book Review
Monte Cely
(512) 310-9777
            Steinbrenner, as the title would imply, is the biography of the recently-deceased Yankee owner. Author Bill Madden combines his first-hand interactions with The Boss and Yankees insiders, extensive interviews, and new sources (such as Gabe Paul’s previously untapped audio tape chronicles) to create an interesting, highly readable account of “King George”.
            This book reveals Steinbrenner in all his contradictions – great and petty; demeaning and magnanimous; astute but childish; demanding in public but soft-hearted in private. The Boss’ life is chronicled from his troubled relationship with his shipping-magnate father (who was a world-class hurdler), through his early years as Cleveland mover-and-shaker, to his extended reign as Yankees kingpin.
            The book is full of candid portrayals of Steinbrenner’s relationships with other baseball figures. The account of Fay Vincent’s investigation of Steinbrenner reveals some of the reasons the owners eventually dumped him as commissioner. The book’s portrayal of Joe Torre is pretty negative as well. The Boss’ love-hate relationship with Billy Martin threads its way through several chapters.   
            Whether you love or hate Steinbrenner, or the Yankees, you’ll enjoy this book. It’s a good read and good history of baseball during the last few decades.
Here are the key statistics:
Book: Steinbrenner – the Last Lion of Baseball
Author:  Bill Madden
Author’s Credentials: Long-time sportswriter for the New York Daily News, covering the Yankees and MLB. He has authored several books on the Yankees. He is the 2010 winner of the Baseball Hall of Fame’s J.G. Taylor Spink Award.
Published: 2010, Harper/Collins; ISBN: 978-0-06-169031-0
Length: 457 pages.
Price: Retail list – $26.99; Online – from $2.00 (new) + shipping.

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