Tom Verducci is the senior baseball writer for Sports Illustratedand a two-time National Sportswriter of the Year. His new book is “The Cubs Way: The Zen of Building the Best Team in Baseball and Breaking the Curse.” We discussed how the team assembled by Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer goes far beyond the “moneyball” statistics (including the notion that team chemistry is a real and very important thing), how it took a complete overhaul of the business model as well as the on-field product to build a winner, and why Joe Maddon gave up on trying to cure Jon Lester’s yips.
Jason Turbow is a best-selling author whose new book is “Dynastic, Bombastic, Fantastic: Reggie, Rollie, Catfish and Charlie Finley’s Swingin’ A’s.” We had fun chat discussing the three-peat A’s team, the personalities and fistfights, and the ups and downs of Charlie Finley.
Even though I grew up a Cubs fan, I’ve always had a fascination with and an inexplicable love for the ’86 Mets, so it was great to have Lenny Dykstra on the show to talk about his fascinating new memoir “House of Nails.” Lenny and I discussed his hitting the first night game home run in Wrigley Field (twice), why the Cubs will go all the way, why he chose to use PEDs, and the right way and wrong way to approach the game.
Jeff Passan is the lead baseball columnist for Yahoo! Sports and the author of an acclaimed new book, “The Arm: Inside the Billion-Dollar Mystery of the Most Valuable Commodity in Sports.” Jeff discussed why he decided to explore the subject, exploded a common myth about Tommy John surgery, and explained why we won’t see a whole new generation of knuckleballers.
It was fun talking with Mookie Wilson, who called in to promote the new paperback version of his book “Mookie: Life, Baseball and the ’86 Mets.” We talked about the Cubs-Mets rivalry in the mid-80s, how much fun the ’86 Mets were, and why we’ll likely never see such a collection of characters assembled in one clubhouse again.
Chris Epting’s “Roadside Baseball” is now in its new and improved second edition, and chronicles more than 500 important events in baseball history, with detailed descriptions of the event and information on each location (like the West Side Grounds in Chicago — the original home of the Cubs). We had a great conversation about the book and shared some great childhood baseball memories.