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Donnie Baseball: The Definitive Biography of Don Mattingly

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The exhaustive research of sports biographer Mike Shalin sheds new light on a baseball legend, exposing the Hall of Famer's moxie and lifelong dedication to baseball in this engaging biography. The in-depth research follows Don Mattingly, an incredibly talented and hard-working player, who, during his time with the Yankees, became one of the most beloved and popular player The exhaustive research of sports biographer Mike Shalin sheds new light on a baseball legend, exposing the Hall of Famer's moxie and lifelong dedication to baseball in this engaging biography. The in-depth research follows Don Mattingly, an incredibly talented and hard-working player, who, during his time with the Yankees, became one of the most beloved and popular players in the glorious history of their franchise. An insightful review of Mattingly's career, including his going from a 19th-round draft choice to the 1985 American League MVP to his true motivation behind his retirement in 1995 and his thoughts on his young coaching. Donnie Baseball: The Definitive Biography of Don Mattingly is a must-read not only for passionate Yankee fans, but for all baseball enthusiasts who want to become better historians of the game.


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The exhaustive research of sports biographer Mike Shalin sheds new light on a baseball legend, exposing the Hall of Famer's moxie and lifelong dedication to baseball in this engaging biography. The in-depth research follows Don Mattingly, an incredibly talented and hard-working player, who, during his time with the Yankees, became one of the most beloved and popular player The exhaustive research of sports biographer Mike Shalin sheds new light on a baseball legend, exposing the Hall of Famer's moxie and lifelong dedication to baseball in this engaging biography. The in-depth research follows Don Mattingly, an incredibly talented and hard-working player, who, during his time with the Yankees, became one of the most beloved and popular players in the glorious history of their franchise. An insightful review of Mattingly's career, including his going from a 19th-round draft choice to the 1985 American League MVP to his true motivation behind his retirement in 1995 and his thoughts on his young coaching. Donnie Baseball: The Definitive Biography of Don Mattingly is a must-read not only for passionate Yankee fans, but for all baseball enthusiasts who want to become better historians of the game.

30 review for Donnie Baseball: The Definitive Biography of Don Mattingly

  1. 5 out of 5

    William Lavell

    I just finished reading Donnie Baseball: The Definitive Biography of Don Mattingly by Mike Shalin on my Nook. Now let me start by saying that Don Mattingly is my favorite baseball player of all time. I was lucky enough to see him play, and he's the best player that I have ever watched. In my opinion, he played the game the way it should be played; he wasn't flashy, he never put himself above his team or the game, and he never cheated to win or extend his career. Having said that, I was very dis I just finished reading Donnie Baseball: The Definitive Biography of Don Mattingly by Mike Shalin on my Nook. Now let me start by saying that Don Mattingly is my favorite baseball player of all time. I was lucky enough to see him play, and he's the best player that I have ever watched. In my opinion, he played the game the way it should be played; he wasn't flashy, he never put himself above his team or the game, and he never cheated to win or extend his career. Having said that, I was very disappointed in this book. This book sounded like an audition tape for Mattingly's hiring as the Dodgers' manager last year (his hiring was announced while the author was writing the book). It was basically 137 pages (that's what the counter on my Nook said, anyway. It seemed a little longer) of managers, former players, and broadcasters telling us what a great guy he was. Not that I disagree, but I was expecting a few more anecdotes than there were. There was a very short story about Stump Merrill threatening to bench him back in '87 if he didn't cut his hair, and another really short story about Dallas Green playing peacemaker when George Steinbrenner ripped Mattingly in the press in the offseason in '89. There were a few mentions of Mattingly's first wife, Kim dashed throughout, but no mention of the divorce and what led to it. And somewhere towards the end of the book, it was mentioned in passing that Mattingly remarried last year (one brief sentence). Mike Shalin is a good writer, and he tried to cover a lot in the book, but it didn't seem like the people he interviewed for the book gave him much to work with. I realize that Don Mattingly wasn't a hellraiser like Billy Martin or Mickey Mantle, and that there probably aren't a lot of wild and crazy stories to tell. But I'm sure there must be more stories than there were in this book. And after the fourth or fifth time you read that someone said "he was a great guy, he really knows the game and he taught me a lot", it does get a little repetitive. I do have to admit, there was one part of the book where Shalin talks about the fact that Mattingly played the game before steroid use was rampant. He asked him point blank if he would have used steroids if he could have, and brought up Mike Schmidt's quote on the subject. Mattingly's answer was honest, and a little bit surprising. I think the best part of the book was the photo section that was included at the end, but even that section left me wanting. Maybe I'm biased and had some unrealistic expectations about this book because Don Mattingly was one of my heroes growing up, but I was really hoping to enjoy this book because I was hoping to learn a few things about him that I didn't know. But I was left disappointed, because it seemed more like a testimonial than a biography. With the material he had, I'll bet he could have written a great article.

  2. 5 out of 5

    B

    I was going to say that there were three sins in sports books: (1) Discussing statistics that do not further a story. (2) Getting quotes from people that really have no significance and, thus, do not further a story. (3) Giving a pitch-by-pitch description (vary as necessary) of a particular event or series of events even though that does not further a story. As you can see they all really boil down to: "If you're going to write a book, tell a story." Here, Shalin totally and unambiguously failed t I was going to say that there were three sins in sports books: (1) Discussing statistics that do not further a story. (2) Getting quotes from people that really have no significance and, thus, do not further a story. (3) Giving a pitch-by-pitch description (vary as necessary) of a particular event or series of events even though that does not further a story. As you can see they all really boil down to: "If you're going to write a book, tell a story." Here, Shalin totally and unambiguously failed to tell a story. Most of the book was a series of quotes by Mattingly and excitingly famous baseball people about how hard Mattingly worked and how much he loved his family and how much his back hurt and how good he was at hitting. And not really in any order. To call this a biography would be misleading. It's more like the author interviewed everyone who played in the 1980s for whom he had a phone number or who came to New York during Mattingly's last season as hitting coach in LA. And then just splashed them all over the book. Still, if you are a true Mattingly hero-worshipper, this might work for you on a level that I don't quite understand. But it would have been much, much better if, for instance, there were any sort of narrative thread or description of Mattingly as a person.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Brian

    I hate to say it, because I REALLY wanted to love this book, but I'm left kinda disappointed. It barely touches upon his career, briefly sweeping through a few of his memorable moments like the 1984 batting race with Winfield, the 1987 Home Run streak and the whole "Wade Boggs sitting out the last day of the season" fiasco. It goes into great detail of the 1995 season and how it all ended, but that was baout it. It spent infinitely more time on his coaching career than his playing career. Love t I hate to say it, because I REALLY wanted to love this book, but I'm left kinda disappointed. It barely touches upon his career, briefly sweeping through a few of his memorable moments like the 1984 batting race with Winfield, the 1987 Home Run streak and the whole "Wade Boggs sitting out the last day of the season" fiasco. It goes into great detail of the 1995 season and how it all ended, but that was baout it. It spent infinitely more time on his coaching career than his playing career. Love the player, wanted SO much more from the book.....

  4. 4 out of 5

    David

    A great read about one of baseball's greats. Don Mattingly aka "Donnie Baseball" was an honest, dedicated, passionate, and perfect Yankee. The book contains stories from his oldest coaches and teammates to the players he'll now be managing that were born around the time he started playing Major League Baseball. He'll now be managing the Dodgers in Los Angeles and I wish him the best of luck. A controversial candidate into Cooperstown but I'm sure he'll be rewarded for all of his hardwork soon en A great read about one of baseball's greats. Don Mattingly aka "Donnie Baseball" was an honest, dedicated, passionate, and perfect Yankee. The book contains stories from his oldest coaches and teammates to the players he'll now be managing that were born around the time he started playing Major League Baseball. He'll now be managing the Dodgers in Los Angeles and I wish him the best of luck. A controversial candidate into Cooperstown but I'm sure he'll be rewarded for all of his hardwork soon enough!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    5 stars for the subject

  6. 4 out of 5

    Trey Nowell

    My all-time favorite player, belongs in the HOF!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Philip Bowles

    Donnie is prob my baseball hero but it is hardto write a full book on such a beloved person. While not a met fan, Ron darlings book was very good.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Larry V

  9. 4 out of 5

    jeremy ruder

  10. 4 out of 5

    Alain

  11. 5 out of 5

    David

  12. 4 out of 5

    Kamila Hinkson

  13. 5 out of 5

    AIDAN

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kim. E.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Matthew

  16. 4 out of 5

    Jordan Whitledge

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jocelyn

  18. 4 out of 5

    Deb

  19. 5 out of 5

    Justin

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Seperis

  21. 4 out of 5

    Gerry

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jcrane1095 Crane

  23. 4 out of 5

    Mike

  24. 5 out of 5

    Gregory Berg

  25. 5 out of 5

    Alan

  26. 4 out of 5

    Harry Ball

  27. 5 out of 5

    Michael Smith

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mike Hamilton

  29. 4 out of 5

    Eric

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jorge

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