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Bat Boy: My True Life Adventures Coming of Age with the New York Yankees
Synopses & Reviews
Sixteen-year-old Matthew McGough was a fairly typical teenager, obsessed with getting through high school, girls, and baseball, not necessarily in that order. His passion for the New York Yankees was absolute, complete with a poster of his hero, Yankees first baseman Don Mattingly, hanging on his bedroom wall. Despite having no connections whatsoever with the ballclub, Matt dreamed of sitting in the dugout with the fabled Bronx Bombers. So, in the Fall of 1991, he wrote a letter in his very best penmanship to the New York Yankees asking for a position as a bat boy.
Miraculously, he got the job, and on April 7, 1992, Matt walked into the madness of the Yankee clubhouse on Opening Day. And there was Don Mattingly, Donnie Baseball himself, asking him to run an errand, an errand which soon induced panic in the rookie bat boy. Thus began two years of adventures and misadventuresfrom the perils of chewing tobacco while playing catch with the centerfielder, to being set up on a date by the bullpen, to studying for a history exam at 3:00 a.m. at Yankee Stadium, to his own folly as Matt gradually forgets hes not a baseball star, hes a high school student.
BAT BOY captures the lure and beauty of the American pastime, but much more it is a tale of what happens to a young man when his fondest dream comes true. Matthew McGough wonderfully evokes that twilight time just before adulthood, ripe with possibility, foolishness, and hard-won knowledge.
"The author, who spent two seasons with the Yankees when he was a high school student in the early 1990s, is evenhanded in describing the job's ups (hanging around the players) and downs (doing menial chores like cleaning sinks and polishing baseball spikes, and putting up with the players' egos). McGough, now a Fordham Law School graduate, chooses to dwell on the positives and tells his story without too much fawning over or dish on the players. He loved getting paid cash tips, meeting girls and becoming famous in a minor way by association. But he also had to deal with outsiders who sought to gain an 'in' with players like Don Mattingly and bigwigs like George Steinbrenner by cozying up to peripheral personnel like McGough and other clubhouse workers. The teenager tried to balance all this glamour with a hectic school life, which, naturally, wasn't always easy, much to the chagrin of his parents and teachers. Since Yankee policy dictates that bat boys can work a maximum of two years, McGough matured from 'rookie' to old hand in a short time, losing a degree of innocence as he learned how to take advantage of his 'veteran' status, which he describes in honest and self-effacing terms. Agent, Heather Schroeder at ICM. (On sale May 10)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
One of the freshest, funniest, most charming memoirs to come along in years--a story both clear-eyed and wide-eyed about growing up and baseball. In the fall of 1991, sixteen-year-old Matthew McGough wrote a letter in his very best penmanship to the general manager of the New York Yankees asking for a position as a bat boy. He got the job. And, on April 7, 1992, Matt walked into the madness of the Yankee clubhouse on Opening Day. Thus began two years of adventures and misadventures--from the perils of chewing tobacco while playing catch with the center fielder, to being set up on a date by the bullpen, to studying for a history exam at 3 A.M. at Yankee Stadium, to his own folly as Matt gradually forgets he's not a baseball star, he's a high school student. McGough wonderfully evokes that twilight time just before adulthood, ripe with possibility, foolishness, and hard-won knowledge.
In the fall of 1991, 16-year-old Matthew McGough asked the general manager of the New York Yankees for a position as a bat boy. He got the job and walked into the madness of the Yankee clubhouse on Opening Day, thus beginning two years of adventures and misadventures. High school & older.
About the Author
After his two-year career as a Yankee bat boy MATTHEW MCGOUGH graduated from Regis High School, Williams College (George Steinbrenners alma mater), and Fordham University School of Law. After law school he clerked for a district court judge at the Federal Courthouse in lower Manhattan. McGough lives in New York City.
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