Mind you, the chance to join the Brooklyn club wasn’t my first chance to get back into the game.
But it was my best, and there are lots of reasons for my saying this, none of them financial. They all relate, instead, to my love of baseball as a sport. To me baseball is and always has been a sport first, a business afterward.
I joined the Brooklyn club not because I needed money but because I didn’t need money. Go on and laugh. I’m laughing too. But that’s a fact. There were other offers that carried as much, or more,dough on the barrelhead.
But Larry McPhail offered me more than money—and don’t let that old managerial bug bite you when I say this.
McPhail offered me a place in real baseball. A place that carried as much real, pure baseball fun and enjoyment as any job I’ve ever had. He offered me a place in the best baseball town in America. He offered me a place in a town where the fans take their baseball as a sport, a game, something to love and fight over and live for, not a means of spending an afternoon with an out-of-town buyer or placing a few cheap bets.