Joe McCarthy

Architect of the Yankee Dynasty

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About the Book

Joe McCarthy was headed towards a career as a plumber—until the parish priest intervened, and convinced McCarthy’s mother that he could make more of himself in baseball. She relented, and Joseph Vincent McCarthy embarked on a career that ranks him among the greatest managers ever. In 24 years his teams took nine pennants, seven World Series titles, and never finished lower than fourth.
This biography of Joe McCarthy details the 90–year life of one of the greatest managers in baseball’s history. Baseball was McCarthy’s ticket out of a working-class existence in Germantown, Pennsylvania, taking him to college, the minor leagues, managerial stints in baseball’s backwaters, and on to remarkable years with the Yankees, Cubs and Red Sox—years filled with triumph and heartbreak. Seven championships and the highest managerial winning percentage ever earned him entry to the Hall of Fame, but McCarthy will always be remembered for his deft handling of his players. McCarthy’s ability to handle even “unmanageable” players won him the respect of all. His effect on the lives of his young charges was, in his mind, his greatest legacy.

About the Author(s)

Longtime sports fan Alan H. Levy is a professor of American history at Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania. He is the author of Tackling Jim Crow (2003) and Rube Waddell (2000) as well as several books on American music, including a biography of the noted composer Edward MacDowell.

Bibliographic Details

Alan H. Levy
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 435
Bibliographic Info: photos, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2005
pISBN: 978-0-7864-1961-6
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8113-2
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1

1. Planning to Be a Plumber      5
2. Starting Down at the Bottom      11
3. Outlaw League      15
4. Mud Hens      18
5. Still Can’t Hit a Curve Ball      22
6. Down to Wilkes-Barre      30
7. A Snappy Little Second Sacker      37
8. A Flirt with the Federals and Off to Louisville      43
9. War Years      49
10. Now Managing for the Colonels      58
11. First Full Season at the Helm      62
12. Winner      68
13. Ups and Downs      77
14. That Boy Is a Wonder      86
15. Made Me Blush for the First Time in My Life      90
16. Don’t Forget the Cubs      99
17. McCarthy’s Scrappers      113
18. Aggressive Even in Repose      120
19. Don’t Blame Hack      125
20. Fractured Ankle, Fractured Season      138
21. “Don’t Like to Finish Second”      150
22. The Fewest Rules, the Most Discipline      165
23. Watch Out for Those Senators      180
24. Second Place Joe      190
25. One Bounce, Not on the Fly      203
26. A Ten-Game Lead Is Never Safe      217
27. There’ll Be Nobody Again Like You in 100 Years      241
28. The Sun Can’t Shine All the Time      256
29. Lou Was a Fine Man      263
30. And the War Came      278
31. Can’t Push Buttons Any More      288
32. One War Ends and Another Begins      301
33. And Now He Wasn’t There      309
34. Will They Love Him in September as They Didn’t in May?      320
35. A Marvelous Little Fella’      349
36. Good to the Last Game      351
37. It’s Later Than You Think      365
38. A Pleasant Good-Bye      378

Appendix: Joe McCarthy’s Major League Managerial Record      393
Chapter Notes      395
Bibliography      419
Index      423

Book Reviews & Awards

“solid”—Library Journal; “thoroughly researched…a flawless account…essential”—Choice; “quite thorough”—Nine; “Alan Levy, in this work, has begun to fill this vacuum through his thorough documentation and analysis of McCarthy’s life and career…a valuable contribution to the baseball history literature. This volume will continue to be a rich resource of valuable facts and analysis for years to come”—Journal of Sport History.