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Me and My Dad: A Baseball Memoir [Hardcover]

Paul O'Neill , Burton Rocks
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Book Description

May 1 2003

Paul O'Neill was the undisputed heart and soul of the four-time World Series–winning New York Yankees from 1993 to 2001. A champion and an icon, he was a dedicated, intense athlete who not only wore the trademark pinstripes with pride, he bled blue and white. O'Neill epitomized the team's motto of hard work and good sportsmanship, traits instilled in him by the man who was his friend, confidant, lifelong model, and biggest fan: his dad, Chick O'Neill.

Paul O'Neill has rarely spoken publicly about the significant role his father played in his baseball career. But now, in Me and My Dad,he speaks from the heart about the man who inspired in him a love for the game and a determination to always play his best. For some, baseball is more than a game -- it's a way of life. Chick O'Neill was one of those people. Paul recounts how his father, after serving as a paratrooper in World War II, pitched in the California minor league, until he discovered that his true passion was his family. Later he was devoted to his son's dream of becoming a professional ball player and was always there -- from coaching Little League to being in the stadium when Paul played for the Cincinnati Reds and the New York Yankees.

In Me and My Dad, Paul also remembers the highlights of his amazing career: being called up to the majors by the Reds, his first World Series, being traded to the Yankees -- and taking part in their phenomenal four World Series wins. He also reflects on his father's untimely death during the 1999 World Series and the farewell tribute given to him by his fans during his last game in Yankee Stadium.

Paul O'Neill's memories treat us to Yankee stories, hometown tales, and valuable insights into what has made him the person he is today, all of it shaped by his relationship with his father.

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

As every Yankee fan knows, the New York right fielder was devoted to his father, Chick, who he describes as "my childhood hero, my pal, and my mentor." It was Chick who imbued his son, the youngest of six children, with the love of all sports, particularly baseball. It was also his father's hard work, O'Neill writes in this sentimental memoir, that created an idyllic childhood for the youngest O'Neill, when summers in Columbus, Ohio, were filled with baseball games coached by his father and where winter brought hockey games on a homemade ice rink in the family backyard. Life for the youngest O'Neill was so ideal that he was drafted by his favorite team, the nearby Cincinnati Reds, and he married his childhood sweetheart, Nevalee. Then in 1993 he was traded to the Yankees; as the heart and soul of the team during his nine years in New York, O'Neill won four World Series and became a fan favorite. O'Neill's most bittersweet series was in 1999, when his father was critically ill and died the day before the final game, and O'Neill's memories of this period are particularly moving. This autobiography is more about relationships than events, and entire years in early in O'Neill's career are summed up in a sentence or two. Unlike his former teammate David Wells, this does not have a bad word to say about anyone (including Wells) or anything connected to baseball. While his fans may have expected some fireworks from the fiery Yankee, O'Neill proves himself to be a dedicated player devoted to his family and baseball.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Stellar Yankee right fielder Paul O'Neill, now retired, weaves his life in baseball with his father's direction, training, and example. Chick O'Neill, who died just before the final game of the 1999 World Series, made his youngest son into the player and the man that he is. O'Neill is not a writer, and even with coauthor Rocks' help, he tends to express himself in phrases that sound like cliches, except that he so fiercely believes them. O'Neill cannot find anything but good to say about his teammates and George Steinbrenner. His own dark-browed competitiveness and intensity--Lee May called him Ordeal O'Neill--comes at least in part from being the youngest of six, four of them older brothers. His career in the minors, with Cincinnati, and finally with the Yankees is outlined from a very personal point of view, and he closes with a warm appreciation for Yankee fans, not the least of which were the Right-Field Faithful who sent him off with a cry of "Paulie! Paulie!" in 2001. GraceAnne DeCandido
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Being the youngest of the six O'Neill children ultimately turned out to be one of the luckiest things that ever happened in my baseball career. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Praise for the "Ultimate Warrior" Aug. 15 2003
Format:Hardcover
Paul O'Neill's semi-autobiography tells of his relationship with his father, Charles "Chick" O'Neill, and how baseball became a way through which the O'Neill family bonded--the game being passed down from generation to generation. Paul, a die-hard perfectionist, contrasts with his father, an eternal optimist. Through his father, Paul was taught how to not only play baseball, but how to carry himself on the baseball field. His team-first style of play seems to be dwindling today in baseball, which is a shame. But there was more to the relationship between Paul and his father than just baseball, as the book explains; they shared an intimate father-son bond that not many fathers and sons have. When Chick died during the 1999 World Series, Paul mentions how deeply saddened he was by the loss of his father, yet he knew in his heart what his father believed he should do, and he went out and played Game Four. This is a great book about the life of a father and son, the life of a father's relationship with his family, and the life of the Ultimate Warrior, Paul O'Neill (this nickname came from George Steinbrenner, which goes to show how much reverence he holds for Paul).
As a Yankee fan I look at right field today and no matter who in pinstripes is playing there, no matter how good he is, he could not replace Paul O'Neill. O'Neill's selfless personality and genuine love of the game is evident to any fan who watched the Yankees during his tenure with the team. I miss seeing O'Neill hitting watercoolers and throwing his helmet, but what I miss most about him is the way he played the game.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Pride of the Yankees May 20 2003
Format:Hardcover
Anyone who has watched the New York Yankees play since the 2001 postseason has noticed something different about the world's most famous and successful franchise. The team's early exit from the 2002 postseason was assessed to a number of variables: the starting pitching didn't hold up, overconfidence, or lack of intensity and desire. It is the latter that has been cited often from Yankee fans, and sadly, though the Yankees have a strong team yet again this season, it may have carried over to 2003 as well. Often times last season, I wondered what the 2002 Yankees might have been had Paul O'Neill patrolled right field for the Yankees, for he was the heart of the Yankees most recent championship run of the last six years and his passion has yet to be replaced by anyone on the Yankee team. Not that Paul O'Neill is someone who is going to dazzle you with eye-popping statistical numbers, for his prime had since passed on the baseball field. But as is the case with many people in life, Paul O'Neill's significance could never be limited to his statistics alone.
Always a quiet, introspective player, O'Neill was never one to find comfort in the public eye. Though he got better about his shyness in the last few years of his career, rare was the occasion where Paul would offer his thoughts in public. Which is why, when I got word that Paul was going to write an autobiography/memoir about his father, I marked down the release date of the book on the calendar. One of Yankee fans' most enduring memories of the last few years was Paul O'Neill crying during the team's celebration on October 21, 1999 when the Yankees swept the Atlanta Braves in the World Series. Tears of joy? Yes and no.
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Was this review helpful to you?
5.0 out of 5 stars Pride of the Yankees May 20 2003
Format:Hardcover
Anyone who has watched the New York Yankees play since the 2001 postseason has noticed something different about the world's most famous and successful franchise. The team's early exit from the 2002 postseason was assessed to a number of variables: the starting pitching didn't hold up, overconfidence, or lack of intensity and desire. It is the latter that has been cited often from Yankee fans, and sadly, though the Yankees have a strong team yet again this season, it may have carried over to 2003 as well. Often times last season, I wondered what the 2002 Yankees might have been had Paul O'Neill patrolled right field for the Yankees, for he was the heart of the Yankees most recent championship run of the last six years and his passion has yet to be replaced by anyone on the Yankee team. Not that Paul O'Neill is someone who is going to dazzle you with eye-popping statistical numbers, for his prime had since passed on the baseball field. But as is the case with many people in life, Paul O'Neill's significance could never be limited to his statistics alone.
Always a quiet, introspective player, O'Neill was never one to find comfort in the public eye. Though he got better about his shyness in the last few years of his career, rare was the occasion where Paul would offer his thoughts in public. Which is why, when I got word that Paul was going to write an autobiography/memoir about his father, I marked down the release date of the book on the calendar. One of Yankee fans' most enduring memories of the last few years was Paul O'Neill crying during the team's celebration on October 21, 1999 when the Yankees swept the Atlanta Braves in the World Series. Tears of joy? Yes and no.
Read more ›
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Bleeding Yankee blue & white
I hardly remember Paul O'Neill as a Red's player, he's always been a Yankee to me. Never have I ever seen any one bleed Yankee blue and white as Paul O'Neill did. Read more
Published on June 26 2004 by "bananawind2aia"
4.0 out of 5 stars Indians fan changes mind, thinks O'Neill is okay!
Being an Indians fan I have never been a Yankee or Paul O'Neill fan. This was mainly due to O'Neill's actions of emotion of breaking water coolers or throwing his helmet after he... Read more
Published on April 14 2004 by "majher"
5.0 out of 5 stars Top Ten Baseball Book of the Year
The father-son baseball connection has been done many times but usually in connection to fans, not a major league player and his dad. Read more
Published on Jan. 14 2004 by mike shannon
5.0 out of 5 stars A True Role Model for Today's Youth
I have always respected Paul O'Neill and looked up to him as a young Reds fan growing up outside of Cincinnati. Read more
Published on Jan. 9 2004 by Michael Crouse
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book
I am not a Yankee fan at all but I loved Paul O'Neill's book. It brought back memories of playing in little league and brings hope and inspiration for me as I attempt to play... Read more
Published on Oct. 22 2003 by Dan Condon
3.0 out of 5 stars Me and My Dad by Paul O'Neill
An enjoyable book and perfect for the summer. Nothing new or earth-shattering, but Paul O'Neill is a good comapny and it's an enjoyable beach book.
Published on Aug. 2 2003 by Joseph F. Panarello
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, Paul
Paul - I'd have to admit that I was one of the people who *might* have yelled "You Suck" back in the early years - but I'm a Dodger fan and you just killed us every time. Read more
Published on June 25 2003
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