From Library Journal
Americans seem to love an underdog, and no franchise was a bigger one than the Philadelphia Phillies. For much of the 20th century, the Phillies had the distinction of being one of the worst teams in professional baseball. In 1980, however, the Phillies finally managed to reverse their losing trends and capture the World Series title. An accomplished sports reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer who has covered the Phillies since the late 1970s, Fitzpatrick examines the standout championship year and how the Phillies overcame numerous obstacles and finally claimed their place in history. The 1980 Phillies had a colorful group of players, including Mike Schmidt, Pete Rose, Steve Carlton, and Tug McGraw, and Fitzgerald shows real insight into these players' personalities. The result is a thoroughly entertaining work that anyone who enjoys baseball would appreciate but Philadelphia-area patrons most of all. For larger public libraries. Tom Auger, Georgia Inst. of Tech., Atlanta
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.
The Philadelphia Phillies baseball franchise is more than 100 years old, yet its only World Series win was in 1980. Fitzpatrick interviewed many of the players and coaches on that historic team, and what he finds may surprise many fans. The Phillies had been successful in the three years prior to 1980, but they couldn't quite make it to the World Series. It was anything but a harmonious team when veteran Pete Rose was signed before the season, but, as Fitzpatrick documents, the ever-competitive Rose brought a winning presence to the contentious Phillies and helped motivate fellow superstars Mike Schmidt and Steve Carlton. Fitzpatrick captures the siege mentality of the team perfectly and shows how the unique personality mix coalesced into a championship season. This is a fascinating look inside team dynamics, and it debunks once and for all the theory that successful teams must possess "good" chemistry. A fine baseball book, sure to be savored by fans for years to come. Wes LukowskyCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved