Seasons in Hell

Mike Shropshire, Author Dutton Books $23.95 (256p) ISBN 978-1-55611-495-3
Baseball's Texas Rangers were the Washington Senators before they were moved in 1972 by owner and political-insider Bob Short, whom the author describes as ""Hubert Humphrey's bagman."" In 1973, Shropshire first began covering the Rangers, a group of has-beens and never-weres, for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. No one could play ball, but everybody could drink, chase women and use ""ability pills""-amphetamines. We see the likes of Rico Carty, so slow ""you could time him with a sun dial""; bonus baby David Clyde, who would be finished within a year; and Jim Bibby, known for his fastball and his ""apparatus of manhood."" Manager Whitey Herzog, who did a fine job retooling the team and would go on to success elsewhere, was replaced by Billy Martin in 1974. Between Martin's almost daily fistfights, the rantings of Jimmy ""Fear Strikes Out"" Piersall and the riot that ensued at 10-Cent Beer Night in Cleveland, the Rangers overachieved and finished second in the American League West. But these guys played over 20 years ago. Only those few fans who actually read books during rain delays will want to transport themselves to the locker-room shenanigans of a lousy team of the 1970s. Photos. (June)
Reviewed on: 06/03/1996
Release date: 06/01/1996
Mass Market Paperbound - 256 pages - 978-0-380-73023-0
Paperback - 245 pages - 978-0-8032-9277-2
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