cover image My Dad, Yogi: A Memoir of Family and Baseball

My Dad, Yogi: A Memoir of Family and Baseball

Dale Berra. Hachette, $26 (256p) ISBN 978-0-3165-2545-9

In this heartfelt family memoir, Berra offers a peek into the private life of his father, the famous New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra. The author, who himself played infield for the Pittsburgh Pirates, New York Yankees, and Houston Astros from 1977 to 1987, details the towering role model of his father, who played in 10 World Series championships in the 1940s and ’50s and was known for his malapropistic “Yogi-isms.” Berra recalls his father as the proud manager of the 1973 National League champion Mets, as well as for the pain he endured when he was unceremoniously dismissed as Yankees manager in 1986. While Berra praises his mother, Carmen, as a “hands-on parent” for her three children, he describes his father as “stoic, contained but full of fire inside.” Berra tells of how his own addiction to cocaine derailed his baseball career and ended his marriage in 1989; his father intervened, saying, “I want to be your dad, but if you keep doing this you’re not a Berra anymore.” In one of the book’s most memorable scenes, Berra describes the moment when Yankee owner George Steinbrenner apologized to Yogi for firing him 14 years earlier: “It’s the worst mistake I made in baseball.” Candid and touching, Berra’s love letter will resonate with fathers and sons alike. (May)