I can hardly wait to read Uppity by Bill White. Easy prediction: Baseball fans of this blog will love it. White played for three teams, all National League: the Giants (both in New York and San Francisco, which undoubtedly has something to do with Willie Mays’s contribution of the foreword), the St. Louis Cardinals, and the Phillies. White always spoke out: as a player against “separate but equal” conditions during Florida spring training and, before that, through the Deep South as well as portions of the Midwest in the minor leagues (I especially can’t wait to find out what it was like playing in race-conflicted St. Louis, where one of my best and oldest friends, Rafia Zafar, heads the black-studies department at Washington University); as a Yankees broadcaster reporting on field and behind-the-scenes activities; as a League President. Bill White was a superb first baseman and a dangerous hitter. The Yankees had their own version of White in Joe Pepitone, who squandered his talent. Two more different personalities one could not imagine. White has my vote for Cooperstown. One possibly apocryphal story (we’ll see what the book says about it) has White taking over his inaugural broadcast from Whitey Ford, with these first on-air words during racially charged times: Thank you, Whitey!
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