Mike Schmidt: Philadelphia’s Hall of Fame Third Baseman
By William C. Kashatus
165 pp. Photographs, table, notes, appendices, bibliography, index
ISBN: 0-7864-0713-1 $22.50 soft cover 2000.
Michael Jack Schmidt, in the minds of many the greatest third baseman of all time, was a Philadelphia institution. From 1973 to 1989 he led the Phillies to five National League championship series and two World Series. Twelve times an All-Star, Schmidt was perhaps baseball’s premier power hitter during the 1970s and 1980s. His 548 home runs are seventh best all-time. In the field he was just as exceptional, winning ten Gold Gloves, more than any other third baseman besides Brooks Robinson. A three-time National League Most Valuable Player (1980, 1981 and 1986), Schmidt was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1995, his first year of eligibility. This book is the first serious account of Schmidt’s celebrated career with the Philadelphia Phillies. Concentrating on contemporary newspaper accounts, periodicals, baseball histories and biographies by Schmidt’s teammates, this long-overdue work is the full story of one of the game’s greatest sluggers, and one of its true heroes and role models.
“Kashatus, who grew up in Northeast Philadelphia, is up-front about his life-long hero worship of Schmidt, but he keeps an even tone . . . The Mike Schmidt who emerges from this biography is an introverted perfectionist, a man perhaps too sensitive for batting-cage trash talk and the pressures of professional baseball, a superior athlete who played with grace and a concentration bordering on solipsism. Until the big biography is written of the enigmatic slugger, this is the definitive book on Michael Jack.” – The Philadelphia Inquirer
“With his book on Mike Schmidt, Kashatus fills the void that needed filling.” – Sports Collectors Digest