Kiss It Good-Bye: The Mystery, The Mormon, and the Moral of the 1960 Pittsburgh Pirates

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9781606411490: Kiss It Good-Bye: The Mystery, The Mormon, and the Moral of the 1960 Pittsburgh Pirates

In 1960, an upstart Pittsburgh Pirates team beat the highly favored New York Yankees in the World Series. Given the power of a Yankee roster that included Mickey Mantle, Whitey Ford, and Yogi Berra, that improbable victory did more than give long-suffering Pirates fans something to cheer about; it put Pittsburgh on the map.

Though John Moody was only six years old during that magical baseball season, he was a devoted fan of the Pittsburgh team. The star pitcher for the Pirates and John's first hero was Vernon Law-- an unsophisticated Idaho country boy, widely known as The Deacon, a friendly nickname derived from his strict Mormon upbringing.

Law was a relatively young man at the time and should have enjoyed several more seasons of fame and success, yet his career went into decline following that phenomenal Series. In this insightful book, John Moody explores a compelling mystery that has persisted now for nearly fifty years, revealing at last why Vernon Law was unable to continue his dominance of Major League batters.

But the book is more than just another expose'. Recalling a distant time in American sports, Kiss It Good-bye contains a universal theme: a son's affection for his father and the bond that was forged between them because of their love of baseball. It is a book that will be welcomed by fathers, sons, and baseball fans of every age.

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About the Author:

Not content to hang around suburban Pittsburgh forever, John Moody lived and worked in New York, Moscow, Paris, Bonn, Warsaw, Mexico, Costa Rica, and Rome, among other places. He helped start the Fox News Channel and now works for its parent company, News Corporation. He co-wrote The Priest Who Had to Die, and is the author of Moscow Magician, a novel, and Pope John Paul II, a biography. After all his world travels, he's still proud to come from Pittsburgh.

Review:

In baseball, you never know. But I know Vern Law was a darn good pitcher. This is the honest truth why Pittsburgh beat us in that 60 Series. --Yogi Berra

It's an amazing story...[with] many life lessons. --Fox News

The 1960 Pirates were one of the great underdog stories of the century. John Moody's book brought back memories for me. Kiss It Good-bye is as close as you can get to being in the Pirate dugout with Murtaugh, Clemente, Vern Law and the rest of that great team. --Bill Mazeroski

Kiss It Good-Bye is a valentine not only to that dramatic game [1960 s World Series] but also to a memorable summer of baseball and a sweet season in life. . . . Mr. Moody is on something of a mission, as suggested by his subtitle: The Mystery, the Mormon and the Moral of the 1960 Pittsburgh Pirates.; He adored the Pirates as a boy . . . The pitcher [Vernon Law] in 1960 posted a 20-9 record (with 18 complete games!) and won the National League Cy Young award. The next year Mr. Law went 3-4 with one complete game, and it would be four years before he enjoyed another stand-out season. It turns out that Mr. Law, a Mormon whose staid demeanor had earned him the nickname - the Deacon,; was injured during the celebration after the Pirates clinched the National League pennant in 1960. Precisely how the injury happened we'll leave to Mr. Moody to reveal, but the pitcher's hampered condition makes his two World Series wins against the Yankees all the more impressive. --Wall Street Journal

The 1960 Pirates were one of the great underdog stories of the century. John Moody's book brought back memories for me. Kiss It Good-bye is as close as you can get to being in the Pirate dugout with Murtaugh, Clemente, Vern Law and the rest of that great team. --Bill Mazeroski

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