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Biofile Jim Bouton Interview

By Scoop Malinowski

Status: Former Major League pitcher from 1962-1978 for New York Yankees, Seattle Pilots, Houston Astros, Atlanta Braves. Best-selling author. Actor. One of the creators of “Big League Chew.”

DOB: March 8, 1939 In: Newark, NJ (Passed away July 10, 2019)

Ht: 6-0 Wt: 170

Childhood Heroes: Sal Maglie. Monte Irvin. Bobby Thompson. I was a Giants fan as a kid.

Early Baseball Memory: Throwing my first knuckleball that really moved (age 12).

Favorite Movie: One-Eyed Jack.

Nicknames: Foggy – because I always had my head somewhere else. Flaky – for having different opinions. Bulldog – from Elston Howard, because I was a good competitor on the mound.

Childhood Ambition: Never thought of the future as a kid.

First Job: Paperboy for the Bergen Evening-Herald, door-to-door in Rochelle Park, NJ. Of course I had lemonade stands before that.

First Car: 1955 black Ford Coupe.

Hobbies/Interests: Motivational speaking, writing.

Greatest Sports Moment: Winning my first World Series game (vs. St. Louis in 1964).

Funniest Player Encountered: Frenchy Bordagaray. He had the funniest quote. He was fined $50 for spitting on the umpire. He said, “That’s more than I expectorated.”

Toughest Competitors: Whitey Ford. I saw him pitch with a sore arm one night. He had nothing. We needed him. He went out and pitched seven innings with guts and junk. Amazing. Great competitor.

Favorite Sport To Watch Outside Baseball: Hockey. To Play? Football.

Favorite TV Shows: Nature shows. I don’t watch much TV.

Musical Tastes: Billie Holliday.

Closest Baseball Friends: Gary Belle, Steve Hovly, Tommy Davis, and guys from the minors leagues – Stu Livingstone, Roger Alexander, Larry Owens.

Most Treasured Possession: I don’t have one.

People Qualities Most Admired: I admire a man by the name of Ruben Fuentes, a fellow baseball player, a teammate of mine. He fell off a ladder and broke his neck. Became a quadriplegic. He still made a life of himself. He’s married with three kids, he has a job and goes to college. I admire Ruben.

Future Ambition: I live in the present.

Family: Wife, Paula, sons, Michael, David, Lee Hollis, daughter, Laurie.

Career Accomplishments: 1962 World Series Champion; 1963 All-Star; 62-63 pitching record with 3.57 ERA and 720 strikeouts; 2-1 record in World Series starts with 1.48 ERA; Authored the best seller Ball Four in 1968.

About Mark Malinowski

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