Vernon Gomez, nicknamed ‘Lefty’ (for obvious reasons) pitched for the NY Yankees from 1930-1942. This is rather amazing as this was the time when pitchers were in the game till their arms fell off. They virtually pitched themselves out of their careers. Vernon was the type of pitcher that would pitch everyday if asked, he had a fierce drive to compete and to win.
This is the account of his life from the beginning to the end. We follow along through the early years of baseball, the good and the bad, we are introduced to other greats such as Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Bill Dickey and Phil Rizzuto. Other players who were well known and stars at the time but whose names are not familiar to me. Even after his baseball career was over he stayed connected to the game. He had a reputation as a man you could trust and his work ethic on the baseball diamond carried on, it was a legacy left to him by his parents. He did a lot to help break down the race barriers in baseball, along with establishing baseball clinics for young players.
Much of the account is related in stories from people that were there or heard of it, where there is a conflict that is brought out too, in one event of his life, where not much is known the author simply states, “He never said why he did what he did.”
This was an easy to read book, the narrative was flowing and while not compelling, was not boring or tedious. It had the background information of Lefty and June’s life that you expect from a biography making it a well rounded account.