Book Review: The Yogi Book

Ask any baseball fan what baseball player in history has said the silliest things and they will no doubt reply with the words Yogi Berra. It’s hard to argue with that answer. Yogi is well known for his quips and jabs, so much so that some may remember that more than they do his Hall of Fame playing career. Knowing his personality and unique statements are what helped keep him in the national spotlight years after his playing days are over, Berra did everyone a favor and published a book containing nothing but his sayings.

The 125-page work entitled The Yogi Book: “I really didn’t say everything I said”, was published in 1998. It contains nothing but his famed quotes accompanied with brief comments regarding whatever the situation may have been. At times, there is an attempt to explain what he meant by saying what he said.

Nearly every page also has a picture of Yogi and people who went along his life journey with him such as family, friends, players and others who he was involved with in the world of baseball.

A few of the quotes featured are:

  • “Slump? I ain’t in no slump…I just ain’t hitting”
  • “It gets late early out there.”
  • “I wish I had an answer to that, because I’m tired of answering that question.”
  • “It’s not too far, it just seems like it is.”
  • “It ain’t over ‘til it’s over.”

Thanks to his quotes, Berra was able to be known by a whole new generation of baseball fans. His encyclopedia of statements only grew as he got older because he stayed around the game. He continued to attend spring training with the Yankees, and other ball clubs during his years of fall out with the team, teaching and molding young baseball minds. Near the end of his life, he would still attend Spring Training even if it were just to take in the action. This book reminds the reader of what Berra was like during his prime. Not his prime playing days, but his prime speaking days, of which there were thankfully decades.

At the end of the book, Berra shares some quotes from his family to illustrate his gift for language is genetic. A few of sayings by family members include:

  • “I need to go shopping for clothes to shop in.”
  • “The water is cold until you get it wet.”
  • “I double checked it six times.”

The book’s cover is littered with quotes from famous people about how joyous it was to be around Berra. Included in them is Frank Sintra who said, “A conversation with Yogi Berra is as memorable as seeing a game in Yankee Stadium in its heyday.”

The book can easily be read in one sitting as is a great conversation piece. It was published by Workman Publishing New York and retails for $8.95.

Baseball Reflections Rating: 3.5/5

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