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The Bad Guys Won! A Season of Brawling, Boozing, Bimbo-chasing, and Championship Baseball with Straw, Doc, Mookie, Nails, The Kid, and the Rest of the 1986 Mets, the Rowdiest Team Ever to Put on a New York Uniform--and Maybe the Best (2004)

by Jeff Pearlman

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2519106,312 (3.88)7
The Bad Guys Won, award-winning Sports Illustrated baseball writer Jeff Pearlman returns to an innocent time when a city worshipped a man named Mookie and the Yankees were the second-best team in New York. It was 1986, and the New York Mets won 108 regular-season games and the World Series, capturing the hearts (and other assorted body parts) of fans everywhere. But their greatness on the field was nearly eclipsed by how bad they were off it. Led by the indomitable Keith Hernandez and the young dynamic duo of Dwight Gooden and Darryl Strawberry, along with the gallant Scum Bunch, the Amazin's left a wide trail of wreckage in their wake--hotel rooms, charter planes, a bar in Houston, and most famously Bill Buckner and the hated Boston Red Sox. With an unforgettable cast of characters--including Doc, Straw, the Kid, Nails, Mex, and manager Davey Joshson--this "affectionate but critical look at this exciting season" (Publishers Weekly) celebrates the last of baseball's arrogant, insane, rock-and-roll-and-party-all-night teams, exploring what could have been, what should have been, and what never was.… (more)
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Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
Pearlman's book about the 1986 Mets doesn't hold back on the profanity or the unkind opinions these guys sometimes had about each other--but even moreso about their opponents. The book is incredibly entertaining from beginning to end, and the cast of characters is one you won't forget. It seems just about everyone talked to Pearlman, and while the stories of some, especially Dwight Gooden and Darryl Strawberry, are sad ones of Hall of Fame careers sidetracked by drugs, there are other stories of guys who made the most of their one opportunity for a championship--and are still basking in the glory. This is definitely not for the easily offended, but a book that pulled any punches would hardly be appropriate for its subject. Pearlman is also funny--not in an obvious way like another baseball writer, Mike Shropshire, tries to be on every page, but just funny throughout. Certainly a deeper book than Shropshire's account of the 1973-1975 Texas Rangers, Seasons in Hell. ( )
  datrappert | Oct 3, 2023 |
This is an account of the 1986 Mets, they beat the Red Sox in the World Series. The Red Sox almost won it in game six, an error that created the word “Bucknered” allowed the Mets to win and go to game seven.

Jeff Pearlman is a Mets fan, you find this out in the beginning of the book, and he grew up to be a sports writer. He begins his narrative of the ’86 Mets by introducing us to Cashen, GM of the Mets. He promised the owners he could build a championship team, but it would take time, he was right on both fronts.

The ’86 Mets were not nice guys, they drank, did drugs and chased women (even some of the married players). Most of their games they came into the clubhouse to find coolers of ice cold Budweiser. The drugs of choice were cocaine and amphetamines (speed, pep pills, uppers and greenies), and getting drunk in the back of the plane was common.

While Pearlman is definitely biased towards the Mets, this is a very candid look at the team, through interviews with former players, batboys, managers and many associated with the Mets organization, it is a very well rounded look at a championship team filled with ‘bad guys’. He has knowledge of the playing side of a team as well as the business side of it, how sometimes practicality overcomes sentimentality, and times that it should. His writing is easy to follow, he makes generous use of similes, Darryl Strawberry is described as “wholesome as a Nevada brothel”, “as charming as a starved pit bull” and “as lovable as a cobra”. He talks about a pitcher who’s pitches made him “as threatening as a doe at a rifle club”.

This is a very interesting book that I would recommend to baseball fans in general and Mets fans in particular. ( )
  BellaFoxx | Apr 4, 2013 |
The most fun I've ever had reading about something that REALLY happened. ( )
  ProgWizardry | Dec 27, 2009 |
Very good read. If you love to read about the nitty gritty down in the dirt stuff in sports this is a great read. Pearlmans writing has a good flow to it and his humour and sarcasm is enjoyable. Ball Four by Jim Bouton is the 1st expose' written about baseball and is a classic but this book is again grittier I find more enjoyable. ( )
  hildr8 | Jun 7, 2009 |
Amazin' history of the most exciting team in Baseball history, the 1986 Mets. Includes many of the sordid details, recollections, and vintage primary sources that help make the retelling of this story a pleasure for all Mets and baseball fans. It's Metsmerizing! ( )
  Loud_Librarian | Jul 17, 2008 |
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The Bad Guys Won, award-winning Sports Illustrated baseball writer Jeff Pearlman returns to an innocent time when a city worshipped a man named Mookie and the Yankees were the second-best team in New York. It was 1986, and the New York Mets won 108 regular-season games and the World Series, capturing the hearts (and other assorted body parts) of fans everywhere. But their greatness on the field was nearly eclipsed by how bad they were off it. Led by the indomitable Keith Hernandez and the young dynamic duo of Dwight Gooden and Darryl Strawberry, along with the gallant Scum Bunch, the Amazin's left a wide trail of wreckage in their wake--hotel rooms, charter planes, a bar in Houston, and most famously Bill Buckner and the hated Boston Red Sox. With an unforgettable cast of characters--including Doc, Straw, the Kid, Nails, Mex, and manager Davey Joshson--this "affectionate but critical look at this exciting season" (Publishers Weekly) celebrates the last of baseball's arrogant, insane, rock-and-roll-and-party-all-night teams, exploring what could have been, what should have been, and what never was.

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