Fay Vincent’s oral history of baseball
Murray Chass has the story in the NY Times.
Vincent, who resigned under pressure in 1992 when the owners were gearing up for a labor fight with the players, began his project about five years ago, funded by the investment banker Herbert Allen.
“I heard tapes of the Larry Ritter interviews with players who played at the turn of the century,” Vincent said in reference to Ritter, who turned those interviews into the acclaimed 1966 book, “The Glory of Their Times.” “What he did was spectacular,” Vincent said of Ritter, who traveled 75,000 miles in a five-year period to get his interviews on reel-to-reel tape recorders. “I wondered if anyone was doing anything with more recent players.”
Vincent said he has interviewed about 35 players and executives, using videotape. Larry Doby, the first black player in the American League, was Vincent’s first interview; his most recent was Don Baylor, the Mets’ new hitting coach, whom he interviewed yesterday.
…Vincent said he envisioned people 50 years from now going to the Hall of Fame and watching the tapes. “Push a button,” he said, “and see Marvin Miller talking for three or four hours. That’s precious stuff.”
I imagine the tapes will be edited down for the masses, but for historians of the game they’ll be a great legacy.