Mookie: Life, Baseball, and the ’86 Mets by Mookie Wilson and Erik Sherman (2015)
Mookie: Life, Baseball, and the ’86 Mets
by Mookie Wilson and Erik Sherman
Highly entertaining and brutally honest, Mookie Wilsonâs autobiography stands as a testament to the legendary status of the 1986 New York Mets team. Wilson fills several pages with stories of his upbringing, his early years with the Mets, his trade to Toronto, and his post-baseball pursuits, but the majority of Mookie: Life, Baseball, and the â86 Mets is understandably devoted to the domination of the 1986 team, the World Series against the Boston Red Sox, and the famous Bill Buckner error of Game Six.
Wilson has developed quite an interesting relationship with Buckner since their playing days, often appearing at autograph shows together to sign the famous photograph showing Wilson hustling down the first base line as Buckner turns around to find the ball that went between his legs. They have had many opportunities to work together at signings, and have almost worked together on the baseball diamond a few times, but those situations never worked out.
Wilson is upfront with his opinions and observations about his teammates throughout the book. He expresses his disappointmentâand even anger, he saysâat Dwight Gooden and Darryl Strawberry and their drug abuse. He reveals the clubhouseâs true feelings about the late Gary Carter, who was seen as selfish and camera-hungry by many of his teammates. He also praises Keith Hernandez for the leadership he displayed after coming to New York from St. Louis in 1983. Very few players escaped Wilsonâs pen, whether good or bad; the highs and lows of playing with George Foster, Lenny Dykstra, Lee Mazzilli, and Kevin McReynolds are all discussed.
Wilson also addresses the role his faith plays in his life, and the moral struggles athletes often face. In the final chapter, Wilson writes about his decision to become a minister. While I disagree with the doctrines his church teaches, I do applaud him for his commitment to morality and desire to spread his faith. The new paperback edition of Mookie: Life, Baseball, and the â86 Mets contains a new afterword in which Wilson talks about the book tour and the reaction of former teammates and the media to the content of the book.
I first became a baseball fan during the Metsâ rise to dominance in 1986, and while they were not âmy team,â I did enjoy watching them. Mookie: Life, Baseball, and the â86 Mets brought back a lot of good memories, and I would recommend it to baseball fans without reservation.