Ever since he bought the New York Yankees in 1973, George Steinbrenner's domineering personality and ruthless tactics have made him the most successful--and most hated--man in baseball. Steinbrenner revolutionized the business and culture of the sport, creating the free-agent era with his gaudy signing of Catfish Hunter. He displayed a flair for showmanship worthy of New York (and unlikely in a Cleveland shipping magnate) when he wooed Reggie Jackson with dinner at '21' and the promise of a new Rolls Royce. And in spite of his manic management style and free-spending, Steinbrenner's Yankees have won more World Series and made more money than any other team in baseball history.
Along for the ride was Bill Madden, who has covered the Yankees and baseball for the New York Daily News for over 30 years. When Steinbrenner wanted to fire manager Billy Martin and hire Yogi Berra in 1985, he called Madden-and acted on his advice two months later. When Steinbrenner made his return from suspension in 1993, Madden was the only reporter to accompany him from the Regency Hotel in Manhattan to Yankee Stadium. When Steinbrenner, his health in decline, decided to do his final one-on-one interview, he gave it to Madden.
Through his long career covering the Yankees, Madden has cultivated sources at every level in the organization, from the many general managers Steinbrenner has fired to the bat boys who are ever-present in the locker room. All of them have colorful stories about the team's owner, whose temper was so legendary he became a regular character on Seinfeld.
In STEINBRENNER, Madden has written the definitive biography of the man who himself defined the most prolific era of the New York Yankees.