Must-click link: Reggie Jackson in No-Man’s Land

Michael Pineda on his injury and return
Brett Gardner & Deep Counts

I never got to see Reggie Jackson play for the Yankees and frankly I don’t remember seeing him play for any team ever. Such is the curse of being a 1980s baby. Reggie is still with the team as a special assistant on what feels like an everyday basis, but the current version is a little more subdued than the Mr. October who played for 21 years.

I’m about ten days late on this, but it’s worth posting nonetheless. Alex Belth of Bronx Banter recently re-published Robert Ward’s celebrated “Reggie Jackson in No-Man’s Land” article from the June 1977 issue of Sport magazine, the first time the article has appeared online in its entirety. This is the infamous “I’m the straw that stirs the drink” article, and it’s absolutely amazing. It’s a pretty long read, but make sure you check it out.

Michael Pineda on his injury and return
Brett Gardner & Deep Counts
  • Matt

    I want Mo to write a book…Sandman’s Land ( )

  • neo

    Born in 62, Yankee fan when they stank in the late sixties and early 70s. I was 15 years old in that 1977 season. I read that article at the time, and I hated Jackson. (Thurman was my hero, Randolph a close second.)

    I was not a Bronx Zoo type of guy. I’m the type who like the way the current team is run without drama.

    Still, I had warmed up to Jackson by time October rolled around. Then October 18, 1977, probably my favorite night as a Yankee fan ever. The first one is so sweet.

    This was before SABR or the idea of working an AB was important. So the coolest thing to me was he swung at the first pitch three consecutive times, off of three different pitchers and hit three bombs.

    Thanks for the link Mike and for bringing back some great memories!!

    • Darren

      I think even SABRdudes can appreciate that 3 HRs in a row is better than working the count.

      At least, I hope so.

      • jsbrendog

        TOO MANY HRZZZ!!!1!1!!

      • R Jaiven

        You mean 4 home runs in a row (on 4 consecutive swings).

  • Manny’s BanWagon

    I was a kid in 77 and Reggie Jackson will always be my all time favorite Yankee.

    When the Boss let him leave in 82, I was so angry that for the next 5-6 years, I became a California Angels fan. I rooted for the Yankees except when they played California. I also despised Dave Winfield because I felt he was the reason they let Jackson go.

    • steve s

      The irony is Reggie turned into a trusted confidant to George and the family and, as Mike alluded above, his influence and presence in the clubhouse and front office to this day has been prevalent and consistent through the years.

      • Manny’s BanWagon

        Many people think of him as an egotistical narcissist but in reality, he’s highly intelligent, generous and thoughtful individual.

        • Foghorn Leghorn

          indeed…very articulate. He announced a few games and had a great voice for it. a very successful business man to boot.

    • Foghorn Leghorn

      I followed the same path. Reggie was my favorite player as a kid. Now, I’d probably hate the SOB b/c I can’t stand that type of pompous showmanship….but, Reggie delivered so he has that going for him, which is nice.

      I began following the angels and then the A’s where Reggie ended up. I didn’t root much for the Yanks from 82 through the rest of the 80s. Once Reggie retired I started coming back around.

      The upside from those years is that I was a huge baseball fan – not just a Yankee fan and it was pretty cool. It seemed like I knew eveery player well and could recite the stats of all from the back of the baseball card.

      Now, I feel like I’m mostly a Yankee fan and less of a baseball fan in general. Championships are great, don’t get me wrong…but I was a happier fan back then.

  • Yank The Frank

    I remember when Reggie came to the Yanks and seeing him play. I thought his forearms looked like tree trunks. When he hit, they stayed hit.

    • Manny’s BanWagon

      He would have hit 700+ Home runs if his career started 15 years later.

  • Kosmo

    Do you remember the “Reggie Bar“ ?
    1977 3 HRs on three consecutive pitches was one of the great sport moments of all time.
    One memorable Reggie moment for me was the shot he hit off Bob Stanley in the final deciding game of the 1978 season. People recall the Bucky Dent HR but Jackson´s HR turned out to be the deciding run of the game which NY won 5-4. Also the HR he hit off of Bob Welch in the 1978 WS was also a great moment.
    Reggie had a great arm in RF but he was a butcher.
    I was sorry NY let him go but as it turned out he had only one good season with the Angels .

    • Foghorn Leghorn

      that HR off Stanley was an absolute bomb…

      Reggie played decently for the Angels, but he was over 35 and on the decline. I’m sure he would’ve played well for the Yanks. He just fit in NY.

      As much as people didn’t like Reggie, he was the final piece that put them over the top. Those teams in 77 and 78 were amazing and it sounds like it was just insane with the boss, martin, the GMs and the big egos..

      • Kosmo

        Reggie in NY for his final few seasons would have been great and with the short RF porch would have possibly contributed to him hitting more HRs.
        The HR he hit off Stanley was a laser shot into the deepest part of Fenway. Wonderful moment. Thanks for sharing !

  •!/Clay_Bellinger Clay Bellinger

    Awesome read. I can only imagine how crazy this must have got people at the time.

    • Kosmo

      The Bronx Zoo and it truly was but for a couple of years an outstanding baseball team.

      • Foghorn Leghorn

        The 2012 Red Sox are trying to copy that format but they are leaving out a key ingredient – the “oustanding baseball team” part

    • Yank The Frank

      It wasn’t always great. The Billy & George show was more of an embarrassment to fans than anything else.