Jim Bouton’s 1970 tell-all “Ball Four” was so poorly received by the baseball establishment, the controversy yielded enough material for a sequel — “Ball Five” — addressing said reaction.  With that history in mind, Bouton says of the furor surrounding Joe Torre and Tom Verducci’s “The Yankee Years”, “what’s the big deal”? From the the New York Daily News’ Andy Martino :

“It is almost 40 years later,” he said. “Why in the world anyone is still talking about the sanctity of the clubhouse is beyond me. Baseball and the Yankees should feel lucky that this book is generating so much attention in January… there is no job hitting a ball with a stick unless a lot of people are convinced it’s important.”

Bouton was also amused that any player would feel violated by the book. “These guys have voluntarily gone into a business where people know that everything that they do or say is subject to being written about. They act as if they’re surprised when somebody tells what they do. Roger Maris always wanted to be a private person. Well, get into the shoe business if that’s what you want.”

And to anyone offended that unflattering accounts of his behavior landed in a book, Bouton offered simple advice: “Books are going to be written. Therefore, don’t act like a jerk.”