From time to time, I receive solicitations from a publicist representing various authors and publishers of sports related books. On many occasions, I’m offered review copies of the tomes in question (sometimes arriving days or weeks after the mainstream media’s reviews have run) or the opportunity to interview the authors, which as you’ve probably already guessed, is not very appealing most of the time.
That said, today’s press release touting the April publication of Christopher Frankie’s ‘Nailed! : The Improbable Rise & Spectacular Fall Of Lenny Dykstra”, did cause me to wonder for about 30 seconds whether or not I’d be keen to check the book out (“from World Series hero and millionaire entrepreneur to homeless C-List deadbeat chiseler, snatching purses, assaulting prostitutes and hanging out with fellow-pariah Charlie Sheen…the truth sometimes truly is stranger than fiction”). But when they’ve already given some of the best bits away in the press release, why bother?
Dykstra’s childhood and early years in Southern California;
Dykstra’s assumed and admitted (then denied) anabolic steroid boasts and abuse;
The troubling allegations that Dykstra had helped a friend bet thousands of dollars on baseball in 1993;
Dykstra’s history of substance abuse, including cocaine, drinking and prescription drugs;
Dykstra’s round-the-clock schedule for employees, including marathon meetings in his hotel room;
The bitter legal fight with Dykstra’s Players Club magazine publisher, Doubledown;
His high employee turnover (eight editors in the magazine’s first year of publication);
The ugly family schism after he fires his whole family from his car wash business;
“Pulling a hammy” while sparring on national television with Fox & Friends’ Brian Kilmeade;
The inside story behind the dirty reporting on his win-loss record in his newsletter “Nails by the Numbers”;
How Dykstra swiped the payroll money from his employees, so that he could redo the kitchen in his mansion;
His freakishly weird relationship with his complicit enabler and assistant, Dorothy;
How he began dismantling his mansion near the end in order to sell its appliances and light fixtures to continue to finance his over-the-top lifestyle.
Christopher Frankie—one of the longest-serving members of “Team Dykstra” before the fall—offers a very balanced account of Dykstra’s troubles. He has no axe to grind here. He witnessed the three-ring, cross-country circus and devastating collapse first-hand and offers readers the insider’s perspective. Frankie interviewed more than seventy-five of Dykstra’s teammates, coaches, employees, reporters, law enforcement officials, victims, friends, and family. He reviewed thousands of court documents, emails, news articles, text messages and videos.
Dykstra lies, cheats and steals to keep his “big league dreams” alive—whatever it takes. Flaunting a “catch-me-if-you-can attitude” in his private jet, flying above the law of the land and trying to elude his worst nightmare: Life “in the middle”. He has no remorse. It is said that at some point Lenny Dykstra lost his soul. And then he lost everything else. An echo of the Bernie Madoff story, NAILED! is an awe-inspiring chronicle of woe and outrageous behavior that will entertain, astonish and terrify readers.