A shockingly honest tell-all book disclosing secrets about the richest, most powerful baseball franchise in the world during the George Steinbrenner era. It’s also a story of abuse inflicted on a gay employee.
Paul Priore’s adopted father Nick used to work for the New York Yankees as manager of their team clubhouse. From a young age Paul would often visit his dad at the stadium and toss a baseball around with the sons of Yankee ballplayers, and eventually Paul ran errands for his father around the stadium.
When Paul got older he helped his dad with work duties in the clubhouse, Nick would pay his son out of his pocket, and that went on for many years. Paul hid his homosexuality from his father and everyone else at the stadium because he wanted it to remain private and he didn’t want to jeopardize Nick’s job, since the owner George Steinbrenner was a homophobic bigot.
One day Paul’s secret was revealed in the clubhouse and players began to taunt him with gay-bashing insults, one player physically abused him, three players sexually assaulted him, and when he complained to police on duty at the stadium and to management, the authorities neglected to take action because it was the famous New York Yankees and scandals were always hidden from the public, especially serious ones.
Management then tried to get rid of Paul, falsely accusing him of grand theft because it would be illegal to fire him for being gay – while they told the news media he was dismissed because of “performance and conduct.”
Sadly, Nick didn’t speak up for his son, even knowing he was completely innocent.
Paul doesn’t condone the Yankees’ code of silence and he reveals a lot of details and secrets about the players, the employees and the organization with an insider’s perspective. His ability to sharply observe people and situations offers insights into the internal workings of the Yankees under the unscrupulous George Steinbrenner.
Although the story has baseball as a backdrop, you don’t have to be a sports fan to understand it. At its core it’s about a decent, honest, hard-working guy who tried to do the right thing and was tormented because he’s gay.
10 of the Yankee Secrets Revealed in this Tell-All Book
1) Steinbrenner installed at least 7 ‘live’ video cameras hidden in the ceiling of the team’s clubhouse to spy on his team and employees.
2) On-duty stadium cops (NYPD) gambled with players and employees in after-hours poker and blackjack games in the clubhouse.
3) Batboys aged 14 & 15 were routinely sent to the off-track betting office to place bets on horse races for team manager Joe Torre & coach Don Zimmer.
4) A batboy linked to a bookie regularly placed wagers on sports events for players and employees during game days in the clubhouse, using a phone connected to the stadium switchboard.
5) Employees including batboys forged autographs for players who refused to sign baseballs; they also had a black market for forged baseballs.
6) Some players injected themselves with steroids in clubhouse toilet stalls. A few players provided urine samples for players being tested for steroids.
7) Some players, married or not, engaged in sexual activities with female stadium employees, security guards and groupies on the stadium premises.
8) Two players were once found engaging in homosexual activity in the clubhouse sauna at the end of their first season with the team.
9) Neither the players nor Steinbrenner paid for the food consumed by the players in the clubhouse; Nick Priore paid for all of it but was never reimbursed.
10) Steinbrenner condoned his players smoking pot and drinking on charter flights on road trips, whatever made them happy; some players drank in the clubhouse before, during and after games.
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