A Couple Of Bumps In The Road

Denny McLain was a great pitcher, mostly with the Detroit Tigers. In fact, he once won 31 games in a season, in 1968, one of only a handful of players in the history of baseball who have ever won 30 or more.

He was also involved in illegal baseball gambling, bookmaking, mail fraud, and did six years in the joint for ripping off 2.5 million from his company’s pension fund. In fact, he was in and out of prison a few times, including being sentenced to 23 years in the 1980s for drug trafficking, embezzlement, and racketeering, for which he got out after 30 months after winning his appeal. He also doused a couple of sportswriters with buckets of water, filed for bankruptcy three times, was associated with mafia chief John Gotti, was suspended from baseball for carrying a gun on a team flight, smuggled a fugitive out of the country in his plane, and was a golf hustler.

But he was a great pitcher.

I met him in Ottawa in the 1980s at a collectables show and he was very nice. He was also about 300 pounds.

More on our guy – right here

4 thoughts on “A Couple Of Bumps In The Road”

  1. I remember Denny McLain and he was a great pitcher……..Sounds like a lot of your friends, except the great pitcher part

  2. Christopher, Hobo is a world class guitar player. And Rick Ley, who knocked out my tooth, owes me hockey gloves.

  3. Christopher, I don’t know if Rick Ley was a great pitcher, certainly he was a good all round athlete. The mystery of the missing tooth can be attributed to Dennis’ pertinacious habit of beaver watching the stands and not giving the approaching fastball his full and undivided attention. As for yours truly, the only throwing I was good at was throwing up.

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