Dick Young (sportswriter) - Abrasive Style and Personality - Tom Seaver Feud

Tom Seaver Feud

Most notoriously, Young engaged in a public feud with New York Mets pitcher Tom Seaver, which contributed to one of the turning points in Mets history. After free agency came to baseball, Seaver publicly complained that Mets owner M. Donald Grant made no effort to sign any of the available players. Seaver was also renegotiating his own contract, and Grant portrayed his star pitcher as being motivated by money. Grant's most enthusiastic supporter in the press was Young, who wrote a series of blistering columns about Seaver, culminating on June 15, 1977. "In a way", Young wrote, "Tom Seaver is like Walter O'Malley. Both are very good at what they do. Both are very deceptive in what they say. Both are very greedy."

But it was a paragraph later in the piece that genuinely enraged Seaver:

"Nolan Ryan is getting more now than Seaver, and that galls Tom because Nancy Seaver and Ruth Ryan are very friendly and Tom Seaver long has treated Nolan Ryan like a little brother."

Seaver and the Mets had only just agreed on a contract extension the previous night, but following the column, Seaver informed the Mets that the deal was off and that he was insistent on being traded out of New York.

"That Young column was the straw that broke the back", Seaver said in 2007. "Bringing your family into it, with no truth whatsoever to what he wrote. I could not abide that. I had to go." Seaver was traded to the Cincinnati Reds later the same day. When Young was subsequently introduced for his Hall of Fame induction in Cooperstown, New York, he was heavily booed by the fans.

In 1981, four years after vilifying Seaver for renegotiating his existing contract with the Mets, Young broke his own contract with the Daily News and jumped to the crosstown Post, where he remained until his death six years later. The News filed a breach of contract suit against Young, which was eventually dismissed.

Read more about this topic:  Dick Young (sportswriter), Abrasive Style and Personality

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