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Finley entertained and enraged

Flamboyant Finley

Wednesday, November 19, 2003
Quotes by Charles Finley

Quotes by Finley

"If a manager of mine ever said someone was indispensable, I'd fire him."

"Prospects are a dime a dozen."

"I always wanted to be a player, but I never had the talent to make the big leagues. So I did the next best thing: I bought a team."
--From Time, August 18, 1975

"I've never seen so many damned idiots as the owners in sport. Baseball's headed for extinction if we don't do something. Defense dominates everything. Pitching is 75 % of the game, and that is why it's so dull. How many times have you seen a fan napping in the middle of a football or basketball game? Hell, in baseball people nap all the time. Only one word explains why baseball hasn't changed: stupidity! The owners don't want to rock the boat."
--From Time, September 18, 1975

"So you won twenty games? Why didn't you win thirty?"
--To Vida Blue during 1972 contract negotiations, quoted in High Inside: Memoirs of a Baseball Wife by Danielle Gagnon Torrez

"Thank God our fans show more interest than some of our players. If they showed as little interest, they'd all leave before the game was over."
--On players leaving the dugout after being taken out of a game at Oakland, quoted by Ron Bergman in The Mustache Game

"The day Custer lost at the Little Big Horn, the Chicago White Sox beat the Cincinnati Red Legs, 3-2. Both teams wore Knickers. And they're still wearin' 'em today." -Quoted by Tom Boswell in the Washington Post, September 5, 1982, who said that Finley made the point "when hawking his novel notions, such as the orange baseball or double-knit uniform..."

"There's an old saying that pigs get fat and hogs go to market. Well, some of the players these days aren't even pigs or hogs--they're gluttons. We have to keep salaries within reason. If we just rolled over and gave them what they wanted, we'd price ourselves out of business."
--On the White Sox paying Richie Allen $250,000 a year, quoted in the New York Times, February 16, 1975

"The man is literally driving me out of baseball financially. I've been at it for 18 years and I'd love to stay in the game. But by not allowing me to sell Vida Blue, he's depriving me of keeping my ship afloat. I'd stand on top of the Sears Tower--the largest building in the world--waving a sign: 'Fire Bowie.'"
--On baseball commissioner Bowie Kuhn, quoted in the Washington Post, February 23, 1977

"We run our club like a pawn shop--we buy, we sell, we trade."
--On how he operated the Athletics, quoted in the Los Angeles Times, June 23, 1977

Quotes about Finley

"Charlie Finley has soured my stomach for baseball. He treated me like a damn colored boy."
--Vida Blue, Vida: His Own Story

"If he thinks it's such a great name, why doesn't he call himself True O. Finley?"
--To teammates after Finley was unable to convince Blue that he should be called "True" Blue, quoted in Vida by Richard Deming

"First guy in checks the dugout for alligators."
--Wayne Causey, as Kansas City A's shortstop, on owner Charlie Finley's promotional animals, widely quoted

"A woman asked me the other day if there's any truth to the rumor that Charlie Finley is out to get me. I said, 'Honey, that ain't no rumor.'"
--as baseball commissioner, quoted in The Sporting News, June 24, 1978

"It took eight hours?seven and a half to find the heart."
--Steve McCatty, on hearing of Charlie Finley's heart surgery, quoted by Jay Johnstone in Temporary Insanity

"Finley is a self-made man who worships his creator."
--Jim Murray

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