Nearly everyone knows Yogi Berra from his oft-quoted lines, with their circular truth (“It ain’t over till it’s over”) and their creative math (“Ninety percent of baseball is mental; the other half is physical”). To baseball fans, he’s unquestionably one of the greatest catchers in history, a 10-time World Series champion with the Yankees who was elected into the Hall of Fame in 1972.
Now, when the baseball season would normally be in its early days, Jon Pessah’s biography “Yogi: A Life Behind the Mask” arrives to help fill the void. It’s a book that covers the funny quotes and the exceptional career, but also the complicated and sensitive person often obscured by the image. Below, Pessah talks about Berra’s shyness, the abuse he received as an Italian-American and just how great a player he was.