Alfred Manuel "Billy" Martin, Jr. (May 16, 1928 – December 25, 1989) was an MLB second baseman from 1950 to 1961, playing most of his career with the New York Yankees. He began his first managing job in 1969 with the Minnesota Twins. He would be a manager in Major League Baseball until 1988, and would lead the Yankees to consecutive American League Pennants in 1976 and 1977, and the World Series in 1977. He would serve as Yankees manager on five different terms.
- To keep the five guys who hate you away from the other five guys who are undecided.
- On the secrets of managing; as quoted in "Once Over Lightly" by Van Thomas, in The Longview News-Journal (March 5, 1974), p. 1-B
- I may not have been the greatest Yankee to put on the uniform, but I was the proudest.
- I didn't throw the first punch. I threw the second four.
Quotes about Martin
- If he'd only known himself half as well as he knew his game, he might have been the best.
- Thomas Boswell, "Flaws in Character Make Martin a Victim in Life and in Death," The Washington Post (December 27, 1989)
- Billy Martin proved what a powerful strategic tool paranoia is. He believed that everyone was against him. And so he spent every waking moment figuring out how imaginary enemies could be defeated in their nefarious plots. And sometimes he not only created strategies to defend against things that would never be done against him, but he realized that those attacks were in themselves novel and he would then try those attacks that he had already dreamed up a defense for. That's why he was so wonderful at suicide bunts and double steals and any way that you could humiliate or psychologically defeat the other team, he was sure that's how the world reacted to him. He was sure the world hated him. And so he turned that really raw, frightened paranoia into wonderful strategic intelligence.
- Thomas Boswell in Ken Burns' 1994 documentary Baseball.
- He's humorless, dedicated, relentless, fearless, tireless and reckless, as tightly wound as a power line, about as safe to cross as a mine field.
- Jim Murray, "He's the Best Baseball Manager Since McGraw," Los Angeles Times (March 28, 1982)
- Some people have a chip on their shoulder. Billy has a whole lumber-yard.
- Jim Murray, "He's the Best Baseball Manager Since McGraw"
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