Murray Chass is shocked, SHOCKED at Piazza’s publishing news

June 18, 2012

They’ve been talking about a Mike Piazza memoir for a few years now. Looks like the time is almost at hand for its release by Simon & Schuster. But exactly when is still up in the air. Pizza promised a “tell-all,” but would that include material about suspected performance enhancing drug usage?

According to Chass’ latest column,

It seemed unlikely that the former catcher would admit to steroid use and jeopardize, even for an $800,000 advance, his chances of being elected to the Hall of Fame. The publisher, however, will not issue the book until after the Hall of Fame results are known.

Craig Muder, the Hall’s communications director, said no date has been set for release of the results but noted that the announcement usually is made between Jan. 5 and 15. Voting ends Dec. 31.

Maybe Simon & Schuster has innocently planned the Piazza publication for soon after the announcement for marketing purposes, but it might just as easily have agreed to a post-election publication to insure that the book would not keep Piazza out of the Hall. [Emphasis added]

If, on the other hand, the book includes a steroids admission, all I can say is shame on Piazza and his publisher. With that possibility in mind, though, the voters would be wise to withhold their votes from Piazza until a future election. He will have 14 more chances.

I don’t know what the big deal is: most baseball titles are released in the spring/summer anyway, not during the winter unless they’re designed as holiday gifts, which usually reserved for coffee table editions, not bios/autobios/memoirs.

In other media news, Chass will play the role of Captain Louis Renault — so marvelously performed in the original by Claude Rains — in the remake of Casablanca.

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