- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 12, 2003

In this corner, wearing the white trunks Jim Bouton, author of the "Moby Dick" of baseball books, "Ball Four."
And in this corner, wearing a pair of cutoffs David Wells, "author" of the soon-to-be-released, "Perfect I'm Not! Boomer on Brawls, Backaches, and Baseball."
The Tale of the Tape:
Bouton: Nicknamed "Bulldog" for his tenacity.
Wells: Nicknamed "Boomer" for his girth.
Bouton: Played in the minors with the Seattle Angels.
Wells: Mother once dated a Hell's Angel.
Bouton: First major-league salary: $7,000.
Wells: First major-league bar tab: $7,000.
Bouton: Wore No.56 "because I wanted it to remind me of how close I was to not making the club" as a rookie.
Wells: Tried to talk the Yankees into unretiring Babe Ruth's No.3, but had to settle for 33 (which is what the No.3 looks like when you're hung over).
Bouton: Cap would fall off when he pitched.
Wells: Shirt always comes untucked on the mound.
Bouton: Coached by Frank Crosetti, "the ol' Crow."
Wells: Used to do shots of Old Crow.
Bouton: Traded for Dooley Womack in 1968.
Wells: Traded for Trovin Valdez in 1995.
Bouton: Still bitter that he never got to appear on "The Match Game," even when it was being run by Joe Garagiola.
Wells: Was a guest on "Saturday Night Live."
Bouton: Little-known fact: Was sitting next to Phil Linz on the Yankees' bus during the infamous "Harmonica Episode" in 1964.
Wells: Little-known fact: Gave up homers to both Ripken brothers in the fifth inning of a game in 1990.
Bouton: On the same Yanks pitching staff with Fritz Peterson, who swapped wives with teammate Mike Kekich.
Wells: Went to the same high school as Don Larsen (Point Loma in San Diego).
Bouton: Threw a knuckleball later in his career.
Wells: Became a knucklehead later in his career.
Bouton: Wrote: "Baseball players will take anything. If you had a pill that would guarantee a pitcher 20 wins but might take five years off his life, he'd take it."
Wells: Wrote: "As of right now, I'd estimate 25 to 40 percent of all major leaguers are juiced. But that number's fast rising."
Bouton: Quoted Tommy Davis saying, "How fabulous are greenies?"
Wells: Said of amphetamines: "A lot of guys will buy themselves a season-long stockpile at one time. We're talking about hundreds and hundreds of pills."
Bouton: Accused Carl Yastrzemski of having "a bit of dog in him," and claimed Roger Maris was "one of the great non-hustlers of all time."
Wells: Said "a huge percentage of [the Yankees] hate [Roger] Clemens' guts." Also revealed that Andy Pettitte had "a meltdown" when Hideki Irabu got a much bigger contract than he did.
Bouton: The Padres burned his book, and Pete Rose stood on the top step of the Reds dugout and yelled, "Bleep you, Shakespeare!" at him.
Wells: Mike Mussina says (cleverly), "I don't feel any different toward Boomer now than I did two days ago."
Bouton: Is shirtless on the cover of the updated "Ball Four."
Wells: Is stark naked, facing a flock of sheep, in one of the pictures in "Perfect I'm Not!"
Bouton: According to "Ball Four" ghostwriter Leonard Schechter, "The final cut … was made by both of us. … We spent 18 hours a day together for weeks, cutting, editing, correcting, polishing."
Wells: Concedes he didn't exactly go through the galley proofs of his book "with a fine tooth comb."
Bouton: Got reprimanded by then-Commissioner Bowie Kuhn for telling tales out of school.
Wells: Has yet to hear from current Commissioner Bud Selig, who apparently is waiting for the paperback.
Bouton: Wrote: "The sad truth about baseball, I'm afraid, is that there is not enough in it to occupy a man's mind."
Wells: He'll drink to that.

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