If you want to get to know R.A. Dickey, the best way is to read his book, now available in paperback with a sweet, sweet, Timothy Busfield-reminiscent cover. But if you don't have the "time" to read a whole book, Ben McGrath's profile in this week's New Yorker hits hits all the high points. And there's something to be said for having a reporter on the ground; for example, this snippet:
Success hadn’t altered Dickey’s frugality, and Anne asked me not to mind the forlorn-looking Christmas trees in the living room. "I’m like, ‘You know, I like the eight-foot Fraser fir,’ " she recalled, of their recent trip to a tree farm run by the Boy Scouts. "He’s like, ‘No, no. Kids, come on, we’re going to find the most pitiful tree that nobody wants.’ And I’m rolling my eyes—like, why does everything have to be so thought through and moral? I mean, just get a Christmas tree! ‘No, we’re not buying into commercialism.’ We spent an hour and a half walking around and feeling sorry for trees." Anne added, "He doesn’t worry about appearances or what other people think. I admire that in him, because I don’t carry that same confidence."
Gotta love that guy.
Great work by McGrath, too. He's also penned, over the years, excellent profiles of Bill James and Tim Wakefield (among others).
Let's just hope that Dickey gets healthy and starts pitching for the Blue Jays like he pitched for the Mets.