Various footage of Bill Veeck from throughout his career.
00:05Copy video clip URL WTTW countdown and intro.
00:20Copy video clip URL Shot of Veeck in Wrigley Field. Narrator introduces Veeck: “We all know Bill Veeck was a man of many talents…” Narrator explains that the footage will be a compilation of various footage.
1:00Copy video clip URL Footage from interview on September 3, 1984. Veeck talks about left-handed people as a minority in baseball, and silly traditions that are started but a year earlier: “Of course there’s a conspiracy against left-handers!” Veeck maintains that third basemen and short-stops should be left-handed. Veeck parodies the end of the Communist Manifesto: “Left-handers of the world, unite…!”
4:12Copy video clip URL Veeck at a bar for the show “Bill Veeck’s Saloon.” Recounts his various showmanship strategies. “Opening days are wonderful.”
6:15Copy video clip URL Veeck in Comiskey Park.
6:30Copy video clip URL Veeck in an interview discussing heroes in baseball. Babe Ruth is Veeck’s hero, a “man of infinite capacity to rise to an occasion.” Also discusses Hack Wilson.
8:05Copy video clip URL Jackie Robinson.
8:30Copy video clip URL Pete Gray (one armed).
9:03Copy video clip URL Satchel Paige.
9:35Copy video clip URL Veeck in Wrigley Field, shirtless, with a straw sun hat discussing with John Mengelt the virtues of sitting in the bleachers: “This is the best ball park in the country…it is the epitome of pleasure.”
11:15Copy video clip URL Veeck discussing the ivy in Wrigley Field. “It happened because I inadvertently mentioned that the brick walls were so bare and harsh in appearance and texture…I suggested to Mr. Wrigley that vines would be great.” They strung 4 strands of copper wire along the brick, interwove the wire with bittersweet, and then the ivy was planted in between them. Eventually the vine choked the bittersweet and was successfully transplanted.
15:28Copy video clip URL Veeck outside Wrigley discussing the stadium and the scoreboard. Shots of inside the scoreboard and man working the scores and the records of the other ballgames being played.
17:35Copy video clip URL Veeck describes designing the new scoreboard model. He gives an anecdote about climbing the scoreboard during a thunderstorm to make sure it didn’t break off in the wind. He had to spend about four or five hours up there.
19:41Copy video clip URL Veeck discussing black players in baseball and their natural predisposition to athletics. “Does playing in the ghetto one-on-one have something to do with it?” Interviewer’s response: “Possibly, but…” The interviewer then makes an argument that the “negro” has to turn to athletics because he has no other outlet.
21:22Copy video clip URL Veeck discussing with an older player about keeping “the eye of the tiger.” The player describes having to remind himself to strive because his life is so comfortable now.
22:32Copy video clip URL Rick Sutcliffe, Cubs pitcher, and Veeck at the Saloon talking about Sutcliffe’s trade from the Cleveland Indians. Long discussion about Sutcliffe’s career and what it takes to be a good pitcher. “Does the crowd influence losing streaks?” Sutcliffe: “I think they do.” They discuss different pitches.
27:40Copy video clip URL A different interview, Veeck brings up the topic of selling tickets and their inflation of value.
29:11Copy video clip URL Veeck in Wrigley discussing the future of baseball, including genetic manipulation and in-house psychiatrists. Veeck discusses maximized profit, egos, or write-offs.
31:37Copy video clip URL Veeck singing in a bar with Roger Wallenstein. They discuss Veeck’s show being canceled. “Television is getting control of the games, and they’re controlling the games not to make the games more interesting, but to make an extra buck.” Veeck uses the Cubs as a perfect example. Roger: “Actors instead of athletes.”
34:46Copy video clip URL Veeck interviewing Ted Turner, who describes financing (gate versus television revenues) in baseball.
36:12Copy video clip URL Veeck and Roger Wallenstein back at the bar, looking through the want ads. “The Garden of Eden is a small piece of land…right between the base lines…Spring training is a state of mind.”
39:12Copy video clip URL End of tape.