What Ted Williams Was Like On and Off the Field

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Dec. 6 (Bloomberg) -- Ben Bradlee Jr., author of "The Kid: The Immortal Life of Ted Williams," discusses Ted Williams' legacy with Pimm Fox on Bloomberg Television's "Taking Stock." (Source: Bloomberg)

Life of ted williams," and he gets into ted williams professional and personal life including the controversial decision to freeze his body after his death.

Ben, thank you very much for coming in.

You are a noted journalist, up in boston for many years.

Where did you get your love of writing and journalism?

Well, you know, i have been in the business quite a while.

It might be in the genes, i'm not sure.

I started as a reporter in california, a small paper, the riverside press enterprise, i wrote a couple of crime books out there.

I had grown up in boston, and when i got a chance to work at "the boston globe" in 1979 as a young reporter, i moved back home.

Who turned you on to ted williams?

Williams was a figure in my life.

He is perhaps my hero growing up.

My room was plastered with pictures of ted williams from magazine photos, and i saw him play as a kid, got his autograph once.

You still have the ball?

I still have the ball.

The ink is fading badly with the passage of 50 years, but i've got it.

What was ted williams like on the field?

He was a presence.

He really was.

The atmospherics of fenway park changed when he came to bat.

I was struck by that.

People were at the edge of their seat and there was electricity in the air.

I spoke with an old sportswriter who told me that he once noticed a blind man at fenway park watching, figuratively, the game.

The reporter went up to the blind man and said, excuse me, why are you here when you could be home listening to the game?

He said, i like the sounds of the park when ted williams comes to bat.

What about ted williams' personal life?


He was an angry man.

What was he angry about?

I think the circumstances of his childhood, which were almost mckenzien.

He had a rough childhood.

His mother was out at all times of night, saving souls in san diego for the salvation army, and not home for tending to her son and his younger brother.

The father was not a presence, and he sort of presented their absence.

He was able to channel this anger constructively on the baseball field.

He like to play angry.

He used that as a motivator.

He thought that he hit better that way.

But the anger bubbled up at unexpected times and hurt him in his personal life.

He went through three marriages very quickly, and it cost him difficulty relating to his children.

His children also figure in his death after he died.

What did his son do?

His son was interested in cryonics, which is an obscure practice.

Several hundred devotees who believed that one day medical science will progress to the point where it will be possible to cure you of whatever it is that you died from and perhaps bring you back to life.

John henry supposedly convinced his father to go along with this.

So his sister told me.

But if he did agree to it, i am not sure he he was of sound mind at the time, and he sold several -- he told several other people i interviewed that after this decision at supposedly been made that he, in fact, wanted to have his remains -- he wanted to be cremated and have his ashes thrown in the keys, the florida keys.

What do you want people to take away from reading "the kid "? well, that this was a very complicated, extremely accomplished person, the greatest hitter that ever lived, and i am telling really the back story of his personal life i think for the first time comprehensively.

He was an extremely accomplished

This text has been automatically generated. It may not be 100% accurate.


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