Heroes, Scamps, and Good Guys

101 Colorful Characters from Cleveland Sports History

Bob Dolgan


A veteran sportswriter profiles the most interesting athletes in Cleveland sports history—stars, bench-jockeys, and everyone in between. Heroes like Jim Brown and Rocky Colavito. Scamps from “Shoeless” Joe Jackson to Albert Belle. Good guys like Bernie Kosar and Mark Price. Some special cases like Gaylord Perry who were a little bit of each!

Hardcover / 318 pages / 5.8 x 8.8 in. / 92 photos / ISBN 9781886228672


“This book tells the story behind the story in Cleveland sports. You really get to know the players as people.” — WERE AM Radio

A veteran sportswriter profiles the most interesting Cleveland athletes ever.

It takes all kinds to fill out the sports pages. Heroes, like Jim Brown and Rocky Colavito. Scamps, from “Shoeless” Joe Jackson to Albert Belle. Good guys, like Bernie Kosar and Mark Price. And a few special cases like Gaylord Perry, who were a little bit of each.

Sportswriter Bob Dolgan coverd them all during six decades on the sports beat for The Plain Dealer. This book collects his best short profiles of the most interesting athletes ever to grace the fields, courts, and rinks of Cleveland.

Most of the big names are here. But Dolgan also shares the tales of some special people who deserve to be remembered as more than just a few statistics in a record book. Kevin Rhomberg, for instance, the Indians outfielder best known for his extraordinary superstition about being touched. And Eddie Klep, the only white player in the Negroe Leagues. And jovial Honest Yockim, diminutive denizen of Cleveland’s notorious Short Vincent sports gambling scene.

These stories will rekindle memories in any Cleveland sports fan and introduce some remarkable characters from the past who are worth getting to know. Look back on any era, and dozens of wonderfully memorable people stand out, sparkling like diamonds in the grass.

Additional information

Weight1.17 lbs

Table of Contents



Leroy “Satchel” Paige

Bob Lemon

Bill Veeck

Lou Boudreau

Russ Christopher

Larry Doby

Jim Hegan

Pat Seerey

Billy Sheridan

Marshall Bossard

Gene Bearden

John Berardino

Allie Clark

Steve Gromek

Ken Keltner

Dale Mitchell


Bill Willis

Otto Graham

Lou Groza

Marion Motley

Mac Speedie

Paul Brown

Bobby Mitchell

Jim Brown

Ernie Davis

Don Cockroft

Sam Rutigliano

Brian Sipe

Doug Dieken

Earnest Byner

Kevin Mack

Don Rogers

Cody Risien

INDIANS 1950S–’60S:

Early Wynn

Luke Easter

Mike Garcia

Al Lopez

Willie Kirkland

Herb Score

Vic Power

Rocky Colavito

Jim Piersall

Gene Green

Pete Ramos

Sam McDowell

Luis Tiant

Tony Horton


Larry Nance

Mark Price

Lenny Wilkens

John Battle

Johnny Bower

Red Williams

Jesse Owens

Harrison Dillard

Eddie Klep

Sam Jethroe

Mike Medich

Dave Demko

Jim Martin

Dave Sugiuchi

Nick Sabadosh

INDIANS 1970S–’90S:

Gaylord Perry

George Hendrick

Wayne Garland

Frank Robinson

Duane Kuiper

Gabe Paul

Joe Charboneau

Kevin Rhomberg

Julio Franco

Mike Hargrove

Carlos Baerga

Albert Belle

Jim Thome


Larry Atkins

Eddie Simms

Sugar Costner

Joey Maxim

Michael Dokes

Danny Weiler

John Rutherford

Barbara Turcotte

Honest Yockim

Nick Mileti

Jimmy Dudley

Jim “Mudcat” Grant

Lord Layton


Louis “Chief” Sockalexis

“Shoeless” Joe Jackson

Emil “Dutch” Levsen

Wes Ferrell

Joe Vosmik

Earl Averill

Hal Trosky

Bob Feller

Johnny Allen

Jeff Heath

Al Milnar

Mel Harder

Ray Chapman



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