Stories about players not on his team, inaccuracies about other players, and a 13-page letter from manager Tom Kotchman’s attorney are all raising issues about former Provo Angel Matt McCarthy’s memoir of life in the minors.
Matt McCarthy was a pitcher in the Anaheim Angels farm system who dropped out of baseball to pursue a medical career, first at Harvard Medical School and then as a resident at New York Presbyterian/Columbia hospital. Along the way he wrote a memoir of his season with the Provo Angels (rookie; Pioneer League), "Odd Man Out," that’s made a dent in the best-seller lists.
But many in baseball are questioning whether much of what McCarthy describes in his bawdy memoir actually happened. Former teammates say his depictions of them don’t come close to reality, and his manager at the time, Tom Kotchman, had his attorney write a 13-page letter to the book’s publisher, outlining all the ways the book is wrong. (The generally respected Kotchman, who has spent a career shaping young players for the Angels as a rookie-league manager, has some good reasons to be upset: McCarthy alleges Kotchman advised young players to take steroids, among other things.) And Angels GM Tony Reagins says comments and actions attributed to him simply didn’t happen.
Several times in the book, which he devotes mostly to the antics of libidinous teammates and his manic manager, Tom Kotchman, McCarthy directly quotes people stating incorrect facts about their own lives and tells detailed (and mostly unflattering) stories about teammates who were in fact not on his team at the time. The book’s more outrageous scenes could not be independently corroborated or disproved; several teammates who were present said in interviews that they were exaggerated or simply untrue.