Before he became a two-fisted crime columnist, [Mike] McAlary was a sports writer with the New York Post. Sports writers from other newspapers who covered events with him were often mystified seeing managers, coaches and players saying things in the Post that they hadn’t heard the day or night before.
The best story I remember about McAlary’s style of sports fiction was a comment he attributed to a Detroit Tigers player after a 1983 game. It was captured in a Post headline in large type: WILSON: GOOSE IS A TURKEY
Glenn Wilson had hit a ninth-inning home run against Goose Gossage, sealing a Tigers’ victory, and supposedly is what Wilson told McAlary after the game. [sic] The only problem was Wilson said he never said such a thing.
In fact, Wilson panicked when he saw the headline. Gossage threw as hard as any pitcher, harder than most, and Wilson was terrified that Gossage would see the headline and throw at his head the next time they faced each other.
The minute Wilson got to the visiting clubhouse at Yankee Stadium that day he wrote a note telling Gossage he never said that and had a clubhouse attendant deliver it to the Yankees’ clubhouse.