MLB Network to air “Swingin’ A’s” documentary Tuesday night


The A’s of the 1970’s were the Bay Area’s first true dynasty and tonight MLB Network will air a documentary on the crazy antics that went on behind the scenes during the time that the sometimes forgotten dynasty ruled the baseball world.

Many people don’t remember the subjects of the new documentary the “Swingin’ A’s.” The Oakland Athletics won three straight World Series Championships from 1972 through 1974.

Often the team is overshadowed when people think of 1970’s baseball by the Cincinnati Reds “Big Red Machine,” However the A’s will be remembered tonight at 6:00 PM PT.

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The documentary will be narrated by Oakland’s one and only M.C. Hammer, who was a clubhouse attendant for the A’s during the time that eccentric owner Charlie Finley had control of the team.

On a side note, not everyone knows that Oakland-born rapper MC Hammer got his name from the members of the 1970’s A’s who told him he looked like Hammerin’ Hank Aaron.

Finley may have been crazy and polarizing, however, the group of players he put together was possibly the one thing he did right.

The only other team in baseball history to win three straight World Series Championships is, of course, the New York Yankees.

MLB Network had a screening of the film last week for the press. Vida Blue and known Oakland Athletics’ fan and MLB Network host Matt Vagersarian held a question and answer session after the conclusion of the documentary.

"He was a complicated man,” Blue said of Finley. “He was a business man first, and that line about it being ‘nothing personal, just business,’ I heard him say that 1,000 times.”"

Finley was a cheap man and he ran the club that way, angering the players who were having so much success. The players would often fight amongst themselves and do some crazy things, however, they did band together as a united front against Finely.

Oakland Athletics
Mar 3, 2015; Mesa, AZ, USA; A’s former players Rollie Fingers and Bert Campaneris were part of the 1976 team and eventual free agents with other teams in 1977. Mandatory Credit: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports /

Eventually Finely dismantled the team after the 1974 season, selling off star players like Reggie Jackson who had been drafted by the then-Kansas City A’s second overall in the second MLB draft in 1965.

Other players who appear in the film include Ray Fosse, Gene Tenace, Ken Holtzman, Rollie Fingers and more. They help detail the interesting chemistry of the 70’s Oakland Athletics.

Blue still believes that had Finley not dismantled the team that they would have continued their streak saying last week,

"“I think we could have won at least one more,” Blue said. “I don’t know about two or three, but four in a row would have been sweet.”"

Four would have been very sweet but much like the A’s of the past decade the team was forced to say goodbye to some of their teammates a bit too soon.

Remember, the documentary airs tonight (Tuesday) at 6:00 PM PT on MLB Network. If you haven’t heard about the craziness that went on in and outside the clubhouse by this group of “misfit players” then definitely tune in.

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The Oakland Athletics still play today in the same stadium they did when they won their three straight World Series Titles.