Peter Golenbock, one of the nation's best-known sports authors, was born on July 19, 1946 in New York City. He grew up in Stamford, Connecticut, and in 1963 graduated St. Luke's School in New Canaan, Connecticut. He graduated Dartmouth College in 1967 and the New York University School of Law in 1970.
As a boy living in suburban Fairfield County, Golenbock grew up a Yankee fan. He began following professional baseball in 1955 during the heart of the Casey Stengel dynasty. His heroes were Mickey Mantle and Whitey Ford. One day in the local library he discovered a wonderful book written by Frank Graham, who provided the impressionable 12-year-old with insights into the personalities of the players and the history of the team. It was a book he was to read over and over.
Golenbock began writing about sports at Dartmouth. In addition to writing for The Daily Dartmouth, he wrote for The New York Times and The Boston Globe. After graduating from law school and working as a lawyer in a personal injury firm for eight weeks, in July of 1972 Golenbock was hired to work in the legal department of Prentice-Hall Inc., Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. After six weeks of writing about President Nixon's wage and price controls, during one lunchtime he rashly knocked on the door of Nick D'Incecco, the head of the Prentice-Hall trade book division. He told D'Incecco about Graham's Yankee book, which was published in 1948. Golenbock wanted to write its sequel. D'Incecco liked the idea and gave him a contract, almost on the spot. DYNASTY: The New York Yankees 1949-64, the definitive history of the Casey Stengel-Ralph Houk-Yogi Berra era of Yankee greatness, a period of 14 pennants in 16 years, became an instant best-seller.
Since 1975, Golenbock has written some of sports' most important books, including five New York Times best sellers. Some of his best-known books include THE BRONX ZOO, which he wrote in 1979 with New York Yankee pitcher Sparky Lyle; BUMS: An Oral History of the Brooklyn Dodgers (1984), PERSONAL FOULS (1988), a look at corruption in college basketball; AMERICAN ZOOM (1993), a history of NASCAR; WILD, HIGH AND TIGHT (1994) his lurid biography of Yankee manager Billy Martin; and IDIOT with Johnny Damon.
Golenbock was a radio sports talk show host in 1980 on station WOR in New York City. He was the color broadcaster for the St. Petersburg Pelicans of the Senior Professional Baseball League in 1989-90 and has been a frequent guest on many of the top television and radio talk shows including "Biography on A&E," the "Fifty Greatest Athletes and the Dynasties on ESPN," "Good Morning America," "Larry King Live," "ESPN Classic," and the YES network.
Golenbock lives in St. Petersburg, Florida with his two basset hounds, Doris and Fred.