Sports psychologist Harvey Dorfman dies at 75
By Associated Press on 2011-03-01 03:39:23
ASHEVILLE, N.C. - Harvey Dorfman, a pioneering sports psychologist known for his work with baseball players, died Monday. He was 75.
Dorfman died at his home, according to agent Scott Boras, whose company employed Dorfman for the past decade.
Dorfman was hired by the Oakland Athletics in 1984 when farm director Karl Kuehl concluded young players needed help dealing with the mental pressure of adjusting to professional baseball.
After helping the A's reach three straight World Series, including a championship in 1989, Kuehl moved to the Florida Marlins in 1994. During his time in Florida, he helped the Marlins win the World Series.
Among the players who have credited Dorfman with assisting them are two-time Cy Young Award winner Roy Halladay and pitcher-turned-outfielder Rick Ankiel.
"Harvey pioneered the introduction of psychology into the mainstream of baseball both on and off the field,'' Boras said. "His presence will always be felt in the game.''
Dorfman wrote several books, including "The Mental ABC's of Pitching: A Handbook for Performance Enhancement,'' "The Mental Keys to Hitting: A Handbook of Strategies for Performance Enhancement,'' "Persuasion of My Days: An Anecdotal Memoir: The Early Years,'' and "Coaching the Mental Game: Leadership Philosophies and Strategies for Peak Performance in Sports and Everyday Life.'' Together with Kuehl, he wrote "The Mental Game of Baseball: A Guide to Peak Performance.''
He is survived by wife Anita; son Dan; daughter Melissa; and three grandchildren. Funeral services will be private.