4/21 in Yankee History
On the 21st of April over the years…
2003: The Yankees continue their hot start with a 15-1 win over the
Twins. With David Wells’s victory‚ the New York starting rotation are
now 14-0. The Twins have played 6 series so far and have either swept‚
or been swept‚ in all six.
1999: The Yankees defeat the Rangers‚ 4-2‚ as Roger Clemens ties an AL
record with his 17th consecutive win over 2 seasons. Johnny Allen
(1936-37) and Dave McNally (1968-69) previously accomplished the feat
for the Indians and Orioles‚ respectively.
1980: Joe ‘The Fireman’ Page, Yankee relief ace of the late 1940s, dies at the age of 62.
Page (in foreground to Casey Stengel’s left)
celebrating the Yanks’ win in the 1949 World Series
1977: Manager Billy Martin‚ faced with a 2-8 slump over the past 10
games‚ draws his lineup out of a hat. Chris Chambliss, batting in the
eight hole, drives in 5 runs on 2 doubles and a homer and New York beat
Ken Holtzman is the winner.
1967: At Fenway‚ rookie Bill Rohr again tops the Yanks‚ beating Mel
Stottlemyre 6-1. Elston Howard’s 8th-inning single drives in the only
Yankee score. Rohr will return to the minors after the Gary Bell
acquisition and resurface with the Indians next year.
1965: At the Stadium‚ Mickey Mantle puts New York ahead with a two-run
homer in the first off Camilo Pascual‚ but the Twins come back to win
1958: At the Stadium‚ the Red Sox put 16 runners on base but score just
one as the Yanks win their 5th straight‚ 4-1. Don Larsen‚ with 5
innings of shutout ball‚ is the winner. Ted Williams has his first hits
of the year‚ a single and homer.
1956: Mickey Mantle homers for the second day in a row against the Red
Sox‚ to lead New York to the win in a 14-10 shoot out at the Stadium.
Mantle‚ playing with his thigh wrapped tightly after straining a muscle
yesterday‚ is 3-for-5.
1954: At Yankee Stadium‚ Yogi Berra and Mickey Mantle belt back-to-back
homers in the third‚ off Leo Kiely‚ and Gil McDougald adds a solo blast
to key the Yankees to a 5-1 win over the Red Sox.
1952: In New York‚ Mickey Mantle’s first-inning homer off Bobby Shantz
starts the Yankees on their way to a 5-1 win over the A’s. The Yanks
tie a ML mark when they pull off their 12th double play in 3 games;
tomorrow they go to 14 in 4 games‚ tying a mark set by the White Sox
1951: Gil Coan of the Senators gets two triples in the 6th inning at
Washington‚ the last major leaguer in the 20th century to collect 2
triples in an inning.
The Senators score 7 runs in the frame‚ but it’s
not enough as they lose to the Yankees‚ 8-7. Tom Ferrick gets the win
for the Bombers.
1950: In Cleveland‚ before 79‚570 fans‚ the 4th largest paid attendance
in MLB history to date‚ the Yankees take two from the Indians‚ winners
of 9 out of their last 11. In the opener‚ Joe DiMaggio drives in 6 runs
on 2 homers‚ one a grand slam‚ and the Yankees roll 14-5. New York
collect 19 hits in the nitecap to win easily‚ 12-4. Eddie Lopat and
Allie Reynolds each win their 4th of the year‚ as the Yankees now pace
the AL by 2 1/2 games.
1948: At Griffith Stadium‚ Joe DiMaggio launches a 450-foot 3-run shot,
but the rest of the Bombers’ offense sputters as the Senators roll,
1932: The Yankees drop game 2 in their series with Philadelphia at the
stadium‚ as the A’s win 8-6. Mickey Cochrane’s ninth inning grand slam
is the deciding blow. Jimmie Foxx adds a single and 2 triples for the
1929: About 40‚000 fans brave a cold rain in New York to watch the
Yankees play their first Sunday regular season game. The A’s Jimmy
***** has a 2-run homer to help Lefty Grove beat the Yanks‚ 7-4.
1887: Joe McCarthy, Yankee manager from 1931 to 1946, is born.
McCarthy managed in the major leagues for 24 seasons. His winning percentage of
.614 is the highest in baseball history. His seven World Championships are a
record shared only with another Yankee manager, Casey Stengel. He
was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1957.
McCarthy never played in the majors. He grew up in Germantown, Pennsylvania,
and broke into pro ball in 1906. He got a taste of managing at Wilkes-Barre,
Pennsylvania, in 1913 and a few years later made a name for himself as a manager
in Louisville, where he developed outfielder Earle Combs. In 1926
McCarthy was named manager of the Chicago Cubs and he led them to
the National League pennant in 1929.
Fired by the Cubs following the 1930 season, McCarthy in 1931 assumed the
helm of a Yankee team that regarded him as a National League
interloper; many of the rollicking Yankee veterans thought Babe Ruth should be the
manager, a point of view that Ruth himself did not discourage. McCarthy never
won Ruth over, but he did win the other players’ loyalty and slowly molded his
kind of undemonstrative and proficient team.
In 1932 McCarthy became the first manager to capture pennants in both
leagues. In the ensuing World Series the Yankees
beat the Cubs in four games, a great moment of revenge for their manager. Then
came three consecutive second-place finishes – and the unkind tag of
Second-Place Joe – before the Yankees’ four consecutive World Championships in
1936-39. The late-1930s teams were arguably the most powerful ever, and their
manager was a great proponent of power baseball. In 1941 McCarthy won his sixth
World Series in six tries as the Yankees’ manager, but the following year his
streak was broken by the Cardinals. The Yankees won the rematch 1943 Series in
McCarthy’s teams were outstanding. They seldom had a difficult pennant race
and, by and large, they overwhelmed their World Series foes. They
were so good that some believed the batboy could have taken them to pennants, an
insinuation that McCarthy hated. His temper flared when it was suggested he had
only to push buttons to win. Many experts consider McCarthy the greatest manager
of all time. He was a great double-play teacher, but his real strengths lay in
his mental alertness. He seldom made the same mistake twice, missed little on
the field, and had an amazing memory for minute details. Joe DiMaggio said,
“Never a day went by when you didn’t learn something from McCarthy.”
McCarthy’s players respected him, most liked him, and some were devoted to
him. But he was perceived by the public as dull. Take away the fat little cigars
and the long-sleeved uniforms and you were left with air. Squatty, square-jawed,
tenacious – there was a sour side to this spike-fisted disciplinarian. Yet his
heart almost broke when Lou Gehrig became
The war years were tough on McCarthy, and when Larry MacPhail
became his boss in 1945, he didn’t have the same rapport he had enjoyed with Ed Barrow. On May 24,
1946, McCarthy resigned. He became the Red Sox’ manager in 1948 and came within
a hair of winning a pennant that year and again in 1949, before retiring for
good early in the 1950 season.
McCarthy died January 13, 1978 at the age of 90.