March 2012

3/11 & 3/12 in Yankee History

On the 11th of March over the years…

2002: Thrown out stealing… The Yankees release outfielder Ruben Rivera (below) for stealing Derek Jeter’s glove and selling it on the black market for $2‚500. There are rumors that Rivera also took other memorabilia‚ such as personal items belonging to Roger Clemens, the Rocket denies it. Rivera had been signed to a one year contract for $1 million.

ruben.JPG

 

2001: The Yankees formally announce the signing of Cuban defector Andy Morales (below, on the left, with his agent Gus Dominguez)‚ a third baseman‚ to a 4-year contract. Morales will wash out and be waived from his minor league team by July. The Yanks will try and sidestep his contract with proof that his listed age of 26 years is really 29.

Morales.jpg

 

1981: Johnny Mize is elected to the Hall of Fame. Though best remembered for his years in the National League, the ‘Big Cat’ spent the final years of his career with the Yankees as a part-time first baseman, super sub, and pinch hitter from 1949 to 1954. Mize was the World Series MVP in 1952, hitting .400 with three home runs in the seven-game series. He played for the Bombers five years, and earned five Championship rings.

johnny_mize_autograph.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/m/mizejo01.shtml

 

1956: At Al Lang Field in St. Petersburg‚ there is no doubt about it as Mickey Mantle hits a Grapefruit League pitch from Cardinal hurler Larry Jackson over the left field wall into the bay. The Yanks top the redbirds 4-3. Stan Musial will say after the game: “No home run has ever cleared my head by as much since as long as I can remember.” The Mick will hit another in the same park on March 20th, off Bob Mave, that also lands in the water. Mantle will launch  a 500-foot shot in Miami on the 24th against the Dodgers.

Mantle_50s.jpg

 

1945: Dock Ellis is born.  The Yankees acquired him from the Pirates on December 11, 1975, along with pitcher Ken Brett and second baseman Willie Randolph in exchange for pitcher George ‘Doc’ Medich. 

dock_ellis_77_1080.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/e/ellisdo01.shtml

 

…and on the 12th…

1992: Yankees VP and chief administrative officer Joseph Molloy‚ son-in-law of principal owner George Steinbrenner‚ is elected as new managing general partner of the club.

Molloy.jpg

 

1962: Daryl Strawberry is born. Happy 50th, D!

darryl_strawberry.jpg

 

1955: Ruppert Jones, starting center fielder for the Yankees 1980 AL East champions team,  is born. Happy 57th, Mr. Jones!  

Jones_R.jpg

 

1903: The New York Highlanders are officially approved as members of the AL.

New_York_Highlanders_Baseball_Team,_1903.jpg

3/09 & 3/10 in Yankee History

On the 9th of March over the years…

2009: A 12-7 Yankee defeat at the hands of the Pirates is one of those Spring Training games filled with hints of things to come that will not, in fact, come to pass. CC Sabathia and Boone Logan are reached for four runs each in the first and ninth innings, respectively, Nick Johnson homers his first two times at the plate, and Jon Weber has another big offensive day, with two doubles, two runs driven in and
one scored. Both Johnson and Weber do the  damage batting
second as the two DHs the Bombers use today.

Boone_Logan.jpg

 

2006: The shape of things to come… In a spring training game against the Tigers at Legends Field, Detroit starter Kenny Rogers holds the Yankees to 1 run in 3 innings, prefiguring his effective start that will kill the Bombers’ chances in  the ALDS in October. The Tigers, meanwhile, jump on Randy Johnson for 5 runs.

rogers.jpg

 

1973: Aaron Boone is born. Happy 39th to Mr. Walkoff!

Boone.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/b/booneaa01.shtml

 

1966: Aaron Robinson, who was platooned with Yogi Berra at catcher before the latter took over as the primary Yankee backstop, dies at the age of 50.

Aaron_Robinson.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/r/robinaa01.shtml

 

1936: Babe Ruth turns down an offer from the Cincinnati Reds to stage a comeback, an offer that once again hinted at a managerial opportunity, something long sought after by the Bambino.

ruth_braves.jpg

 

1908: ’30s Yankee outfielder Myril Hoag is born. Hoag is best remembered as the first Yankee to go 6 for 6 in a 9 inning game (and one of only two, along with Johnny Damon), against the Red Sox in 1934.

Hoag.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/h/hoagmy01.shtml

 

…and on the 10th…

2003: The Yankees fine pitcher David Wells $100‚000 for comments in his autobiography that the team feel are detrimental to the club’s image.

wells-reacts.jpg

 

2001: In an ST game at Legends Field against the Red Sox, former Yankee center fielder Mickey Rivers mans the first base coaching box. Mick the Quick will advise the few Yanks to reach base against Tim Wakefield and two relievers, as the home side fall, 2-1.

Rivers_OT.jpg

 

1999: Joe Torre  is diagnosed with prostate cancer. While he is undergoing treatment‚ the team will be run by bench coach Don Zimmer.

Don_Zimmer__Joe_Torre_.jpg

 

1958: Steve Howe is born. Howe was a lefty reliever for the Yanks from 1991 to 1996, but will probably always be best known for his record seven drug-related suspensions.  Howe signed three free agent contracts with the Yanks, and compiled a mark of 18-10 with 31 saves during his time with the team. He died in a car accident during the 2006 season. 

Howe.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/p

3/07 & 3/08 in Yankee History

On the 7th of March over the years…

1998: The Yankees sign Orlando ‘El Duque’ Hernandez to a 4-year‚ $6.6 million contract.

orlando_hernandez_studio_portrait_photofile.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/h/hernaor01.shtml

1981: Pee-Wee Wanninger, starting shortstop for the 1925 Yankees, dies at the age of 78. Lou Gehrig began his streak of 2,130 consecutive games with a pinch-hitting appearance for Wanninger on June 1, 1925.

Pee-Wee--Wanninger--New-York-AL--baseball--.jpg

http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/W/Pwannp101.htm

1942: The Yankees open the exhibition season by beating the Cardinals 3-2‚ with Tommy Henrich driving in all the New York runs.

tommy_henrich_autograph.jpg

…and on the 8th…

1999: Joe DiMaggio dies at the age of 84 following a long illness.

DiMaggio_plaque.jpg

1966: Casey Stengel is elected to the Hall of Fame by the Veterans’ Committee, who waive the normal 5-year waiting period, Stengel having retired only the previous year from managing the New York Mets.

Stengel_50.jpg

1947: In an exhibition game at Havana’s new Stadium del Cerro‚ the Dodgers‚ behind three pitchers‚ beat the Yankees in 10 innings 1-0. Carl Furillo scores on Pete Reiser’s double‚ and a single by George ‘Snuffy’ Stirnweiss in the 10th is the only Yankee hit. On hand to watch is Connie Zimmerman‚ an associate of mobster Lucky Luciano‚ and racing handicapper Memphis Engelberg. As SABR historian Burt Solomon writes‚ Durocher points out the men to sports writers Dick Young and Milt Gross‚ saying‚ “Look at that. If I had those guys in my box‚ I’d be kicked out of baseball. Are there two sets of rules? One applying to managers and one applying to club owners?” When asked if the two men are his guests‚ Yankee GM Larry MacPhail snaps‚ “What are you, the goddamned FBI?” MacPhail calls
Durocher a liar‚ and in a bizarre turn‚ later files charges against the manager with the commissioner’s office.

lucky_luciano_wanted_card-p137934460117340317qi0i_400.jpg

1939: ’60s Yankee ace Jim Bouton is born. Happy birthday to Mr. ‘Ball Four’!

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/b/boutoji01.shtml

1930: Babe Ruth signs a 2-year contract for $160‚000 with New York. At $80‚000 per year‚ he is the highest paid player in Major League history to date. When it is pointed out he is earning more money than the President of the United States‚ Ruth observes: “I had a better year than he did.” Ed Barrow‚ Yankee GM‚ assures posterity‚ “No one will ever be paid more than Ruth.”

Ruth_Hoover.jpg

Also on this day, Bob grim is born. Grim was AL Rookie of the Year in 1954, when he became only the second freshman Yankee pitcher to win 20 games.

bob_grim_autograph.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/g/grimbo01.shtm

1918: The Yankees buy first baseman George Burns‚ 37‚ from Detroit‚ then swap him to the A’s for another veteran, Ping Bodie. Burns will replace Stuffy McInnis, the last of the Connie Mack’s ‘$100‚000 infield‚’ who went to the Red Sox in January.

bodie80.jpg

3/05 & 3/06 in Yankee History

On the 5th of March over the years…

2009: It is a day that Joba Chamberlain would just as soon forget as the Yankees get their second [bad] 2009 taste of World Baseball Classic play in a loss to Team Canada. Joba allows a four-pitch walk, single, walk, walk, and walk before Jonathan Albaladejo crowns the six-run top of the first by allowing a two-run Matt Stairs double, a sac fly and a single. The scoring, and just about all of the offense, is over, and the Yanks fall 6-0.

Joba_Chamberlain_08.jpg

 

1973: Yankee teammates Fritz Peterson and Mike Kekich arrive at spring training and announce that they have swapped wives and families, including household pets.

Wife_swap.jpg

 

1966: Kevin Brown is born. Happy 46th to everyone’s favourite wall-punching pitcher!

kevin_brown-740551.jpg

 

1942: The Yankee Clipper comes in for criticism as the weekly entertainment newspaper Variety weighs in on ‘droopy drawers’ in baseball: «Joe DiMaggio and Carl Hubbell are the silliest looking pair we’ve seen. Way back in the days when the speed boys were stealing 40 to 90 bases a year‚ you’ll remember they used to roll their pants just below the knee. Now they’ve got ‘em almost to their shoes. The theory here is that the constriction inherent in the new style can slow a player a full stride getting to first».

Joe_DiMag.jpg

 

…and on the 6th…

1992: Yankee pitcher Pascual Perez is suspended for one year for violation of baseball’s drug policy. 

Pascual_Perez__90_Topps_-_Gold_Tooth.jpg

 

1986: Francisco Cervelli is born.  Happy birthday to the Italian Stallion!

francisco-cervelli.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/c/cervefr01.shtml

 

1985: Enos Slaughter is elected to the Hall of Fame by the Special Veterans Committee. Though remembered primarily for his year with the St. Louis Cardinals, Slaughter spent much of the latter part of his career with the Yankees, and was in left field when Don Larsen pitched his World Series perfect game. 

slaughter-enos-bat-hof-8x10.jpg

 

1977: Marcus Thames is born.  Happy 35th to ‘Tiny Thames’!

marcus_thames.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/t/thamema01.shtml

 

1969: In seven spring training games, the designated hitter rule is used as an experiment for the first time. The Yankees’ John Orsino (a recent acquisition from the Senators who will not make the trip north with the club) is the first DPH (designated pinch hitter, as the position is referred to) to get a hit, a single in a contest with his former teammates at Washington’s camp in Pompano Beach, Florida. Orsino bats 6th and goes 1 for 4.

John Orsino (f).jpg

 

1965: Wally Schang, starting catcher for the first Yankee pennant-winning team (in 1921), dies at the age of 75.

WallySchangBW_tif.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/s/schanwa01.shtml

 

Passing on the same day, at the age of 85,  is Jimmy Austin, starting third baseman for the New York Highlanders in 1909 and 1910,

Jimmy_Austin_baseball_card.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/a/austiji01.shtml

 

1922: Babe Ruth signs for 3 years at $52‚000 a year. The next highest-paid Yankee player is Frank ‘Home Run’ Baker, at $16‚000 annually.

Babe_Ruth2.jpg

3/03 & 3/04 in Yankee History

On the 3rd of March down through the years…

2009: In a one-day anomaly, Derek Jeter appears as a visiting player at George M. Steinbrenner Field, now renamed from Legends Field. In the lineup for World Baseball Classic Team USA, the Yankee captain singles in two runs off Phil Hughes, has a second hit and scores a run. Taking over first base in the sixth, new Yankee Nick Swisher has a two-run single, but the USA team ride a four-run 6th sixth off young Eric Hacker to a 6-5 victory. Future Yankee Curtis Granderson is hit by a Hughes pitch and scores a run.

derekjeter.jpg

 

1998: Former Yankee GM and American league President Lee MacPhail is elected to the Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee

lee_macphail.jpg

 

1997: For the negotiating rights to Hideki Irabu, the Yankees offer the Padres a choice of one from a list of players: Brian Boehringer, David Weather‚ Chris Cumberland‚ Andy Fox and Matt Luke; also‚ one player from a list of five minor leaguers‚ plus $3 million. The Padres are talking to several other teams beside the Yankees.

Hideki Irabu.jpg

1946: The Yankees wind up an 11-game swing through the Panama Canal Zone with a 5-4 loss to the Canal Zone All-stars. Al Jarlett‚ slated for the PCL‚ goes the route in handing the Yankees their 3rd loss. The team leave for Florida tomorrow.

panama_canal_03.jpg

 

1927: Babe Ruth becomes the highest paid player in the Major Leagues by signing for a reported $70‚000 a year for 3 years.

RUPPERT-articleLarge.jpg

 

1926: Wally Pipp informs the Reds that he will not report unless the Yankees give him a portion of the $20‚000 sale price.

Pipp.jpg.gif

 

1872: Hall of Famer and early Yankee star Wee Willie Keeler is born.

Willie_Keeler.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/k/keelewi01.shtml

.

..and on the 4th…

2010: Roy Halladay and C.C. Sabathia spin two scoreless innings apiece in Clearwater on in what is announced as the 64th straight year the Phillies have held Spring Training in the city on Florida’s west coast. The home team push across a run in the 7th, but current Yankee uber-prospect Jesus Montero keys a two-run rally in the 9th inning with a leadoff single, with David Winfree and Jose Gil driving in runs. Unfortunately, however, lefty Wilkins Arias allows two hits sandwiched between a pop out and strike out, then gives up a deciding single for a 3-2 Phillies win.

cc-sabathia-yankees.jpg

 

1962: George Mogridge, the first Yankee pitcher to throw a no-hitter, dies at the age of 73.

Mogridge_George.gif

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/m/mogrige01.shtml

 

1913: The Yankees sail for Bermuda to begin spring training, making them the first Major League team to travel outside the US.

bermuda_map.gif

 

1897: Lefty O’Doul, who spent the first three years of his career  with the Yankees as a pitcher, is born.

OdoulLefty.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/o/o%27doule01.shtml

3/01 & 3/02 in Yankee History

Well, fellow Yankee fans, the weather conditions outside your windows may say otherwise, but spring is here, and the Bombers are on the field somewhere doing something, so it’s time for this nerdfest of a blog to bestir itself to life again. Since spring training tends to yield slow news-days, the posts will cover two days at a time during the month of March. So, put on your NYY caps, silence the dog with a juicy bone, and let’s begin!

On the 1st of March down through the years…

2008: A Spring Training game in Clearwater vs. the Phillies provides both teams with a less than pretty glance into the future of their pitching, as Shelly Duncan’s 1st inning  three-run home run off Adam Eaton gives the visiting Yanks the early lead, and Yankee righty Darrell Rasner struggles through a 26-pitch third frame in a 9-3 Bombers win. A-Rod and young catcher Jesus Montero also homer for New York,and Duncan collects 5 RBI. After the game, both Montero and fellow catching prospect Austin Romine will be reassigned to Minor League camp.

montero_t180.jpg

 

1996: The Yankees christen Legends Field‚ their new $30 million 31-acre complex near the
Tampa Airport. The field has the exact same dimensions as those of the stadium in the
Bronx. On hand to see Phil Rizzuto toss out the first ball are former Yanks Whitey Ford, Catfish Hunter, Ron Guidry and Chris Chambliss, who then watch the new Yankees beat the AL Champion Indians 5-2.

Legends_Field.jpg

1993: George Steinbrenner resumes his role as general partner of the Yankees following his suspension from baseball for conduct unbecoming an owner because of his dealings with Howard Spira, reportedly a former employee of Yankees outfielder Dave Winfield.
Winfield’s contract with New York required Steinbrenner to make a sizable annual contribution to the outfielder’s charitable foundation. Steinbrenner suspected the foundation was being badly run and had paid Spira for information that might have relived the Yankees’ owner of his obligation. Steinbrenner and Winfield eventually settle the dispute.

George_Steinbrenner_Note_To_Self.jpg

 

1988: For the first time since 1956, the Special Veterans Committee does not elect anyone to the Hall of Fame. Former Yankee players Phil Rizzuto, Joe Gordon and Leo Durocher (though the latter is considered chiefly for his later contributions elsewhere as a manager) are among the candidates passed over.

Rizzuto_52.jpg

 

1969: Mickey Mantle announces his retirement.

Mickey_Mantle.jpg

 

1947: New managers in training camps include Bucky Harris with the Yankees and Johnny Neun at Cincinnati. Neun had ended 1946 as manager of the Yankees after both Joe McCarthy and Bill Dickey had quit.

harrisbyp.jpg

 

1944: Late ’60s & early ’70s Yankee pitcher Ron Klimkowski is born.

Klim_3.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/k/klimkro01.shtml

 

…and on the 2nd…

2005: The Yankees open their spring campaign, but Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Bernie Williams and Johnny Damon would be playing just the one game in Tampa before heading to World Baseball Classic games elsewhere, Williams with Puerto Rico, and the other three with the U.S.A. team in Arizona. Jeter goes 1-for-3, A-Rod 0-for-3, and Williams and Damon 2-for-3, with the latter stroking hits his first two times up in Pinstripes. But after taking an early lead over the visiting Phillies, the Yanks fall  6-3 when southpaw Mike Myers struggles in his first ever Yankee outing, surrendering a three-run 7th inning.

Myers.jpg

 

2004: The Yankees sign free agent first baseman Travis Lee to a contract.

Lee1606A1.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/l/leetr01.shtml

1949: Joe DiMaggio leaves the Yankee camp to have an ailing right heel examined at Johns
Hopkins hospital. He is told that no surgery is needed and he returns to
Florida‚ but the heel will continue to bother him. The star is hitting
just 7-for-31 in the Grapefruit League.

Dimag.jpg

1943; Early Yankee second baseman Earle Gardner dies at the age of 59.

Earle_Gardner.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/g/gardnea01.shtml

1917: Jim Konstanty is born. Though remembered primarily for his years with the Phillies. the reliever contributed significantly to the Yankees’ 1955 pennant drive before being waived in early 1956 and picked up by the Cardinals, with whom he finished his career.

Konstanty.jpg

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/k/konstji01.shtml

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.