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History Highlights for February 2

February 2 is a great Baseball Hall of Fame day, and by logical extension it’s a great day in Yankee history too. To start with, Babe Ruth was inducted into the very first class this day in 1936, along with Ty Cobb, Honus Wagner, Christy Matthewson, and Walter Johnson. And Yankee pitching greats from both sides of the plate were voted into the Hall on February 2 also, with righty Waite Hoyt (in 1969) and Lefty Gomez (in 1972). Hoyt went 157-98 with 28 saves for the Bombers; Gomez 189-101. Also the Yankee Manager under whom the World Championship magic began received the honor on February 2 when Miller Huggins (12 seasons, six pennants, three titles) was tabbed posthumously in 1964. Continue reading

History Highlights for January 23

The Yanks last pulled off a big trade on January 23 way back in 1904, when they shipped pitchers “Long” Tom Hughes and Bill Wolfe to Washington for Al Orth, who was nicknamed “The Curveless Wonder.” Although Al only amassed 72 wins and 73 losses with the Yanks from 1904 through 1909, those numbers were negatively affected by his 16-34 mark on two bad teams in ’07 and ’08. In 1906, he led the American League with 27 wins, 36 complete games, and 339 innings pitched. Hughes had been a 7-11 bust in New York in 1903 after they had sent Jesse Tannehill to Boston for him, but the change of scenery to Washington did not help, as he compiled an 83-125 mark with the Senators by the end of the 1913 season. Wolfe only pitched one game in the bigs, which he lost for the 1902 Phillies. Continue reading

History Highlights for December 31

It was largely through the efforts of AL founder Ban Johnson that ownership of the Yankee franchise changed hands on December 31, 1914. Colonel Jacob Ruppert and Cap Huston paid Bill Devery and Frank Farrell $460,000 for it, and then built a winner. After the misstep of hiring Bill Donovan to manage the club (fifth-, fourth-, and sixth-place finishes in 1915-1917), Miller Huggins arrived behind the bench in 1918 and Babe Ruth on the bench two seasons later. The Yankees became the winning organization that inspires such deep feeling in fans of all stripes to this day. Continue reading

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