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History Highlights for August 16

Babe Ruth (1948) is the most famous Yankee player to have died on August 16, as he would be on any day he passed. He hit 661 home runs with 1,971 rbi’s for the Yanks from 1920-1934, numbers that jump to 714 and 2,213 when the 1914-1919 Red Sox years and the one with the Boston Braves in 1935 are included. Further embellishing his record as the best ballplayer ever is the 94-46-4 record he posted as a pitcher. The Bambino’s body was made available for viewing at Yankee Stadium where more than 100,000 fans paid their respects, an approach not likely to be repeated in this era. Continue reading

History Highlights for August 15

It was a very good thing that Freddy Garcia and three relievers pitched well enough for the Yankees to prevail 3-2 over the Rangers in new Yankee Stadium on August 15, 2012, because I may have stormed the Scoreboard otherwise. Once the Yanks had scored all their runs on Nick Swisher, Curtis Granderson, and Eric Chavez rbi’s in the bottom of the third, the board shared the fact that, after his awesome home-run-hitting display across the street in the 2008 Home Run Derby, Josh Hamilton had not yet hit one in the new place, a stat that remained true for all of six pitches. Hamilton would close the score to 3-2 with another long ball in the sixth, but Rafael Soriano struck him out in the ninth inning. Continue reading

History Highlights for August 13

Mickey Mantle died this day in 1995, and if that were not enough, long-time Hall of Fame shortstop and broadcaster Phil Rizzuto died August 13, 2007. Both he and The Mick played their entire careers here, with Mickey posting 536 (often tape-measure) home runs with 1,509 rbi’s from 1951-1968. The Scooter reached just 38 fences and drove in 563 runs from 1941-1956, and he managed one AL MVP to three by The Mick. But Phil’s long years in the broadcast booth endeared him to baseball fans everywhere. And it gets worse. Former super-successful Yankee General Manager George Weiss passed away on August 13, 1972. And Johnny Pesky, he of the “Pesky pole,” who played most of his 1942-1954 career in Boston, with 17 home runs and 404 rbi’s, died on this day in 2012. Continue reading

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