This Week in Yankees History
December 5th - December 11th
1871 - Former Yankees P Lewis “Snake” Wiltse (1902-1903) was born. He went 7-14 in 21 games for the Yankees.
1928 - Former Yankees minor league P Jack Urban was born. In 1949, the New York Yankees signed Jack Urban as an MLB amateur free agent. He never appeared with the Yankees at the MLB level. On April 5,1957, Jack was sent by the New York Yankees to the Kansas City A’s to complete an earlier deal made on February 19,1957. The Yankees sent a player to be named later, along with OF Irv Noren, INF Milt Graff, P Mickey McDermott, P Tom Morgan, P Rip Coleman, and INF Billy Hunter to the A’s for players to be named later, along with P Art Ditmar, P Bobby Shantz, P Jack McMahan, and INF Wayne Belardi. The Yankees would send P Jack Urban on April 5,1957 to the A’s to complete the trade. The Athletics would send INF Curt Roberts on April 4,1957. The A’s would send INF Clete Boyer on June 4,1957 to the Yankees to complete the trade. On April 8,1959, Jack was traded by the A’s back to the Yankees for P Mark Freeman. On May 12,1959, Jack was purchased by the St. Louis Cardinals from the Yankees. Despite of all of this MLB trade activity, Jack managed to have MLB career record of 15-15 in 69 games with the A’s and the Cardinals. His best MLB season was in 1957, posting a 7-4 record with the Kansas City A’s.
1958 - The Philadelphia Phillies, hoping to fill the National League void in New York City caused by departure of the New York Giants and Brooklyn Dodgers to California, drop any plans for 1959 regular season broadcasts into New York City after the New York Yankees threaten to broadcast their 1959 American League season games into Philadelphia TV market.
1959 - Representing MLB, the Yankees' AL All Star C and MVP Yogi Berra visits Italy to present baseball equipment and aid in the sport's development.
1964 - Former Yankees OF/DH Gary Roenicke (1986) was born. On December 12,1985, Gary was traded by the Baltimore Orioles with a player to be named later to the New York Yankees for P Rich Bordi and INF Rex Hudler. The Orioles would send Leo Hernandez on December 16,1985 to the Yankees to complete the trade. Gary would hit .265 in 69 games with the Yankees, before leaving the team for MLB free agency.
1974 - The New York Yankees obtained reserve INF Eddie Leon from the Chicago White Sox for reliever Cecil Upshaw. Ed would only appear in one game for the Yankees before being released by the team on May 5, 1975. Cecil Upshaw, who was obtained from the Cleveland Indians in the Chris Chambliss trade in 1974, was a major disappointment for the Yankees.
1984 - The Oakland A's send AL All Star base stealing OF Rickey Henderson and P Bert Bradley to the Yankees in exchange for P Jay Howell and P Jose Rijo, OF Stanley Javier, and minor leaguer pitchers Tim Birtsas and Eric Plunk.
1984 - The New York Yankees traded veteran C Rick Cerone to the Atlanta Braves for minor league P Brian Fisher. Rick had only played in 38 games for the 1984 Yankees hitting just .208. Brian Fisher would work out of the Yankees bullpen in 1985.
1996 - Two days after signing MLB free agent Catcher Joe Girardi, the New York Yankees send back-up C Jim Leyritz to the California Angels in exchange for minor leaguer players Ryan Kane and Jeremy Blevins. Jim Leyritz, the Yankee player with the longest tenure of five years, 126 days was vulnerable because of his $1.75 million yearly contract.
1996 - Former Yankees reserve OF Cliff Mapes (1948-1951) passed away (1922-1996). On November 1, 1946, Cliff Mapes was drafted by the New York Yankees from the Cleveland Indians organization in the 1946 MLB Rule 5 player draft. He was the last active Yankee player to wear Babe Ruth’s No. 3 Yankees uniform. Also he wore No. 7 during the 1951 AL season, the number that rookie OF Mickey Mantle would get after returning from Kansas City Blues (AAA). On July 31,1951, Cliff was purchased by the St. Louis Browns from the Yankees.
2001 - New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani announces he wants to complete new stadium deals for the Mets and Yankees before he leaves office at the end of the month. Before the September 11 attacks, which dramatically changed the city's financial stature, the mayor thought an arrangement in which the city, the state and the owners agreed to pay one-third of the cost of the new stadiums might complete the negotiations with the teams.
1873 - Former Yankees 3B and Manager Harry Wolverton (1912) was born. The New York Yankees would go 50-102 in 1912 under Harry’s leadership. Former Chicago Cubs great INF and MLB Manager Frank Chance would replace him in 1913. As a player, Harry appeared in 33 games for the 1912 Yankees, hitting .300.
1903 - Former Yankees Hall Of Fame 2B Tony “Poosh 'Em Up Tony” Lazzeri (1926-1937) was born (1903-1946). Tony Lazzeri set what were then organized baseball records with 60 HRs and 222 RBIs for the Salt Lake City Bees in 1925, not to mention a .355 batting average. On August 1,1925, Tony was traded by the Salt Lake City Bees (PCL) to the Yankees for players to be named later and $50,000. The Yankees would send in March of 1926, Mack Hillis, Frank Zoellers and Curt Fullerton to the Salt Lake City (PCL) to complete the trade. Tony had a lifetime BA of .293 with Yankees. He appeared in seven World Series hitting .262 with 4 HRs with 19 RBIs. His best Yankees season was in 1929, when he hit.354 with 18 HRs and 106 RBIs. Tony had seven 100 RBI Seasons: (1926-1927,1929-1930,1932-1933 and in 1936). He was on the 1st AL All Star team in 1933. On October 15,1937, Tony was released by the Yankees, upon his request to retire from MLB. Tony Lazzeri was elected to MLB’s Hall Of Fame in 1991.
1920 - Former Yankees reserve C Gus Niarhos (1946-1950) was born. In 1941, the New York Yankees signed Gus Niarhos, as an MLB amateur free agent. Gus played in 153 games for the Yankees, hitting .264. On June 27,1950, Gus was selected off waivers by the Chicago White Sox from the Yankees for $10,000. He was another one of the young Yankee catchers, who were blocked by the presence of Yogi Berra, starting behind home plate.
1945 - Former Yankees MLB 3B Coach Larry Bowa (2005-2007) was born. Larry Bowa left the New York Yankees after the 2007 AL season to join former Yankees Manager Joe Torre, who took over the Dodgers manager’s job.
1946 - The Yankees obtained 2B Ray Mack and C Sherman Lollar from the Cleveland Indians for P Al Gettel, P Gene Beardon and OF Hal Peck. Ray Mack would be sent to the Chicago White Sox during the 1947 AL season. In two seasons with the Yankees, Sherman Lollar would catch 19 games as a reserve catcher, before being sent to the St. Louis Browns in 1948.
1953 - Former Yankees OF/DH Gary Ward (1987-1989) was born. On December 24, 1986, Gary Ward was signed as a MLB free agent with the New York Yankees. During with his stay with the Yankees, Gary never hit like he had done with the Minnesota Twins earlier in his MLB career. On April 16,1989, Gary was released by the Yankees.
1968 - The New York Yankees obtained INF Nate Oliver from the San Francisco Giants for 3B Charlie Smith (A classic nothing for nothing trade that leaves nothing).
1971 - Former Yankees P Jose Contreras (2003-2004) was born in Cuba. In 2003, the New York Yankees signed Jose Contreras as an MLB amateur free agent. A former pitching star in Cuba, Jose never really felt comfortable with the Yankees. In 2003, he posted a 7-2 record for the team. In 2004, Jose was 8-5 with the Yankees, when he was traded in July to the Chicago White Sox for P Esteban Loaiza.
1973 - The New York Yankees purchased shortstop Jim Mason from the Texas Rangers for $100,000. Jim would hit .250 for the Yankees in 1975, before dropping off to .152 and .180, before being drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays from the Yankees as the 30th pick in the 1976 AL expansion team player draft (the Blue Jays and Mariners.)
1977 - Former Yankees reserve C Kevin Cash (2009) was born. On December 23, 2008, Kevin Cash was signed as a MLB Free Agent by the New York Yankees. He appeared in 10 games with the Yankees, hitting .231. On September 5,2009, Kevin was released by the New York Yankees.
1978 - Former Yankees reserve INF Chris Basask (2007) was born. Chris Basask appeared in five games as a reserve INF with the 2007 Yankees with no hits.
1992 - The New York Yankees traded minor league 1B J.T. Snow, Pitchers Russ Springer and Jerry Nielsen to the California Angels in exchange for P Jim Abbott.
1997 - Former Yankees OF Lou Clinton (1966-1967) passed away (1937-1997). On January 14, 1966, Lou was traded by the Cleveland Indians to the New York Yankees for C Doc Edwards. Lou hit .220 in 80 games in 1966. He appeared in only six games for the Yankees in 1967. Lou originally came up to the MLB with the Boston Red Sox.
2002 - In a cynical move‚ the New York Yankees offer the same two-year $4.6 million contract to three lefty relievers - Mike Stanton ‚ Mark Guthrie and Chris Hammond - and give each 15 minutes to decide. Hammond‚ 37‚ signs for $4.8 million over two years. Chris Hammond‚ out of baseball for two years‚ had a remarkable season in 2002‚ posting a 0.95 ERA in 63 games and did not allow an earned run after June 28. He is the 3rd pitcher since 1900 to post a sub-one ERA while pitching 70+ innings. The veteran Mike Stanton doesn't bother to respond to the step-child treatment and‚ preferring to remain in the New York area‚ will sign a three-year contract with the New York Mets in a week.
1930 - Former Yankees P Mark Freeman (1959) was born. In 1952, the New York Yankees signed Mark as an MLB amateur free agent. On April 8, 1959, Mark was traded by the Yankees to the Kansas City A’s for P Jack Urban. On May 8, 1959, Mark Freeman was returned to the Yankees by the A’s. He appeared in only 1 game with no record with the Yankees during the 1959 AL season. On May 19,1960, Mark was traded by the Yankees to the Chicago Cubs for P Art Ceccarelli.
1930 - Former Yankees minor league C Hal Smith was born. In 1949, the New York Yankees signed Hal Smith. He was involved in a huge trade after the 1954 American League season whereby 17 players changed teams between the Yankees and Orioles. He came to the majors 1st in 1955 with the Orioles in their second year in Baltimore. Smith immediately became a regular as a rookie, appearing in 135 games, while hitting .271 on a team that hit .240. In August 1956, he was traded to the Kansas City A’s, and the following year had one of his best MLB seasons with the bat, hitting .303 and slugging .483, 101 points above the league slugging average. The following two years, Smith played a lot of 3B, as the A's tried to keep his bat in the lineup when he wasn't catching. He was traded after 1959 AL season to the Pittsburgh Pirates, in time to be part of their 1960 World Series team. During the regular season he slugged .508, and during the World Series he hit a 3-run HR in Game 7 that keyed a Pirates comeback in the 8th inning. Smith's HR put the Pirates ahead by the score of 9-7 before the Yankees tied the game with 2 runs in the 9th inning. Bill Mazeroski’s memorable HR in the bottom of the 9th inning won the 1960 World Series for the Pirates. In 1962, Hal became one of the original Houston Colt .45s. In 1964 he finished out his MLB career on the 1964 Cincinnati Reds.
1933 - The New York Yankees released 2 MLB veteran players: P Wilcy Moore and 2B Roy Schalk.
1939 - Former New York Yankees 1B Lou Gehrig‚ age 36‚ is unanimously elected to Baseball's Hall of Fame‚ the sole choice this year. The five-year waiting period is waived for the "Iron Horse", who dying from ALS disease.
1942 - Former Yankees OF/DH Alex “The Bull” Johnson (1974-1975) was born. Outside of hitting a game winning grand slam HR at his 1st Yankee at bat in 1974, Alex performance with the New York Yankees was a major disappointment, hitting only .216 in 1974 and .261 in 1975. On September 4,1975, Alex was released by the Yankees.
1949 - The New York Yankees released veteran OF Charlie “King Kong” Keller (1939-1949,1952). Charlie Keller finishes his New York Yankees career with a lifetime BA of .286 with 184 HRs with 723 RBIs in 1,066 games. He was named to the AL All Star team four times. Charlie appeared in four World Series with the Yankees, hitting .306 with 5 HRs and 18 RBIs. Charlie would sign with the Detroit Tigers for the 1950 AL season, playing as a part–time OF and pinch hitter. He would hit .316. In 1951, he hit .258 for the Tigers. Charlie has plagued by back problems at the end of his fine MLB career. He rejoined the Yankees in September of 1952, appearing in only 1 game before retiring from MLB.
1950 - Former Yankees OF Rich Coggins (1975-1976) was born. On June 20, 1975, Rich Coggins was purchased by the New York Yankees from the Montreal Expos. Rich didn’t hit much during his stay with the Yankees. On May 18,1976, Rich was traded by the Yankees along with P Ken Brett to the Chicago White Sox for OF /DH Carlos May.
1957 - The Associated Press votes Tony Kubek of the New York Yankees as the American League Rookie of the Year. Frank Malzone of the Boston Red Sox‚ who was declared ineligible‚ receives one vote. Malzone‚ with better offensive numbers‚ will later claim that he was robbed by New York writers‚ when the BBWAA changes the maximum number of at-bats to maintain rookie eligibility during the season‚ thus excluding him.
1962 - Former Yankees P Bobo Newsome (1947) passed away. On July 11, 1947, Bobo Newsome was purchased by the New York Yankees from the Washington Senators. Bob went 7-5 in 17 games with 1 save in 1947. On February 6,1948, he was released by the Yankees.
1967 - The Atlanta Braves traded INF Bobby Cox to the New York Yankees for P Dale Roberts and C Bob Tillman. Dale Roberts had appeared in two games with the 1967 Yankees with no record. Bob Tillman was a reserve catcher, who hit .254 in 22 games for the Yankees. Bobby Cox would appear in 220 games as an infielder for the Yankees, hitting just .225. Later he would become a 3B MLB coach with the Yankees, then moving on to managing the Toronto Blue Jays before moving to the Atlanta Braves. Bobby retired as manager of the Atlanta Braves from MLB this season.
1967 - Former Yankees AL All Star 1B Tino Martinez (1996-2001, 2005) was born. On December 7, 1995, Tino was traded by the Seattle Mariners along with pitchers Jim Mecir and Jeff Nelson to the New York Yankees for INF Russ Davis and P Sterling Hitchcock. Coming to the Yankees, he was replacing All Star Don Mattingly at 1st base. His best Yankees season was in 1997, when Tino hit .296, 44 HRs with 141 RBIs. Tino played in 5 World Series with the Yankees, hitting .268, 3 HRs with 14 RBIs. In 2001, he left the Yankees as a MLB free agent to sign with the St. Louis Cardinals. On January 1, 2005, Tino was signed as a MLB free agent with the Yankees. He hit .241,17 HRs, with 49 RBIs in 131 games, before retiring as a MLB active player.
1969 - Former Yankees P/OF Lefty O’Doul (1919-1922) passed away. Lefty O’Doul appeared in 40 games as an outfielder for the New York Yankees hitting .243. Also Lefty O’Doul appeared in 11 games, as a pitcher for the Yankees with no record. On July 23, 1922, Lefty was traded by the Yankees along with OF Chick Fewster, OF Elmer Miller, INF Johnny Mitchell, and $50,000 to the Boston Red Sox for veteran 3B Joe Dugan and OF Elmer Smith. Lefty would switch from pitching to hitting in the National League. He would become a great hitter in NL, finishing with a lifetime MLB BA of .346, as an outfielder. He was a longtime manager in the Pacific Coast League, with the San Francisco Seals (1935-1951), the San Diego Padres (1952-1954), the Oakland Oaks (1955), the Vancouver Mounties (1956), and the Seattle Rainiers (1957). He compiled a manager record of 2,094-1,970 over 23 seasons in the minor leagues. He is a member of the Pacific Coast League Hall of Fame.
1973 - The New York Yankees obtained OF/DH/1B Lou Piniella and P Ken Wright from the Kansas City Royals for veteran P Lindy McDaniel. Lou Piniella would become one of the key players of the great New York Yankees teams of the late 1970’s. Lindy McDaniel was at the end of his fine MLB career.
1973 - The New York Yankees purchased C Bill Sudakis from the Texas Rangers for $40,000. Bill would hit .232 in 89 games for the Yankees in 1973.
1976 - Former Yankees minor league INF Kevin Hooper (2004) was born. On May 26, 2004, Kevin was selected off of waivers by the New York Yankees from the Florida Marlins. Kevin didn’t play for the Yankees at MLB level. On August 6, 2004, Kevin, who was playing at Columbus (AAA) was released by the Yankees.
1976 - Former Yankees P Duke Maas (1958-1961) passed away. (1929-1976) Duke Maas was originally came up to the MLB with the Detroit Tigers, but he was traded to the Kansas City A’s. On June 15, 1958, Duke was traded by the A’s along with veteran P Virgil Trucks to the New York Yankees for P Bob Grim and OF Harry “Suitcase” Simpson. He would go 26-12 in 96 games with the Yankees. His best Yankees season was in 1959, when he posted a 14-8 mark. He appeared in two World Series games for the Yankees pitching in relief, in 1958 (Braves) and 1960 Pirates). The Yankees lost him to the LA Angels in the 1960 AL Expansion Player Draft in December of 1960. On April 4, 1961, Duke was traded back by the Angels to the Yankees for reserve INF Fritz Brickell. Duke would only pitch in one-game for the Yankees, before major arm problems shut him down for the rest of 1961 AL season. He never pitched in MLB again. Duke Maas finished his MLB pitching career with a 45-44 record with a 4.19 ERA. He passed away at the age of 45 in 1976.
1983 - The California Angels traded veteran shortstop Tim Foli Angels to the New York Yankees for P Curt Kaufman and cash. On July 10, 1979, Kurt was signed by the Yankees as an MLB amateur free agent. Kaufman had a 1-0 record in 11 games for the Yankees (1982-1983). Tim Foli would hit .262 in 61 games for the 1984 Yankees.
1983 - The Kansas City Royals trade P Mike Armstrong and minor league C Duane Dewey to the New York Yankees for slugger 1B Steve Balboni and P Roger Erickson.
1995 - 1B Tino Martinez was traded by the Seattle Mariners along with pitchers Jim Mecir and Jeff Nelson to the New York Yankees for INF Russ Davis and P Sterling Hitchcock. Coming to the Yankees, Tino was replacing All Star Don Mattingly at 1B, who had retired from MLB, because of continuing back problems.
2000 - The New York Yankees signed veteran MLB starter Dwight Gooden and reserve INF Luis Sojo as MLB free agents. Doc Gooden would go 4-2 in 18 games for the 2000 Yankees. Luis Sojo will appear in 34 games, hitting .288 for the Yankees. He will hit .286 in 4 games of the 2000 World Series against the New York Mets.
2001 - The New York Yankees traded veteran OF Dave Justice to the New York Mets for 3B/1B Robin Ventura. Robin will hit .249 in 230 games for the Yankees before being traded on July 31, 2003, by the Yankees to the Dodgers for minor league players: OF Bubba Crosby and P Scott Proctor.
2002 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent reserve C Chris Widger. Chris would appear in 21 games for the 2002 Yankees, hitting .297.
2003 - Reliever Gabe White was signed as a MLB free agent with the New York Yankees. Gabe went 2-2 in 36 games for the Yankees during the 2003-2004 AL seasons. On June 18,2004, the Yankees traded Gabe to the Cincinnati Reds for minor league P Charlie Manning and cash.
2006 - The New York Yankees drafted 1B Josh Phelps from the Baltimore Orioles organization in the 2006 MLB Rule 5 player draft. Josh will hit .263 in 36 games for the 2007 Yankees, before being picked up on waivers by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
2007 - New York Yankees reserve 1B/OF/DH Andy Phillips was granted MLB free agency. On June 2, 1999, Andy was drafted by the New York Yankees in the 7th round of the 1999 MLB amateur player draft. Andy appeared in 203 games for the Yankees, hitting .253.
2009 - The 2009 MLB Winter Meetings start slowly in Indianapolis, IN, with the only deals announced on the first day being SS Adam Everett re-signing with the Detroit Tigers for one year, and the Washington Nationals acquiring reliever Brian Bruney from the New York Yankees for a player to be named later.
1874 - Former Yankees C/1B Joseph Connor (1905) was born. In September of 1905, Joe was loaned to the New York Highlanders by Newark (Eastern League) He appeared in 8 games for the 1905 Yankees, hitting .227.
1879 - Former Yankees 3B James “Jim” Austin (1909-1910) was born. On September 1, 1908, Jim was drafted by the Highlanders from Omaha (Western) in the 1908 MLB Rule 5 player draft. He appeared in 269 games for the Yankees, hitting .224. On February 11,1911, Jim was traded by the Yankees along with 2B Frank LaPorte to the St. Louis Browns for 3B Roy Hartzell and cash.
1880 - Former Yankees OF/3B Jack “Bullet Jack” Thoney (1904) was born. On May 8, 1904, he was purchased by the New York Highlanders from the Washington Senators. He appeared in 36 games, hitting just .188 for the Yankees
1939 - At the December meeting of both MLB leagues in Cincinnati, Judge Landis votes against all amendments favorable to farm systems. The Rules committee, with an eye towards rising declining batting averages, votes to restore the “sacrifice fly” for the 1940 MLB season. Seven American League owners push through a new rule barring the AL champion from making any trades within the league. This rule was clearly aimed at the New York Yankees, winners of the last four World Series; the National League owners decline to vote it for their league.
1941 - Former Yankees reserve INF Ed Brinkman (1975) was born. Ed Brinkman appeared in 44 games with the New York Yankees hitting only .175 during the 1975 AL season, before retiring as an active MLB player.
1950 - Former Yankees INF Tim Foli (1984) was born. On December 7 1983, Tim was traded by the California Angels to the New York Yankees for P Curt Kaufman and cash. Tim hit .262 in 61 games for the Yankees in 1984. On December 20, 1984, the Yankees traded Tim along with OF Steve Kemp and cash to the Pittsburgh Pirates for INF Dale Berra, P Alfonso Pulido, and minor league OF Jay Buhner.
1966 - Five years after breaking Babe Ruth's single MLB season HR record, the New York Yankees traded former AL MVP OF Roger Maris to the St. Louis Cardinals for journeyman 3B Charlie Smith. The trade was a salary dump made by CBS front office management. Roger Maris wanted to retire as a New York Yankee, but the trade made him want to continue to play for the next 2 seasons, with Roger going to the World Series with the Cardinals twice, while the Yankees dropped to the AL cellar.
1968 - Former Yankees P Mike “Moose” Mussina (2001-2008) was born. On November 30, 2000, Mike Mussina was signed as a MLB free agent with the New York Yankees. Mike finished the 2008 AL season with 20 victories for the 1st time in his 18 year MLB pitching career. Also he won the 2008 AL Golden Glove award for a pitcher, his 3rd was a Yankees, winning others in 2001-2003. Mike had a 108-72 record in 249 games with the Yankees. In two World Series with the New York Yankees, Mike posted a 1-2 record. In ALCS, Mike went 4-5 for the Yankees. Mike announced his retirement from MLB on November 20, 2008.
1978 - Former Yankees reserve OF Nick “Tomato Face” Cullop (1926) passed away. Nick Cullop appeared in two games with the 1926 New York Yankees, hitting .500. On October 19, 1926, Nick Cullop was sent by the Yankees to the Washington Senators to complete an earlier deal made on August 27,1926. The Yankees sent players to be named later to the Senators for veteran starter Dutch Ruether. Dutch went 12-7 for the 1927 Yankees in his last season as a MLB player.
1983 - The American League club owners elected Dr. Robert “Bobby” Brown as President of the AL. He would hold the position from 1984-1994. Bobby Brown, who played 3B for the New York Yankees (1946-1954), before embarking on a successful medical career, as a heart specialist. Bobby played 548 regular-season games for the Yankees, with a lifetime BA of .279 with 22 HRs. In addition, he appeared in four World Series (1947,1949-1951) for the Yankees, batting .439 in 17 games, while participating in four World Championships. Also Bobby served 1½ years in the military during the Korean War.
1982 - Current Yankees P Alfredo Aceves (2008-2010) was born. Alfredo went 1-0 in 6 games with a 2.40 ERA. He had originally signed with the Blue Jays in 2001. The Yankees signed him as a free agent from the Mexican professional baseball leagues. In 2009, Al went 10-1 in 43 games with 1 save for the Yankees. Al missed most of the 2010 AL season due to back problems.
1985 - Former Yankees P (1950) and Yankees MLB scout Dave Madison (1956-1958) passed away (1928-1985). The New York Yankees signed Dave Madison as an MLB amateur free agent in 1947. Dave Madison appeared in one game with the 1950 Yankees with no record. On April 7,1952, Dave was purchased by the St. Louis Browns from the Yankees.
1988 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free-agent former San Diego Padres starter Andy Hawkins (1988-1989). Andy went 20-19 for the Yankees before being released on May 9,1991.
1998 - The New York Yankees traded minor league OF Chris Singleton to the Chicago White Sox for a player to be named later. The White Sox would send minor league player Rich Pratt on January 10,1999 to the Yankees to complete the trade. Chris Singleton had been obtained by the New York Yankees in the Charlie Hayes trade with the San Francisco Giants. He had never played for the Yankees at the MLB level.
2004 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent reliever Steve Karsay to a four-year contract. Steve went 6-4 in 91 games with 12 saves, before being released by the Yankees on May 3,2005. His best Yankees season was in 2004, going 6-4 with 12 saves in 78 games. After that 2004 AL season, he had problems with arm injuries.
2005 - The New York Yankees traded veteran INF/OF Tony Womack to the Cincinnati Reds for minor league players Ben Himes and Kevin Howard. Womack had appeared in 108 games for the 2005 Yankees, hitting just .249. Both players received by the Yankees, only played in the Yankees farm system for 2006 season then were released.
2006 - The New York Yankees signed veteran starter Andy Pettitte as a MLB free agent. Since returning to the Yankees in 2007, Andy has posted a 43-31 record.
2008 - Former New York Yankees 2B Joe “Flash” Gordon becomes the 1st player elected to the Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee since it was reconstituted. It had been seven years since Pirates 2B Bill Mazeroski had been the most recent pick by the Committee. The new Committee had been criticized for not enshrining anyone in their 1st elections. Joe “Flash” Gordon had won the 1942 American League Most Valuable Player Award with the New York Yankees. Also he played for the Cleveland Indians from 1947-1950. Later he became a MLB manager with the Cleveland Indians, Detroit Tigers, Kansas City A’s and Kansas City Royals.
2009 - The first blockbuster deal of the 2009 MLB winter meetings is a three-team effort: the New York Yankees receive CF Curtis Granderson, the Arizona Diamondbacks get P Ian Kennedy and Edwin Jackson, and the Detroit Tigers obtain Pitchers Max Scherzer, Daniel Schlereth and Phil Coke and OF prospect Austin Jackson.
1902 - The American League announces purchase of grounds for a stadium in New York City. The next day the National League declares its readiness to make peace with the rival American League.
1923 - Traveling to Chicago for the MLB meetings, Wild Bill Donovan, New Haven manager is killed in a train wreck. Donovan was a pitcher for Detroit Tigers and MLB manager for the New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies. New Haven team president George Weiss had swapped berths with Donovan and escapes with a minor injury. Phillies owner William F. Baker is also on the train, but he is unhurt. George Weiss would later become the New York Yankees General Manager in 1949, holding the position until October of 1960. Under Yankees GM Ed Barrow, George Weiss will run the New York Yankees farm system. Wild Bill Donovan had managed the New York Yankees from 1915-1917.
1928 - Former Yankees reserve INF Joe “Oats” DeMaestri (1960-1961) was born. On December 11, 1959, Joe DeMaestri was part of the trade that sent OF Roger Maris and 1B Kent Hadley to the New York Yankees for P Don Larsen, OF Hank Bauer, OF/1BNorm Siebern and 1B/OF Marv Throneberry, who were sent to the Kansas City A’s. The Boston Red Sox originally signed Joe. He played for the Chicago White Sox, St. Louis Browns before joining the Philadelphia A’s. In 1957, Joe was with the Kansas City A’s and was named the starting shortstop for the American league All Star team. In 1960, Joe got into only 49 games and hit .229, playing as a reserve for Tony Kubek. In game 2 of the 1960 World Series against the Pittsburgh Pirates, Joe singled off the bench and scored a run in the Yankees' 16-3 rout over the Pirates. In game 7, Joe replaced Tony Kubek at shortstop in the 8th inning after Tony was hit in the throat by a ground ball of the bat of Pirates CF Bill Virdon. The 1961 American League season would be Joe DeMaestri final year in MLB. In his backup role, he appeared in only 30 games and hit for the lowest batting average of his MLB career, a docile .146 in 41 at-bats. However he was around for one of baseball's most historic moments on October 1, 1961, when Roger Maris hit his 61st HR of the season to break Babe Ruth's single-season record of 60. "Oats", along with Tony Kubek and Bill Skowron pushed Roger Maris out of the New York Yankees dugout to make a curtain call, which at that time was an unusual practice.
1946 - Former Yankees reserve OF Rich Bladt (1975) was born. On January 6, 1970, Rich was sent by the Chicago Cubs to the New York Yankees to complete an earlier deal made on September 11, 1969. The Cubs sent a player to be named later, Terry Bongiovanni (minors), and cash to the Yankees for veteran OF Jimmie Hall. The Cubs would send OF Rick Bladt on January 6,1970 to Yankees to complete the trade. Rich hit .222 in 52 games as a reserve OF in 1975. On January 20, 1977, Rich was traded by the Yankees along with OF Elliott Maddox to the Baltimore Orioles for veteran OF Paul Blair.
1948 - Former Yankees P George "Doc" Medich (1972-1975) was born. The New York Yankees in the 30th round of the 1970 MLB amateur player draft picked hurler George Medich. “Doc” will post a 49-40 record in 111 games, with the Yankees. The 1974 American League season will be his best Yankees season, when George posted a 19-15 mark. Doc was traded by the New York Yankees to the Pittsburgh Pirates in the winter of 1975 for P Ken Brett, P Dock Ellis, and rookie 2B Willie Randolph.
1965 - While giving a speech in Columbus, MO, Branch Rickey collapses and dies a few days short of his 84th birthday. A MLB player, and manager, an extraordinary judge of baseball talent, and a shrewd trader, he became perhaps the game's most influential executive. He was the creator of the concept for a farm system for MLB teams, while running the Cardinals. Rickey was the Dodgers baseball executive, who was responsible for bring Jackie Robinson to MLB in 1947. As a former MLB catcher, Branch played for the New York Yankees in 1907, hitting just .182 in 52 games playing with a bad shoulder.
1965 - Former Yankees P Joe Ausanio (1994-1995) was born. On December 13, 1993, Joe Ausanio was drafted by the New York Yankees from the Montreal Expos in the 1993 MLB minor league player draft. Joe went 4-1 in 41 games for the Yankees.
1970 - Former Yankees reserve OF Tony Tarasco (1999) was born. Tony Tarasco appeared in 14 games, hitting .161 for the 1999 Yankees. Tony Tarasco is most famous for leaping to catch a Derek Jeter fly ball at the Yankee Stadium wall in the 1996 ALCS, when Jeffrey Maier hauled the ball over the fence for a HR. He was playing for the Baltimore Orioles at the time.
1977 - The New York Yankees signed free agent reliever Rawley Eastwick for more than 1 million dollars. Shane Rawley and Yankees Manager Billy Martin didn't get along, so by June of 1978, he was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies for OF Jay Johnstone and minor league OF Bobby Brown. The free agent signing didn’t make much sense since the Yankees already had Sparky Lyle and Rich Gossage in their bullpen.
1981 - One day after announcing that Manager Bob Lemon will return for the 1982 AL season, the New York Yankees announce that former manager Gene Michael, whom Bob Lemon replaced on September 6th, will return as manager for the 1983 AL season. They won't wait that long, as Bob Lemon will give way to Gene Michael after only 14 games.
1982 - In what will turn out to be a pair of unwise deals; the New York Yankees signed MLB free agent OF Steve Kemp to a five-year contract. Then they traded OF Dave Collins, P Mike Morgan, and 19-year old minor league 1B Fred McGriff to the Toronto Blue Jays for P Dale Murray and minor leaguer OF Tom Dodd.
1988 - The New York Yankees signed a 12-year television contract with the Madison Square Garden Cable Network.
1993 - The New York Yankees traded INF Spike Owen and cash to the California Angels for minor league player Jose Musset.
1924 - The New York Yankees obtained INF/OF Howard Shanks from the Boston Red Sox for INF Mike McNally. Howard appeared in 66 games, hitting .258 for the Yankees.
1930 - The New York Yankees purchased veteran C Ralph “Cy” Perkins from the Philadelphia A’s. Cy appeared in 16 games for the Yankees, hitting .255. In 1932-1933, Cy was a MLB coach for the Yankees. Also he was a MLB coach with the Detroit Tigers and the Philadelphia Phillies.
1940 - In Chicago, a curious rule that was designed to "break up the Yankees" is continued by the American League, a rule which prohibits the team winning the championship from trading with any other AL club. The rule was voted in at the 1939 December league winter meetings by the 7 other AL owners after the Yankees had won 4 straight World Series. The major and minor leagues agree that players taken into the military will not count against their team roster limits.
1946 - The New York Yankees signed veteran 1B George Mc Quinn, who was recently released by the Philadelphia A's. The 36-year-old 1B has two good seasons left in him. He will hit .304 with 80 RBIs for the 1947 Yankees.
1947 - The Cleveland Indians send P Red Embree to the New York Yankees for OF Allie Clark. The Yankees almost took Red Embree instead of starter Allie Reynolds in a trade a year ago, that involved former American League 1942 Most Valuable Player 2B Joe “Flash” Gordon.
1958 - Former Yankees 3B Alvin “Cozy’ Dolan (1911-1912) passed away. He appeared in 37 games for the Yankees, hitting .256. On May 31,1912, Cozy was purchased by Rochester (International) from the Yankees.
1966 - The Pittsburgh Pirates traded long-time starter Bob Friend to the New York Yankees for P Pete Mikkelsen and cash. Bob Friend was over the hill; he would be sold to the New York Mets in June of 1967. A very bad trade for the Yankees made by the CBS controlled front office. Pete Mikkelsen would have 5 successful seasons in the National League, after leaving the New York Yankees.
1966 - The New York Yankees traded veteran reliever Pedro Ramos to the Philadelphia Phillies for P Joe Verbanic and cash. Ramos helped the Yankees win the 1964 American League pennant by going 1-0 in 13 games with 8 saves in September of 1964. He was acquired from the Cleveland Indians after September 1,1964, so he wasn’t allowed to play in the 1964 World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals. In 1965, he went 5-5 in 65 games with 19 saves. In 1966, Pedro slipped to a 3-9 mark in 52 games with 13 saves.
1972 - The MLB adopts the “save” as an official statistic. A pitcher shall be credited with a save if, when entering a game as a reliever, he finds the tying or winning run on base or at the plate, and he preserves the lead. Or he pitches 3 effective innings and preserves the lead.
1972 - The American League votes unanimously to adopt the designated-hitter rule for a 3-year experimental basis. The DH will replace the pitcher in the lineup unless otherwise noted before the start of the game. In the December 1975, meeting the AL will vote to permanently adopt the DH. The National League declines to go along with the AL.
1973 - The New York Yankees released veteran reserve INF Hal Lanier.
1988 - Former New York Yankees All Star 2B Free-agent Willie Randolph signs with the Dodgers. He will replace former All Star 2B Steve Sax in the Dodgers lineup, who had earlier this month signed with Randolph's former club, the New York Yankees.
1991 - Admitted gambler Howard Spira is sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison for attempting to extort $110,000 from New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner.
1992 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent starter Jimmy Key to a four-year contract. Jim will go 48-33 in 93 games with the Yankees. In 1993, he posted his best Yankees season going 18-6 in 34 games.
1997 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent DH/OF Chili Davis to a two-year contract. Chilli Davis would hit .280 in 181 games with the Yankees, before retiring from MLB.
1999 - New York Yankees Hall Of Fame slugger Babe Ruth is voted Player of the Century by an Associated Press panel. The Giants Hall Of Fame CF Willie Mays comes in second in the voting.
1999 - Former New York Yankees C MLB free agent Joe Girardi is signed by the Chicago Cubs to a three-year contract.
2008 - The New York Yankees reach an agreement with free agent hurler CC Sabathia for a seven-year, $161 million deal, a new record for a pitcher. Sabathia had gone 11-2 with a 1.65 ERA for the 2008 Milwaukee Brewers. He had won the 2007 American League Cy Young Award.
2009 - The 2009 MLB Rule 5 Player draft is held. The Washington Nationals select OF Jamie Hoffmann from the Dodgers with the first pick, but immediately send him to the New York Yankees to complete an earlier trade for P Brian Bruney.
1900 - Former Yankees reserve OF Roy Carlyle (1926) was born. On June 15, 1926, Roy Carlyle was selected off waivers by the New York Yankees from the Boston Red Sox. Roy appeared in 35 games for the 1926 Yankees, hitting .385
1923 - Considered a team troublemaker by New York Yankees Manager Miller Higgins, the Yankees sell starter Carl “Sub” Mays to the Cincinnati Reds for $85,000. The submariner hurler will win 20 for the Reds in 1924. Carl went 56-36 with the Yankees including a 20-9 season in 1923.
1924 - Former Yankees P Hal “Skinny” Brown (1962) was born. On September 7, 1962, Hal Brown was purchased by the New York Yankees from the Baltimore Orioles. He appeared in only 2 games for the Yankees, posting a 0-1 record. On April 21, 1963, Hal Brown was purchased by the Houston Colt .45's from the New York Yankees.
1926 - Former Yankees minor league P Johnny Grey was born. Before the start of 1950 MLB season, Johnny Gray was signed as an MLB amateur free agent by the New York Yankees. The 6'4" right-hander was assigned to the Amsterdam Rugmakers of the Canadian-American League, appeared in 19 games, won 10 and lost 4 with a 3.86 ERA. He would spend three more years in the Yankees minor league system (1951-1953). The Yankees would trade him in the Vic Power trade to the Philadelphia Athletics in the winter of 1953. He would reach the majors with them in 1954, their final season in Philadelphia with a record of 3-12. Also he would play with the Cleveland Indians and Philadelphia Phillies.
1930 - The BBWAA votes to continue the custom of selecting a Most Valuable Player Award for each league. Beginning in 1931 the annual vote of the BBWAA will designate a player for this honor in each league. Previous MVP winners will be able to repeat under the new rules, something that was prohibited by the American League in the 1920s.
1935 - The New York Yankees traded the hot-tempered P Johnny Allen to the Cleveland Indians for pitchers Monte Pearson and Steve Sundra, a minor leaguer. Pearson would go 63-27 including a 19-7 mark in 1936. He had a 4-0 World Series record, while Sundra went 21-11 over three seasons for the Yankees. Monte Pearson threw the 1st no-hitter at Yankee Stadium in 1938.
1936 - Former Yankees reserve C Doc Edwards (1965) was born. On May 3, 1965, Doc was traded by the Kansas City A’s to the New York Yankees for C/1B/OF Johnny Blanchard and P Rollie Sheldon. Doc appeared in 45 games for the 1965 Yankees hitting just .190. On January 14,1966, Doc was traded by the Yankees to the Cleveland Indians for OF Lou Clinton. After retiring as an active player, Doc was a minor league manager for the Yankees at West Haven (AA) in 1973-1974. He was the Cleveland Indians MLB manager (1986-1988).
1951 - All Star CF Joe DiMaggio officially retires as a member of the New York Yankees, finishing with 361 MLB career HRs with a MLB career BA of .325 after 13 seasons. His 56-game, consecutive-game hitting streak in 1941 will stand as one of the all-time best MLB achievements. Joe will be elected to Baseball’s Hall Of Fame in 1955.
1954 - Former Yankees P Bob Sykes was born. The New York Yankees were on the losing end of one of the worst deals in the 1980's. After the 1981 NL season, the St. Louis Cardinals traded P Bob Sykes to the Yankees for outfielder Willie McGee. McGee went on to be a huge contributor for the Cardinals the next several seasons, winning the 1985 National League Most Valuable Player award and making the NL All-Star team four times; Sykes never played in the majors again. The Cardinals would send replacement players to the Yankees for the injured Bob Sykes; INF Bobby Meacham and OF Stan Javier.
1956 - Long-time reserve C Charlie Silvera was traded by the New York Yankees along with cash and another player to be named to the Chicago Cubs for a player to be named later. The Cubs would send C Harry Chiti on December 14,1956 to the Yankees to complete the trade. Chiti never plays for the Yankees at the MLB level. He will be picked up by the Kansas City A’s in the 1956 Rule 5 Player Draft.
1959 - The Kansas City A's Owner Arnold Johnson gives the New York Yankees an early Christmas present, when he gift-wraps a young OF Roger Maris in pinstripes. The New York Yankees acquired the slugger in a seven-player deal that sends veterans P Don Larsen and RF Hank Bauer, young Yankees 1B/OF Marv Throneberry, and LF Norm Siebern to the A’s. It would be Yankees GM George Weiss, last major trade before leaving the team in October of 1960. Also the Yankees received veteran INF Joe DeMasteri and 1B/OF Kent Hadley in the Roger Maris trade. They would be reserve players for the 1960 Yankees bench.
1960 - Former Yankees P Paul Assenmacher (1993) was born. On July 30, 1993, Paul Assenmacher was traded as part of a three-team trade by the Chicago Cubs to the New York Yankees. The Yankees sent P John Habyan to the Kansas City Royals. The Kansas City Royals sent OF Karl Rhodes to the Chicago Cubs. Paul went 2-2 in 26 games for the 1993 Yankees. On March 21,1994, Paul was traded by the Yankees to the Chicago White Sox for P Brian Boehringer.
1973 - The New York Yankees released veteran OF Ron Swoboda. He had retired from MLB. Ron would become a sportscaster in New York City.
1975 - In a busy day of trading, the New York Yankees acquired hurlers Dock Ellis and Ken Brett, and 2B Willie Randolph from the Pittsburgh Pirates for Yankees starter George “Doc” Medich. In a separate deal with the California Angels, the team trades All Star OF Bobby Bonds for OF Mickey Rivers and P Ed Figueroa. Both trades bring the New York Yankees key players that will help them win the American League flags in 1976-1978, World Series Championships in 1977-1978.
1987 - In the 1st trade ever between the New York Yankees and New York Mets that involves a MLB player, the Mets send shortstop Rafael Santana and a minor leaguer to the Bronx for C Phil Lombardi and minor leaguers players: OF Darren Reed and P Steve Frey.
1995 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent INF Mariano Duncan to a two-year contract. Mario hit .292 in 159 games for the Yankees, before being traded on July 29, 1997, along with cash to the Toronto Blue Jays for minor league player Angel Ramirez.
1996 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent reliever Mike Stanton to a three-year contract. Mike would work out of the Yankees bullpen from 1997-2002, posting a 30-12 record with 15 saves in 428 games. On December 3,2004, the Mets traded Mike to the Yankees for P Felix Heredia. Mike had a 1-2 record in 28 games, before being released by the New York Yankees during the 2005 AL season.
2003 - Former New York Yankees starter Andy Pettitte inks a three-year; $31.5 million deal with his “hometown” Houston Astros. The 31 year old Texan, who compiled a 149-78 career record with a 3.94 ERA during his 9-year stint in pinstripes turned down better offers to stay with the New York Yankees or go to the American League East rival Boston Red Sox. He will join former Yankees teammate starter Roger Clements on the Houston Astros starting rotation.
(As always I'd like to thank Fw57Clipper51 for his great contribution.)