This Week in Yankees History
January 15th - January 21st
1890 - Former Yankees MLB Scout and Minor league Manager Johnny Nee was born (1890-1957). Johnny Nee was a major league baseball scout and a minor league player-manager. Nee, a young minor league infielder of 22 was chosen to skipper the Terre Haute team in 1912 as a player-manager. He served as a player-manager at many of his minor league stops including his last post as the leader of the Virginia League Kinston Eagles (1925-1926). During that final managerial season, one of his young charges was future Hall of Famer Rick Ferrell. Starting in 1927, Johnny Nee began a long career as a MLB scout for the New York Yankees. He was credited with discovering many future MLB players including Bill Dickey, Gene Bearden, Marv Breuer, Ben Chapman, Atley Donald, Tommy Henrich, Chink Outen, Billy Werber, Johnny Allen , Dixie Walker , Spud Chandler, Billy Hitchcock and Willie Jones. He left the Yankees for the Philadelphia Phillies in 1946. At the end of the 1949 NL season, Nee was named head of the Phillies minor league system.
1896 - Former Yankees P Michael Cantwell (1916) was born. Mike Cantwell appeared in one game with the Yankees in 1916.
1934 - New York Yankees slugger Babe Ruth signs a 1-year MLB contract worth $35,000. While the contract is considered a lucrative one for the times, it represents a pay cut of $17,000 for "The Babe".
1958 - The New York Yankees announced that 140 games would be televised on WPIX-TV this season. The broadcast deal is worth over one million dollars. Six days later, the Philadelphia Phillies agree to televise 78 games into the New York City area, which is without National League baseball for the 1st time since the National League’s inception in 1876. When the Yankees threaten to televise their games into the Philadelphia TV market, the Phillies quickly change their minds.
1947 - Former Yankees 1B/OF Tony Solaita (1968) was born (1946-1990). The New York Yankees signed Tony Solaita as an MLB amateur free agent in 1965. In 1968, he appeared in only one game for the Yankees, going 0 for 1. On February 28,1973, Tony was traded by the New York Yankees to the Pittsburgh Pirates for minor league 1B George Kopacz.
1956 - Former Yankees C and MLB Manager Jerry Narron (1979) was born. The New York Yankees in the 6th round of the 1974 MLB amateur player draft drafted Jerry Narron. In 1979, Jerry played in 61 games filling in for the late Thurman Munson, hitting just .161. On November 1,1979, Jerry was traded by the New York Yankees along with Pitchers Rick Anderson, Jim Beattie, and OF Juan Beniquez to the Seattle Mariners for OF Ruppert Jones and P Jim Lewis. As a MLB Manager, Jerry has managed the Texas Rangers and Cincinnati Reds.
1957 - Former Yankees P Don Cooper (1985) was born. The New York Yankees in the 17th round of the 1978 MLB amateur player draft drafted Don Cooper. On December 8,1980, Don was drafted by the Minnesota Twins from the New York Yankees organization in the 1980 MLB Rule 5 player draft. On March 13,1984, he was traded by the Toronto Blue Jays to the New York Yankees for minor league player Derwin McNealy. Don appeared in 7 games with no record in 1985 for the Yankees. He is currently the MLB pitching coach for the Chicago White Sox.
1960 - Former Yankees P Curt Brown (1984) was born. On December 19,1983, Curt Brown was traded by the California Angels to the New York Yankees for minor league P Mike Browning. Curt went 1-1 in 13 games for the 1984 Yankees.
1988 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent starter John “Candy Man” Candelaria. John will post a 13-7 mark with the Yankees in 1988. He was 3-3 in 1989, when he was traded to the Montreal Expos for INF Mike Blowers.
1998 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent All Star OF Tim Raines. Tim will hit .296 for the 1998 Yankees, before leaving the team for free agency. He signed with the Oakland A’s.
2003 - The New York Yankees traded veteran starter Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez to the Chicago White Sox for P Antonio Osuna and minor league player Delvis Lantigua.
2007 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent C Ben Davis. He would play for the Yankees at Scranton (AAA) in 2007, before being released by the team during spring training in 2008.
2008 - The New York Yankees signed the following free agents, most of them will be playing for Scranton (AAA): INF Bernie Castro, P Dan Giese, INF Nick Green, P Heath Phillips, INF Cody Ransom, P Darrell Rasner, P Scott Strickland and P Billy Traber.
2009 - Former Yankees Minor League Manager Tommy Jones passed away (1954-2009). Tommy Jones managed in the New York Yankees farm system at Albany-Colonie in the Eastern league AA level (1987-1988).
1957 - Former Yankees 1B/DH Steve “Bye-Bye” Balboni (1981-1983,1989-1990) was born. The New York Yankees in the 2nd round of the 1978 MLB amateur player draft drafted Steve Balboni. After seeing limited action with the Yankees, Steve Balboni was traded on December 8,1983, along with P Roger Erickson to the Kansas City Royals for P Mike Armstrong and minor league player Duane Dewey. On March 27,1989, Steve was traded by the Seattle Mariners to the Yankees for minor league P Dana Ridenour. He only hit .232 and .219 before being released by the Yankees in 1990.
1963 - Former Yankees P Tommy Thompson (1912) passed away (1889-1963). Tommy Thompson appeared in 7 games, posting a 0-2 record for the 1912 Yankees.
1966 - Former Yankees P Jack McDowell (1995) was born. On December 14, 1994, Jack McDowell was traded by the Chicago White Sox to the Yankees for a player to be named later (OF Lyle Mouton) and minor league player Keith Heberling. He went 15-10 in 30 games for the Yankees in 1995.
1968 - Former Yankees OF Liz Funk (1929) passed away (1904-1968). Liz Funk, born Elias Calvin Funk in Kansas in 1904, was at the University of Oklahoma during the years 1923-1928. A centerfielder by trade, he got into 1 game with the 1929 New York Yankees in April, spending most of the season in the Pacific Coast League, and then he became a regular with the 1930 Detroit Tigers. He was in the minors in 1931, and in early 1932 Louisville of the American Association traded him to the 1932 Chicago White Sox, where he became the regular centerfielder on a team that lost 102 games. In 1933 the White Sox kept manager Lew Fonseca but changed numerous players, including the entire outfield. Funk played his last major league game in May 1933.
1970 - Former Yankees P Ron Villone (2006-2007) was born. On November 16, 2005, Ron Villone was traded by the Florida Marlins to the New York Yankees for minor league player Ben Julianel. Ron went 3-3 in 107 games for the Yankees.
1974 - The BWAA selects former New York Yankees teammates Mickey Mantle and Whitey Ford to the Hall Of Fame. Mickey Mantle becomes only the seventh player to make it in his first try. His 536 MLB career HRs with the New York Yankees ranked second only to Babe Ruth and he played in more games (2,401) than any other Yankee player, including Lou Gehrig. Whitey Ford was arguably the greatest New York Yankees pitcher of all time, retiring with more wins (236), more innings pitched (3,171), more strikeouts (1,956), and more shutouts (45) than any pitcher in the club’s history.
1977 - Former Yankees P Colter Bean (2005-2007) was born. In 2000, the New York Yankees as an MLB amateur free agent signed hurler Colter Bean. He went 0-1 in 6 games for the Yankees.
1994 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent reliever Donnie Pall. Don went 1-2 in 26 games for the 1994 Yankees, before being released by the team.
2003 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent C John “Flash” Flaherty. He will make the team in Yankees spring training camp as the reserve catcher for the 2003 American League season, replacing Chris Wedger.
1915 - Former Yankees minor league manager MLB scout and MLB Manager Mayo Smith was born (1915-1977). For the 1949 baseball season, the New York Yankees hired him as a player-manager for the Amsterdam Rugmakers of the Canadian-American League (Class C league). Smith led by example, hitting .297 with 19 HRs and 116 RBIs in 119 games. Never known for his power, he lit up that lower circuit and was tied for 3rd in HRs and was 3rd in RBI’s despite missing 20 games. His team went 67-71-1 and finished in 5th place. The next year he batted .323 with 10 HRs and 53 RBI’s in only 66 games; the team finished in 4th place with a 72-65-1 record. They won in the 1st playoff round, but they lost in the finals. Smith would not play regularly again, getting into 1 game in 1952; he had completed his 2-year run as a player-manager. In 1951, Mayo Smith was promoted to the class B Piedmont League to manage the Norfolk Tars. He led the team to a title in 1951 - and again in 1952, when the team posted the second-best winning percentage (.727) in the history of the Piedmont League. He moved up another rung in the Yankees organization. Mayo managed in the AA Southern Association for 2 seasons, leading the Birmingham Barons. He was a MLB scout for the Yankees for seven years. He managed in the MLB with the Philadelphia Phillies (1955-1959), Cincinnati Reds (1959) and the Detroit Tigers (1966-1970), winning the 1968 AL pennant and the World Championship. He was named the 1968 AL Manager of the year.
1931 - Former Yankees Bench Coach, MLB player and longtime MLB Manager Don Zimmer was born. In 1949, the Brooklyn Dodgers signed shortstop Don Zimmer. After several seasons with the Dodgers as a reserve infielder, he was traded to the Chicago Cubs. Don appeared in 1955 and 1959 World Series with the Dodgers. Also he played for the 1962 New York Mets and Cincinnati Reds, Dodgers and the Washington Senators. He spent one season playing in Japan. He began his minor league manager career in 1967 working until 1970. In 1971, he became a MLB coach with the Montreal Expos, 1972, San Diego Padres, 1974-1976, Boston Red Sox, 1983 New York Yankees, 1984-1986 Chicago Cubs, 1987 San Francisco Giants, 1992 Boston Red Sox, 1993-1995 Colorado Rockies, and the 1996-2003 New York Yankees. He was a MLB Manager with the following teams: 1972-1973, San Diego Padres; 1976-1980, Boston Red Sox; 1981-1982, Texas Rangers; 1988-1991, Chicago Cubs. In 1989, Don won NL Division championship with the Cubs. He was named 1989 NL Manager of the Year. With the New York Yankees, he was Manager Joe Torre’s MLB bench coach. Since 2004, Don has worked as a special advisor for the Tampa Bay Rays.
1936 - The New York Yankees obtained P Irving “Bump” Hadley and OF Roy Johnson for Senators for P Jimmy DeShong and OF Jesse Hill.
1939 - The New York Yankees elected long time General Manager Ed Barrow as the club president. Edward Barrow replaces Owner Jacob Ruppert, who had died 4 days earlier. Barrow will remain as the New York Yankees president until 1945, when the team is bought by new owners Dan Topping, Larry Mc Phail and Del Webb from the Jacob Ruppert Estate.
1960 - Former Yankees DH/OF Chilli Davis (1998-1999) was born. Chilli Davis hit .291 and .261 for the New York Yankees before retiring from MLB, after the 1999 World Series.
1970 - MLB teams select a record 357 players in the January phase of the annual free-agent draft, including top pick Chris Chambliss by the Cleveland Indians, and Chris Speier. Fred Lynn, who was drafted by the New York Yankees in the 1st round, will not sign with the team.
1984 - The New York Yankees drafted P Tim Belcher in the 1st round (1st pick) of the 1984 MLB amateur player draft (Secondary Phase). In a Yankees front office paperwork mistake, the Yankees would lose Belcher to the Oakland A’s as a free agent compensation pick on February 8, 1984.
1989 - MLB Free agent OF/DH Claudell Washington leaves the New York Yankees to sign a 3-year contract with the California Angels.
2002 - The New York Yankees released reserve INF/OF Clay Bellinger. Despite his ability to play many positions on the field, Clay couldn’t hit for any kind of average.
2002 - The New York Yankees signed veteran MLB free agent starter David Wells. He will go 19-7 and 15-7 for the Yankees, before leaving the team for MLB free agency in the winter of 2003.
1903 - Former Yankees INF Clifford “Nolan“ Richardson (1935) was born (1903-1951). Nolan Richardson appeared in 12 games as a reserve INF for the 1935 Yankees, hitting .217. On November 5,1937, Nolan Richardson was purchased by the Baltimore Orioles (International League) from the New York Yankees. He was head baseball coach at the University of Georgia in 1951.
1954 - Former Yankees minor league P Scott McGregor (1975-1976) was born. Scott McGregor was drafted by the Yankees in the 1st round (14th pick) of the 1972 MLB amateur player draft. He never appeared with the club at the MLB level. On June 15,1976, Scott was traded by the New York Yankees along with C Rick Dempsey, pitchers Tippy Martinez, Rudy May, and Dave Pagan to the Baltimore Orioles for veteran pitchers Ken Holtzman, Doyle Alexander, Grant Jackson, C Ellie Hendricks and minor league OF Jimmy Freeman. Scott will have a MLB career record of 138-108 with the Baltimore Orioles (1976-1988).
1974 - Former Yankees P Pete Appleton (1933) passed away (1904-1974). Pete Appleton was with the New York Yankees in 1933, appearing in one game with no record, then he was sent back to Newark Bears (International League), He finally finished the rest of the 1933 baseball season with Baltimore Orioles of International League. After finishing as an active player Pete managed in the Washington Senators organization. Later he was a MLB scout for the Senators/Twins.
1888 - Former Yankees reserve OF Patsy Maloney (1912) was born (1888-1979). Pat Maloney appeared in only 25 games for the Yankees in 1912, just hitting .215.
1944 - Former Yankees minor league INF Chet Trail was born. Chet Trail was the only player ever who was on a postseason roster, but who never appeared in a regular MLB season or postseason game. This strange occurrence happened when the Yankees put him on their 25-man roster for the 1964 World Series. He was their 25th player during the AL season under a special 1964 rule permitting 1 bonus player to play in the minors, while being charged to the 25-man MLB roster. Commissioner Ford Frick ruled that Trail was eligible for the World Series roster, but he was not formally activated, and the Yankees played with 24 players during the 1964 World Series, which they lost to the St. Louis Cardinals in seven games. Chet Trail's minor league career lasted from 1963 to 1969. He spent all or part of every season from 1966-1969 in AAA. Chet Trail was traded by the Yankees to the Orioles to complete the Steve Barber trade. On July 4,1967, Steve Barber was traded by the Baltimore Orioles to the New York Yankees for players to be named later, 1B Ray “Buddy” Baker and cash. The Yankees sent 2 minor league players: INF Chet Trail and OF Joe Brady on December 15,1967 to the Orioles to complete the trade.
1971 - Former Yankees P Jeff Juden (1999) was born. Jeff Juden appeared in 2 games for the New York Yankees during the 1999 American League season, posting a 0-2 record.
1972 - The New York Yankees obtained P Fred Beene (1972-1974) from the Baltimore Orioles. Fred would go 7-3 in 54 games with 5 saves before being sent to the Cleveland Indians in the Chris Chambliss trade during the 1974 American League season.
1972 - The BWAA elects Dodgers P Sandy Koufax (344 votes), Yankees C Yogi Berra (339 votes), and P Early Wynn (301 votes) to the Hall Of Fame. One year earlier, the BWAA had failed to elect anyone to the Hall of Fame. The Dodgers Ace Sandy Koufax makes it in his 1st try and, at age of 36, is the youngest honoree in Hall Of Fame history.
1972 - The New York Yankees acquired veteran All Star OF Johnny Callison on a conditional basis from the Chicago Cubs. The Yankees will end up keeping him. They will complete the deal by shipping veteran reliever Jack Aker to the Cubs on May 17,1972. He will appear in 67 games for the Yankees, hitting .231.
1975 - Former Yankees 1B/DH Fernando Seguignol (2003) was born. Fernando Seguignol was 1st signed by the Yankees 10 days after his 18th birthday. He was assigned to the 1993 GCL Yankees and struggled, batting only .217 as an OF. In 1994, the teenager improved to .289, though he struck out 61 times in 266 AB’s. He led the NY-PA League with 9 triples that year. In 1995, he was traded to the Montreal Expos for P John Wetteland. In 2003, Fernando returned from Japan to play in the USA, signing with the Yankees. He was 5 for 7 in limited appearances with the Yankees. He was 5 for 13 with the Tampa Yankees. He spent most of 2003 season, producing at a .341 clip with 28 HRs in 402 AB’s for the Columbus Clippers (AAA). He led the International League in HRs and BA, led all of full-season MIL baseball in slugging percentage. He was named the DH on the International League All-Star team and won the league’s Most Valuable Player award. In 2004, he went back to play in Japan, where he is still active.
1987 - Former Yankees All Star OF (1934-1942) and MLB Executive George “Twinkletoes” Selkirk passed away (1908-1987).On November 4,1931, the New York Yankees purchased OF George Selkirk from Jersey City (International League. George Selkirk succeeded Babe Ruth as the Yankees right fielder, after Ruth was sent to the Boston Braves following the 1934 AL season. George played for nine seasons with the Yankees finishing with lifetime BA of .290. He was a member of American League All Star team twice (1936 and 1939). George hit .265 in six World Series. He served in the military during WWII. When he was release by the Yankees in May of 1946, he would become a minor league manager. During the 1957-1958 AL seasons, he worked in the Kansas City A’s front office as their General Manager. Then he would become the General Manager of new Washington Senators expansion team in 1963, holding the position until 1968.
1991 - Former Yankees reserve OF Roy Weatherly (1943,1946) passed away (1915-1991). On December 17,1942, OF Roy Weathery and INF Oscar Grimes were obtained from the Cleveland Indians for C Buddy Rosar and OF Roy Cullenbine. In 1943, Roy hit .264 as a reserve outfielder for the Yankees. Roy hit .266 in 79 games for the New York Yankees.
1992 - The New York Yankees released veteran P Dave Eiland (1988-1991). On June 2, 1987, Dave Eiland was drafted by the New York Yankees in the 7th round of the 1987 MLB amateur player draft. Dave went 5-11 with the Yankees. After retiring as an active player, Dave would rejoin the New York Yankees organization, as a pitching coach. He was the Yankees MLB pitching coach in 2009-2010. He joined the Tampa Bay Rays organization as a special advisor in December of 2010.
1996- The New York Yankees signed 2 MLB free agents: INF Matt Howard and P Dave Pavlas. Matt Howard will be a reserve INF appearing in 35 games, hitting .204 for the 1996 Yankees. Dave Pavlas will appear in 16 games with no record with 1 save for the 1996 Yankees.
2001 - Former Yankees minor league P Johnny Babich passed away. (1913-2001). Pitcher Johnny Babich grew up in the San Francisco area. He began his professional career with the San Francisco Seals (Pacific Coast League) in 1931. In 1933, he was traded by the Seals to the San Francisco Missions and went on to win 20 games. He won 10 games the next season before being acquired by the Brooklyn Dodgers, for whom, he was 7-11 as a MLB rookie. After posting a 6.66 ERA for the Dodgers the next season, he was sent back down to the minors. The following year, Babich spent most of the season in the PCL; he did play in three games for the Boston Bees (aka the Braves). After going 19-17 with a 3.27 ERA for the Hollywood Stars (PCL) in 1938, he was acquired by the New York Yankees, who sent him to their minor league AAA team, the Kansas City Blues (American Association). One year later, he was acquired by the Philadelphia A’s in the MLB Rule 5 player draft. With the 1940 A’s, he posted a 14-13 record with a 3.73 ERA. Johnny posted a 5-0 record against the 1940 New York Yankees. He played one more year in the MLB, going 2-7 for the 1941 A’s. Following his MLB career, Babich managed in the minors and continued to pitch as well. He led the 1947 Stockton Ports to the California League title, while going 5-2 on the mound.
1907 - Former Yankees OF Jesse Hill (1937) was born (1907-1993). On January 19, 1932, Jesse Hill was traded by the Hollywood Stars (PCL) to the New York Yankees for Myles Thomas, George Quellich, and cash. He would hit .293 in 107 games in 1937, before being sent to the Washington Senators.
1912 - Former Yankees P Frank Makosky (1937) was born (1912-1987). Frank Makosky went 5-2 in 26 games with 3 saves in 1937.
1921 - The New York Yankees obtained OF Bob Roth from Washington Senators for OF Duffy Lewis and P George Mogridge. Roth would hit .283 in 1921, and then the Yankees released him.
1926 - The New York Yankees obtained 1B Spencer Adams from the Washington Senators for cash. He hit .120 as a reserve INF in 1926.
1931 - Joe Sewell, released by the Cleveland Indians after the 1930 American League season, then signs with the New York Yankees. The future Hall Of Fame infielder will finish his 14-season MLB career in 1933. He will hit .302 for the Yankees in 1931. With the Yankees, Joe will be the regular third baseman for the 1931-1933 teams.
1936 - Former Yankees reserve C Jesse Gonder (1960-1961) was born (1936-2004). Before the 1960 AL Season, Jesse Gonder was sent from the Cincinnati Reds to the New York Yankees in an unknown trade. He was the starting catcher for the Yankees AAA team at Richmond (International League) in 1960. Jesse appeared in only 17 games for the Yankees as a reserve catcher, before being sent on December 14,1961 to the Reds for veteran reliever Marshall Bridges. With the Yankees, veterans Elston Howard, Yogi Berra and Johnny Blanchard on the 25-man Yankees MLB roster blocked Jesse Gonder. In 1962 he won the Pacific Coast League Most Valuable Player Award while playing for the Reds AAA club, the San Diego Padres. Jesse would play for the Cincinnati Reds, New York Mets, Pittsburgh Pirates and Milwaukee Braves in the National League, before retiring as a MLB player. Later he wrote a book about his experiences with racism as a baseball player in the 1950-1960’s.
1941 - Former Yankees OF Jack Lelivelt (1912-1913) passed away (1885-1941). Jack Lelivelt appeared in 54 games for the Yankees hitting .339. On May 25,1913, Jack was traded by the New York Yankees along with INF Bill Stumpf to the Cleveland Naps for shortstop Roger Peckinpaugh.
1944 - Former Yankees 1B/DH Kevin Maas (1990-1993) was born. The New York Yankees in the 22nd round of the 1986 MLB amateur player draft drafted Kevin Maas. Kevin would hit .231 with 65 HRs with 164 RBIs in 384 games with the Yankees, before being released by the team in 1993.
1977 - The New York Yankees obtained veteran golden glove OF Paul Blair from the Baltimore Orioles for veteran OF Elliot Maddox and minor league OF Rich Bladt. Paul Blair will prove a fine defensive addition to the Yankees outfield. He will be used as a late inning defensive replacement for Reggie Jackson in RF.
1978 - Former Yankees minor league OF Jon Weber was born. Jon Weber signed with the New York Yankees for 2010. In spring training camp, Jon had won the James P. Dawson Award for best Yankee rookie in the camp. Jon never appeared with the Yankees at the MLB level. He batted .258 in 47 games for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees, and then the Yankees released him. Signing with the Detroit Tigers, he hit .256 in 21 games for the Toledo Mud Hens; he retired as an active player. Shortly thereafter, in July 2010, he had the 3rd positive drug/steroid test of his baseball career, resulting in a 100-game suspension should he return to the diamond.
1998 - The New York Yankees selected Hector Ramirez off of waivers from the Baltimore Orioles. He will never play for the Yankees at the MLB level. On January 30,1998, Hector is selected off waivers by the Orioles from the Yankees.
2000 - The 30 MLB owners vote to give all their Internet rights to the Commissioner's office. Bud Selig is expected to parcel out monies in equal amounts. The New York Yankees lose their great web site to MLB’s cookie cutter web site format. Now gone are Eddie Layton’s organ playing of “Take me out to the Ballgame” and Bob Shepard’s “Welcome to Yankee Stadium” greeting.
2002 - The New York Yankees signed free agent P David Manning. The team will release David during the 2002 Yankees spring training camp.
2011 - The New York Yankees sign OF Andruw Jones to a one-year contract. Jones almost washed out of baseball after a terrible 2008 season that saw him hit .158 with no power, but he has since bounced back to being a useful player again, although his days of stardom are apparently over. He will appear in 77 games for the 2011 Yankees as a DH/OF, hitting .247 with 13 HRs with 33 RBIs. The Yankees resigned him for the 2012 AL season
1916 - The New York Yankees buy P Nick Cullop from the Kansas City Packers (Federal League), Infielders Joe Gedeon from the Salt Lake Bees (PCL), and Germany Schaefer from Newark Peppers (Federal League). Schaefer will announce that he is changing his nickname to "Liberty" because of the World War I. He noticed that "sauerkraut" had been renamed "liberty cabbage".
1938 - The New York Yankees All Star CF Joe DiMaggio begins a player contract holdout that will last for nearly three months. After meeting with Yankees owner Jacob Ruppert and GM Ed Barrow, Joe DiMaggio rejects a one-year offer of $25,000. DiMaggio counters their offer by asking for $45,000 player contract. His holdout with the Yankees will last until April 20th, two days after the start of the 1938 American League season. Joe will appear in 145 games for the 1938 Yankees, hitting .324 with 32 HRs and 140 RBIs.
1941 - Former Yankees P Rick Beck (1965) was born. In 1962, the New York Yankees signed Rick Beck, as an MLB amateur free agent. He was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies from the New York Yankees organization in 1962 MLB 1st year player draft. In 1965, Rick Beck was reacquired by the Yankees from the Phillies. He appeared in 3 games, posting a 2-1 record with 2.14 ERA, before going into the U.S. Army for two years. He never returned to play in the MLB, after finishing his Army active duty time.
1946 - Former Yankees reserve C, Minor League Manager and MLB Manager Johnny Oates (1980-1981) was born (1946-2004). John appeared in only 49 games for the 1980-1981 Yankees, hitting only .190. Oates quickly became a manager in the Yankees organization, managing at Nashville (AA) and at Columbus (AAA) in 1982 and 1983. He was a MLB coach for the Chicago Cubs from 1984 to 1987. He then managed the Rochester Red Wings (AAA) for a year in the Baltimore organization in 1988 before moving up to become an MLB Orioles coach from 1989 to 1991. Oates was named manager of the Orioles in May 1991, and from 1991 to 2001 managed the Orioles and then the Texas Rangers (2000-2001). Seven of his eleven teams played over .500 while he managed them.
1955 - The BWAA passes over Yankees All Star CF Joe DiMaggio in his 1st year of Hall Of Fame eligibility. The writers elected former NL All Star P Dizzy Dean and A’s slugger OF Al Simmons to the Hall Of Fame. Joe DiMaggio finishes 8th place in the BWAA voting.
1959 - Former Yankee minor league INF and MLB player Jose Uribe was born (1959-2006). In 1977, INF Jose Uribe was signed by the New York Yankees, but he spent the year on the disabled list. He was released by the Yankees organization the same year. Three years later, he was signed by the St. Louis Cardinals. In 1985, he was traded by the Cardinals to the San Francisco Giants, where played in until the 1992 NL season. In 1993, Jose finished his MLB career with the Houston Astros. In 2006 Jose was killed in an auto accident, where he was thrown from his jeep, not wearing his seat belt. He died from injuries from the car accident.
1960 - Former Yankees P Andy Hawkins (1989-1991) was born. A MLB free agent signing, Andy Hawkins went 20-29 in 66 games before being released by the Yankees in 1991.
1966 – Former Yankees P Chris Hammond (2003) was born. Chris went 3-2 in 62 games with 1 save for the 2003 Yankees. On December 18, 2003, Chris was traded by the Yankees along with cash to the Oakland A’s for minor league players Eduardo Sierra and J.T. Stotts
1969 - The New York Yankees signed P Tom Buskey as an MLB amateur free agent. Tom went 0-2 in 12 games with 2 saves with the Yankees during the 1973-1974 AL seasons. On April 26,1974, Tom was traded by the Yankees along with Pitchers Fred Beene, Steve Kline, and Fritz Peterson to the Cleveland Indians for 1B Chris Chambliss, P Richard “Dirt” Tidrow, and reliever Cecil Upshaw. Tom died from auto accident injuries in 1998 in Harrisburg, Pa.
1971 - No player receives three-fourths of the necessary votes to be elected into Baseball’s Hall Of Fame, with New York Yankees C Yogi Berra (242) and Cleveland Indians starter Early Wynn (240) coming the closest. Yogi Berra and Early Wynn will be elected to the Hall Of Fame in 1972.
1975 - The New York Yankees released veteran shortstop Gene Michael. He had been the Yankees regular shortstop from 1968-1974. He would finish his MLB career with the Detroit Tigers in 1975, hitting just .214 in 56 games. After his MLB playing career was over in 1975, he rejoined the New York Yankees organization.
1983 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent P Steve Comer. He will be released by the Yankees during their spring training camp in March.
1987 - The Atlanta Braves sign MLB free agent OF Gary Roenicke, who had spent the 1986 AL season with the New York Yankees, after 8 seasons with the Baltimore Orioles. Gary had played in 69 games for the 1986 Yankees hitting .265.
1992 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent C/DH/1B Mike Stanley. Mike would become the Yankees regular catcher, until the arrival of new Yankees Manager Joe Torre in winter of 1995. Torre would trade him and bring in Joe Girardi to become the team’s regular catcher, despite being the weaker hitter; he was a better defensive catcher than Mike Stanley.
1998 - The New York Yankees signed MLB free agent C Phil Hiatt. He never plays for the Yankees. He will be cut during the 1998 spring training camp.
2005 - The New York Yankees signed 2 free agents INF Damian Rolls and P Aaron Small. Aaron Small will go 10-0 for the Yankees in 2005. Aaron Small’s overall Yankees pitching career record will be 10-3, before arm injuries force him to retire from MLB in 2006. Rolls will never play for the Yankees at the MLB level. He will spend the 2005 season playing for the Columbus Clippers (AAA).
(As always I'd like to thank Fw57Clipper51 for his great contribution.)