Tag Archives: Clete Boyer

Huh? Questions about the Lineup’s picks again…this time at 3B and next week—SS.

No, the lineup did choose the right guy for #1 at 3B–A-Rod.

It’s the four below him I question. They did pick Graig Nettles and Red Rolfe as I thought they should. It’s the other two I question.

Howard Johnson for the Mets? I wondered about that one myself and was tempted. I chose David Wright, however.

HoJo was with the Mets from 1985-1993. He hit 192 HR as a Met, but had just a .251 BA with them. 124 OPS+. His career 162 g. average was .249-24-80, OPS+ 117. Average not hot, but good OPS+. Good speed, too, as he went 30-30 three times for the Mets (1987, 1989 and 1991) and led the NL in HR in 1991 with 38. He also led the league in RBI that year. His OPS+ numbers with the Mets? 94, 118, 133, 124, 169, 106, 145, 91, 98.  10th in MVP voting in 1987, 5th in 1989 and 1991. Didn’t think the numbers were that good, do you? Four times did Johnson steal 30 or more. After turning 30, however, Johnson’s numbers dropped like a rock in water. 1987-1991 superb, but his numbers before and after weren’t. His postseason numbers make A-Rod’s previous struggles pale in comparison. 1 for 26 in the postseason. Not the greatest glove.

Wright had a tough year in adjusting to Citi Field. Just 10 HR last year. He has a long way to go, as he has only had five full seasons as a Met. In those years however, Wright has had two 30 HR seasons, one a 30/30, to HoJo’s three. His 162 g. average to date is .308-27-107, OPS+ 136. He has won two GG (two more than HoJo) and has finished in the top 10 for MVP voting 3x (same as HoJo). Maybe the panel didn’t feel like Wright has done enough yet to put him over HoJo. I disagree.

As for the other spot, Clete Boyer was selected. I was tempted to put Frank Baker there, but Home Run Baker’s dead ball era HOF stats were best with the Philadelphia A’s, not with the Yankees.

But here is my biggest gripe with the Lineup. How can they put Gary Carter—who only had two really good years in NY, and who was selected over Dickey and Munson—on the all-time NY team for catchers, but not put Wade Boggs on for 3B?

Yes, I know Boggs had his best years in Boston. But if you choose Carter over Dickey and Munson, how do you not then choose Boggs over Boyer?

Yes, I know Boyer had the better glove. He also couldn’t hit.

Boyer hit .241 as a Yankee, .242 in his career. His 162 g. average was .242-15-61, OPS+ just 87. A lot of Gold Gloves he could have won, he didn’t because of Brooks Robinson. Boyer was a full-time player from 1960-1966 with the Yankees. He hit .224 in 1961, .218 in 1964.

Boggs was with the Yankees for just five years, but hit .292 or better in each of those years. The .292 was the only year under .300. As a Yankee, Boggs hit .313. His 162 g. average for his career was .328-8-67 and his great eye for a walk led to a career OPS+ of 130 (111 as a Yankee). Over 3000 hits in his career. A HOF. Not the fielder Boyer was, but still 2 GG.

The OPS+ numbers for Boggs as a Yankee weren’t as good as in Boston, 104, 141, 119, 98 and 102, but they were still better than Boyer’s.

But I repeat…how can Carter (see a previous post on that) get on over Dickey and Munson when Carter had only two good NY years, but Boggs lose out to Boyer?

Next week? The SS. We know who’ll be #1…and he wears #2 (Jeter). One #1 will wind up one of the runnerups (Pee Wee Reese) along with Rizzuto. Who’ll be the other two?

UPDATE: Already I see a HUGE problem with the SS picks. No, not with Jeter, Scooter or Pee Wee, but with the other choices. I mean, WHERE IS ALVIN DARK? He is not even one of the choices that you can select….but Kevin Elster is? ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

Elster: .228 career hitter, OPS+ 83. .224 in seven years with the Mets. In 40 games with the Yankees, he went 2 for 37. Elster had three years in NY where he played in 100 or more games. Those years?

1988. .214-9-37. OPS+ 75
1989. .231-10-55 OPS+ 87
1991 .241-6-36 OPS+ 89

Alvin Dark. NYG 1950-1956. 1951 NL Pennant Giants, 1954 WS Champs.
Career .289 hitter with an OPS+ of 98.

23 HR in 1953, 20 in 1954. Not the glove of Elster, but a far better bat. 5th in MVP voting in 1954. .300 or better, 1951-1953.

Not only that, Dave Bancroft isn’t on the list. Only 4 years with the NYG, 1920-1923, but a HOF who hit .300 or better 1921-1923.

Elster on the list over Dark and Bancroft. You gotta be ****ing kidding me.     

But then, they’ll probably take .236 hitting Buddy Harrelson as one of their backups, while not even nominating Dark or Bancroft.

You gotta be kidding me.   

Yankees’ “Old Reliable”, Henrich, dies at 96.

Tommy Henrich, given the nickname “Old Reliable” by Mel Allen, has died at the age of 96.

Henrich was the RF in a stellar Yankees’ OF of Charlie Keller in LF, Joe DiMaggio in CF and Henrich in RF.

Henrich was, at the time of his passing, the oldest living former Yankee and the  person still alive who played in the 1938 WS. You couldn’t find a player alive who played in a WS earlier than that.

Henrich was in the Indians system when he appealed to Commissioner Landis, claiming that the Indians were unfairly hiding him and holding him back. Landis sided with Henrich, and Henrich was declared free to sign with anyone. (The first free agent?). He signed with the Yankees and became a Yankees legend.

Henrich was 24 when he came up to the Yankees in 1937.  He hit .320 as a part-timer that year but didn’t play in the WS. He hit .307 in a platoon role in 1940 and .308 as a full-timer in 1948. His career average was .282, with 183 HR. His 162 g. average (a bit meaningless, since all Henrich’s seasons were of the 154 game variety) was .282-23-100. He had a career OPS+ of an excellent 132.

A 5x All-Star, Henrich drove in 100 runs in 1948. He finished sixth in MVP voting in both 1948 and 1949. 1949 would be his last full season in a career that spanned 1937-1942 and 1946-1950. He missed three full seasons due to WWII.

Henrich was involved in some of the World Series’ biggest and most remembered moments of the 1940s…and ever. In 1941, it was Henrich who struck out in Game 4 to seemingly end the game. The only thing is, the pitch eluded catcher Mickey Owen of the Dodgers and Henrich reached first. The Yankees rallied, and a 4-3 Series-tying victory by the Dodgers wasn’t to be. Instead, the Yankees scored four, won 7-4, took a three games to one lead and won the championship the next day.

In 1947, it was Henrich who watched helplessly in Game Four as with two out and two on, Cookie Lavagetto’s hit to RF at Ebbets Field sailed over Henrich’s head and off the RF wall for a double. Bill Bevens had a 2-1 lead and was one out away from a no-hitter. The double drove in both runners for a stunning 3-2 Dodger victory.

In Game One of the 1949 WS, Henrich hit the first walkoff HR in WS history, touching Don Newcombe to break up a scoreless pitching duel between Newcombe and the “Superchief,” Allie Reynolds.

After his retirement, Henrich was a coach during the 1951 spring training. One of his assignments was to teach a raw 19-year old the basics of the outfield. This 19 year old had great power and speed, but it was clear that he wasn’t meant for SS, where he had played the year before. The 19-year-old was Mickey Mantle.

During DiMaggio’s streak in 1941, Henrich came up and (with game in hand) asked Joe McCarthy if he could bunt. McCarthy was surprised at the request, but then realized that Henrich was worried about hitting into a DP—and that would then mean the then hitless Dimaggio’s streak would be over. McCarthy gave the go-ahead, Henrich bunted, Joe D. got his hit, and the streak lived on.

The NY Post says that according to the Elias Sports Bureau, Virgil Trucks is now believed to be the oldest living Yankee at 92. Trucks ended his career with the Yanks in 1958 at the age of 41, pitching 25 games that season and going 2-1.

One of the numbers Henrich wore was #15—later retired for Thurman Munson.

Henrich was a member of seven WS Championship teams (1937-1939, 1941, 1947, 1949 and 1950). He spent his whole playing career with the Yankees, playing mostly RF, then switching to 1B near the end of his career. He hit .333 in the WS with 4 HR.

About a dozen years ago, one of my sisters was in Harrisburg, where a couple of Yankees were signing autographs. She called me to ask if I wanted some autographed baseballs by them. I asked, “Who is signing?”. She replied, “Tommy Henrich and Clete Boyer.”

Naturally, I said to get me both autographed baseballs. I still have them.

Now Henrich, like Boyer, is gone.




Gardner is top rookie in camp, Sheppard officially out, and a look at another player dumped shortly before #500.

Pete Abraham reports that Joba hit 95/96 today. More like it.

Gardner was named the top rookie in camp. The J. P. Dawson award (named after an ex-writer who passed on in 1953; yeah, I had to look up who J. P. Dawson was last year).

See the comments in the previous post. Thanks to Nick for asking if Gardner qualifies as a rookie. He does. Barely. 

The Yanks made it official in announcing that Bob Sheppard won’t make opening day. It’s been a long time, as I reported this week. You hate to think it, but you wonder if he ever makes it back.

As reported in the previous post, Gary Sheffield was released today by the Tigers. Sheffield has 499 HR.

From 1952-1966, Eddie Mathews played for the Braves. In so doing, he played for the Braves in all three places—the last year in Boston, the entire Milwaukee tenure, and the first year in Atlanta. He was the only player to do so. After the 1966 season, a couple of deals went down.

The first one involved Clete Boyer. The Yankees traded him to the Braves for two players, the touted one being Bill Robinson, who was hyped greatly but never panned out for the Yanks. This happened 11/29/66. Now the Yanks needed a 3B, but had an OF. Less than two weeks later, they got rid of a disgruntled OF in Roger Maris for a 3B. Maris to the Cardinals for Charlie Smith. Smith didn’t last long with the Yanks. (These were the darkest of the CBS dark ages).

Meanwhile, with the trade of Boyer to the Braves, the Braves had Mathews AND Boyer and of course, no DH. Felipe Alou, coming off a .327-31-74 year, was at 1B. On December 31, 1966, Mathews was the key figure in a trade by the Braves to the Astros. At the time of the trade, Mathews was tied with Gehrig with 493 HR. As with Sheff, so much for the milestone, see ya later. On July 14, 1967, exactly two months after Mickey Mantle became the 6th player (after Ruth, Foxx, Ott, Ted Williams and Mays) to hit #500, Mathews became the seventh, connecting off of Juan Marichal at Candlestick Park. Mathews ended his career with 512.