Results tagged ‘ august 19 ’

August 19 – Happy Birthday Atley Donald

The more I learned about former Yankee pitcher Atley Donald while doing research for today’s post, the more I liked the guy. A southern boy, who moved to Louisiana as a child, Donald was a great high school athlete who became a fire-balling college pitcher at LSU. When no big league scouts offered him a contract, Donald headed to St Petersburg, FL for the 1934 Major League spring training season, with $25 in his pocket. His goal was to convince his favorite big league team, the Yankees, to give him a tryout before his money ran out. When he got to that tryout, New York manager Joe McCarthy was impressed enough with the right-hander’s fastball that he kept the young pitcher in camp and when it was over, got him a deal to pitch for the Yankee’s Class C affiliate in Wheeling, West Virginia. From there to Norfolk, to Binghamton and finally to Newark, Atley pitched outstandingly all the way up New York’s chain of farm teams.

The Yankees gave him his first shot at the big leagues in 1938 but he wasn’t quite ready. He proved to be more than ready the following year when he burst into the Bronx and won his first 12 starts of the season. But the Yankees had so much starting pitching that year, McCarthy hardly used his hard-throwing rookie the final two months of the season. Donald finished 1939 with a 13-3 record and a 3.71 ERA. That was probably his most successful season in pinstripes. Over the next half dozen seasons, Donald would experience plenty of physical problems including a bad back and a loss of vision in his left eye. Still, when healthy, he was able to pitch effectively compiling a 65-33 career record during his eight seasons as a Yankee. During his final big league appearance in July of 1946, he tore the rotator cuff in his right shoulder. When the Yankees offered him a scouting position, Donald accepted it and spent the next few decades finding new Yankee talent in and around Louisiana. His signings included catcher Jake Gibbs and the great Ron Guidry.

Donald shares his August 19th birthday with this great former Yankee second baseman who was also born in the south.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1938 NYY 0 1 .000 5.25 2 2 0 0 0 0 12.0 7 8 7 0 14 6 1.750
1939 NYY 13 3 .813 3.71 24 20 2 11 2 1 153.0 144 74 63 12 60 55 1.333
1940 NYY 8 3 .727 3.03 24 11 10 6 1 0 118.2 113 49 40 11 59 60 1.449
1941 NYY 9 5 .643 3.57 22 20 2 10 0 0 159.0 141 69 63 11 69 71 1.321
1942 NYY 11 3 .786 3.11 20 19 0 10 1 0 147.2 133 58 51 6 45 53 1.205
1943 NYY 6 4 .600 4.60 22 15 5 2 0 0 119.1 134 69 61 10 38 57 1.441
1944 NYY 13 10 .565 3.34 30 19 9 9 0 0 159.0 173 77 59 13 59 48 1.459
1945 NYY 5 4 .556 2.97 9 9 0 6 2 0 63.2 62 29 21 3 25 19 1.366
8 Yrs 65 33 .663 3.52 153 115 28 54 6 1 932.1 907 433 365 66 369 369 1.369
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 8/19/2013.

August 19 – Happy Birthday Bobby Richardson

Those of us who are old enough to have been Yankee fans back in 1961, remember today’s birthday celebrant fondly.  Bobby Richardson was born on today’s date in 1935, in Sumter, SC. He was the lead-off man and starting second baseman for one of the great teams and most impressive starting infields in Pinstripe history. He combined with first baseman Moose Skowren, shortstop Tony Kubek and the late Clete Boyer at the hot corner to provide New York’s pitching staff with an outstanding first line of defense. The seven-time All-Star and five-time Gold Glove winner had a productive bat as well. He reached the .300 mark twice during his twelve-year career, led the league in hits with 209 in 1962 and drove in a record 12 RBIs in a losing effort against Pittsburgh, during the 1960 World Series. His only weakness was his inability to draw more walks as a lead-off man. In 1961, for example, Richardson drew just 30 base-on-balls in over 700 plate appearances. How many more RBI’s would his teammates Mantle and Maris have had that year if Bobby wasn’t such a free swinger?

Richardson retired from the Yankees in 1966, just 31 years-old at the time. He became a successful college baseball coach at the University of South Carolina and ran for Congress in the mid seventies. Always a deeply religious man, younger Yankee fans were introduced to Bobby when he officiated at teammate Mickey Mantle’s funeral.

Richardson shares his birthday with this former Yankee pitcher, who afterwards became the Yankee scout who signed Ron Guidry.

Year Tm G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
1955 NYY 11 29 26 2 4 0 0 0 3 1 2 0 .154 .214 .154 .368
1956 NYY 5 7 7 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .143 .143 .143 .286
1957 NYY 97 320 305 36 78 11 1 0 19 1 9 26 .256 .274 .298 .573
1958 NYY 73 195 182 18 45 6 2 0 14 1 8 5 .247 .276 .302 .578
1959 NYY 134 507 469 53 141 18 6 2 33 5 26 20 .301 .335 .377 .713
1960 NYY 150 507 460 45 116 12 3 1 26 6 35 19 .252 .303 .298 .601
1961 NYY 162 704 662 80 173 17 5 3 49 9 30 23 .261 .295 .316 .610
1962 NYY 161 754 692 99 209 38 5 8 59 11 37 24 .302 .337 .406 .743
1963 NYY 151 668 630 72 167 20 6 3 48 15 25 22 .265 .294 .330 .624
1964 NYY 159 728 679 90 181 25 4 4 50 11 28 36 .267 .294 .333 .626
1965 NYY 160 713 664 76 164 28 2 6 47 7 37 39 .247 .287 .322 .609
1966 NYY 149 648 610 71 153 21 3 7 42 6 25 28 .251 .280 .330 .610
12 Yrs 1412 5780 5386 643 1432 196 37 34 390 73 262 243 .266 .299 .335 .634
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 8/19/2013.