Results tagged ‘ ping bodie ’

October 8 – Happy Birthday Ping Bodie

His real name was Francesco Stephano Pezzolo and he holds a dear place in my heart because he was the first player of Italian descent to play for the New York Yankees. He was a legendary slugger in the Pacific Coast League before joining the White Sox in 1911. He played four seasons in Chicago and then a year with the Philadelphia Athletics. The Yankees got him in 1918 and he spent his last four Major League seasons in a New York uniform. He was the starting Yankee right-fielder for two of those years and he was also Babe Ruth’s first Yankee roommate. His best season in New York was 1920 when he drove in 79 runs and hit .295. San Francisco-born Italian Americans who followed Bodie to the Yankees and credited him as their inspiration included Joe DiMaggio, Tony Lazzeri, and Frankie Crosetti.

After he hit just .172 in 1921 both his Yankee and Major League playing careers were over. He went back out west and continued playing in the Pacific Coast League for a while, eventually migrating to Hollywood where he began his second career as an electrician in the movie industry. Bodie became well known on movie sets and created friendships with several of the leading actors and actresses of his day. He died in 1961 at the age of 74.

He shares his October 8th birthday with former Yankee hitting coach, Wally Moses, this former NY starting pitcher and this Yankee reliever.

Year Tm G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
1918 NYY 91 371 324 36 83 12 6 3 46 6 27 24 .256 .319 .358 .677
1919 NYY 134 533 475 45 132 27 8 6 59 15 36 46 .278 .334 .406 .740
1920 NYY 129 523 471 63 139 26 12 7 79 6 40 30 .295 .350 .446 .796
1921 NYY 31 97 87 5 15 2 2 0 12 0 8 8 .172 .242 .241 .483
9 Yrs 1050 4161 3670 393 1011 169 72 43 516 83 312 381 .275 .335 .396 .731
NYY (4 yrs) 385 1524 1357 149 369 67 28 16 196 27 111 108 .272 .330 .398 .728
CHW (4 yrs) 517 2002 1756 193 480 74 33 20 246 43 148 233 .273 .333 .387 .720
PHA (1 yr) 148 635 557 51 162 28 11 7 74 13 53 40 .291 .356 .418 .774
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 10/8/2013.