Yogi Berra, a former Major League player (Catcher), coach and manager passed away on September 22nd from natural causes.
Berra, a Baseball Hall of Famer will be remembered for many things which include of course his “Yogi-isms”.
Rest in Peace, Yogi.
Yogi Berra, the Hall of Fame catcher renowned as much for his unique way of turning a phrase as for his record 10 World Series championships with the New York Yankees, has died. He was 90.
Berra’s death came exactly 69 years after his major league debut. On Sept. 22, 1946, Berra homered in his second major league plate appearance in Game 1 of a doubleheader against the Athletics.
Berra played in more World Series games than any other major leaguer and was a three-time American League MVP. A 15-time All-Star, Berra was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1972.
“Renowned as a great teammate, Yogi stood for values like inclusion and respect during the vital era when our game began to become complete and open to all. With his trademark humility and good humor, Yogi represented only goodwill to baseball fans,” Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement.
“Yogi Berra was a beacon of Americana, and today Major League Baseball and all of its clubs stand together in mourning his passing and celebrating his memory. On behalf of the game he served with excellence and dignity, I extend my deepest condolences to Yogi’s children and grandchildren, his many friends throughout our game and his countless admirers,” the commissioner added.
Berra played for the Yankees from 1949 to ’65. His teammates included fellow Hall of Famers Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle and Whitey Ford.
In 1956, he caught the only perfect game in World Series history and, after the last out, leaped into pitcher Don Larsen’s arms. The famous moment was captured in photographs published in newspapers around the world.
Joe Torre, MLB’s chief baseball officer and former Yankees manager, said in a statement that, “We’ve lost Yogi, but we will always have what he left for us: the memories of a lifetime filled with greatness, humility, integrity and a whole bunch of smiles. He was a lovable friend.”
Berra was a fan favorite, especially with children, and the cartoon character Yogi Bear was named after him.
His first professional season with the Yankees’ farm team in Norfolk, Virginia, was interrupted by World War II. He joined the Navy and later served on a gunboat supporting the D-Day invasion.
President Barack Obama said Wednesday that “Berra was an American original — a Hall of Famer and humble veteran; prolific jokester and jovial prophet. He epitomized what it meant to be a sportsman and a citizen, with a big heart, competitive spirit and a selfless desire to open baseball to everyone, no matter their background.”
His breakthrough season came in 1948, when he hit .315 with 14 homers and 98 RBIs while continuing to improve his fielding. In 1949, he compiled a .989 fielding percentage and did not make an error in the All-Star Game or World Series.
Berra was AL MVP in 1951, 1954 and 1955. He holds World Series records for most hits (71), most games (75), most at-bats (259) and doubles (10). He is second in RBIs (39) and runs scored (41), one behind Mantle in both categories.
All told, Berra went to the World Series 21 times as a player, coach or manager.
“You never think of that when you’re a kid,” Berra said of his Hall of Fame induction. “But egads, you gotta be somethin’ to get in.”