September 1, 1961, the Yankees, with a 1-1/2 game lead over the Detroit Tigers, were now going to face off for the first time since a one-day July 4 doubleheader. On that day, the Tigers held a 2-game lead over the Yankees. The Tigers won the first game, with the Yankees taking the second. Resulting in no change in the American League standing. For the next eight weeks, the heavy-hitting Tigers and Yankees keep pace with each other leading up to this first of a 3-game showdown.


September 1, 1961, Young Fans Hoping To Get Mickey Mantle’s Autograph, As Roger Maris Slips By.

Seeing these photos of young fans wanting to get an autograph brings up fond memories of days after school and weekends chasing down ballplayers arriving at Yankee Stadium before a game, asking them, please sign.

“Mantle, Maris and a Few Others Stir a Potpourri of Fan EmotionThe players arrived at Yankee Stadium last night in bright, new automobiles. Dozens of small boys rushed toward them and pleaded, like supplicants, for autographs or for some word, some recognition”.

Mickey Please Sign

Foot Notes: Main NY Times Article Written by, Robert L. Teague 1929-2013. Bob Teague joined WNBC-TV in New York in 1963 as one of the city’s first black television journalists and went on to work as a reporter, anchorman, and producer for more than three decades

Mantle, Maris and a Few Others Ítir a Potpourri of Fan Emotion Written by Gay Talese: Gay Talese -1932- is an American writer. As a journalist for The New York Times and Esquire magazine during the 1960s, Talese helped to define contemporary literary journalism. He’s written 15 books, most noted for Honor Thy Father 1971, and Frank Sinatra Has a Cold with Phil Stern.

 In March, on my Twitter account, with the help of The New York Times Time Machine, I started recreating the New York Yankees 1961 baseball season.

 It was Major League Baseball’s first season of expansion to ten teams in a league. 1961, the American League is the first to expand to ten teams, with the National League expanding in 1962. This expansion also created an unbalanced number of the game each league would play in 1961. Ten teams had to alter the traditional 154 game schedule and extended it by eight games to 162. The addition of those eight games would haunt the 1961 season and Roger Maris for years.

Screen Grab One: Yankees Season

On Memorial Day 1961, the Cincinnati Reds sweep a doubleheader from the San Francisco Giants, leaving both teams tied for first place, with Los Angeles Dodgers just 0.10% behind. Until late September, the Dodgers teams would be chasing the Reds. In the American League, the Detroit Tigers, with a 4.5 game lead over the Yankees, continue to play well with their heavy-hitting lineup carrying them. The Yankees have started to improve. On May 30, 1961, Mantle and Maris each connected for two home runs apiece. From this point, forward Mantle and Maris would continue to hit home runs at a record pace, ultimately with Maris hitting 61 and Mantle 54 home run.

Screen Grab Two: SF Giants, Dodgers Reds

Woke-up to the sad news Don Larsen passed away. October 8, 1956, was also the first time I would meet him in my aunt and uncle’s kitchen around 5:30. Back then, families lived within the same building, and my aunt and uncle lived a floor above us.

Aunt Anne come down while having dinner and ask if would okay for me to go upstairs and meet someone. Mom and dad knew and said okay. Leaving the dinner table back then was a big deal then. Sitting in there kitchen, having a beer with my uncle, was Don Larsen.

They had two season tickets to Yankee Stadium Section 5 club Lodge level. The seats were the first row seats1-2. They were directly behind Mel Allen and were all the sportswriters sat. Section 5 Lodge at the top of the stairs had a bar-clubhouse for the writers and the small group of ticketholders in that section. Back then, women were not allowed in any sports venue sportswriters bar/clubhouse.

My aunt often declined to attend games, sighting that Uncle Charlie would go up to bar for three or four innings, and she did not like sitting alone that long, and so I got to go to games. Many of the games I attended were Old Timers Day, Saturday and Sunday doubleheaders, and some World Series games. These games had a significant media presence. I did get to meet the writers in the beginning, and I was too young to realize the wow factor!

When my uncle died in1972 from cancer, Don Larsen sent my aunt a letter that she read I recall that he felt terrible that he could not make it to NYC for the funeral. Side note, my parents also knew him and never spoke of it.

Some years back, I went to Bryant Park to a Yankees event and spoke to Don Larsen and mentioned my Aunt Anne and Uncle Charles Shipp, and he stopped walking, and we exchanged a few words shook hand and parted our ways.

Last evening I commented on the daily trade rumors surrounding Jose Quintana. Today MLBs’ HotStove did not disappoint, and talk about Quintana and is as hot as ever. Now it’s the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Huston Astros turn. After my original post on the Quintana rumor mill Sporting News published their spin: article boils down to this

For me, this paragraph sums up the article, and why they are called rumors:

Quintana, who is signed over the next four years at a decently affordable $35 million, went 13-12 with a 3.20 ERA and 181 strikeouts last season. Still just 27 years old, he is on the upswing of his career and would be a valuable addition for the Yankees in the competitive AL East.

Outfielder Clint Frazier or infielder Gleyber Torres are the Yankees’ top-ranked prospects. It would likely take one or both of them to snatch Quintana away from Chicago.

The question is whether or not they will be willing to meet the demand as the season draws near.

If the Yankees were crazy enough to make this trade, Fraizer and Torres for Quintana, the fans would go nuts, and Cashman would lose his job at some point in the season. The Yankees would not include these players for Chris Sale, so why now would they trade them?

Baseball HotStove with its rumors is one of the cool fun elements that separates for all the other major sports make baseball’s off-season and entertaining. But some of these rumor/news articles are real head-scratchers.

Next up Bill Mazeroski!

Reference Sporting News By Alex Brzezinsk Ominisport


Will Jose Bautista sign with a team before Pitchers and Catchers report February 14th?

Will Jose Bautista get an offer beyond one year?

Buck Showalter
August 2, 2013
TAMPA, Fla. — The way Buck Showalter sees it, Alex Rodriguez’s possible suspension would mean that the New York Yankees would end up with Baltimore Orioles catcher Matt Wieters in two years.

Fast forward two years free agent Matt Wieters still not signed. Will this catcher be home when Pitchers and Catchers report for Spring Training?

Buck Showalter, as usual, did his whining about the Yankees, who as it turns out do not need Matt Wieters and it seems that Buck Showalter also does not want his after all.

The Pool In Right Center Field Must Be Leaking!
Diamondbacks demand/sue as they claim they need a need stadium to replace the 19-year old Chase Field.
A disturbing trend seems to be arising; the Braves open their new ballpark, SunTurst Park, this season; after only 20-years in Turner Field.
The Rangers are another team that recently got approval for a new 1 billion ballpark, their current ballpark Globe Life Park in Arlington opened in 1994.

White Sox having daily Quintana talks with teams.
I must be missing something when it comes to Jose Quintana, 5 years 46 W 46 L!

Not a MLB News day goes by wihout a new rumor linking Quintana to (fill in the) ______________  as a possiable landing spot.


Late yesterday the Mets signed Yoenis Cespedes for three years with an Opt-Out clause after one year. This made think of Charles Oscar Finley maverick owner of the A’s  who passed away twenty years ago. In March 1960, he purchased the Kansas City A’s and for the next 20 years, would be a thorn in the side of two Baseball Commissioners and the other owners.

As an owner, he was behind baseball playing World Series games at night, and the Designated Hitter. Now after 42-years it appears in 2017, the National League will finally adopt the DH. Other ideas, like using an orange baseball for night games were considered silly.

Courtesy of Nancy FinleyCharles O. Finley
Courtesy of Nancy FinleyCharles O. Finley

But, Charles Finley’s biggest contribution to baseball and all sports, is Free Agency. Through his failure during 1974, baseball season to meet certain obligations in Catfish Hunters contract, an arbitrator declaring Hunter, a free agent and his subsequence signing of a five-year contract with the Yankees. Following the 1975 season, a grievance was filed by Andy Messerschmitt of the Dodgers and Dave McNally of Expos, arbitrator, Peter Seitz ruled for the players declaring them free agents. This verdict ended the Reserve Clause that tied players to teams forever. Charles Finley then said what may be his boldest idea “Make Them All Free Agents Every Year”. Marvin Millet opposed this knowing it would it would keep player salaries low and the owners were afraid of the concept.

What was once scared owners and maybe the players is now taking hold in a unique concept, the opt-out after one to three years now being part of bigger contract signings.

It is early in the game, but as the opt-out becomes more attractive in contract negotiations, it will make for some exciting times in player and team moves.



Some say the Baseball season is too long, no way. Look at the current changes that have taken place in the Standings from first place to the wildcard. It just doesn’t happen in the NFL or the NBA.
For me, it is the fun days, and not the dog days of August. It is scoreboard watching at its best.

Original Yankee Stadium Scoreboard  October 1937
Original Yankee Stadium Scoreboard October 1937

 Spring Training 1951
Spring Training 1951 Photographer Ozzie Sweet Registered Copyright Holder Paul Plaine Ballpark Prints LLC

Cover Shot for Sport Magazine March 1960  Photographer Ozzie Sweet  Registered Copyright Holder Paul Plaine Ballpark Prints LLC
Cover Shot for Sport Magazine March 1960
Photographer Ozzie Sweet Registered Copyright Holder Paul Plaine Ballpark Prints LLC


 Mickey Mantle 1960 Photographer Ozzie Sweet Registered Copyright Holder Paul Plaine Ballpark Prints LLC
Mickey Mantle 1960 Photographer Ozzie Sweet Registered Copyright Holder Paul Plaine Ballpark Prints LLC

Mickey Mantle 1964 Photographer Ozzie Sweet  Registered Copyright Holder Paul Plaine Ballpark Prints LLC
Mickey Mantle 1964 Photographer Ozzie Sweet Registered Copyright Holder Paul Plaine Ballpark Prints LLC

Today in the media it is evaluation day of who is the winners and losers in MLB’s annual July 31st trading deadline. Watching the 4 pm countdown yesterday on Fox Sports (I’m on the Jersey Shore in rented beach house) and seeing my team the NY Yankees standing pat made me very happy. My first thoughts were of that old baseball adage. “The trades you don’t make are your best ones.”(1)

I am 100% a fan of baseball and enjoy watching games of all the teams, and all that goes on from the fall Hot Stove League to the August Waiver Wire, and everything in between. I just love it.

After the 4 pm deadline that is 4:15 pm as the commissioner office needs that extra 15 minutes to approve last of the last minute deals. Then the conversation starts who won who lost. After reviewing all the transactions, it struck me that the players being traded were for minor leagues who are not the front-line prospect, as one would expect.

But all of the stories surrounding the Yankees and trades it was only about their rated front-line prospects, and late last night 21 year Luis Severino one of the prospects every team wanted was called up. He’s scheduled to make his major league debut Tuesday night. I expect a lot of second-guessing from the media and fans next Wednesday.

As of today, the Blue Jays who were voted this year’s trading deadline winners are 6-games behind the Yankees, so should all know by the end of this season if standing pat was the right decision.

1- The trades you don’t make are the best ones.
Attributed to Branch Rickey and also Bill Veeck

1922 The Yankees, who have been sharing the Polo Grounds with the Giants since 1913, begin construction on their own ballpark in the Bronx. The stadium will become known as the ‘House that Ruth Built,’ acknowledging the Babe’s popularity and influence.   Visit   see over 25 additional images from 1921 to 1937 the building of Yankee Stadium

May 31, 1922 Ballpark Prints Yankee Stadium www.ballparkprints .com
May 31, 1922 Ballpark Prints Yankee Stadium http://www.ballparkprints .com

 June 13, 1922 Ballpark Prints Yankee Stadium
June 13, 1922 Ballpark Prints Yankee Stadium