In the glorious history of the New York Yankees, almost every day has significance in Yankee history. This week was the first time in baseball history that the New York Highlanders were referred to as the “Yankees” by the Boston newspaper, the Boston Herald. The team would officially become the New York Yankees 1913. Here are some other notable happenings this week in Yankee history.
10/26/1950: The BBWAA selects Yankee shortstop Phil Rizzuto (.324, 7, 66) as the American League MVP. The ‘Scooter,’ who receives 16 of 23 first-place votes, easily outpoints runner-up Boston’s Billy Goodman, the first player without a regular position to receive consideration for the prestigious award.
10/26/1996: After two stunning defeats at home, 12-1 and 4-0 losses, to start the series, the Yankees win the next four games to clinch their first World Series since 1978 with a 3-2 victory in the Bronx over the defending World Champs Braves. The Fall Classic victory will be the first title of four in five years for the Bronx Bombers.
10/26/2000: In Game 5 at Shea Stadium, the Yankees win their third consecutive World Series, the fourth title in five years, and record 26th championship by defeating the Mets, 4-2. Luis Sojo’s ninth-inning two-out, tie-breaking single off starter Al Leiter is the decisive hit.
10/27/1954: Former Yankees superstar Joe DiMaggio’s and actress Marilyn Monroe’s well-publicized stormy marriage ends in divorce after the famous movie star files on the grounds of mental cruelty, just 274 days after the wedding. Joltin’ Joe will send roses to ex-wife’s grave three times per week for the next 20 years after she died in 1962.
10/27/1999: The Yankees, behind the solid pitching of Roger Clemens, sweep their second straight Fall Classic, beating the Braves, 4-1. Atlanta joins the New York Giants (1910-19) as the only teams to lose four World Series in a decade.
10/29/2009: Derek Jeter is the recipient of this year’s Roberto Clemente Award, an honor given to a player who best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, and community involvement. The 35-year-old Yankee captain joins 13 Hall of Famers and former Bronx Bombers Ron Guidry and Don Baylor in winning the prestigious prize.
10/30/2007: The Yankees sign Joe Girardi to a three-year deal worth a reported $7.5 million to replace popular manager Joe Torre, who left earlier in the month, rejecting a 29% pay cut after guiding his club to their 12th postseason appearance in 12 years. The 43-year-old former catcher and broadcaster, the NL manager of the year with the 2006 Marlins, beat out coaches Don Mattingly and Tony Pena to become the team’s 32nd skipper.
10/31/2000: New York Yankees completed the threepeat. The Yankees defeated the New York Mets, 4-2 in Game 5 of the World Series at Shea Stadium. The Subway Series victory earned the Yankees their twenty-sixth title in franchise history. They became the first team since the 1972-74 Oakland Athletics to threepeat. No other team has even repeated as champs since this team. It also capped off a run of four titles in five seasons for the Yankees.
10/31/2009: Alex Rodriguez’s Game 3 fly ball in the right-field corner of Citizens Bank Park becomes the subject of the first instant replay call in World Series history. The Yankee third baseman’s hit, initially ruled a double, is changed by the umpires to a home run after the replay clearly shows the ball going over the fence before striking a television camera and bouncing back to the field.
EmpireSportMedia.com’s Columnist William Parlee is a member of the Society for American Baseball Research. Follow me on Twitter @parleewilliam