New York Yankees: 10 Worst Moments In Club's History
There have been plenty of great moments in Yankees history.
If you think otherwise, http://bleacherreport.com/articles/394107-giddy-up-the-21-greatest-moments-in-new-york-yankees-history, check that out, and then get back to me.
But believe it or not, the Yankees have experienced a handful of heartbreaking and disappointing moments as well.
And yes, I have lived through some of them.
Before I present the 10 Worst Moments In New York Yankees history, here are some honorable mentions:
1) In Game 6 of the 2003 World Series, Josh Beckett pitches a five-hitter at Yankee Stadium, striking out nine and walking two. World Series over.
2) A-Rod and the Yankees lose to the Detroit Tigers in the 2006 ALDS - that was just embarrassing
3) 2002 ALDS vs. Anaheim Angels: Yankees win 103 games in the regular season, and lose to the Angels 3-1 in the division series.
So for all you Yankee haters out there, sit back, relax, and enjoy reading some of the worst times in the history of those "Damn Yankees."
One Less Hot Dog And He Might've Been Safe
Why he was trying to steal second base, we'll never know, but trailing the St. Louis Cardinals 3-2 with two outs in the bottom of 9th inning, Babe Ruth - Yes, Babe Ruth - got caught stealing ending the 1926 World Series for the Yankees.
Down a run, Yankees clean-up hitter Bob Meusel, who was a .315 hitter at the time, and had batted in 81 runs in just over 100 regular season games, had experienced success against Cardinals pitcher Grover Alexander with a double and triple in Game 6.
But in Game 7, Meusel never had a chance with Alexander on the mound.
Before Meusel was even able to swing the bat, Cardinals catcher Bob O'Farrell's throw to Rogers Hornsby nailed Ruth at second, and the Cardinals were World Series champions for the first time in history.
The Brooklyn Way
Prior to the 1955 World Series, the Brooklyn Dodgers never won a World Series championship, but that was about to change.
The Yankees won Game 1 behind Whitey Ford and Game 2 behind Tommy Byrne's, but would lose the next three in Brooklyn.
The Yankees tied the series at three, after the "Chairman of the Board" Ford, held the Dodgers to four hits and a single run while striking out eight, forcing a seventh game.
Considering the Yankees and the Dodgers were meeting in the World Series for the fifth time in nine years, with the Yankees having won in 1947, 1949, 1952, 1953, it looked like history was about to repeat itself as the Yankees domination over the Dodgers was going to continue.
But even without Jackie Robinson in the lineup, Dodgers starter Johnny Podres shut out the Yankees in the deciding seventh game, and handed the Yankees their first World Series loss since 1942 and only their second since 1926.
For the first time in World Series history, Podres was awarded World Series MVP honors, with a win/loss record of 2–0, pitched two complete games and compiled an ERA of 1.00, but most importantly, recorded a Game 7 shutout.
The Yankees could blame themselves for letting a 2-0 series lead slip, but I blame Mickey Mantle, who finished this series with an average of .200, one home run and RBI, and two strikeouts - Not the same Mick Yankees fan would see one year later during the summer of '56.
The Dodgers would win another National League pennant the following year, but only two seasons after winning their first World Series championship, their days in the Big Apple were over, as the Dodgers relocated to California, and became the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Ballgame Over, World Series Over, Pirates Win, THEEE PIRATES WINNN
With the Pirates leading 3-2 in the 1960 World Series, with Whitey Ford on the mound in a 12-0 shutout of the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Yankees forced a seventh game.
All signs pointed towards a Game 7 victory and a 19th World Series championship for the Yankees, as the Yankees were leading 7-4 going into the bottom of the eighth. The Pirates would rally for five runs, and took a 9-7 lead on a three-run homerun by catcher Hal W. Smith heading into ninth inning.
Trailing 9-7 in the top of the ninth, the Yankees cut the deficit their deficit to one, and on a RBI single by Mickey Mantle, which scored World Series MVP Bobby Richardson, the Yankees tied the game at nine apiece.
But then the Yankees had no idea their hearts would be crushed by one of the most unlikely heroes in MLB post-season history.
It was the bottom of the ninth, Yankees pitcher Ralph Terry was on the mound, and Bill Mazeroski, who only had hit only 11 home runs during the regular season was at the plate. With a count of one ball and no strikes, Mazeroski smashed a historic long drive over the left field wall, ending the World Series and giving the Pirates their first World Series championship in 35 years.
Besides for not being able to end his career with a.300 batting average, losing the 1960 World Series was the biggest disappointment of Mantle's career.
For the Mazeroski and the Pirates, this was a moment that would last a lifetime.
In the movie The Bronx Tale, a Young Calogero stated "Bill Mazeroski, I hate him. He made Mickey Mantle cry. The papers said the Mick cried."
Now we know why.
Sorrows In Seattle
The 1995 season would be manager Buck Showalter's final year in pinstripes, as Showalter would leave the Bronx without a World Series trophy.
During the 1995 playoffs, the Mariners became only the fourth team in major-league history to win a best-of-five series after being down 2-0, but this feat wouldn't be accomplish without major drama.
The Yankees won the first two games, and Seattle would win Game 3, as they recorded their first ever postseason win.
Behind Edgar Martinez's grand slam, along with his seven RBIs in Game 4, the Mariners tied the series two games apiece, heading into the deciding fifth game.
During Game 5, nine innings wouldn't be enough to determine the winner.
So in the top of the 11th inning, the Yankees were able to take a 5-4, and Jack McDowell was called upon to close out the series.
In the bottom of the 11th inning, with runners already on-board, Martinez drove a pitch into the left-field corner. Cora, who was on third base scored easily, and a sprinting Griffey scored all the way from first, giving the Mariners a 6-5 series clinching victory.
The Mariners were now heading to the ALCS to face the Cleveland Indians with a trip to the World Series on the line.
The Indians win it! OH MY GOD, THE INDIANS WIN IT!
Being just four outs away from facing the Baltimore Orioles in the 1997 ALCS, the Yankees were leading 2-1 in the best-of-five division series, and had a 2-1 lead in Game 4 of the 1997 ALDS.
It's not often that Mariano Rivera doesn't get the job done, but this was one of those times. With two outs in the bottom of the eighth and Rivera on the mound, having converted 43 saves during the regular season, the Indians season appeared to be over.
But Sandy Alomar Jr. homered to tie the game, and then in the ninth inning with Marquis Grissom on second after a leadoff single and then a sacrifice bunt, which moved him into scoring position, Omar Vizquel hit a single off reliever Ramiro Mendoza that rolled past Derek Jeter, allowing Grissom to score the game-winning run.
The Yankees would go onto lose Game 5 behind the heroics of Manny Ramirez's two runs batted in, and 21-year old Jaret Wright, who pitched 5 1/3 innings and giving up only two runs, earning his second victory in the series.
The Indians would advance to the World Series, only to lose a dramatic seventh game to the Florida Marlins, but they certainly had their moment against the defending champs in these playoffs.
Pure drama will forever characterize the essence of the 2001 World Series between the New York Yankees and Arizona Diamondbacks.
With the horrid smells of Ground Zero and nightmarish images from September 11th looming in the backdrop of New York City, from Scott Brosius to "Mr. November", and the multiple pitching meltdowns Byung Hyun-Kim, Yankee Stadium personified greatness during Games 5 and Game 6 of the World Series.
New Yorkers certainly cherished these great moments, but the greatest moment came during the bottom of the ninth inning of Game 7.
The Yanks were leading 2-1, and were three outs away from their fourth consecutive World Series championship, and none other than the great Mariano Rivera, who had converted a remarkable 23 consecutive postseason saves, was on the mound.
But after a Mark Grace single to lead off the inning, and a Damian Miller sacrifice bunt that Rivera would throw off Derek Jeter's glove and into center, the wheels started to come off.
With runners on first and second, and no outs, David Dellucci was thrown out at third afterJay Bell's ineffective bunt. The Next batter, Tony Womack doubled in a run, tying the game at two
Craig Counsell is then hit by a Rivera pitch, loading the bases for Luis Gonzalez.
Manager Joe Torre decides to move the infield in (WHY JOE, WHY?), and Rivera's famous cutter jams Gonzalez, who manages to hit a blooper over Jeter's head.
The baseball barely reached the outfield grass, but Bell would score, and the Diamondbacks were World Series champions - great ending to one of the greatest World Series of all-time.
A CURageous Performance
You all know, the bloody sock. Do I need to remind you?
Since I feel that I do, here it goes:
After getting shelled in Game 1 (3 IP, 6 ER, 1 K), Curt Schilling feels all the pressure of trying to erase "an 86 year old curse", as the Yankees try to advance to their second consecutive World Series.
It's Game Six of the 2004 ALCS.
Curt Schilling takes the mound following a procedure to aid his ailing right ankle.
His sock soaked with blood from the sutures used in the medical procedure, Schilling has one of greatest pitching performances in MLB playoff history.
Pitching seven strong innings, giving up one run on four hits and striking out four, Schilling's Game Six performance allows the Red Sox to even the series at three games apiece.
Yankees fans might not have enjoyed watching Schilling, but his performance was certainly one for the ages.
There's a First Time For Everything
Is having Game 6 and Game 7 of the ALCS on the same list too much for Yankee fans to handle?
It might be, but both games need to be here.
Yankees fans will always remember Schilling's moment, and how he tormented the Yankees on a bummed ankle, but Game 7 of the 2004 ALCS was the moment that changed the lives of the Yankees and their fans forever.
And they have Javier Vazquez to thank for that.
With the Red Sox already leading 2-0, the bases were loaded in the second inning and manager Joe Torre called upon Javier Vazquez to face Johnny Damon. In the first pitch of the at-bat, Damon hammered the pitch into the right-field seats for a grand slam.
The rout was on, and the game was all, but over.
I will save all the Yankee fans the aggravation and reminisce about what else transpired throughout the remainder of the game.
The Red Sox won 10–3 and became the first team in Major League Baseball history to win a seven-game series after losing the first three games.
Four games later the Red Sox finally ended the "Curse of the Bambino" by capturing their first World Series championship in 86 years.
Ear Plugs, PLEASE!!
This moment didn't happen on the baseball field, or in the Yankees dugout.
This moment didn't happen in the stands, unlike on August 10th, 2005, when 18-year old Scott Harper jumped 40 feet from the upper deck onto the backstop in the 8th inning of a game against the Chicago White Sox.
But rather, this embarrassing moment in Yankees history occurred on May 6, 2007, when Roger Clemens unexpectedly appeared in the owner's box at Yankee Stadium announcing his return to the Yankees.
Yankees radio announcer Suzyn Waldman would give a terrible name to Yankee announcers past and present, because on the day Clemens announced his comeback, Waldman considered his return "dramatic," as Clemens would be returning to a team that was paying him $28 million for one year.
"Oh my goodness gracious!!!...Roger Clemens is a New York Yankee," screamed Waldman.
That sounded to me she wasn't just happy to see Clemens back in pinstripes...
She overreacted and embarrassed herself, and the Yankees franchise for hiring her. She is extremely annoying to listen too, and that display of yelling or whatever you want to call that non-sense, was just another example of why Waldman should not be employed by the Yankees, or anyone in baseball.
We would all be better off.
End Of An Era
I'm not talking about when Mickey Mantle called it a career or the last baseball game that was played at the old Yankee Stadium.
I'm a referring to Joe Torre.
The Yankees organization should be ashamed for the lack of respect they showed the greatest manager in Yankees history by basically throwing him out the door when his contract was up.
Torre revitalized the Yankees franchise, under controversial owner George Steinbrenner, lasting 12 seasons, managing 1,942 regular season games (with a won-loss record of 1173–767), winning six American League pennants and four World Series championship.
Torre was the second-longest managerial tenure in the club's history: only Joe McCarthy lasted longer.
In 2007, Torre led the Yankees to their 13th consecutive postseason appearance, but the Yankees were eliminated in the first round for the second consecutive year under Torre, as this season would prove to be Torre's last.
After the season the Yankees offered Torre a one-year contract worth $5 million in base pay and $1 million in bonuses to be paid for each of three benchmarks the team reached: winning the ALDS, ALCS and World Series.
Torre turned down the offer, and the Torre era was over.
The way the Yankees handled the Torre situation was a disgrace, and props to Torre for taking the higher road, and leaving on his own terms.
It would still be great to have Torre in the Yankees dugout, but it's still great to
see him in a baseball uniform.
Even if it's on the West Coast.