August 21 in Yankee History

  • The Yanks finally salvaged the third game against the visiting Astros on August 21, 2014. Given the amount of trouble they (and most of the league) have had with Dallas Keuchel in 2015, it’s a good thing they reached him for three runs on three straight hits in the home second: Mark Teixeira single, Martin Prado double, and Chase Headley home run. The amazing Brandon McCarthy gave up just four hits and no walks while striking out eight in a nine-inning, complete-game shutout, 3-0.
  • Cleveland reached Masahiro Tanaka for single runs in four different innings in a 7-3 win in Yankee Stadium on August 21, 2015. A two-run, eighth-inning rally by the home team made it close, but the Tribe reached southpaw Justin Wilson for three runs in the top of the ninth.
  • Although the game that followed was exciting, the most satisfactory part of my experience in Yankee Stadium on August 21, 2013, was the perch at the outfield wall from which I and a group of season ticket holders were able to watch batting practice. Most fascinating was seeing bullpen coach Mike Harkey, setup man David Robertson, and starter Hiroki Kuroda discussing pitching grips with Mariano Rivera, but it was also very cool when I realized that righthander Robertson was throwing balls back to the infield with his left hand. In the game that followed, the Yankees beat R.A. Dickey and the Blue Jays 4-2 on the strength of an eighth-inning Alfonso Soriano two-run home run.
  • Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth went yard in the same inning 19 times during their Yankee careers, and 72 times in the same game. In an 11-7 Yankee win over George Blaeholder and the Browns on August 21, 1931, The Babe hit his 600th career home run, and Lou followed him, going back-to-back.
  • Ron Guidry, feted with his no. 49 retired in the Bronx in 2003, won his 10th game in 1977 on August 21, 2-1 over the Rangers, as both runs were knocked in by Graig Nettles, on a home run and a double.
  • The Yanks handed Javier Vazquez four quick runs in the first inning vs. the Mariners in Yankee Stadium on August 21, 2010, crowned by a Jorge Posada 409-foot bomb, but the troubled righty left a tie game with no one out in the fourth. Still, a three-run rally on Austin Kearns, Curtis Granderson, Eduardo Nunez and Derek Jeter base hits and a Mark Teixeira sac fly in the home seventh carried the day in the 9-5 Yankee win.
  • And on this day in 1977 while Guidry was winning No. 10, Tom Seaver made his first Shea Stadium visit after his trade to Cincinnati, winning 5-1 on a six-hitter with 11 strike outs. He also doubled and scored twice.
  • Red Sox hurler Wes Ferrell walked off the Yankee Stadium mound in a tantrum over a lack of support as the Yanks beat the Sox 4-1 on August 21, 1936. Boston Manager Joe Cronin fined him $1,000, but Ferrell refused to pay, and was traded before the next season.
  • The Yankees extracted revenge against young Texas righty Brian Sikorsky, who had beaten them the first time he saw them, as they blasted the Rangers 12-3 in Yankee Stadium on August 21, 2000. Consecutive third-inning singles from Jorge Posada, Luis Sojo, Scott Brosius, and Clay Bellinger got the six-run inning started, and two infield errors capped it. The Yanks coasted from there.
  • When Ottawa and Rochester of the International League played two games on August 21, 2001, Tim Raines, Sr., and Tim Raines, Jr., faced each other from opposing benches. Each got one hit in the first game, and young Raines outdid his father when he singled in Game Two also.
  • Angels rookie Jason Dickson, who recently was pitching for ex-Yank Sparky Lyle‘s Somerset Patriots of the Independent Atlantic League, shut down the Yankees 7-1 on August 21, 1996, despite Derek Jeter‘s home run on the first pitch of the game.
  • Three years later on the same day, Orioles outfielder Brady Anderson led off both games with the White Sox with homers on August 21, 1999, only to have the Chicago team beat his club in both. Anderson’s double blasts equaled an achievement that had only only occurred twice before, the last time by Rickey Henderson in 1993.
  • The Yankees and the White Sox played an 18-inning, 3-3 tie on August 21, 1933.
  • Although he had not contributed much in the Bronx since his arrival, Yankee fans should have been relieved when the club activated lefthander Damaso Marte from the 60-Day disabled list on August 20, 2009, as he would pitch lights-out in the coming postseason. The Yankees optioned infielder Ramiro Pena to AAA Scranton-Wilkes Barre to make room on the 25-man roster.
  • Both Bob Feller (1951) and the aforementioned Wes Ferrell (1932) won their 20th games of the season on August 21, the same day, again, that Christy Mathewson won his 22nd, in 1913.
  • Mickey Mantle hit a pinch homer off Jim Merritt of the Twins on August 21, 1968, the 534th dinger of his career, which tied him on the all-time list with Jimmie Foxx. But Minnesota prevailed in the game, 3-1.
  • Tinkering with the end of the bench, the Yankees optioned righthander Chase Whitley to the AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders; then recalled third baseman Zelous Wheeler from Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, on August 21, 2014.
  • The Yankees signed outfielder Benjamin Gamel on August 18, 2010. They would assign him to the GCL Yankees the next day.
  • On August 21, 2013, the Yankees optioned righty reliever Preston Claiborne to the AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders.
  • On August 21, 2012, the Yankees signed free agent shortstop Dan Fiorito.
  • When White Sox pitcher Ted Lyons no-hit the Red Sox, 6-0, on August 21, 1926, he did it in an economical 67 minutes.
  • When Yankee outfielder Bernie Williams tied an unfortunate record by striking out five times during a 7-4 loss to Kansas City on this day in 1991, he was consoled by Yankee coach Frank Howard, one of the 28 guys (to that time) who shared the ignominious mark.
  • The Yankees placed third baseman Alex Rodriguez on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left calf on August 21, 2010.
  • Not only did the Yankees activate third baseman Alex Rodriguez from the 15-day disabled list on August 21, 2011, they also designated newly arrived Aaron Laffey for assignment. The club also signed lefthanded pitcher Andrew Cave.
  • Representatives of Cuba, Panama, Puerto Rico, and Venezuela met on August 21, 1948, and agreed to start the Serie de Caribe (Caribbean Series), a round-robin 12-game tournament. In the version still going on today Cuba and Panama have been replaced by Mexico and the Dominican Republic.
  • When Pittsburgh’s Nick Maddox beat Brooklyn 2-1 on August 21, 1908, he notched his 20th win in his 30th appearance, a record. It would be tied by three players, first by Yankee Russ Ford in 1910. Boo Ferriss (1945) and Cal Eldred (1993) were the other two.
  • St. Louis Browns southpaw Bill Bayne whiffed seven of the first nine Yankees and struck out 10 overall in a 10-0 win over the Bombers in the second of two on August 21, 1921. Coupled with their 5-0 win in the first game, the Browns picked a good day for a sweep, playing in front of their biggest crowd of the year.
  • An August 21, 1901 contest between the Baltimore Orioles (the franchise that would be the Highlanders in New York 18 months later) and the Detroit Tigers would end tied 0-0 after O’s hurler Joe McGinnity was tossed for spitting in the face of Umpire Tom Connolly. Trying to intervene, Detroit’s Ked Eberfeld would be decked by Baltimore’s Mike Donlin.
  • Late New Yankee starter Cory Lidle is first in a list of August 21 highlights involving future or former Yankee players, because on this day in 2002 he and Oakland beat Cleveland 6-0 in a complete-game one-hitter. After allowing a single and walk in the first, he retired 25 straight. Great Yankee starter Stan Bahnsen also threw a one-hitter, this one for Cleveland, a 4-0 win over the White Sox on August 21, 1973. And finally, one-season Yankee third baseman Spike Owen was playing for the Red Sox when he tied a 20th Century record by scoring six times in a 24-5 thumping of the Indians on this day in 1986.
  • Two 300′s were achieved on August 21, Dale Murphy‘s 300th career home run (1987), and Rollie Fingers‘s 300th save (1982).
  •  
    Players Who Have Died This Day

  • Catcher Roy Luebbe (1985), whose only play was in eight games for the 1925 Yankees, is the only Pinstriper to have died on August 21. Although he batted 0-for-15, he drove in three runs and scored one.
  • Noteworthy nonYankee August 21 player deaths include a third baseman, a catcher, and two righthanded pitchers. Third sacker Joe Mulvey (1928) hit most of his 29 home runs good for 532 rbi’s from 1883-1895 for the Phillies; and backstop Jack Ryan (1952) played mostly with the Colonels, the Beaneaters, the Cardinals, and the Senators from 1889-1913, hitting four home runs and driving in 189 runs during that time. Carl Lundgren (1934) posted his entire 91-55-6 record from 1902-1909 with the Cubs; and Ted Wilks (1989) pitched for the Cardinals, the Pirates, and the Indians from 1944-1951, winning 59, losing 30, and saving 46 games.
  •  
    Players Born This Day

  • 1996 World Series MVP John Wetteland (1966), who saved 74 in New York in 1995 and 1996 and 330 overall, is the foremost of seven Yankees born on August 21. The Bombers got Wetteland from the Montreal Expos for Fernando Seguignol and cash in April 1995. He was granted free agency in November 1996 once the Yanks realized what they had in young Mariano Rivera.
  • First baseman/catcher John Ellis (1948), who debuted in 1969 through 1972 with the Yanks, was the other significant contributor among the day’s Yankee birthdays, with 16 homers and 96 rbi’s. Ellis was signed by the Yankees as an amateur free agent in 1966, and the transaction that sent him packing is mentioned in other birthday reports from around this time, because he was one of three players shipped to Cleveland in 1972 for Jerry Moses and Graig Nettles (born August 22, 1944).
  • Catcher Dick Gossett‘s (1891) service in New York in 1913-1914, with 10 rbi’s in 49 games, was his only major league time. Seven-year vet Shawn Hillegas (1964) was 1-8 in 21 games for the hapless 1992 club, though the one win was a complete-game shutout. Hillegas was signed as a Yankee free agent in April 1992 and released that August.
  • Gerry Staley (1920) notched one strike out while giving up four hits in 2.3 innings for the 1955 and 1956 Yanks. New York selected Staley off waivers from the Cincinnati Redlegs in September 1955, and lost him off waivers to the Chicago White Sox the following May. Murry Dickson (1916) was 1-2 with one save for the 1958 Pinstripers. He was acquired from the Kansas City Athletics in August 1958 for Zeke Bella and cash. The Athletics got him back by purchasing his contract from the Yankees in May 1959.
  • The oft-injured Mason Williams (1991) displayed some of why the Yanks have waited patiently for him to have a healthy year since they drafted him in the fourth round in 2010. In eight games of his 2015 callup, he hit .286, with a home run and three rbi’s, while playing stellar defense in center field, in the absence of the injured Jacoby Ellsbury. Alas, Williams has had further injuries, and he may have been passed on the Yankee outfield depth chart by several younger players. But he did play in 12 games in 2016, and five more so far in ’17, adding three more rbi’s to his total.
  • To describe the strange 2018 journeys of third baseman (mostly) Brandon Drury (1992) is a good a way as any to talk about the newest Yankee birthdayer. Acquired by New York from Arizona in late February 2018 in a three-team deal, including Tampa Bay, Drury was apparently brought in because the Yankees were concerned that Miguel Andujar was not ready to take over third base. And Brandon did hit a big home run in the season’s opening series in Toronto, but struggled a little at the bat, until it was revealed that he was suffering from migraine headaches, and had been for a few years. His arrival on the DL opened the doors to Andujar, who has taken the job and run with it. Upon a somewhat healthy return Drury got little playing time, until he was traded with outfielder Billy McKinney to the Blue Jays for lefty starter J.A. Happ in late July ’18. We’ll see.
  • Other birthdays: Felix Millan (1943); John Stearns (1951); Jim Bullinger (1965); Karl “Tuffy” Rhodes (1968), a star in Japan, who in 1993 went to the Cubs from the Padres in the same three-team trade that brought Paul Assenmacher to the Bronx at the cost of sending John Habyan to Kansas City; Andujar Cedeno (1969); Craig Counsell (1970); Lou Pote (1971); Ismael Valdes (1973); Lou Collier (1973); Ramon Vazquez (1976); Jason Marquis (1978); Jesse Chavez (1983); Jeff Clement (1983); B.J. (now Melvin) Upton (1984); J.D. Martinez (1987); Tim Collins (1989); Ehire Adrianza (1989); Christian Vazquez (1990); Luke Weaver (1993); and Derek Fisher (1993).