How did Yankee fans last 14 years without acknowledging one of the Yankee greats, before finally celebrating his career with a day just a few summers ago? There was only one Louisiana Lightning. Ron Guidry retired on July 12, 1989. And, he replaced Mel Stottlemyre as Yankee Pitching Coach when Mel retired. Although Ron has been replaced in that role by Dave Eiland, and then Larry Rothschild, under skipper since 2008 Joe Girardi (and in 2018, Aaron Boone), he is still held in the highest regard in the South Bronx.
July 12, 1951, was a very good Yankee day. “Super Chief” Allie Reynolds threw the first of his two no-hitters on the season at the Indians, besting Bullet Bob Feller. The Yanks won 1-0 on the strength of Gene Woodling‘s seventh-inning home run.
Each club used five pitchers on a threatening and wet night in the Bronx on July 12, 2013, with Hiroki Kuroda going the requisite five frames for the 2-0 win over the Twins. The scoring came in the bottom of that last inning, on rbi singles from Brett Gardner and Robinson Cano.
Stopping a losing streak at three games, Don Gullett pitched the Yanks to a 5-2 win over the Brewers on July 12, 1977. Willie Randolph had the game-winning home run.
The Yanks did OK when they traded Drew Henson, Jackson Melian, Brian Reith, and Ed Yarnall to the Reds for Denny Neagle and Mike Frank this day in 2000. Neagle did help for awhile before pitching himself off the following year’s roster down the stretch, and neither Henson nor Melian fired in their attempts to play big-league ball. Kind of a push, really.
And the “trade winds” definitely blew in the Bombers’ favor when they picked up reliever Lindy McDaniel for starter Bill Monboquette in a trade with the Giants on the same day in 1968.
But July 12, 1987, is a dark day on which the Pinstripers made one of their worst ever transactions, as they sent young starter Bob Tewksbury to the Cubs for Steve Trout.
Keeping things at a disastrous level (but with a different team, thankfully), the White Sox lost the first of two in Comiskey Park legitimately to the Tigers, 4-1, on July 12, 1979. And then they had to forfeit the second game, as fans swarmed and damaged the field on the one and only Disco Demolition Night.
NBC got themselves in trouble with Baseball Commissioner Ford Frick when they showed giant close-ups of the catchers’ signals in a Yankee/Red Sox game on July 12, 1959. But the Bombers had problems of their own, as the 7-3 loss to Boston was their fourth straight.
Yankee slugger Babe Ruth hit the 30th of his record 60 home runs on the season in a 7-0 win over the Indians on July 12, 1927.
There are so many Yankee heroes, and a shorter list of guys who failed fabulously playing in New York. Among the latter we count first baseman Jack Doyle. He was signed on July 11, 1905, and made two huge errors during the Yankees’ 6-3 loss to Detroit the following day. It was his last big-league game, and his only one for the New Yorkers.
Detroit’s Felipe Lira and New York’s David Cone pitched 1-1 ball through six innings in the Stadium on July 12, 1997. But the Yanks rode a Derek Jeter single and double and a Luis Sojo triple to five tallies in the next two frames, and they prevailed 6-2.
The Tigers beat the Yankees 4-2 on July 12, 1934, as Schoolboy Rowe fanned 11 New Yorkers. The Detroit win moved them into first place.
The home run Babe Ruth hit in a 6-4 win over the Browns on this day in 1921 was the 137th of his career, moving him past the record 136 for a career held by 19th Century star Roger Connor.
Yankee pitcher Jack Warhop stole home in the third inning of a 4-1 win over the Browns on this day in 1912.
Don’t hold your breath waiting for the record for doubles in a game or doubleheader to fall. Both records were badly distorted when 45,000 fans were allowed into the 35,000-seat Sportsman’s Park in St. Louis on July 12, 1931, and the overflow crowded into the outfield, ringing the wall. Fly balls falling among the crowd were credited as ground-rule doubles with the Cubs and Cards combining for 32 on the day, and 21 in the second game.
On July 12, 2017, the Yankees signed free agent righthander Oliver Lezcano to a minor league contract.
The Yankees signed free agent catcher Gustavo Campero to a minor league contract on July 12, 2016.
The bullpen beat continued, as the Yankees designated righty Matt Daley for assignment on July 12, 2014.
The Yankees signed four new draftees on July 12, 2013: outfielder Dustin Fowler; lefthanded pitcher Nestor Cortes; and first basemen Drew Bridges and Aaron Judge.
On July 12, 1911, Yankee third baseman Roy Hartzell had the day of his life as he notched a three-run double and another double in the same inning, went on to hit a grand slam, and threw in a sac fly to garner eight rbi’s in a 12-2 Yankee victory over the Browns.
Signed the day before, righthander Francis Joseph was assigned to the Yankee minors on July 12, 2011.
The Yankees signed catcher Tyler Austin on July 12, 2010, and assigned to him to the Gulf Coast League Yankees in Tampa the next day.
Pirates Franciso Cordero and Ricardo Rincon combined on a 10-inning no-hitter in beating the Astros 3-0 on July 12, 1997.
Melido Perez was still with the White Sox when he threw a rain-shortened, six-inning, 8-0 no-hitter at the Yanks on this day in 1990. Officially he lost the no-no due to a later rule change that negated no-hitters of less than nine innings.
Stan Musial‘s 12th-inning home run carried the National League to a 6-5 win over the American in the All Star Game on July 12, 1955, overcoming Mickey Mantle‘s three-run jack from earlier in the game.
A Babe Ruth-managed Armed Forces All Star team featuring Joe DiMaggio and Ted Williams overcame the Boston Braves 9-8 in a fund-raising exhibition on July 12, 1943.
The Yankees signed righthander Sean Black on July 12, 2009.
A Johnny Sain highlight leads off a short list of July 12 accomplishments by future or former Yankee players. Hurler Sain missed a Perfect Game in a 1-0 Braves win over the Reds on this day in 1946 when Grady Hatton‘s pop fly fell in among three Boston defenders. And pitching for the Pirates at the time, Jack Chesbro threw a five-hit shutout and bested Christy Matthewson and the Giants 4-0 on July 12, 1902.
Perhaps the only sadder day for Yankee fans when considering the passing of beloved Pinstriper Bobby Murcer on this day in 2008, was his trade to the Giants for Bobby Bonds in 1974. A true link back to the days of glory and teammate Mickey Mantle — Bobby was the first in a long line hoped to be the one to replace the irreplaceable — Murcer stroked 252 home runs with 1,043 rbi’s in the bigs from 1965 through 1983, with 77 and 356 of those numbers, respectively, coming with the NL Giants and Cubs before he was brought back in 1979. We got to enjoy Bobby a bit longer as a broadcaster for YES, and his wife Kay Murcer is one of several widows of Yankee greats who enjoys returning to the Bronx to accept accolades in his name to this day. As happened several times in July, before 2008, the lone Yankee player who had died July 12 earned that distinction by a stint with the 1902 Baltimore Orioles team that would relocate to New York as the Highlanders in 1903. Righthander Jack Cronin (1929) posted a 3-5 record with no saves while pitching 10 games (eight starts) that year. In an 1895-1904 career spent largely with the Tigers and the Giants, Cronin’s overall mark was 43-57-3.
Lefthanded outfielder Wally Judnich (1971), who hit 90 home runs and drove in 420 runs mostly with the Browns from 1940-1949, is the first of two noteworthy nonYankee players to have passed July 12. The other was shortstop Billy Urbanski (1973). He cleared 19 fences good for 207 rbi’s with the Braves and the Bees from 1931-1937.
Players Who Have Died This Day
Southpaw Chasen Shreve, born on July 12, 1990 is one who, at least initially, produced stellar results in the Bronx once he arrived to start the 2015 season in the bullpen. He earned his 6-2 mark in 59 games, striking out more than one per inning, batting left or right, and owning the seventh inning. Having arrived in the same trade that brought the failed righty David Carpenter, Shreve gave the fans something to smile about. Chasen, who pitched to a minuscule era with no record in 15 games with Atlanta in 2014, stumbled down the stretch, and again in early 2016 after a strong Spring and first few weeks. He returned to the 25-man squad in early July, and had a decent season in 2017. Chasen has posted a 14-6 mark with one save in his Yankee career, as of this writing (in July 2018), but he has pitched worse than his 2-2 with an era around 5.00 this year, and he has become a favorite fan whipping boy in the Bronx.
The nonPinstriped July 12 celebrants of note are: righthander Lee Meadows (1894), who won 188 while losing 180 for the Cardinals and Pirates from 1915-1929; southpaw Jack Harshmann (1927), who posted most of his 69 wins (with 62 losses and seven saves) for the White Sox and the Orioles from 1952-1960; lefthanded first baseman/outfielder Ron Fairly (1938), a 215-homer man with 1,044 rbi’s with the Dodgers and the Twins from 1958-1978; Mario Soto (1956), who appeared only with the Reds to the tune of a 100-92 mark from 1977-1988; Wally Ritchie (1965); Mike Munoz (1965); Kelly Wunsch (1972); Dan Reichert (1976); Brad Eldred (1980); Phil Dumatrait (1981); Tom Gorzelanny (1982); Howie Kendrick (1983); Tony Sipp (1983); Nick Vincent (1986); and Nick Delmonico (1992).
Players Born This Day