It was Gleyber Day in the Bronx on May 25, 2018, as the Yanks beat visiting Anaheim 2-1. The home team took a 1-0 second-inning lead on Gleyber Torres‘s infield single, only to be tied 1-1 on a Mike Trout fifth-inning home run off Luis Severino. But Gleyber to the rescue, as his seventh-inning blast carried the Yankees to victory.
Singleton back-to-back, seventh-inning home runs from Chase Headley and Didi Gregorius, and another by Austin Romine in the ninth, were too little too late as Toronto outscored the Yankees in the Stadium on Wednesday, May 25, 2016, 8-4. Four of the runs came off starter Ivan Nova, who pitched into the seventh, and neither Chasen Shreve nor Nick Goody could hold the visitors back in relief. Marco Estrada went seven innings for the win, as we caught this one from the Delta Suite behind home plate.
The Yankee bats broke out big time on Memorial Day, May 25, 2015, with a 14-1 demolition of the visiting reigning American League champs, the Kansas City Royals. The Bombers were led by three rbi’s from Brett Gardner, Chase Headley, Brian McCann, and Stephen Drew, each of whom chipped in with a home run. Nate Eovaldi went seven for the win, and lefthander Jacob Lindgren, making his major league debut, finished up. With both managers emptying their benches in the later innings, it was a scorekeeper’s nightmare, as seven pitchers were joined by 24 offensive players, many of them switching positions a few times, before the game came to a close. The Tuskegee Airmen were honored in a pregame ceremony.
Our next May 25 report involves a Mickey Mantle highlight, always a tasteful choice. On this day in 1966, Mickey went yard twice, off Dean Chance and then Lew Burdette, in an 11-6 mauling of the Angels.
Two Andruw Jones two-run home runs keyed a Yankee 7-3 victory over Toronto in Yankee Stadium on May 25, 2011. Back-to-back Derek Jeter and Curtis Granderson first-inning doubles not only got the carnage started; it moved Jeter past Cap Anson into 23rd place on the all-time runs scored list. Mark Teixeira added a two-run bomb, and Freddy Garcia cashed in the win. And the biggest news of the day: When coming on for the ninth inning, Mariano Rivera became the first pitcher ever to make 1,000 appearances for his one (and only) team. He was the 15th pitcher to have accrued 1,000 appearances.
On a day that had older Yankee fans remembering young Bill Rohr from 30-plus-years before, Brian Rose of the Red Sox threw three-hit ball for six innings against the Bombers in Yankee Stadium on May 25, 1999, after having already beaten them in Boston the week before. Chuck Knoblauch drove the second pitch of the game over the wall in left, but Rose left with a 4-1 lead in an eventual 4-2 Boston win, with Tom Gordon earning the save. The big blow off Yankee starter and loser Hideki Irabu was former Yankee Mike Stanley‘s three-run tater in the sixth. Rose, like Rohr before him, would quickly fade into anonymity after his two-week domination over the Yankees.
When Jarrod Washburn of the Mariners retired from the day after six frames in Yankee Stadium on May 25, 2008, it was with a 5-2 lead, but New York pounded Sean Green, Arthur Rhodes, and J.J. Putz for four runs in the bottom of the eighth in a 6-5 Yankee victory won by reliever Edwar Ramirez and saved by Mariano Rivera. Catcher Jose Molina delivered the game winner with a two-out double, and the Tuskegee Airmen moved the games-remaining in the old Stadium counter from 56 to 55.
The Yankees got some unexpectedly good starts from a series of AA and AAA pitchers in 2007 when injury devastated the rotation, but some of the games obviously were not as good. The Angels reached Tyler Clippard for three runs in four innings in Yankee Stadium on May 25, 2007, Matt DeSalvo gave up three more without recording an out, and veteran reliever Luis Vizcaino was pounded for four more in a 10-6 loss. The game wasn’t close until Robinson Cano hit a three-run double off Scot Shields in the bottom of the eighth.
Jimmy Dykes and Mickey Cochrane took over the roles of assistant manager and general manager, respectively, on May 25, 1950, with Earle Mack, son of the legendary Manager Connie Mack, moving from assistant GM to chief scout. The moves were made in search of a new direction for the Athletics, but to no avail, as the Yanks beat them 2-0 anyway, behind Eddie Lopat and Joe Page.
With all those home runs in his career, it is a bit of a surprise that Babe Ruth only hit three in a regular-season game twice. The first was in a Yankee loss, and the second was in his final professional season, in 1935 with the Boston Braves, on May 25. But his team fell in that one too, as the Pirates overcame the Babe’s onslaught for an 11-7 win.
Babe Ruth spent life on the edge, and sometimes he paid for it. On this day in 1922, he was suspended for one day and fined for throwing dirt on an umpire who called him out at second. Then he entered the stands after one heckler and gestured at another, acts that caused GM Ed Barrow to strip him of the “Captain” title. The Yanks beat the Nationals 6-4.
The Philadelphia A’s beat the Yanks in the 1931 AL pennant race by 13.5 games, and two of the games in that big lead occurred on May 25. Philly’s Mickey Cochrane and New York’s Ben Chapman homered in Game One, and the A’s prevailed behind Lefty Grove, 4-2. Roy Mahaffey was the beneficiary of Philly’s offensive explosion in the 16-4 nightcap.
And six years later on this day, on May 25, 1937, Mickey Cochrane played his last game. After hitting a solo bomb off the Yanks’ Bump Hadley in the third, he suffered a skull fracture when hit by a Hadley pitch two frames later. Cochrane blamed himself for losing the ball rather than Hadley for throwing it. The Yanks came back to win the game 4-3, against Schoolboy Rowe.
A May 25, 1924, loss to Boston by a 6-5 score moved the Red Sox and Yanks into a flat-footed tie for first place, pitting the two teams in a close battle from which the Boston team would fade in mid-June.
Mickey Mantle hit an opposite field homer off Boston lefty Mickey McDermott on this day in 1953, but the Red Sox outlasted the Yanks 14-10 in what was at that time the longest nine-inning game ever, at three hours and 52 minutes.
Jesse Tannehill snapped the Boston Pilgrims’ 20-game losing streak by blanking the White Sox 3-0 on May 25, 1906. But it would not be Boston’s year as both teams from that city finished last, while the two Chicago representatives would come in first. This two-city phenomenon would strike again in 1921, as the New York Giants and Yankees won their respective pennants, and the Philadelphia Phillies and Athletics would bring up the rear.
A Yankee rally against Toronto bullpenners Tanyon Sturtze and Pete Walker on May 25, 2003, fell short when first base umpire Wally Bell ruled that Raul Mondesi‘s bid for a three-run seventh-inning jack was just foul in Yankee Stadium. As it was, singleton homers from Jorge Posada, Derek Jeter, and Alfonso Soriano were not enough as the Yanks fell, 5-3.
Todd Stottlemyre and his father, one-time Yankee starter and later pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre, became the first major league father/son tandem both of whom had garnered 100 victories when Todd reached the century mark on May 25, 1997.
It was a bleak day in the Bronx on May 25, 1992, until the eighth inning arrived. Then the Yankees plated the first nine men to come to the plate and blasted past the visiting Brewers for a 13-7 victory. Danny Tartabull had a grand slam in the uprising.
The Yankees suffered a bullpen collapse on May 25, 1917, as the Indians rallied for six ninth-inning tallies for a 6-5 win. Tris Speaker‘s steal of home got the first run in and sparked the mayhem.
On May 25, 2019, the Yankees sent shortstop Didi Gregorius on a rehab assignment to the Tampa Tarpons.
On May 25, 2018, the Yankees signed free agent catcher Wilkin Castillo to a minor league contract, and they traded backstop Erik Kratz to Milwaukee for future considerations. Also, righthander Tommy Kahnle had his roster status changed by the club.
On May 25, 2017, the Yankees placed center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury on the seven-day disabled list, on a concussion protocol, after he had run into the wall in a victory the day before. To fill the roster spot, they recalled Rob Refsnyder from the AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders. The club also signed free agent shortstop Luis Santos to a minor league contract.
In two May 25, 2013, moves that cleared the way to add players to their roster, and two moves to make those adds, the Yankees placed outfielder Curtis Granderson on the 15-day disabled list, with a fractured left hand; designated hurler Francisco Rondon for assignment; claimed southpaw David Huff off waivers from Cleveland Indians; and recalled outfielder Brennan Boesch from the AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders.
In a fateful trade, the Red Sox swapped Dennis Eckersley and minor leaguer Mike Brumley to the Cubs for first baseman Billy Buckner on May 25, 1984.
Lefty Grove of the Red Sox allowed a May 25 single to Joe DiMaggio in 1941, becoming one of few Yankee opponents to contribute both to Joe’s 56-game hitting streak and Babe Ruth‘s 60-homer season in 1927, as the Babe hit one off him that September. Also of note: In the 10-3 Boston win, Ted Williams‘s batting average climbed over .400, a number he would exceed at the season’s close as well. A magical season!
Perhaps aware of how dangerous his fastball could be, the legendary Walter Johnson tried to avoid hitting batters, without a lot of success. He plunked three (of 205 in his career) in one of two games with the Yankees on May 25, 1912. Yankee shortstop Jack Martin fell victim twice, and suffered a shattered jaw from the latter, but the Yankees swept Johnson’s Senators, 6-3 and 9-5.
Tigers Hank Greenberg and Rudy York both homered twice in a 7-3 Detroit win over New York on May 25, 1938.
On May 25, 2011, the Yankees transferred righthander Phil Hughes from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day disabled list. Filling the spot opened on the 40-man roster, the team claimed righty Kanekoa Texeira off waivers from Kansas City, and optioned him to AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
In a preamble to the resurrection of his career with the Yankees the next year, Darryl Strawberry would be released by the Dodgers on May 25, 1994.
To the modern-day fan of baseball, Casey Stengel is famous for his work having piloted the Yanks, and then as the first manager of the Mets, but Casey was always a crowd pleaser. On May 25, 1919, as he good-naturedly gestured to an applauding crowd coming to bat in the seventh inning as a Pittsburgh Pirate, he doffed his cap, delighting one and all as a sparrow escaped and flew into the air.
Larry Gura had a short, successful run with the Yanks once they traded catcher Duke Sims to the Rangers for him on this day in 1974. But after going 5-1, Gura would displease Billy Martin, and he was moved to Kansas City.
The Oakland Oaks of the Pacific Coast League did the Yankees a favor when they purchased the contract of troubled outfielder Dick Wakefield on May 25, 1950.
When hurler Ferguson Jenkins of the Cubs struck out Garry Templeton in the third inning of a 2-1 loss to San Diego on May 25, 1982, he became the seventh pitcher in major league history to record 3,000 K’s. Exactly one year earlier, Boston’s Carl Yastrzemski played in his 3,000th game, and he scored the tie-breaker in an 8-7 Red Sox win over the Indians.
Louisville’s Deacon Phillippe beat the Giants 7-0 with a no-hitter on May 25, 1899. It was just his seventh major league game.
There were three one-hitters thrown in the bigs on May 25, 2001. Hideo Nomo bested the Blue Jays, 4-0, at Fenway, Greg Maddux‘s 1-0 win over the Pirates was his second 1-0 one-hitter that month, and Kerry Wood‘s 1-0 silencing of the Brewers represented back-to-back one-hitters for the Cubs’ staff.
Among the most noteworthy May 25 events involving former or future Yankee players is Rick Rhoden‘s 100th career victory in the Pirates’ 8-2 win over the Braves on this day in 1985. And Roger Clemens made one of his closest bids for a no-hitter one year later as he pitched the Red Sox to a 7-1 win over the Rangers. Oddibe McDowell broke up the no-no bid with a single with two down in the eighth.
Willie Mays made his major league debut on May 25, 1951, whiffing in his first at bat and finishing the day 0-for-5.
There are no Yankee players who have died on May 25.
The list of nonYankee players who have died on May 25 holds four noteworthy hurlers, all of them righthanders with slightly losing records after long service. Switch-hitting Bill James (1942) won 65, lost 71, and saved four games from 1911-1919, mostly with the Tigers, the Indians, and the Browns; and Henry Boyle (1932) went 89-111 with one save for the Maroons and the Hoosiers from 1884-1889. Carl Weilman (1924) posted all of his 85 wins, 95 losses, and 10 saves with the Browns from 1912-1920; and Willie Sudhoff (1917) pitched mostly for the Browns too, with a 103-135-3 record from 1897-1906.
Players Who Have Died This Day
The list of Yankee players with May 25 as their birthday swelled by one in 2005 when minor league outfielder Mike Vento (1978) was called up. A several-year stalwart in the AA Trenton Thunder outfield, Mike managed just two at bats playing right field in two games for the Yanks that year. He went hitless with a strike out, but he did record two putouts and an assist in the Yankee outfield. He played eight games with the 2006 Washington Nationals.
Although John Montefusco (1950), “the Count,” until recently, was the only other Yankee player born May 25, we’ll later list three major leaguers who spent a little time with the team. John ended his long career with the Yanks in 1983 through 1986 once they got him from San Diego for Dennis Rasmussen and Edwin Rodriguez in August of the former year. He won 10, lost three, and saved four while in Pinstripes. The Count’s career count? 90-83, with five saves, from 1974-1986.
But before going into guys who did not take the field wearing pinstripes, we need to add righthander Mike King (1995), who after being drafted in the 12th round by Miami in 2016, was traded by the Marlins with international bonus slot money to the Yankees for Garrett Cooper and Caleb Smith in 2017. Mike got into one game with the parent club in 2019, giving up two hits and a run in two innings. In nine 2020 games (four starts) he went 1-2, but appears to have established himself as the team’s best long man option in the pen in 2021. He has pitched to a sub-2.00 era in five games as of this writing.
Joey Eischen (1970) bounced around the National League from Montreal to LA (for ex-Yank Roberto Kelly) to Cinncy, but the Yanks signed him to a free-agent contract in February of 1998, though they released him a month later. Eischen posted a 9-7 record with three saves through 2004, mostly with Montreal. Jim Archer (1932), who would play with the Orioles and the A’s, was signed by the Yankees as an amateur free agent before the 1951 season, though they released him a year later, as well. The lefty thrower went 9-16 with the 1961-1962 Kansas City A’s. And first baseman Randall Simon (1975) signed with the Yanks as a free agent in May 2000; they released him that October. Through the 2006 season Simon had hit 49 home runs with 237 rbi’s, with the Braves, the Tigers, the Pirates, and the Cubs.
Hall of Fame Negro League player Martin Dihigo (1905) leads the day’s other baseball birthdays. Also, Washington first baseman for 20 years Joe Judge (1934); Bob Knepper (1954); Dave Hollins (1966); Bill Haselman (1966); Native American Will Pennyfeather (1968), who had middling success in the bigs but starred for the Atlantic League Atlantic City Surf; Todd Walker (1973); Miguel Tejada (1976); Fernando Lunar (1977); Chris Young (1979); Scott Hairston (1980); Jason Kubel (1982); Brad Snyder (1982); Brad Lincoln (1985); Eric Young (1985), son of another player by the same name, who was born in New Brunswick, N.J., home of Rutgers University, where the senior Mr. Young attended college; Pat Dean (1989); Neil Ramirez (1989); Ryan Sherriff (1990); Jarrett Cosart (1990); Donovan Walton (1994); and Jake Fraley (1995).
Players Born This Day