November 27 in Yankee History

  • In a great trade that helped set up their fabulous run in the late seventies, the Yanks sent catcher Johnny Ellis, infielder Jerry Kenney, and outfielders Charlie Spikes and Rusty Torres to the Indians for third baseman Graig Nettles and catcher Gerry Moses on November 27, 1972.
  • The November 27, 1993, swap the Yankees made for Xavier Hernandez of the Houston Astros was accompanied by a great deal of hoopla, but his resulting 1994 numbers (4-4 with six saves) were disappointing. On the other hand, neither player the Bombers sent southwest, pitcher Domingo Jean nor infielder Andy Stankiewicz, did much in Houston either. Jean never made the Astros’ roster; “Stanky the Yankee” contributed one home run and 21 rbi’s in spot duty over three seasons.
  • On the basis of the plain numbers (11-10) posted in 2007, it would seem the Yanks did OK when they re-signed righty starter Mike Mussina to a two-year contract on November 27, 2006. But after surviving a horrendous streak that August where early-inning rallies obliterated the team in three straight, Moose turned it all around with his first 20-win season in 2008.
  • Joe DiMaggio rode his 56-game hitting streak to a win of the American League Most Valuable Player Award over Boston’s .406-hitting slugger Ted Williams on November 27, 1941. Many consider the choice (the “streak” over the last plus-.400 season) controversial, and if viewed in that light I might agree. Then six years later on the same day Joe vanquished Ted in the 1947 voting yet again. In the latter, the Yankee Clipper did have a great year for the World Champions, but Williams was amazingly totally left off one ballot (in voting where each writer submitted his top 10 candidates) in a season in which he hit for the Triple Crown. Sox fans felt that the Splinter was robbed both times, as Williams finished in first in six of 12 key offensive categories the first time, and nine of 12 the next. To me, it’s a clear case that the player who contributed to his team winning the title took the prize. The Sox did come in second in 1941, but it was 17 full games behind the Yanks. Six years later they finished closer in games (12) but they were in third place. In both cases, the Yanks could have finished with a double-digit lead in games over Boston even if the Sox did not have Williams, but not if the team in New York was bereft of no. 5 patrolling center field.
  • And both leagues handed out their MVP awards on November 27, 1953, with Indians third baseman Al Rosen prevailing in the AL, and Dodgers catcher Roy Campanella copping the NL prize.
  • Baseball Commissioner Bowie Kuhn suspended Yankee owner George Steinbrenner for two years on November 27, 1974, as a result of his conviction for making illegal campaign contributions to the Richard Nixon campaign.
  • Outfielder Dave Winfield and pitcher Ron Guidry represented the Yankees on the 1984 American League Gold Glove team announced on November 27.
  • On November 27, 1870, The New York Times referred to baseball as “The National Game.”
  • The Dodgers shipped pitcher Tim Belcher and eventual Yankee closer John Wetteland to the Reds for outfielder Eric Davis and pitcher Kip Gross on November 27, 1991.
  • When the White Sox traded Chet Lemon to the Tigers for Steve Kemp on November 27, 1981, they were hoping for the guy who knocked in an average 93 runs from 1977 through 1980 and not the one who faded to just 49 rbi’s in ’81. And they were successful, to the tune of 98 runs produced in 1982. But when the Yanks swooped in and signed Kemp as a free agent a year later, he dipped to 49 and 41 rbi’s, respectively, in two years. Steve was largely ineffective in the big city, and that was later exacerbated by a freak injury in a batting practice accident.
  • The Mets had to send a player (pitcher Bill Denehy) and $100,000 to the Senators to acquire manager Gil Hodges on this day in 1967.
  • St. Louis Cardinal Vince Coleman rode his 110 stolen bases to the National League Rookie of the Year Award on November 27, 1985. He was preceded in winning the senior circuit’s rookie prize on this November day by fellow Cardinal Bake McBride in 1974; by Gary Matthews of the Giants in 1973; and by Montreal Expo Carl Morton in 1970. Gary Peters of the White Sox outpolled teammate Pete Ward and Twins outfielder Jimmie Hall for the only American League Rookie Award presented on November 27, in 1963.
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    Players Who Have Died This Day

  • Lefty-hitting righthander Clem Llewellyn (1969) is the only Yankee player to have died on November 27. He pitched his only big league game (not a start) for the 1922 Yankees, to no record.
  • The list of noteworthy nonYankee players who have died on November 27 includes a righthanded pitcher, three outfielders, and two infielders. Hurler Bob Harmon (1961) won 107 games, lost 133, and saved 12 with the Cardinals and the Pirates from 1909-1918; lefty-hitting second baseman/third baseman Eddie Mayo (2006) hit 26 home runs and drove in 287 runs playing with the Tigers and the Bees from 1936-1947; and second baseman Jack Burdock (1931) hit 15 long balls and drove in 390 runs with the Red Caps and the Beaneaters from 1876-1891. Outfielder/first baseman Barry Shad (1936) cleared 10 fences good for 391 rbi’s from 1899-1909 with the Phillies, the Cardinals, the Cubs, and the Beaneaters; outfielder Austin McHenry (1922) hit all 34 of his homers with 286 runs knocked in with the Cardinals from 1918-1922; and lefthanded outfielder Babe Herman (1987) hit 181 roundtrippers and drove in 997 runs with the Dodgers, the Reds, and the Cubs from 1926-1945.
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    Players Born This Day

  • There are six November 27 Yankee birthdays. Bullet Joe Bush (1892) posted an excellent 62-38 mark with four saves in New York from 1922-1924 after six years with the Philly A’s and four with the Red Sox and before one season each with the Senators, the Pirates, the Giants, and the A’s again. He finished with a career record of 195-183. The Yanks got Joe from the Red Sox with Sam Jones and Everett Scott in December 1921 for Roger Peckinpaugh, Jack Quinn, Rip Collins, and Bill Piercy. Then in December 1924, New York traded Bush with Milt Gaston and Joe Giard to the St. Louis Browns for Urban Shocker.
  • Lefty Bill Short (1937) went 3-5 in 10 games (all starts) for the 1960 Yankees in his major-league debut, after they signed him as an amateur free agent before the 1955 season. He was then selected by the Baltimore Orioles from New York in the 1961 rule-V draft. He went on to pitch two seasons with the Orioles, and one each with the Red Sox, the Pirates, the Mets, and the Reds for an overall 5-11 record with two saves.
  • Johnny Schmitz (1920) batted righty but threw from the southpaw side, and posted a 1-1 mark in eight games with the ’52-’53 Yanks in a 16-year career (1941-1956), most of which he spent with the Chicago Cubs. The Yanks selected Schmitz off waivers from the Brooklyn Dodgers in August 1952. They traded him with Jim Greengrass, Bob Marquis, Ernie Nevel, and cash to the Cincinnati Reds for Ewell Blackwell a few weeks later. The Yanks purchased Schmitz back the following February, but the Senators grabbed him that May. His career mark: 93-114, with 21 saves.
  • The list of active (barely) Yankees born November 26 went up one in 2008 when they acquired future Hall of Fame catcher Ivan Rodriguez (1971) late in the season. But Ivan must have been pressing trying to impress his new team. Not only did he only hit two home runs for just three rbi’s in 33 games, he had trouble throwing runners out too. But Hall status is guaranteed Ivan after a long career spent mostly with the Texas Rangers where he won a Championship with the Marlins in 2003 and started on the 2006 Tigers team that lost in the World Series.
  • Lefty reliever Raul Valdes (1977) is another guy with minimal pinstriped game experience once he signed as a free agent in August 2011. Raul, who has posted a 6-6 record with one save from 2010 through 2012 with the Mets and Cardinals before his stop in the Bronx, and with the Phillies afterward, had no wins, losses, or saves with the Yanks in six games in 2011. Raul pitched for Houston in 2014.
  • And finally, righthander Jason Beverlin (1973) spent years in the Yankee organization without ever playing with the parent club in a regular-season game. He came over from the Oakland Athletics with Ruben Sierra in a July 1995 trade for Danny Tartabull. Granted free agency in October 2000, Beverlin went 0-3 in seven games (three starts) with the Tigers in 2002 after making a few appearances with the Indians first.
  • Other birthdays: Dave Giusti (1939); Dan Spillner (1951); Mike Scioscia (1958); Randy Milligan (1961); Tim Laker (1969); Ken Ray (1974); Willie Bloomquist (1977); Jimmy Rollins (1978); Jonathan Van Every (1979); Jason Berken (1983); and Bradley Zimmer (1992).