You don’t win as many pennants as the Yankees have without having some memorable mid-September moments. First, the Yankees resurrected their season in what was a very bad September when they won a come-from-behind contest in Toronto on the 14th in 1999. Hitting two grand slams in the same game for only the third time in their history, Bernie Williams tied the game at six with his in the eighth inning, and the Bombers won behind Paul O’Neill‘s salami in the ninth, 10-6.
On September 14, 2017, six of the first seven Yankees to the plate in the bottom of the first reached, and scored, topped off by Todd Frazier‘s three-run dinger. It was a weird night in the Stadium, as the Scoreboard and loudspeaker went silent at 6:50 during preparations for the 7:12 pm first pitch, and stayed that way until sound was restored at 7:30, during the second inning. Aaron Judge later homered twice in the 13-5 destruction pf the Orioles, with the second being at least the second time in his brief career he had gone back to back with Tyler Austin, this in the four-run sixth inning. Baltimore (and one-time Yankee) manager Buck Showalter had home plate ump Brian O’Nora check the ball after Masahiro Tanaka‘s third pitch of the game.
The manner in which the Yanks lost a 2-0 decision to the visiting Dodgers on September 14, 2016, is almost too painful to retell. Neither Clayton Kershaw (five frames) nor Michael Pineda (just four) pitched long in this one, but the game went to the ninth scoreless when Starlin Castro and Gary Sanchez errors handed L.A. the game. The Dodgers had all of four hits, the Yankees three.
The Yanks dropped a 6-4 decision to Tampa in the Stadium on September 14, 2012, when their comeback attempt was both too little and too late. Trailing 4-2 in the eighth, B.J. Upton‘s bomb off Cody Eppley increased the lead by one before Alex Rodriguez‘s two-run shot got the Yanks close, but the Rays added a sixth run on Eduardo Nunez‘s error in the ninth to forge the final score.
Alfredo Aceves posted one of 10 2009 wins when he replaced Joba Chamberlain after four innings in a 5-3 win over Anaheim in Yankee Stadium on September 14, 2009. Mark Teixeira had three hits, knocked in two runs, and scored one, and Nick Swisher had two hits with a homer. In an odd play, running from second, Melky Cabrera was called out for interfering with shortstop Erick Aybar just before Tex’s two-run double in the home fifth. The Yanks unveiled their new speed threat in the eighth when outfielder Freddy Guzman, promoted from AAA earlier in the day, pinch ran for Jorge Posada. Guzman raced around to third on Robbie Cano‘s rbi single, but he would not score in this game.
Carl Pavano was the lucky recipient of the instant offense when Alex Rodriguez‘s first-inning grand slam and Jason Giambi‘s two-run jolt in the second gave him a quick 6-0 lead in an 8-4 Yankee win over Edwin Jackson and Tampa Bay in Yankee Stadium on September 14, 2008. Mariano Rivera‘s 478th save tied him for second on the all-time list with Lee Smith. Derek Jeter added a singleton jack and former Yankee catcher and owner of the Newark Bears Rick Cerone moved the games-remaining counter in the old Stadium from eight to seven.
And September 14 is the day that the Pinstripers have clinched four different pennants. They wrapped up their 13th in 1942 behind Ernie “Tiny” Bonham‘s 20th win and Joe DiMaggio‘s four hits, in an 8-3 win over the Indians.
One year later, they bested the visiting Philadelphia A’s 6-5 to clinch pennant no. 14 on the 14th in 1943.
The pennant the Yankees garnered on September 14, 1953 was their fifth in a row, beating Cleveland 8-5 behind second baseman Billy Martin‘s four rbi’s.
On September 14, 1958, the 12-7, 14-inning, second-game win over the A’s behind Virgil Trucks‘s six innings (only two hits allowed) of relief was a bonus, as it was the 5-3 win in the lid-lifter that clinched their 24th, and ninth under Casey Stengel.
Ten years later, on September 14, 1968, Denny McLain became the first 30-game winner since Dizzy Dean in 1934, when he overcame the A’s and two Reggie Jackson homers to win 5-4 on a two-run Tigers ninth-inning rally.
Both Graig Nettles of the Yankees and brother Jim Nettles of the Tigers homered in the September 14, 1974, 10-7 Yankee win, a feat they had accomplished before with Graig in Cleveland and Jim in Minnesota.
The Yanks moved into first place and Vic Raschi posted his 20th in a 7-5 Yank win over the Tigers on this day in 1950. Vic walked in two and allowed four runs in the first but the Bombers came back on homers by Joe DiMaggio and Johnny Mize.
The debut of 21-year-old Washington hurler Lew Lanford on September 14, 1907, was so awful it is almost laughable (though not perhaps to him). The six runs the Highlanders plated in the first frame of an 8-2 win scored as the result of two walks, two hit batters (including one that struck Frank LaPorte in the head), a wild pitch, and a balk. Getting into the spirit of things, Lew’s teammates kicked in with two errors and a passed ball.
Both Jose Contreras and young Tampa Bay starter Doug Waechter settled for no-decisions in Yankee Stadium on September 14, 2003, with the righty surviving Derek Jeter‘s two-run fifth-inning jack in an eventual Rays 5-2 victory. The visitors scored three after Enrique Wilson‘s error in the eighth.
With the Indians and the White Sox both being shut out on September 14, 1920, the Yanks increased their lead to 1.5 games with a 13-3 thrashing of Detroit.
Todd Hundley set the Mets season record for homers and the mlb record for homers by a catcher in one year when he stroked his 41st in a 12-inning, 6-5 win over the Braves on this day in 1996.
Joe DiMaggio drove in two runs with a fifth-inning triple and the Yanks moved into first place on September 14, 1951, in a 5-1 win over Cleveland.
On that same 1951 day, Browns rookie Bob Nieman hit homers in his first two major league at bats in a 9-6 loss to the Red Sox.
Toronto Blue Jay David Wells, going for win no. 20, faced Andy Pettitte, in search of his 19th, in Yankee Stadium on September 14, 2000. Both left the game in the eighth inning of a 1-1 tie. Jose Cruz, Jr., continuing his mastery of the House That Ruth Built, won it with an 11th-inning two-run dinger, even though Ryan Thompson hit one in the bottom of the 11th with one out on the eighth pitch. The Jays cashed in the 3-2 win.
The Yanks split two with the AL-leading Tigers on September 14, 1935, winning 2-1 and losing 5-1.
The Highlanders grabbed first place from the Boston Pilgrims on September 14, 1904, when Bill Dineen lost to Jack Chesbro 3-1 in the first of two. New York scored two in the first, set up by Patsy Dougherty‘s leadoff single and Willie Keeler‘s bunt, which Boston catcher Lou Criger threw into the crowd. The nightcap would be called after five innings in a 1-1 tie.
On September 14, 2016, the Yankees placed right fielder Aaron Judge on the 15-day disabled list, with a right oblique strain. The team filled the spot by recalling Mason Williams from the AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders.
In a case of what could best be described as good news, bad news, and no big news, the Yankees activated righthander David Phelps from the 60-day disabled list; transferred shortstop Derek Jeter from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day disabled list, with his left ankle injury; and sent righthander Jim Miller outright to the AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, all on September 14, 2013.
Frankie Crosetti temporarily returned to the Yankees’ bench on September 14, 1935, after a knee operation at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, but he would retreat to his California home shortly.
On September 14, 2011, the Yankees outrighted southpaw Steve Garrison to the AA Trenton Thunder.
September 14 has seen some triple plays. First baseman George Burns of the Red Sox turned an unassisted one in a 4-3 win over the Indians in 1923. Walter Johnson faced only 27 batters two years earlier despite allowing three singles, as the first two were removed on a liner into a fourth-inning triple play and the third was picked off. And the Giants recorded the first triple killing of the 20th century (or last of the 19th?) against Chicago on September 14, 1900.
Red Ames of the Giants won the first of his 183 career games when he threw a five-inning no-hitter at the Cardinals for a 5-0 victory in his major league debut on September 14, 1903.
Despite the Yanks’ eventual loss to Cleveland in the 1997 ALDS, one of my most exciting moments was watching Tim Raines, Derek Jeter, and Paul O’Neill homer back-to-back-to-back in the Yanks’ Game One victory. It was with one ex-Yank and one Yankee to be that O’Neill first garnered that same achievement when he followed Mariano Duncan and Hal Morris homers with one of his own in a 7-3 Reds loss to Houston on September 14, 1991.
Bud Selig made it official on September 14, 1994. The rest of the season was cancelled due to the baseball strike. There would be no 1994 World Series.
A list of September 14 achievements by one-time Yankees in other uni’s begins with Babe Ruth‘s 2-1, two-hit win over the White Sox while pitching for the Red Sox on this day in 1915. Ruth had two of the three Boston hits as well. Hall of Famer Paul Waner, who would close his career with a handful of games in Pinstripes, equaled Rogers Hornsby‘s record when he stroked a 200th hit for a seventh season on September 14, 1936.
In the same category, former Yank hurler Jim Bouton, after having already retired from pro ball, earned the 4-1 Braves victory in a return over the Giants with six innings of work on this day in 1978. His first win since 1970, it would be his last. And finally, 2006 Yankee first baseman Craig Wilson contributed five rbi’s in a 12-inning White Sox 17-16 win over the Tigers on September 14, 1998.
Aside from Yankees Tiny Bonham and Vic Raschi, mentioned above, other pitchers who have garnered their 20th victories on September 14 include Boston’s Derek Lowe, in a 6-4 Red Sox win over the Orioles in 2002; Dave Stewart of the A’s, with a 9-1 win over the Twins in 1990; Houston’s Mike Scott, who nabbed it with an 11-3 win over the Dodgers in 1989; Preacher Roe winning his for the Dodgers over the Pirates, 3-1 in 1951; New York Giants hurler Johnny Antonelli, who won his 21st, 1-0 over the Cardinals in 1954, with Willie Mays scoring the only run; and Cubs pitcher Larry Cheney, who shut the Giants out 7-0 for no. 20 in 1913 despite allowing 14 hits. Topping them all is Boston’s immortal Cy Young, who copped his 30th with a 12-1 win over Washington on September 14, 1901.
The only Yankee player to have died on September 14, outfielder Bill Holden (1971), hit no home runs but drove in 20 of his career 21 runs with 46 hits in 218 at bats while playing 68 games with the 1913-1914 Yankees. A brief 1914 stop with Cincinnati netted the other rbi.
Righthander Sloppy Thurston (1973), who pitched primarily for the White Sox and the Dodgers from 1923-1933 to a dead-even 89-89 mark with 13 saves, is the only hurler among five noteworthy nonYankee players to die this day, along with two outfielders and two infielders. Outfielder Wally Roettger (1951) reached 19 fences good for 245 runs driven in from 1927-1934 mostly with the Cardinals and the Reds; Beau Bell (1977) went yard 46 times for 437 rbi’s from 1935-1941 with the Browns, the Tigers, and the Indians; third baseman Hans Lobert (1868) hit 32 long balls and knocked in 482 runs from 1903-1917 with the Reds, the Philllies, and the Giants; and shortstop Jackie Tavener (1969) hit all of his 13 homers with 243 rbi’s from 1921-1929 with Detroit and Cleveland.
Players Who Have Died This Day
Sadly lost to the baseball world in January 2014, Yankee second baseman Jerry Coleman (1924) is one of five Bombers born on September 14. He played only for the team in the Bronx, spanning the 1949 through 1957 seasons, during which time he kicked in with 16 homers and 217 rbi’s. The Yankees released Jerry in December 1957, and he recently made the Announcer’s Wing of the Hall Fame in honor of his years of service in that capacity for the Padres in San Diego.
Stan Williams (1936) pitched five years in L.A. and five years in Cleveland on either end of his 1963-1964 stay in the Bronx, where he posted a 10-13 win/loss record. He also pitched in Minnesota, St. Louis, and Boston (with the Braves). Williams was traded from the Los Angeles Dodgers to the New York Yankees for Bill Skowron in November 1962. The Cleveland Indians purchased Stan’s contract from the Yankees in March 1965.
Righthander Andy O’Connor (1884) played only one big-league game. He got a start with the 1908 Highlanders, and he lost that game. Third baseman Phil Cooney (1882) played but one game too, also for the Highlanders, his in 1905. He went 0-for-3 at the plate, and recorded one assist and one putout.
The troubled (aren’t they all?) 2014 season witnessed the arrival of yet another September 14 Yankee birthdayer, as lefty Josh Outman (1984) was plucked from the Indians in late August. A big-leaguer with Oakland, Colorado, and Cleveland since 2008, Josh arrived in the Bronx with a 16-11 career record in 152 games; he had started 32.
Also worthy of mention in the September 14 birthdays are Mike Draper (1966) and Frank Carpin (1938), who each spent time with the club but never on the field of play. Draper, a 1988 Yankee amateur draft pick in the 26th round, was drafted by the Mets from the Yankees in the 1992 rule-V draft. Righty Draper posted a 1-1 mark with the 1993 Mets in his only big league action. Southpaw Carpin went 4-1 with one save with the Pirates in 1965 and the Astros in 1966. A 1959 Yankees amateur free agent selection, Frank was sent to the Pirates in an unknown transaction in March 1965.
Other birthdays: Hall of Famer hurler Kid Nichols (1869), who amassed most of his 361-208 record with the Boston Braves; Tim Wallach (1957); Jerry Don Gleaton (1957); David Bell (1972); Chad Bradford (1974); George Lombard (1975); John Hester (1983); Brandon Hicks (1985); Delmon Young (1985); Francisco Arcia (1989); Derek Law (1990); Cody Anderson (1990); and Gregory Polanco (1991).
Players Born This Day