A lefty hitting shortstop who played all of his 1957 through 1964 years with the Yanks, Tony Kubek retired on January 25, 1966. Kubek contributed 57 homers and 373 rbi’s to the Yankee cause.
Larry MacPhail, Dan Topping, and Del Webb purchased the Yankees from the Ruppert estate on January 25, 1945. But with a Championship in 1947 and five in a row starting two years later, Yankee fans soon relaxed that ownership eyes were still obviously on the prize.
A sad episode, really, took place in Yankee history when the Bombers sold the contract of Lefty Gomez to the Boston Braves on January 25, 1943. Lefty had to that point pitched for the Yankees and the Yankees only, compiling a nifty 189-101 record from 1930-1942, with another six wins (with no losses) during five World Series. The Braves released Lefty before he pitched in a game for them, but Gomez then signed with Washington. He would pitch one game for the Senators and lose it. It’s like Yogi Berra recording a few at bats for the Mets once he took over the managing job in Flushing. Both guys “almost” played exclusively for the Yanks. By the way, Tony Kubek (see above) is a guy who has that exclusivity with the Bombers.
In a move that had more to do with payroll cap space than anything else, the Yankees made the strange move to trade righthanded reliever Adam Ottavino, along with righty Frank German, to the rival Red Sox for a Player To Be Named Later on January 25, 2021.
Yankee fans breathed a sigh of relief on January 25, 2016, when the Brewers signed free agent southpaw Chris Capuano to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training, meaning he would in all likelihood not be returning to the Bronx. On the other hand, any fans of infielder Ronald Torreyes should not have been concerned that day when the Los Angeles Angels claimed him from the Yankees off waivers, as the Yanks would claim him back shortly. Also that January 25, the Yankees signed free agent catcher Carlos Corporan to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training.
Liking the righty power they saw the previous season, the Yankees re-signed free agent right fielder/DH Andruw Jones on January 25, 2012, but he would tail off badly toward the upcoming season’s conclusion.
January 25 player moves affecting former or future Yankee players include Tim Raines signing with the A’s in 1999; and the Padres’ trade of Dave Tomlin for Gaylord Perry in 1978. In addition, future Yankee and at the time ace of the Braves Phil Niekro underwent an appendectomy on January 25, 1970. Although he would miss no time in the upcoming season, he did struggle.
After a frustrating 1980s following the great 1976-1978 teams, is it coincidental that the Yanks stole the “Team of the Nineties” title from the Braves after George Steinbrenner‘s January 25, 1989, meeting with Catholic Pope John Paul II? The Yankees will truly try anything to win another title.
It turned out to be a fairly minor move when the Yanks signed infielder Ron Coomer to a minor league contract on January 25, 2002. He made the 2002 squad and would hit three home runs with 17 rbi’s in 55 games that season, his only one in Pinstripes.
Fast-food entrepreneuer Ray Kroc (McDonalds) purchased the San Diego Padres on January 25, 1974.
By passing away on January 25, 2015, righthander Bill Monbouquette became the first Yankee player to have perished this day. Bill pitched in 50 games (21 starts) for the Yankees in 1967 and 1968 to an 11-12 record with one save. Most of Monbouquette’s 1958 through 1968 career was spent with the Red Sox, and his overall record was 114-112, with three saves.
Of five major-league ballplayers of note who have died on January 25, Detroit (most of the time) outfielder Hoot Evers (1991), who hit 98 home runs with 565 rbi’s from 1941-1956, stands out. Fellow outfielder (and lefthanded hitter) Abner Dalrymple (1939) hit 43 long balls and knocked in 407 runs playing mostly for the White Sox from 1878-1891; catcher George Gibson (1967) cleared 15 fences with 345 rbi’s playing with the 1905-1916 Pirates and the 1917-1918 Giants; and third baseman/shortstop Dick Smith, who played all 70 games of his career with the 1951-1955 Pirates, good for no home runs but 11 rbi’s, continue the list. First baseman/outfielder David Green (2022) hit 31 home runs with 180 rbi’s in 489 games playing for St. Louis from 1981-1987 and in one other stop.
Players Who Have Died This Day
Only one of the five Yankee players born on January 25 had a really brief stay with the club, as righthander Fred Glade (1876) appeared in only five games (all starts) in ending his career with the 1908 team. He had pitched in Chicago with the Cubs in 1902, and with the Browns from 1904-1907, and Fred’s record with the Yanks was 0-4. He arrived with Charlie Hemphill from the St. Louis Browns in a February 1908 trade to the New York Highlanders for Jimmy Williams, Hobe Ferris, and Danny Hoffman.
Catcher Les Nunamaker (1889) smacked two homers, drove in 107 runs, and stole 23 bases for the Yanks from 1914-1917; he was with the Red Sox from 1911-1914, the Browns in 1918, and finished up with the Indians from 1919-1922. Purchased by the Yankees from the Red Sox in May 1914, Nunamaker was also traded to the Browns, in a big swap that had Les accompanying Nick Cullop, Joe Gedeon, Fritz Maisel, and Urban Shocker to St. Louis for Eddie Plank, Del Pratt, and cash in January 1918.
Righthander Roy Sherid (1907) served his only major-league time with the Yanks, as he compiled a 23-24 record with one save from 1929-1931. Steve Roser (1918) started with the Yanks and won five games, lost four, and saved one in the Bronx from 1944-1946, and finished that year (and his career) with the Boston Braves, for whom he threw a no-hitter.
And finally, righthanded reliever Dale Mohorcic (1956) posted a 4-3 record with three saves with the 1988-1989 club after the Yanks shipped Cecilio Guante to the Rangers for him in 1988; Mohorcic pitched 1990 with Montreal before calling it quits. Unfortunately, Dale may be best known for an earlier episode in Milwaukee where he was accused of doctoring the ball, exonerated by the ump, but later it was discovered in a local hospital that he had swallowed sandpaper.
Other birthdays: Ed Head (1918), who pitched in Brooklyn for the Dodgers only where he compiled a 27-23 mark from 1940-1946; Wally Bunker (1945); Ed Goodson (1948); Vern Ruhle (1951); Balor Moore (1951); Brian Holman (1965); Jose Macias (1972); Terrell Wade (1973); Dan Serafini (1974); Derrick Turnbow (1978); Phil Stockman (1980); Anderson Machado (1981); Tyler Graham (1984); and Shane Lindsay (1985), who was claimed from the Rockies by the Yankees in May 2010, only to be grabbed by the Indians three weeks later; Wyatt Mills (1995); and Lenyn Sosa (2000).
Players Born This Day