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View Full Version : Who are some of the very best defensive Yankees?



Jersey Yankee
10-25-01, 10:29 PM
Someone asked me to name some of the best and I was hoping to look them up here. Hopefully, they will also have a good bat but can anyone name several and the positions they'd played?

Thank you.

Jim Roche
10-26-01, 07:42 AM
Here goes.... Remember....'Opinions are like...rear ends...everybody has one'

Here's my 'Opinion' on all time Yankee fielding greats......

C- Dickey, Howard, Berra,Girardi
1B- Mattingly, Martinez, Pepitone
2B- Richardson, Randolph, Gordon
SS-Jeter, Dent, Rizzuto
3B- Nettles,Boyer,Rolfe,Dugan
LF- White, Tresh, Winfield
CF-DiMaggio,Mantle, Williams
RF-Ruth, Maris, Bauer,
LHP- Pettite,Guidry,Ford, Byrne,Gomez
RHP-Ruffing,Reynolds, Terry, Stottlemyre

Folks, rest assured that my 'Opinions' on Dickey, Gordon, Rizzuto, Rolfe, Dugan, DiMaggio, Ruth, Byrne, Gomez, Ruffing and Reynolds were shaped by their actions in games that my father saw as a longtime Yankee fan from 1922 to 1995. Watching them play by film and talking to many who saw them play leads me to these conclusions...

Notice how all of these guys contributed greatly to the Yankees winning 38 American League Pennants and 26 World Series Championships.....

Nome
10-26-01, 08:02 AM
Not a bad list. Add Joe Collins to 1B and Gene Woodling to LF

Andy

Sixty one
10-26-01, 08:42 AM
I would agree with most of the list. However, I would put Rizutto ahead of Dent and add Kubek to the ss list. I would also find room for Broscius at 3rd and Bobby Schantz at the pitcher position. ;) ;) :NY: :NY: :NY:

coalcracker
10-26-01, 09:03 AM
A difficult question to answer unless you have personally seen a player perform over a long period of time. I haven't. I only saw Joe DiMaggio a few times, but Joe, being my favorite player, was the best at everything. As far as fielding is concerned, I do remember baseball writers saying he was one of the best, but let me quote from an article on Joe's fielding prowess,."He never had to dive for a ball. He was like a man skimming across ice to the place the ball was going to land. He held out his glove and there it was".
:NY: :NY:

Nome
10-26-01, 09:10 AM
I agree with 61's comments and have to add that the VERY best fielding SS the Yanbkees ever had was Willy Miranda. The only problem was that Willie had problems hitting over the Mendoza line. I had almost forgotten about him, but he was as good as they come in the field.

Andy

Sixty one
10-26-01, 09:21 AM
Nome, you're right about Miranda, but he only played for the Yanks for two years and therefore, I thought the other ss were more qualified.
By the way, do you remember Jerry Coleman who played with NY during the 1950's? He was a good 2nd baseman who could make the pivot on the double play better than most. His career was interrupted twice because of WWII and Korea and is currently a Padre announcer..I think?:NY:

Gehrig
10-26-01, 09:38 AM
It is a very solid list however...(You KNOW whats coming :lol: )

Lou Gehrig, though I've never seen him play nor do I know anyone who saw him play, should be on that list at 1B. His FP never fell below 987 and if you've ever seen the glove he used, thats amazing. I have read quite alot of info on him including many eyewitness accounts and have seen much material on him in the form of videos, again including eyewitness accounts and ALL state that he was a excellant and solid defensive first baseman.

Mattingly - Career FP - .996
Gehrig - Career FP .991...and with that glove :scared:

Nome
10-26-01, 10:16 AM
61,

I do remember Coleman. He and Scooter made a great DP combo. Gerry also was one of a hell of a clutch hitter. I remember so many times when he came through with a winning hit. He hit a lot of line drive doubles thru the hole, yet he didn't hit for average. Those were great teams just as has been the 95-01 Yankees.

Another good fielding pitcher was Jim Kaat. He wasn't with us for long but he did alright with the glove.

Sixty one
10-26-01, 12:44 PM
How did I miss Gehrig! How in the world could you put Pepitone on the list and leave Gehrig out!

Gehrig was in a class by himself, and of course you also have to take into consideration the glove he played with compared to today's gloves and the number of games he played at first.

By the way Nome, I also mentioned #42 Gerry Coleman because I played second base in little league and he was the Yank I most admired for a short time in the '50's.

Jim Roche
10-26-01, 02:26 PM
To all who have responded....

Working nights must be gettin' to me .....
I REALLY missed out on .............................
Lou Gehrig, Joe Collins (even Vic Power)
Jerry Coleman, Willy Miranda and (although I didn't see him with the Yanks) Gene Woodling..........

penguin4
10-26-01, 02:27 PM
Actually the best fielding firstbaseman of all time on the Yankees was reputedly a fellow by the name of Hal Chase during the Highlanders era, who also happened to be the Yankees' first captain, in 1912. His numbers don't show it, though, because he had a habit of throwing ballgames when he felt like it, and I think it eventually got him suspended from professional ball indefinitely. He batted righty and threw lefty, which is a rare combination, but probably gave him an edge in the long run. Supposedly he had the ability to run all the way to third to catch a pop-up to the left side. Now, how much of Hal Chase's talent is true and how much has become embellished is probably a point of heated debate. But I do know that even when Gehrig came along, and everyone couldn't stop singing his praises as the "Crown Prince" of hitting prowess, etc, the writers of the day still agreed, for the most part, that Chase was still better defensively.

Jersey Yankee
10-26-01, 04:34 PM
To all, *THANK YOU* for this great list. I needed it for some little contest going on and I'd rather pick from our own guys than anyone else. You don't know how proud my true blue Yankee heart is right now!!!

mr.roy
10-27-01, 03:03 PM
Coleman is indeed an announcer for the Padres and has been for quite some time now.

Slippery Elm
10-27-01, 06:42 PM
Hal Chase was a crook and a gambler. Forget him.

HoFer Earle Combs over Bernie in CF, based on all I've read.

deranged2005
10-27-01, 07:56 PM
Originally posted by Jim Roche
Here goes.... Remember....'Opinions are like...rear ends...everybody has one'

Here's my 'Opinion' on all time Yankee fielding greats......

C- Dickey, Howard, Berra,Girardi
1B- Mattingly, Martinez, Pepitone
2B- Richardson, Randolph, Gordon
SS-Jeter, Dent, Rizzuto
3B- Nettles,Boyer,Rolfe,Dugan
LF- White, Tresh, Winfield
CF-DiMaggio,Mantle, Williams
RF-Ruth, Maris, Bauer,
LHP- Pettite,Guidry,Ford, Byrne,Gomez
RHP-Ruffing,Reynolds, Terry, Stottlemyre

Folks, rest assured that my 'Opinions' on Dickey, Gordon, Rizzuto, Rolfe, Dugan, DiMaggio, Ruth, Byrne, Gomez, Ruffing and Reynolds were shaped by their actions in games that my father saw as a longtime Yankee fan from 1922 to 1995. Watching them play by film and talking to many who saw them play leads me to these conclusions...

Notice how all of these guys contributed greatly to the Yankees winning 38 American League Pennants and 26 World Series Championships.....

sounds good to me

penguin4
10-27-01, 10:12 PM
Originally posted by Slippery Elm
Hal Chase was a crook and a gambler. Forget him.

So was Ty Cobb, and he's in the Hall of Fame. Remember, this is strictly ABILITY, not personality.

HoFer Earle Combs over Bernie in CF, based on all I've read.
Ditto. From what I've read, Combs had better arm. Something had to get him into the Hall of Fame-- his lifetime numbers were good, but they weren't on par with, say, Joe DiMaggios.

Gehrig
10-27-01, 11:21 PM
Originally posted by penguin4
Actually the best fielding firstbaseman of all time on the Yankees was reputedly a fellow by the name of Hal Chase during the Highlanders era, who also happened to be the Yankees' first captain, in 1912. His numbers don't show it, though, because he had a habit of throwing ballgames when he felt like it, and I think it eventually got him suspended from professional ball indefinitely. He batted righty and threw lefty, which is a rare combination, but probably gave him an edge in the long run. Supposedly he had the ability to run all the way to third to catch a pop-up to the left side. Now, how much of Hal Chase's talent is true and how much has become embellished is probably a point of heated debate. But I do know that even when Gehrig came along, and everyone couldn't stop singing his praises as the "Crown Prince" of hitting prowess, etc, the writers of the day still agreed, for the most part, that Chase was still better defensively.

Jersey Yankee
10-28-01, 02:36 PM
Originally posted by Slippery Elm
Hal Chase was a crook and a gambler. Forget him.

HoFer Earle Combs over Bernie in CF, based on all I've read. Babe was a womanizer, Mickey was an alcoholic, some even said that Joe D was too bitter over the Marilyn breakup, since Bill Gallo, NY Daily News' great sportswriter & cartoonist, a definitely "insider", said that mentioning her name was the one taboo when introducing him to young reporters.

All not role models, but great ball players anyway. Sad, but true.

Jersey Yankee
10-28-01, 02:38 PM
One more request. From the list of names above or anyone else's choice, for the IF & OF, are there any players who would be chosen above all others as great for both offense and defense, then baserunning, coolheadedness, etc? I'm asking as a total ballplayer, which position player would someone feel are about the best Yankees for position players?

Thank you.

PS,

Gehrig, nice pic of Hal Chase. Anyone rate him over Donnie Baseball as a player?

penguin4
10-28-01, 03:09 PM
Here's his obit, for anyone interested... (1947)http://www.crosswinds.net/~thedeadballera/Obits/ChaseHalsObit.gif

OklaYankeeFan
10-28-01, 06:12 PM
Since this is about defensive play...you GOTTA put Mariano on the list. No one fields position #1 better than Mo. Called up in 1995, did not make his first major league error until this year. The things he jumps off the mound & fields are amazing.

Jersey Yankee
10-28-01, 07:32 PM
I can see why Andy's on this list. That off-balance toss to 1B was very nice and on target.