Friday, April 27, 2012

R.I.P. Moose Skowron, 1930-2012

Hey guys, Drew back here. We lost a real good one today in baseball, in Yankee great Bill "Moose" Skowron. The Polish-American athlete; nicknamed "Moose" after a haircut that looked like Italian fascist leader Benito Mussolini's, was one of the better players to put on the pinstripes during his tenure in New York between 1954 and 1962. He was a clutch hitter, and big games always brought the best out of his ability; as he batted .293 with 8 home runs in 39 World Series games, including 3 of those home runs in the 7th game of the series' he played in! He walked off the field as a winner, taking home 5 World Series rings, 4 with the Yankees, and 1 in 1963 with the LA Dodgers after he was traded from NY the season prior. He retired with 8 All Star appearances to his credit, and a lifetime batting average of .282 with 211 home runs. 

Today, Moose passed on at the age of 81 after a long battle with lung cancer. Of course, I wasn't alive at the time of his career, but I'll always remember him for being an integral part of that 1961 Yankees team, the team that wanted revenge after Bill Mazeroski beat them the season before. Maris and Mantle went off as you all know, but Skowron also hit 28 home runs, which added up to 143 home runs between the three of them ALONE that season! 

Not only was he a great baseball player in his 81 years, but he was also a great man. He always signed items for fans through the mail, and was a common guest at the Yankees Old Timer's Game festivities. Yogi Berra said of him: "There weren't many better guys than Moose, he was a dear friend and a great team man. A darn good ballplayer, too." He signed a card for me via a through the mail success a little over a year ago, and I appreciated every bit of it. He was a class act in every way, and I'm fortunate I got the opportunity to get his autograph. 

Moose, you will forever be remembered and missed. Rest In Peace.

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