The Passing of a Baseball Hero
At 90-years-old, Yogi Berra was still the face of baseball’s rich history, and still saying his famous Berra-isms. Yet, 90 years is a long life, especially after winning 10 World Series rings squatting behind the plate. America will not only miss Berra as a former 3-time AL MVP winner during the second dead ball era, but as a great WWII veteran ,when he marched onto the beaches of Normandy before beginning his 18 years with the Yankees.
Yogi Berra may not have the best Hall of Fame total numbers, but he never lost value over 18 seasons, as all the way through, he was a consistent hitter while being a leader behind the plate. Yogi was the most valuable with the glove and calling games, as he threw out 49% of potential base stealers (league average= 45%) throughout his career. His work behind the plate helped significantly as he helped lead the Yankees to 10 championships between 1947-1963, backing up great pitching with a catcher’s ERA of 3.40 (side-note, caught 3 no hitters). He was not only consistent behind the plate (second lowest total passed balls in the Hall), but also with the bat.
Despite being a catcher in the second dead ball era, Yogi had a tremendous amount of pop crushing 358 home runs. Even though he only averaged to hit 19 doubles a season, his slugging percentage was still a high .482. With his stellar bat in the middle of the lineup, he had a career OPS+ of 125. With 9 of Yogi Berra, the men in pinstripes would have won over 60% of their games. Because of his great athleticism, Yogi would sometimes even play the outfield, like he did in a couple of the games during the 1960 WS. During the postseason he batted .274 with 12 homers during the stretch of 75 games. Berra was one of the best sports leaders in history, and a great guy to be around in the clubhouse. Then when it came to the game, he was dead focused, as one of the greatest all-around ball players of all-time; a true Cooperstown member.