The list of New York Yankees players who have served our country through military service is plentiful. While we owe our gratitude to all of them, let’s create an all-military team of veterans who have played in the Yankees organization. As long as they played at some level, they are eligible for the team. Don’t see a player you feel deserves a place in the line-up? You are absolutely right! We appreciate him just as much. But only one player is selected per position.
Pitcher: Whitey Ford. Ford served in the United States Army during the Korean War. On the mound, he was a ten-time All-Star. He is arguably the Yankees greatest starting pitcher ever.
Catcher: Yogi Berra. Berra served in the United States Navy in World War II. Yogi was a three- time American League Most Valuable Player.
First Base: Steve Souchock. Souchock fought in the Battle of the Bulge. He batted .302 in his first Major League season.
Second Base: Jerry Coleman. Coleman fought in the Korean War. He flew 120 combat missions. He was a four-time World Series champion.
Short Stop: Phil Rizzuto. Rizzuto served in the United States Navy during World War II. He was the 1950 American League Most Valuable Player.
Third Base: Billy Johnson. Johnson served in the United States Army in World War II. He played 964 games for the Yankees.
Outfield: Tommy Henrich. Henrich served in the United States Coast Guard in World War II. He was a five –time All-Star.
Outfield: Joe DiMaggio. DiMaggio served in The United States Army Air Forces. His 56 game hitting streak will never be broken.
Outfield: Bobby Murcer. Murcer served in The United States Army. He was a five-time All-Star and won the Gold Glove Award in 1972.
Manager: Ralph Houk. Houk was a United States Army Ranger in World War II. He earned the rank of Major, so he was known as “The Major” with the Yankees.
Alright, there they are. They all brought the same tenacity to the stadium that they brought to the battle. So tell me, who is not there that also deserves our gratitude? If only there were more positions on the baseball diamond.