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  • Writer's picturePaul Semendinger

All-Decade Yankees

By Paul Semendinger

January 27, 2024

***

Note - I penned this article for the IBWAA. It appeared in their newsletter, Here's The Pitch on January 13, 2024

***

It is fun to look back in history and find interesting and unique bits of information about my favorite baseball team, the New York Yankees.


The other day I was considering the list of Yankees who spent an entire decade with the team. Now, note that I am not saying ten years, I am saying an entire decade as in the 1920s or the 1950s. This is an exclusive and very short list. Some of the greatest Yankees of all time didn't make it.


Here then is that special and very unique list:


1910-1919:

  • None


1920-1929:

  • Bob Meusel (1,294 games)

  • Babe Ruth (1,399 games)


1930-1939:

  • Bill Dickey (1,213 games)


1940-1949:

  • Charlie Keller (953 games) - missed time for military service in WWII

  • Joe DiMaggio (927 games) - missed time for military service in WWII

  • Tommy Henrich (914 games) - missed time for military service in WWII


1950-1959:

  • Yogi Berra (1,396 games)

  • Hank Bauer (1,284 games)

  • Whitey Ford (245 games) - missed time for military service


1960-1969:

  • None


1970-1979:

  • Roy White (1,393 games)


1980-1989:

  • None


1990-1999:

  • None


2000-2009:

  • Derek Jeter (1,500 games)

  • Jorge Posada (1,302 games)

  • Mariano Rivera (651 games)


2010-2019:

  • Brett Gardner (1,349 games)

  • C.C. Sabathia (273 games)


What I found most interesting in this exercise is that from 1960 to 2000, a 40-year period, the only Yankee to remain with the club for a decade was the great (and very underrated) Roy White.  


The decade of the 2020s is not yet half over and yet the only Yankees who have a chance to achieve this distinction are Aaron Judge, Gleyber Torres, Giancarlo Stanton, and Gerrit Cole. 

Torres will be a free agent after the 2024 season. Stanton will be a free agent in 2028 and it is highly unlikely that he'll even be a Yankee that long. 


Gerrit Cole, as well, is signed only through 2028, though he has an opt-out clause that the Yankees can supersede by offering him one more season (2029) that would allow him this distinction. 


It is, of course, very likely that Aaron Judge, signed through 2032, will make this list.  

When one spends time looking at baseball history, new learning seems to always follow.  That is part of the fun and the beauty of this wonderful sport.  

***

Paul Semendinger runs the Yankees site Start Spreading the News.  His latest book, a motivational book focused on running, titled 365.2, comes out in March.  Paul has also written Impossible is an Illusion, Scattering the Ashes, The Least Among Them, and he collaborated with Roy White on From Compton to the Bronx.  

52 Comments


yankeerudy
Jan 28

My only beef is that we start with 1 when we count to ten, not zero. But a fun exercise.

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Paul Semendinger
Paul Semendinger
Jan 28
Replying to

Interesting. (Should I do another list???) 😀


I always think of the first number 1970s rather than 1971-80. Hummmmm.....

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Paul Semendinger
Paul Semendinger
Jan 27

Still not by a computer... Typing on my phone, which is tedious...


But...


I don't understand the push back on this. These are lists. Just as people say "These are the best players of the 1950's..."


These are players who lasted a decade with the Yanks. In fact, I think it is more interesting because the likes of Getting, DiMaggio, and Mantle are not on it.


They need not be on every list.


I could do Most Games Played or whatever and it would be the same old list. As I said at the top, sometimes it's fun to see baseball and it's history in different ways.

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Alan B.
Alan B.
Jan 28
Replying to

Paul, this was an opinion piece based on your interpretation of thr facts as you see them. Again, who cares? You don't like it, what's the harm people?

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autmorsautlibertas
Jan 27

Sorting through over 100 years of Yankee rosters must have taken quite a bit of time. Interesting results. Thank you Dr. Semendinger.

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Mike Whiteman
Jan 27

Very interesting look at longevity! How about Lefty Gomez for the 1930s? Red Ruffing came pretty darned close in the 1930s as well, except for a first month of 1930 with Boston.

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Paul Semendinger
Paul Semendinger
Jan 28
Replying to

Thank you again. Yes, he actually pitched more in the minors than the majors in 1920.


With the IBWAA someone said I should have included Gehrig, but he didn't play all of 1939, just as Munson (both tragically) didn't play all of 1979.

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fantasyfb3313
Jan 27

well i understand the parameters of your list. and it is interesting from that VERY narrow perspective to see which players actually played a true calendar decade but a yankee list that, by any method or specification, manages to not include either one of Gherig or Mantle seems both mostly meaningless and very unexciting

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fantasyfb3313
Jan 28
Replying to

WELL...

I took a shot at the research. I wish i thought you could just go by WAR or some other stat, whatever it would be, and say that summarizes every player and gives you the neat and tidy proof of who was better than who.


I dont think that exists, but FWIW Jeter (71.3) and Yogi (59.6) are 5 and 6 in all time WAR and Whitey(57) and Mo (56.3) are 7 and 9. I am calling both of those basically coin flips. sorry the stats are not simple to digest. one example is that if you look at strictly pitching WAR then Mo is the number one Yankee pitcher in all time WAR and Whitey is only gi…


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