The 10 Greatest Yankees
by Lincoln Mitchell
January 7, 2022
Here are my answers in order from ten to 1. A quick note on sources. I used baseball reference to check some numbers, but did not cheat and use their rankings of career WAR for team.
10. Alex Rodriguez-I am pretty confident that he would not make too many lists of most beloved Yankees of all time, but he was a great hitter for the Yankees, won two MVPs and played a huge role in the 2009 championship.
9. Thurman Munson-Some might rank Bill Dickey ahead of him, but Munson was the heart and soul of three pennant winning teams won an MVP award was a seven time All-Star in a tragically short career. I hope to live a good long life, and am confident that I will go to my grave knowing that Munson was the best catcher in the American League during the 1970s and belongs in the Hall of Fame.
8. Mariano Rivera-The greatest closer of all time and an absolute joy to watch.
7. Whitey Ford-The greatest pitcher in Yankees history. He might have been even better if Casey Stengel had used him in a consistent manner.
6. Derek Jeter-Jeter is one of the few players who is simultaneously overrated and underrated, but he was a very good player for a very long time and had some huge moments.
5. Joe DiMaggio-A great and important player who lost much of his outstanding career to injury and military service.
4. Yogi Berra-From 1947-1958, when Berra was the everyday catcher the Yankees won eight World Series and ten pennants. The durability, offensive production and value behind the plate that Berra provided during those years had never been seen before and was absolutely central to the most successful period in team history.
3. Lou Gehrig-Gehrig is another player whose personal story eclipses just how good a player he was, but he was an extraordinary hitter with fantastic power.
2. Mickey Mantle-Too many focus on what Mantle might have been, rather than what he was-one of the best players in baseball history. Mantle won a triple crown in 1956 and then had perhaps an even better year in 1957. He retired after the 1968 season because everybody believed he was washed up. His OPS+ that year was 143.
1. Babe Ruth-The best and most important player in Yankees history.