Jump, Scooter, Jump! Phil Rizzuto In Action

Phil Rizzuto – 1950

New York – Bob Dillinger of the Athletics slides safely back to 2nd in the first inning of game with Yanks here, 7/5 as Phil Rizzuto leaps for throw from catcher Yogi Berra. The ball went over Rizzuto’s head . Yanks won 12-8. credit: Acme Telephoto July 5, 1950

As Red Sox great Ted Williams once said the margin of difference between the Yankees and the Red Sox was very slim, but that the Yankees had Phil Rizzuto. “If Rizzuto had been in Boston we’d have won all those pennants instead of New York,” Williams said.

The Yankees won their second consecutive World Series in 1950, and would continue winning the World Series through 1953 – a record five in a row.

Nick named “The Scooter,” the five foot six Rizzuto had his greatest season ever in 1950. A .324 batting average with 200 hits, 125 runs scored, 36 doubles, 7 triples, 7 home runs and 66 RBIs. He also stole a dozen bases while walking 92 times and striking out just 39 times. As a team the 1950 Yankees struck out just 458 times over the entire season.

The Yankees have struck out a combined 457 times through 55 games as of May 28, 2023.

Back to Rizzuto. He also led the league with 19 sacrifice hits and 150 singles. His .982 fielding percentage, led A.L. shortstops while committing just 14 errors.

Rizzuto justifiably won the American League’s 1950 Most Valuable Player award.

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