Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
July 13, 2008
BASEBALL: RIP Bobby Murcer

Bobby Murcer has lost his battle with cancer at age 62. Murcer had a long career with the Yankees in several capacities; as a player, he will always be remembered as the poor man's Mickey Mantle, a power-hitting center fielder from Oklahoma who could do at least a little bit of everything. The Mick was one of the 5 or 6 greatest players ever, so being a lesser Mantle is not a bad thing at all; Murcer was a legitimately great player for two years (1971-72, when he batted .331/.427/.543 and .292/.361/.537), a quality regular for a decade, and a valuable bat off the bench in his second go-round in the Bronx. He was also a classy, likeable guy, like his hero and mentor, Mantle, but unlike Mickey he didn't make an irresponsible wreck of his own life off the field. Murcer fits neatly in the second tier of Yankee outfielders, the ones ranging from borderline Hall of Famers to long-time quality regulars - Bernie, Maris, O'Neill, Roy White, Keller, Henrich, Combs, Meusel, etc.

RIP.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 11:14 AM | Baseball 2008 | Comments (8) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

He was a real class act and an all around nice guy. When you add up all the hours over all the years that you listen to baseball announcers-it is like they are family members or friends. You know about their family, their stories, etc.

First the Scooter and now Bobby-the closing of an era.

Posted by: dch at July 13, 2008 12:44 PM

this was the type of individual that has made me a lifelong yankee and baseball fan. he will always be remembered as a great man and a great rolemodel to the youth of the world.

Posted by: kevin milley at July 13, 2008 12:50 PM

My first -- and strongest -- memory of Bobby Murcer will always be the trade for Bobby Bonds.

Posted by: Mike at July 13, 2008 7:02 PM

I'm from Massachusetts and grew up hating the Yankees, but Boby Murcer was one of the few Yankees from that era I actually liked. His too-early death is a shame.

Posted by: Magrooder at July 13, 2008 8:47 PM

we are losing mensches at an alarming pace--Russert, Carlin, Tony Snow and now Bobby Murcer

Posted by: ironman at July 13, 2008 10:43 PM

we are losing mensches at an alarming pace--Russert, Carlin, Tony Snow and now Bobby Murcer

Posted by: ironman at July 13, 2008 10:43 PM

Thanks for the kind words about Bobby. He kept the torch alive in those dark days of Horace Clarke and Jerry Kenny. I was at the Stadium for both his first game and his last. He was a true Yankee. He will be missed.

Posted by: trooper york at July 16, 2008 6:34 PM

My best memory of Murcer was a June 1970 doubleheader at the Stadium against Cleveland, best-remembered today (if at all) for Steve Hamilton's striking out Tony Horton with his folly Floater. Before that, Mercer actually had to dart in-between the monuments in centerfield to chase down one shot, as the Tribe bombed the Yanks in Game 1. Bobby then homered in his final at-bat of that game, and in his next three at-bats in Game 2 to give the Yanks a split.

I was with a group of Mets fans, and even they were going crazy after homer No. 4. For those dark days of the late 60s-early 70s, Bobby and Roy White were about the only things to cheer for on an everyday basis.

Posted by: John at July 17, 2008 12:58 AM
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