Phil Rizzuto

Phil Rizzuto

SS, 2B
September 25, 1916
5' 6"
150 lbs
Major League Debut:
4-14-1941 with NYA
Allstar Selections:
1950 ML, 1950 MVP, 1951 BR
Hall of Fame:


Phil Rizzuto was in the right place at the right time. The New York native was with the powerhouse Yankees in the period of their greatest domination, and as a result is among the all-time leaders in many World Series statistics: 52 games (6th), 183 at-bats and 45 hits (7th), 21 runs (10th), 30 walks (4th), and 10 steals (3rd). One of the best shortstops in the AL in his time, he led three times each in double plays and total chances per game, twice each in fielding and putouts, and once in assists.

Rizzuto was a fair hitter for a shortstop and a superb bunter. He moved Frankie Crosetti aside in 1941 and 1942, but spent 1943-45 in the military. On an all-star service team, coach Bill Dickey played Pee Wee Reese at shortstop and Rizzuto at third base. The peak of Rizzuto's career came in back-to-back standout seasons in 1949 and 1950. Though he had previously been the Yankees' number-seven or number-eight batter, his hot 1949 moved him to the leadoff spot, and he produced 110 runs while batting .275 and walking 72 times. He finished second in the MVP voting (behind Ted Williams, who missed his third Triple Crown by a fraction of a point). Rizzuto's 1950 season earned him the MVP award by over a hundred points: he had career highs with a .324 batting average (sixth in the AL), 125 runs (tied for second), 91 walks, 36 doubles (third), and a .439 slugging average, the only time he topped .400.

Rizzuto continued at the top of the lineup (first or second in the order) until he slumped badly in 1954, hitting just .195. Thereafter he was a backup used mostly for his defense. He moved into the Yankee broadcast booth immediately following his last season and remained a popular fixture there until 1996. While in the booth, Rizzuto became known for advocating the bunt in most situations, reading countless birthday, wedding and aniversary announcements and for his expressions "holy cow" (whenever something astonishes him, which is frequently) and "that huckleberry" (an unserious putdown). He is the inventor of the scoring symbol "WW," for "wasn't watching." The Yankees retired his number 10 in 1985. Mr. Rizzuto died on August 14, 2007 at the age of 89. 


This day in baseball history

August 30

  • 2011

    Hugh McQuillan and Heinie Mueller combine to ...

  • 2006

    On August 30, 2006, Boston right-hander Curt Schilling fans ...

  • 1999

    On August 30, 1999, Edgardo Alfonzo of the New York Mets bec ...

More Baseball History

Sponsored Links

AL MVP 1960, New York Yankees, Phil Rizzuto


  • devidmiller5060 said: Mmm.. good to be here in your article or post, whatever, I think I should also work hard for my own website like I see some good and updated working in your site. custom wheels 2:36AM 08/21/15
  • devidmiller5060 said: wow, great, I was wondering how to cure acne naturally. and found your site by google, learned a lot, now i’m a bit clear. I’ve bookmark your site and also add rss. keep us updated. direct lender payday loan 4:31AM 08/20/15
  • devidmiller5060 said: You have raised an important issue..Thanks for sharing..I would like to read more current affairs from this blog..keep posting.. best minecraft servers 2:39AM 08/19/15
Login or register to post comments

Stay Connected

Share |

Today's Poll

Will Red Sox Repeat in 2014:
Browse Player Profiles