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This Day in Yankees History: Mickey Mantle sets a record and Joe Torre returns

Joe Torre returned after a fight with cancer 21 years ago at Fenway Park.

ALCS - Detroit Tigers v Boston Red Sox - Game Two Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

Welcome to This Day in Yankees History. With the start of the 2020 season delayed for the foreseeable future, the Pinstripe Alley team decided to take a look back through history. These daily posts will highlight two or three key moments in Yankees history on a given date, as well as recognize players born on the day. Hope you enjoy this trip down memory lane with us!

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64 Years Ago

Mickey Mantle homered from both sides of the plate in the same game for the third time, setting a major-league record. Mantle would manage the feat 10 times in his career. A pair of former Yankees now share the record, as Mark Teixiera and Nick Swisher have smashed homers from both sides 14 times.

21 Years Ago

Two months after undergoing surgery for prostate cancer, manager Joe Torre returned to the dugout in Fenway Park as the Yankees took on the Red Sox. Torre had missed the first 36 games of the season, with Don Zimmer filling in as interim manager. Torre received a warm ovation from the Boston crowd ahead of the Yankees’ 6-3 loss.

10 Years Ago

A day after rallying to stun the Red Sox in the ninth, the Yankees get stunned by Boston, erasing a five-run deficit, thanks in part to a ninth-inning error by Marcus Thames, who had won the game a night before with a walkoff homer. The Yankees threatened against Jonathan Papelbon in the bottom of the ninth, but fell short in a 7-6 loss.

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Happy 74th birthday to Reggie Jackson. Jackson only played five years in the Bronx, but his start shined brighter than ever in New York, managing a 148 OPS+ and helping win two World Series titles. It’s also the 48th birthday of Mike Jerzembeck, who gave up nine runs in 6.1 innings for the 1998 Yankees, and it would have been the 135th birthday of Cy Barger, who pitched for the 1906 and 1907 Yankees.

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We thank Baseball-Reference, FanGraphs, and for providing background information for these posts.