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This Day in Yankees History: Ron Guidry retires

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A Yankees legend said goodbye on this day in 1989.

Tampa Bay Rays v New York Yankees Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images

Welcome to This Day in Yankees History. With the start of the 2020 season delayed for just a bit longer, 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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69 Years Ago

Allie Reynolds throws a no-hitter as the Yankees beat Cleveland 1-0. Three walks and one error by Phil Rizzuto were the only blemishes on Reynolds’ performance, as he out-dueled Bob Feller. Gene Woodling’s home run was the only run support Reynolds needed, as he would retire the last 17 Indians’ hitters he faced to finish of the no-no.

In a bit of a weird coincidence, the pitching matchup from that day would be between the two hurlers who threw the no-hitters that sandwiched this one in history. The previous no-no in MLB had come 11 days earlier when Reynolds’ opponent, Feller, held down the Tigers. MLB’s next no-hitter would come in September when Reynolds threw another one, this time against the Red Sox.

31 Years Ago

After throwing just 173 innings combined in the majors in the previous two seasons due to injury and then getting off to a less than stellar start in Triple-A, Ron Guidry announces his retirement.

“Louisiana Lightning” had a 14-year career with the Yankees, which peaked in 1978, when he had a all-time great season and won the Cy Young Award. He had three other top-five Cy Young finishes, made four All-Star teams, and was part of the 1977 and ‘78 Yankees World Series championship teams.

His most famous moment in pinstripes came on June 17, 1978, when he struck out 18 hitters, a game which is believed to spawn the idea of standing and clapping when a pitcher has two strikes on a hitter.

Guidry’s no. 49 was retired by the Yankees in 2003, and he was the team’s pitching coach from 2006-07.

20 Years Ago

A trade with the Reds brings pitcher Denny Neagle to New York. An excellent first half of the season in Cincinnati would not continue when he switched leagues, as Neagle put up an ERA near six in 15 starts with the Yankees. It didn’t come back to haunt them too much as none of the prospects they sent to the Reds amounted to much, and the Yankees still ended up winning the 2000 World Series, despite the struggles from their mid-season acquisition. Neagle left the team after that season, signing with the Rockies.

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The lone Yankee-related birthday today belongs to Chasen Shreve. The reliever came to New York with David Carpenter as part of a January 2015 trade with the Braves that sent former top prospect Manny Banuelos to Atlanta. The deal seemed like a steal when through June, Shreve had a 1.72 ERA and was striking out nearly 10 hitters per nine. However, he would soon return to Earth, and repeat that pattern seemingly every season in his Yankees career. He was eventually traded to the Cardinals in 2018, a deal that brought Luke Voit to New York. Shreve has most recently been included as part of the Mets’ 60-man roster pool for this weird 2020 season.

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We thank Baseball-Reference and Nationalpastime.com for providing background information for these posts.