Former Yankees First Baseman Proves There Is Crying In Baseball

Yankees Joe Pepitone: There is crying in baseball

Former Yankees’ first baseman Joe Pepitone is set on proving that, after all, there is crying in baseball, filing a suit against the HOF.

Think the Yankees have given us enough entertainment this year? Think again because a blast from the past has kicked up his heels to give us a moment of pause, and for some, a comedic reason to escape from the Yankees season thus far.

Joe Pepitone played first base for the Yankees and was a three-time AL All-Star from 1962-1969.

Yankees’ Joe Pepitone: Mickey Mantle Wannabe

Better known for his desire to tack his persona on the backs of Mickey Mantle and Whitey Ford as The Man on the streets of New York, Pepitone came nowhere near reaching the status of these Yankees greats, no less producing stats they did to reach the Baseball Hall Of Fame.

As a player in the league before Curt Flood and Andy Messersmith ushered in salaries, the type we see today, the Yankees paid Pepitone, for example, $78,639 for his 1969 season, his last season with the Yankees when he hit 27 home runs with 70 RBI.

The string with the Yankees ran out for Pepitone that offseason when he was traded by the New York Yankees to the Houston Astros for Curt Blefary.

Later, traded again by the Chicago Cubs to the Atlanta Braves for Andre Thornton, Pepitone’s career was driven to an end in 1973.

Pepitone’s 1975 autobiography picked up reads based on headlines that featured in Rolling Stone (appropriately) headlines like “Joe Pepitone on Smoking Weed, Screwing With Sinatra and ‘Seinfeld.’”

True or not, and the Yankees probably drew a deep breath before they invited Pepitone to Yankees Stadium for their annual Old Timer’s Day; Pepitone continues to draw cheers from Yankees’ fans for each appearance.

MLB makes it difficult to track pensions received by its retired players, but it’s safe to say Joe Pepitone needs to augment his income, especially given the lifestyle he has yet to abandon.

Yankees Pepitone: Give Me Money Or The Bat

Hence, it should come as no surprise that, according to reports from Reuters and others, Pepitone expects to be paid $500,000 because he loaned the bat Yankees’ legend Mickey Mantle used to hit his 500th home run off Stu Miller.

It’s real and in the courts, as we see from The Athletic that reports, “Pepitone unequivocally demanded that the Museum return the Bat on September 1, 2020, as promised,” the lawsuit alleges. “The Museum has unreasonably and unlawfully refused Pepitone’s demand to return the Bat and continues to possess the Bat without legal cause or justification over Pepitone’s objection.”

Hopefully, the Yankees have a “Thank you, no comment,” but this exceeds my patience with players, like Pepitone and Jose Canseco, who use every means (they feel is) necessary to make a buck.

For God’s Sake – Case Dismissed

In place of the money Pepitone is asking for, are we expected to believe that he will accept the return of the bat loaned to The Mick?
Not a chance, and the Yankees need to intercede to ensure that bat stays where it belongs – in Cooperstown.

Here’s What Readers Are Saying…

Anthony Whiteman What a disgrace.

Barry Shildneck I think most guys would just be happy to know that “their” bat is in the HOF. But I do see his point. The Yankees, or MLB, or whoever, had no right to give away the bat without his consent, so technically, he should be compensated. But a half-million dollars??? Quite a stretch. 😎

Lisa-Dianne Gray Love, Love Joe


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Steve Contursi
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Author: stevecontursi

I am an amateur writer with a passion for baseball and all things Yankees and Mets.