Good-Bye, Major

July 25, 2010 — Former Yankees manager Ralph Houk passed away on Friday at the age of 90.

While Houk’s contributions to the Yankees and to the game of baseball are impressive and will leave a lasting legacy, his impact on America is far greater.
Houk replaced Casey Stengel following the Yankees’ loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 1960 World Series. In his first three seasons in the dugout, Houk led the Yankees to three American League championships and two World Series championships.

Houk later served as the Yankees’ general manager before returning to dugout for eight seasons in the Bronx, five with the Detroit Tigers and four with the Boston Red Sox.

Before Houk came to the Bronx, he served in the United States Army. He enlisted during World War II, fought in the Battle of the Bulge and the Normandy Invasion, and was awarded a Silver Star and a Purple Heart.

Ralph Houk, the Major, was an American hero, and the New York Yankees and the entire baseball community are no doubt proud to have called him one of their own.

–Alfred Santasiere III

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