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We remember Billy Martin (1928-99)

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We remember one of baseball’s great characters.

According to The Society of Baseball Research:    

Alfred Manuel Pesano, Jr. was born in Berkeley, California, on May 16, 1928, to Alfred Manuel and Joan (Salvini) Pesano. Joan, who went by the nickname Jenny, was of Italian descent, and Alfred Sr. was born in the Azores. He abandoned the family when Billy was 8 months old, and Jenny later married a nightclub singer named Jack Downey. Alfred Jr.’s maternal Italian grandmother called him Belli or Bellitz when he was an infant and this name eventually evolved into Billy. Soon after, his mother changed the family name to Martin.      

We remember Billy Martin as a player and manager with the Yankees.    

He played second base on the team that won 5 World Series titles, 1949-53.    Later, he managed New York to the 1977 World Series title.   He won the 1976 AL pennant but lost to Cincinnati.      

Martin also won division titles with Twins (1969 AL West) and Tigers (1972 AL East).    He led the Rangers to a surprising second place finish in 1974.    Then he managed the Yankees off and on for the next 20 years.

As a player, Billy hit .257 over 1,022 games.    He hit .333 in 28 World Series games.

As a manager, he won 1,253 games for a .553 winning pct.    He was 15-19 in the post season.    

Billy died in an accident in 1999.     

Written by scantojr

May 16, 2017 at 7:30 am

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