The 1927 Yankess – "Murderer’s Row"

It was last night in bed, while watching Season 4 of Cheers that I was made aware of what many consider to be the single greatest baseball team in the history of the sport.

The Cheers team having just been beaten in softball by rival Gary’s Old Town Tavern, returns to the bar in ignominious defeat as Sam regrettably proclaims to Diane that “they were playing better than the ’27 Yankees.” To that, Woody adds, “He’s exaggerating, Miss Chambers. There were only nine of them.” A great line!

I wasn’t sure if this was just a throw-away line tossed in by a writer who thought no one would bother to check (no internet to run to way back then), but it turned out to be the real thing.

Were they the greatest team of all-time?

The 1927 team, which won 110 games, included Babe Ruth’s 60 homers and a sweep of the World Series from the Pittsburgh Pirates. They also took the 1926 pennant and another four-game sweep in 1928.

Ruth’s 1926-28 home-run output was 47, 60 and 54. His batting averages were .372, .356 and .323 and he batted in 452 runs. He hit third.

Behind him was Lou Gehrig. Nine years his junior, Gehrig hit 47 home runs in 1927 with a .373 average and 175 runs batted it. Only Ruth had ever hit more homers.

Behind Gehrig were two right-handed sluggers, Bob Meusel and Tony Lazzeri, the second baseman. Lazzeri’s 18 homers ranked third in the whole league. Meusel knocked in 103 runs, Lazzeri, 102. Meusel’s 24 stolen bases left him second only to George Sisler’s 27 in the American League, and Lazzeri stole 22.

Murderer’s Row – the 1927 New York Yankees Page has some great pics of Ruth, Gehrig, and Meusel. It also unfortunately has a grating syntehsized version of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” accompanying it, so down your speakers. (It doesn’t repeat once if plays through the first time.)

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One Response to “The 1927 Yankess – "Murderer’s Row"”

  1. you lost me after “it turned out to be the real thing”, but you’re still my favorite.

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