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definition - Red_Ruffing

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Red Ruffing

Red Ruffing

Born: (1905-05-03)May 3, 1905
Granville, Illinois
Died: February 17, 1986(1986-02-17) (aged 80)
Mayfield Heights, Ohio
Batted: Right Threw: Right 
MLB debut
May 31, 1924 for the Boston Red Sox
Last MLB appearance
September 15, 1947 for the Chicago White Sox
Career statistics
Win–Loss record     273–225
Earned run average     3.80
Strikeouts     1,987
Career highlights and awards
Member of the National
Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Baseball Hall of Fame Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg
Induction     1967
Vote     86.93% (fifteenth ballot)

Charles Herbert "Red" Ruffing (May 3, 1905 – February 17, 1986) was a Major League Baseball pitcher most remembered for his time with the highly successful New York Yankees teams of the 1930s and 1940s. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1967.[1]


  Early life

Born in Granville, Illinois, Ruffing suffered the loss of four toes on his left foot in a freak mine accident in Coalton, Illinois, as a youth. Subsequently converted from an outfielder to a pitcher.

  Major league career

Ruffing made his major league debut in 1924 with the Boston Red Sox, pitching without a decision over 23 innings of work. He saw regular playing time with the Sox over the next few years but had limited success, garnering a 39–96 record in five-and-a-half years with Boston. However, the Red Sox were in the midst of the darkest period in their history, and Ruffing usually got abysmal run support. His best year, in terms of earned run performance, came in 1928, when he posted a 3.89 ERA. However, even in that year, he only had a 10–25 record.

Ruffing's career was revived by a mid-season trade in 1930 which sent him to the New York Yankees for Cedric Durst. This deal is now reckoned as one of the most lopsided trades in baseball history; 1930 proved to be Durst's last year in the majors. Buoyed by the offensive production of greats Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig, he won 15 games after the trade with a 4.14 ERA. Ruffing eventually turned into an ace, winning 20 games or more four times in a row from 1936 to 1939, and striking out a league high 190 batters in 1932. He regularly contended for the ERA crown, twice posting ERAs under 3.00, and appeared in seven World Series, won six (1932, 1936–1939 and 1941), and posted a 7-2 career post-season record with a 2.63 ERA.

On August 13, 1932, Ruffing threw a complete game shutout and hit a 10th inning home run off Washington Senators pitcher Tommy Thomas to give the New York Yankees a 1-0 victory.[2] Ruffing is one of only three pitchers in major league history to win a game 1-0, hit a home run in the game, and strike out ten or more batters. The others are Early Wynn, who achieved the feat in 1957, and Yovani Gallardo, who did it in 2009.

After missing the 1943 and 1944 seasons due to the war, Ruffing was forty, and nearing the end of his career, upon returning in 1945. After moving to the Chicago White Sox in 1947, he retired. He finished his career with 273 wins, 225 losses, 1987 strikeouts and a 3.80 ERA. Ruffing could also handle the bat fairly well compared to other pitchers, hitting 36 home runs and batting .269 in 1937 career at-bats.

Upon his retirement, Ruffing held the American League record for most runs and earned runs allowed, records he still holds today.[3]


After retirement, Ruffing worked as a roving instructor in the Cleveland Indians organization. When Al Simmons retired from his coaching position just before the 1951 season, bullpen coach Jake Flowers was moved to the third base coaching position, and Ruffing took over Flowers's duties. From 1952-1961, Ruffing was a player personnel executive for the Indians. Ruffing returned to baseball serving as pitching coach for the New York Mets in 1962. The job also involved scouting duties, and Ruffing retired shortly after. He returned to baseball in 1969, at the request of former teammate Don Heffner, who was managing the Denver Bears of the American Association, serving as pitching coach.


At an Old Timers Day Ceremony on July 10, 2004, the Yankees dedicated a plaque in his memory in Monument Park at Yankee Stadium.[4]

A museum in Nokomis, Illinois, is dedicated to Ruffing and fellow Hall of Famers Ray Schalk and Jim Bottomley.

  See also


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ [2]
  3. ^ BR Play Index
  4. ^ Moses, David (July 10, 2004). "Ruffing finally gets his plaque". MLB.com (Major League Baseball Advanced Media). http://newyork.yankees.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20040710&content_id=794774&vkey=news_nyy&fext=.jsp&c_id=nyy. Retrieved August 28, 2010. 

  External links

Preceded by
Lefty Grove
American League Strikeout Champion
Succeeded by
Lefty Gomez
Preceded by
Lefty Gomez
American League Wins Champion
Succeeded by
Bob Feller


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