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From 1921 through 1964, a span of forty three years, the New York Yankees appeared in twenty-nine World Series championships winning twenty of them. By anyone’s definition, this was a true sports dynasty.
Literary hundreds of superb ballplayers contributed to this sustained excellence, but the “heart and soul” could only be found in one place – the outfield. The World Series tradition had its origin and early nurturing during the Babe Ruth time frame (1920 – 1934, seven appearances – four titles). The era of Mickey Mantle (1951 – 1968) featured twelve Fall Classic appearances with seven victories for the Bronx Bombers. However, the most productive championship period (1936 – 1951), bridging the other two with ten Series wins in eleven appearances, came under the leadership of Joe DiMaggio.
Two years after babe Ruth had been traded, 1936, the slumping Yankees unveiled their new secret weapon – a twenty-one year old hitting phenom form California. A natural leader, DiMaggio promptly took the Yankees to another World Series title. In just his second year, he was widely considered to be the premier centerfielder in the American League. With flawless fielding, heads-up base running and powerful, consistent batting, there was just no stopping this man who quickly became known as “The Yankee Clipper.”
Over the course of his thirteen seasons, DiMaggio’s batting and slugging averages were .325 and .579 respectively. He also “smashed” 361 career homers. He led the American League in batting average, homeruns and RBIs two times each and was a three time AL – MVP (1939, 1941, 1947). “Joltin’ Joe” is ranked as one of the top five World Series leaders in at-bats, hits, runs, RBIs and total bases. All of this was accomplished in spite of the fact that the heart of his career was “cut out” by military service in World War II.
Joe DiMaggio is probably best known for hitting safely in 56 games over the course of two months in 1941. When the “string was snapped,” he then hit safely in sixteen more consecutive contests. In over fifty years, no one has ever even come close to equaling his record. Considering the difficulty in hitting a baseball and the inherent variability of the sport, e.g. weather, time of day, type of pitcher, slumps, etc., this monumental feat may never be duplicated.
At 6’2” and 193 lbs., Joe DiMaggio was a big man but a very kind, gentle and good person. He loved the game of baseball for the game itself, not for the money. He cared about his fans and the kids. Proudly and willingly, he served his country and never complained about losing time from the prime of his career.
America is a lot different now. The family unit is in decline. Crime and drugs are a way of life. Baseball itself has become contaminated by money. Greed has a simple game bogged down in a labor quagmire from which there appears to be no exit. The famous song by Simon and Garfunkel plays over and over again in our minds, “Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio? Our nation turns its lonely eyes to you.”
Large - 34" x 50"
50 Artist Proof Limited Edition Available - $337
500 Limited Edition Available - $270
Medium - 21" x 31"
50 Artist Proof Limited Edition Available - $185
500 Limited Edition Available - $179
Small - 15" x 22"
50 Artist Proof Limited Edition Available - $168
500 Limited Edition Available - $135
Large - 34" x 50" (Expanded 40" x 56")
15 Artist Proof Limited Edition Available - $749
150 Limited Edition Available - $599
Medium - 21" x 31" (Expanded 27" x 37")
25 Artist Proof Limited Edition Available - $389
250 Limited Edition Available - $339
Small - 15" x 22" (Expanded 21" x 28")
25 Artist Proof Limited Edition Available - $309
250 Limited Edition Available - $249