Other Free Encyclopedias » Famous Sports Stars » Baseball » Lou Gehrig Biography - Growing Up, Taste Of Fame, College Ball, The Beginning Of A Legend, Chronology

Lou Gehrig - The End Of The Streak

nyy yankees played pride

Gehrig hit the 2,000 consecutive games played mark on May 31, 1938, but shortly thereafter problems started surfacing. Gehrig was no longer hitting like he used to. His batting average that season fell below .300. The rest of the Yankees made up for it, winning the pennant and sweeping the Chicago Cubs in the World Series, but it was clear that something was wrong. Gehrig came back in 1939, but he soon realized that his poor playing was hurting the whole team. On May 2, 1939, after 2,130 consecutive games, Gehrig voluntarily benched himself. In June, the Mayo Clinic diagnosed Gehrig with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which would soon become known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

Gehrig formally retired from baseball on July 4, 1939, in Yankee Stadium, where he gave one of the most memorable speeches in the history of sports, declaring himself to be "the luckiest man on the face of the earth." He spent 1940 working as a parole commissioner for New York City, interviewing various convicted criminals, but by the beginning of 1941 he was too weak to work any more, even on crutches. He died on June 2, 1941.

Career Statistics

Yr Team AVG GP AB R H HR RBI BB SO SB
NYY: New York Yankees.
1923 NYY .423 13 26 6 11 1 9 2 5 0
1924 NYY .500 10 12 2 6 0 5 1 3 0
1925 NYY .295 126 437 73 129 20 68 46 49 6
1926 NYY .313 155 572 135 179 16 112 105 73 6
1927 NYY .373 155 584 149 218 47 175 109 84 10
1928 NYY .374 154 562 139 210 27 142 95 69 4
1929 NYY .300 154 553 127 166 35 126 122 68 4
1930 NYY .379 154 581 143 220 41 174 101 63 12
1931 NYY .341 155 619 163 211 46 184 117 56 17
1932 NYY .349 156 596 138 208 34 151 108 38 4
1933 NYY .334 152 593 138 198 32 139 92 42 9
1934 NYY .363 154 579 128 210 49 165 109 31 9
1935 NYY .329 149 535 125 176 30 119 132 38 8
1936 NYY .354 155 579 167 205 49 152 130 46 3
1937 NYY .351 157 569 138 200 37 159 127 49 4
1938 NYY .295 157 576 115 170 29 114 107 75 6
1939 NYY .143 8 28 2 4 0 1 5 1 0
TOTAL .340 2164 8001 1888 2721 493 1995 1508 790 102

The Pride of the Yankees

Lou Gehrig's life story was brought to the big screen in the 1942 film The Pride of the Yankees. Written by renowned Hollywood screenwriters Jo Swerling (of It's a Wonderful Life) and Herman J. Mankiewicz (of Citizen Kane) and nominated for eleven Academy Awards, including Best Picture, The Pride of the Yankees was a major success. Gehrig was played by Gary Cooper, a well-regarded actor, but not one with a natural affinity for baseball. This led to some difficulties filming the baseball scenes. Most notably, since Cooper was right-handed and Gehrig batted with his left, the batting scenes were filmed in reverse, with the players wearing mirror-image uniforms and Cooper batting right-handed and running to third. Although The Pride of the Yankees showcases Gehrig's famous hard work and dedication to the game, its most affecting moments are about Gehrig's tender and supportive relationship with his wife, Eleanor, who was played by Teresa Wright. Many actual Yankees, including Babe Ruth, played themselves in the film.

Lou Gehrig - Career Statistics [next] [back] Lou Gehrig - Gehrig, 'iron Man' Of Baseball, Dies At The Age Of 37

User Comments

Your email address will be altered so spam harvesting bots can't read it easily.
Hide my email completely instead?

Cancel or