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Mickey Mantle - Related Biography: Baseball Player Whitey Ford

record yankee yankees scout

Born on October 21, 1928, Eddie "Whitey" Ford earned his nickname as a towheaded boy playing baseball at the Astoria Boys Club. Yankees scout Paul Krichell saw him pitch his high school team, the Aviation Trades, to the New York Journal American Sandlot tournament championship. At the time, Ford was playing first base but had pitched in the game as a substitute.

In 1946, Ford signed a minor league Yankee contract. He would remain in the minors for several years, compiling a 51-20 record. When he finally made his way up into the majors, he was already pitching like a veteran player.

In his first season with the Yankees, Ford compiled a 9-1 record. He would leave for the next two seasons (1951 and 1952) to serve his country at Fort Monmouth.

When he returned, in 1953, Ford fell right back into the rotation. At 5'10" tall, Whitey was stocky, strong, and confident. It was his confidence that allowed him to make the high pressure pitches to get himself out of trouble.

In 1956 he led the league with a .760 winning percentage, winning nineteen games with a 2.47 ERA. In 1961, Whitey Ford won the Cy Young award with a record of 25-4.

After he retired, Ford spent two seasons coaching for the Yankees, later becoming a scout for the team. In his baseball career he amassed a won-loss record of 236-106, with a 2.75 ERA, forty-five shutouts and 1956 strikeouts.

One of Mantle's best friends during some of the most glorious years in Yankee history, Whitey Ford eventually joined Mantle in recalling the glory years in their 1978 book, Whitey and Mickey: A Joint Autobiography of the Yankee Years.

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