Yankees great, 3-time All-Star Joe Pepitone dead at 82
Joe Pepitone, a three-time All-Star who was a staple of the 1960s New York Yankees, has died at 82.
The Yankees announced Pepitone's passing in an official statement.
“The Yankees are deeply saddened by the passing of former Yankee Joe Pepitone, whose playful and charismatic personality and on-field contributions made him a favorite of generations of Yankees fans even beyond his years with the team in the 1960s. As a native New Yorker, he embraced everything about being a Yankee during both his playing career – which included three All-Star appearances and three Gold Gloves – and in the decades thereafter,” the statement read.
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“You always knew when Joe walked into a room – his immense pride in being a Yankee was always on display. He will be missed by our entire organization, and we offer our deepest condolences to his family, friends and all who knew him.”
As the Yankees mentioned, Pepitone was a product of the Big Apple, having been born in Brooklyn. He debuted with the team at 21 years old in 1962, hitting .239 in 63 games in pinstripes.
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For the next three seasons after that, Pepitone became a household name for Yankee fans as he tallied three straight All-Star appearances. He also won back-to-back Gold Gloves at first base in 1965 and 1966.
The Yankees made it to the World Series in 1963 and 1964 with Pepitone playing a major role in getting the Bombers there. However, they would lose to the Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals in those series, respectively.
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Pepitone would play eight seasons in New York, slashing .252/.294/.423 with 166 homers and 541 RBI in 1,051 games before moving on to the Houston Astros, Chicago Cubs and Atlanta Braves before calling it quits in 1973.
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But Pepitone's days in baseball were not over. He was a mainstay with the Yankees once he hung up his cleats, consistently providing a charismatic presence at Yankee Stadium during Old Timer's Day and other events.