Sunday, July 19, 2020

Another Hall of Famer on Moms Ball - Red Ruffing

Another Hall of Famer that I can cross off of my list, thanks to my mom, is Red Ruffing.  Mom really nailed it with this baseball, as the guys that are on it are ones who would be super tough to get on single signed baseballs.  So, this multi-signed ball really helps the collection a lot.

Ruffing (b. 1905 - d. 1986) played in the majors from 1924 to 1942 and 1946 to 1947 for the Red Sox, Yankees and White Sox.  He had a career record of 273-225 with 1,987 strike outs and a 3.80 ERA.  He was a 6-time All Star (1934 and 1938 to 1942) and had a career-best MVP finish at 4th place in 1938.

Ruffing's career got off to a rough start between 1925 and 1929, losing between 13 and 25 games each of those seasons.  He led the league in losses in 1928 and 1929 with 25 and 22, respectively.  He turned the corner in 1930 when the Red Sox traded him for Cedric Durst; at the time, Ruffing was 0-3, but he would go 15-5 with the Yankees.  After the trade, Ruffing would average almost 17 wins a season for the next 13 seasons.  He won 20 games or more in four straight seasons (1936 to 1939) .  Ruffing won the World Series with the Yankees in 1932, 1936 to 1939 and 1941 ( 6 championships).

When Ruffing was traded from the Red Sox to the Yankees, then-Yankees manager, Bob Shawkey, a former pitcher, was convinced he could get better results out of Ruffing by changing his pitch delivery.  The changes worked, and the trade of Durst for Ruffing is considered one of the most lopsided trades in MLB history.

Red Ruffing was elected to the Hall of Fame in a run-off election in 1967, his final year of eligibility on the ballot.

Ruffing is my 149th Hall of Fame signature on a baseball.