Yogi Berra

Death of Yogi Berra

May 12, 1925 - September 22, 2015
Montclair, New Jersey | Age 90

Legendary New York Yankees catcher


Baseball great Yogi Berra died Tuesday of natural causes. He was 90.

Berra was a New York baseball stalwart, playing for the Yankees for most of his career and the Mets for a single year, then later coaching and managing both teams. But he was born May 12, 1925, in St. Louis, Missouri, the son of Italian immigrants.

Signing with the Yankees in 1946, Berra joined a team that was recovering from losing some of its best players to World War II – Berra himself had served in the U.S. Navy. A catcher, he became one of the stars of the team's postwar years, alongside teammates including Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle. These were spectacular years for the Yankees: In Berra's 18 seasons with the team, they went to the World Series 14 times and won 10 times. Berra holds the records for most World Series appearances as well as most World Series wins. He was also an All-Star in 15 seasons and was the American League MVP three times.

Berra retired from the Yankees in 1963, signing on as manager of the team. He was quickly fired after the Yankees lost that season's World Series bid, then signed as a coach by the Mets. In addition to coaching, he played in several games in his first season as the Mets' coach. He was with the Mets until 1975 and later became bench coach for the Houston Astros.

Berra's career batting average was .285, with 358 home runs and 1,430 RBIs. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1972, and the Yankees retired his No. 8. In retirement, he became involved with the Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center at New Jersey's Montclair State University.

Berra was famous not only for his baseball talents, but also for his amusingly mangled aphorisms. Some of his most popular quotes include, "When you come to a fork in the road, take it;" "The future ain't what it used to be;" and "If you don't know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else." Berra once famously responded to an inquiry about his odd quotes by saying, "I really didn't say everything I said."

Berra was preceded in death by his wife, Carmen Berra, in 2014. Three sons survive him.