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Yogi Berra is Now Player-Coach for Yankees

Feb. 11, 1963 - The New York Yankees’ spring training campaign got under way today in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Thirty-nine players plus ten coaches and instructors answered the roll-call as Manager Ralph Houk briskly set about pointing his Bombers toward another American League pennant. Commanding the spotlight today was Yogi Berra (pictured today with Joe DiMaggio), as the transition of Yogi the player to Yogi the player-coach is on. Asked after his first workout how he liked it, he replied, “Well, it’s a little tougher than I thought. The first thing I learned was a coach never sits down. Every time I headed for the bench, Old Crow [Frank Crosetti] or Johnny Sain or Houk would start snapping at my heels and tell me to keep hustling. Now, what does the coach need to keep hustling for? I thought a coach was supposed to keep the players hustling.” Despite his new role, Yogi insists he can still catch. To prove it, he points to the 22 innings he caught in that 7-hour marathon game between the Yankees and Tigers last summer.


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