The Men of Yesteryear

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Manager Profile

Joe McCarthy

(Marse Joe)
B: Apr 21, 1887 Philadelphia, PA
D: Jan 3, 1978

Buffalo, NY

Managerial Stints
Chicago (N) 1926-1930
New York (A) 1931-1946
Boston (A) 1948-1950
Managerial Record W-2125; L-1333

About Joe McCarthy

  • Joe McCarthy managed the New York Yankees to 8 pennants, 7 of which his team won the World Series. He also managed the Cubs to a pennant in 1929.
  • Attended Niagra University in Buffalo for 2 years, but left for the promise of a baseball career. 
  • Played minor league ball from 1907-1921 and compiled a .261 average. However during that stretch he was player/manager for several clubs and became recognized for his keen knowledge of the game and aggressiveness on the field.
  • Was 0 for 4 against Babe Ruth in Ruth's big league debut in Baltimore of the International League in 1914.
  • International League President Ed Barrow  recommended Joe for the Yankees managerial job in 1916. An agreement was near, but Joe inked a deal with the Brooklyn team of the Federal League. Unfortunately for him, the league folded and his chance at a major league position went by the boards. 
  • Joe went back to Louisville of the American Association and was a star second baseman for years. He became player/manager in mid 1919 and managed them to a pennant in 1921. He stayed on as manager of Louisville through 1925, all the while becoming recognized as the best manager in the minor leagues.  
  • In 1926, after some hesitation, McCarthy accepted William Wrigley's offer to manage the Chicago Cubs. Wrigley approached McCarthy after listening to the advice of John Foster, the editor of the Spalding Baseball Guide
  • His first move in 1926, was to ask for waivers on the popular, but aging and somewhat out of control, Grover Cleveland Alexander. This established his control of the team and his players adhered to his style. He was a master tactician and stressed double plays and insisted his pitchers field their position well.
  • In 1929, with the addition of Rogers Hornsby, who Joe nearly demanded Wrigley to get, his Cubs had captured the National League pennant. The team lost the World Series in 5 games to the Philadelphia A's.
  • The Cubs and McCarthy parted ways late in the 1930 season, after a turbulent relationship with Hornsby, who many felt was trying to undermine McCarthy for the job himself.
  • Shortly after the 1930 World Series, Yankees brass Jacob Ruppert and long time supporter Ed Barrow offered him the Yankees post for the 1931 season. His acceptance was popular with the writers and many fans, but no so popular with the Yankee players. The aging Babe Ruth had already expressed his desire for the position.
  • The strain with Ruth made the road a little tougher, but in 1932, the Yankees were headed to a World Series. Their opponent would be McCarthy's last employer, the Chicago Cubs. The Yankees swept the series 4-0.
  • McCarthy managed the Yankees to pennants in four straight seasons starting in 1936. He also put together a run of 3 more pennants from 1941 through the 1943 seasons. Having players along the way like Lou Gehrig, Tony Lazzeri, Bill Dickey, Phil Rizutto, Red Ruffing and Lefty Gomez certainly helped make the job somewhat trouble-free.
  • In May of 1946, Joe left the Yankees amid poor health and some tension with new Yankees President Larry McPhail. 
  • Joe stayed out of baseball for a year but returned to manage the Red Sox in 1948. His team lost a heartbreaking one game playoff to the Indians 8-3 and the team settled for second place. In 1949, another second place finish and in June of 1950, Joe resigned with his team in second place.
  • He retired and went back back to Buffalo with his wife. Joe had a great career and managed a handful of the greatest players to ever play the game.
  • Joe McCarthy was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1957. A plaque was dedicated to him at Yankee Stadium on his 89th birthday.