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1927 Yankees Profiles - Pitchers

Walter Beall
Age: 27
1927 Statistics: 0-0, 9.00 ERA

A native of Washington, D.C., Beall had a league-leading 2.76 ERA while playing with Rochester of the International League in 1924; after which the Yankees signed him. He made his ML debut with the Yanks on September 3, 1924. Prior to 1927, he owned a 4-5 career record with a 4.42 ERA.

He appeared in only one game in 1927, pitching to four batters and giving up one earned run in the eighth, and last, inning of a 9-8 Memorial Day loss to Philadelphia. It was his last appearance with the club before being shipped to St. Paul, and eventually, his last year with the Yankees.

Joe Giard
Age: 28
1927 Statistics: 0-0, 8.00 ERA

Image provided by Matt Fulling

Giard was property of the Yankees when, in 1924, he was part of a trade to St. Louis that brought Urban Shocker back to New York. The Yankees re-acquired Giard along with Cedric Durst on February 8, 1927. He owned a 13-15 career record, with a 6.36 ERA heading into the 1927 season.

Giard, one of three southpaws on the staff, was the ninth man on the pitching staff. "Peco" appeared in 16 games all in relief, but was not the pitcher of record in any of them. He was the starting pitcher on July 25 for an exhibition game in Johnstown, Penn. Giard's single on August 26, sparking a four run rally in an 8-6 win over Detroit, was one of only two hits all season. His other was in a 14-4 loss in Detroit on July 9. The Yankees had a 5-11 record in games which he pitched. 1927 was his only year with the team, and his last year in baseball.

Waite Hoyt
Age: 27
1927 Statistics: 22-7, 2.64 ERA

The Yankees acquired Hoyt from the Red Sox in an eight player trade prior to the 1921 campaign. He pitched three complete games without allowing an earned run in the 1921 World Series. Going into his tenth season, "Schoolboy" was the ace of the pitching staff. He had a 110-85 career record, along with a 3.56 ERA.

This would be his breakthrough year. Hoyt was Huggins' choice for Opening Day vs. Philadelphia, and he emerged as the best pitcher in the American League. For the first time in his career he would win 20 games. Hoyt tied for the league lead in wins with 22, led with a .759 winning percentage, was second in the league with a 2.64 ERA, was third with 23 complete games, and fourth with 256 innings pitched. He led the Yankees in all of those categories but ERA. He pitched a complete game in 71% of his starts, leading the team. Hoyt was also the only Yankee hurler to face over 1,000 batters in 1927. As reliable as he was, Hoyt appeared at least once every six games; rested for 11 games from June 25 through July 4; then appeared at least once every five games for the Yankees the rest of the season (he developed a sore elbow June 25 in a 4-2 loss to Philadelphia which would limit him to two batters, both singles, in his next start, July 5 against Washington; the only batters he would face in a 17 game span). Hoyt gave up only three hits in a 5-0 shut out over Washington on May 27. Hoyt was 5-1 with a 1.56 ERA in May, his best month. He was consistent, posting an 11-3 record on the road, and an 11-4 record at Yankee Stadium. He and Ruether tied for the team lead with three shut outs each, finishing one behind the league leader. Of his seven losses, five were by one run. He did not have a losing record against any team, and his 5-0 record (with a 2.00 ERA) against St. Louis tied him with Shocker for best record against an opponent on the staff. Hoyt made four relief appearances during the season, finishing all four and picking up his only save in the last game, a 4-3 win over Washington. Hoyt had career bests in ERA and CG. In allowing nine of his team high 10 HR to be hit at Yankee Stadium, each AL team hit at least one off of him there. Offensively, he scored 10 runs, leading the staff. He hit a triple on July 31 in his 5-0 shut out over Cleveland. He beat Pittsburgh 5-4 in Game 1 of the 1927 World Series. As early as September 1927, Hoyt had his own program on NBC radio.

Wilcy Moore
Age: 29
1927 Statistics: 19-7, 2.28 ERA

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In 1926 with Greenville of the South Atlantic League, Moore was 30-4. He possessed a wicked sinker that was the result of a broken wrist suffered in 1925. The Yankees purchased him for $5,000.

He made his ML debut on April 14, 1927 vs. Philadelphia. Huggins used him mainly in relief; posting a 13-3 record with a 1.96 ERA and finishing 30 of his 38 appearances out of the bullpen. He also had 12 starts. "Cy" was second on the team behind Hoyt in innings pitched. His 2.28 ERA was the best in baseball in 1927, and he tied for the league lead in saves with 13. He had the third best winning percentage (.731) in the AL. Batters only hit .234 against him, also leading the league. Moore allowed only three home runs, and committed only one error in 1927. He earned his first save in relief of Hoyt during a 9-6 win at Washington on May 2. Moore had seven hitless relief appearances, leading the staff. His first start of the season came on May 28 against Washington, a CG 3-2 loss. He was 5-1 in his six complete games. Moore lost to Philadelphia's Lefty Grove 1- 0 on September 3; the only time the Yankees were shut out all year. Offensively, Moore had the worst batting average on the team (.080). Huggins pinch hit for Moore on nine different occasions, most on the team. Ruth bet him $300 that he wouldn't get three hits all year; he won the bet on August 26 in an 8-6 win at Detroit. Reputedly, Moore used the money he won to buy two mule for his Oklahoma farm, naming one "Babe" and the other "Ruth". He finishing with six hits, including a home run on September 16 in a 7-2 win against Chicago. The Yankees had a 36-13-1 record (.750) in games in which he pitched. He had career bests in W, PCT, ERA, IP (213), K (75), and SV. Moore allowed just one earned run (0.84 ERA), lowest among pitchers in the 1927 World Series, pitching in relief in Game 1 and a complete game in Game 4.

Herb Pennock
Age: 32
1927 Statistics: 19-8, 3.00 ERA

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After posting a 76-72 career record, Pennock came over to the Yankees from the Red Sox prior to the 1923 season, in exchange for three players and $50,000 cash. After earning $15,000 for the 1926 season, Pennock held out for $20,000...they eventually settled for $17,500; making him second on the team to Ruth. He was generally regarded as the best left-hander in baseball, and Huggins called him "the greatest left-hander in history". Heading into 1927 he owned a 156-115 record with a 3.45 ERA.

Pennock was Huggins #2 pitcher in 1927. He won his first five decisions before suffering a 7-2 loss to Washington on May 27. His 19 wins tied him for fourth best in the AL, tied for second on the team; his .704 winning percentage was fourth best in the AL, fifth on the team (Pipgras didn't qualify); and his 18 complete games were fifth in the AL, second on the team. He completed 69% of his starts, second on the team behind Hoyt. Pennock pitched his only shut out on May 7, winning 8-0 at Chicago. He won eight of his final nine decisions. Pennock was 9-2 on the road with a 2.56 ERA. He did not strike out more than four batters in any game he appeared. He was a perfect 2-0 with 2 saves in 8 relief appearances, allowing only eight hits (three hitless appearances). Pennock had a 4-1 record against St. Louis. A switch hitter, he batted .217. Huggins was not sure if he would be available for the Series after he was hit in the knee while pitching batting practice in Pittsburgh. Starting Game 3 of the 1927 World Series, Pennock retired 22 straight Pirates (a record at the time), en route to winning 8-1. It ran his career World Series record to a perfect 5-0, with a 2.05 ERA.

George Pipgras
Age: 27
1927 Statistics: 10-3, 4.12 ERA

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Pipgras came up with the Yankees on June 9, 1923; and walked 25 batters in 33 innings. Owning a 1-4 record with a 7.21 ERA over two stints with the team, Miller Huggins promptly sent him to the minors, St. Paul of the American Association, for two years to work on his control.

After pitching in over 100 games in the minors, he was eased back into the Yankee rotation, with 16 of his starts coming the second half of the season. Huggins felt he worked best with Bengough behind the plate, pairing Pipgras with him in nine of those starts. Opposing batters hit .247 against him, second lowest on staff behind Moore. Pipgras gave up only two home runs in 1927, lowest among all AL pitchers with at least 150 innings pitched. His .769 winning percentage, a career high, was actually the best on the staff. He won his first five decisions before suffering a 6-4 loss to Cleveland on July 29. He beat Chicago on September 18, 2-1 in only 1 hour: 23 minutes; the fastest nine inning game of the year for the team. His best game came on September 24, giving up only three hits in a 6-0 shut out over Detroit for their 106th victory, breaking the AL record for wins. Pipgras was 3-0 with a 3.41 ERA in September, his best month. He had an 8-1 record at Yankee Stadium. He had no record with a 2.91 ERA in eight relief appearances. In relief of Hoyt, Pipgras hit a home run on June 12 in an 8-7 loss to Cleveland. Pipgras batted .314 (11 for 35) at Yankee Stadium. Again paired with Bengough, Pipgras pitched a complete game in Game 2 of the 1927 World Series; giving up a triple to the first batter, and then settling in for a 6-2 victory. He recorded the final out himself and pocketed the ball.

Dutch Ruether
Age: 33
1927 Statistics: 13-6, 3.38 ERA

Ruether was picked up on waivers from the Senators August 27, 1926. Heading into 1927, he had a 124-89 career record, with a 3.51 ERA.

He was Huggins' fourth starter. Ruether started out 3-0 with a 1.59 ERA in April, his best month. Through the end of July, his record was 12-2, and then it seemed like his season took a turn for the worse, and minor arm troubles began that led to erratic performances down the stretch. Nonetheless, he tied Hoyt for the most shut outs on the team with three. Ruether's best came was a 2-0 win over Detroit on June 2, allowing only two hits (lowest on staff in 1927), striking out two and walking two. Ruether worked quickly on the mound. He had a 1 hour: 29 minute 3-0 CG victory over Boston on April 18, a 1:31 2-0 CG victory over Detroit on June 2, and a 1:32 4-1 CG victory over Cleveland on September 14; the 2nd, 3rd and 4th fastest nine inning games of the year for the Yankees. He had a 4-1 record against Boston. In the field, he didn't have an error all year. He also hit seven batters, most on the team. He was the only pitcher on the staff not to finish a game in relief. Ruether was a good hitter, batting a respectable .263 with one HR and 19 RBI's in 1927. His lone HR came in a 7-3 victory over Cleveland on July 30. He was the only pitcher on the team to pinch hit, appearing 7 times (four times for Bengough) and batting .333 (2 for 6). Ruether was quoted as saying, "Do you know that I believe my whole career has been a mistake? I have had good years,...but for all that I believe my natural position was at first base." Ruether shared the same birthday as Pat Collins. 1927 was his last in the majors.

Bob Shawkey
Age: 36
1927 Statistics: 2-3, 2.89 ERA

Shawkey joined the Yankees in 1915, acquired from Philadelphia for $18,000, giving him the longest tenure of any member of the team. He was a starter most of his career. Heading into 1927, he had a 194-147 career record, to go along with a 3.09 career ERA, best on the staff.

In 1927, his last in the majors, Shawkey pitched in 19 games. He had an 0-1 record with a 10.50 ERA in six innings, after starting two of the first eight games. Huggins moved him to the bullpen where Shawkey posted a 2-2 record with four saves and a 1.67 ERA in 17 relief appearances. His 2.89 ERA was fourth best on the team, seventh best of all AL pitchers regardless of innings pitched. He struck out 4.74 batters per nine inning pitched, highest on the staff. Shawkey did not appear in a game in June. In his 17th at bat of the season, he singled for his only hit of the year, and subsequently scored his only run of the year, in a 12-10 win at Boston. He had the second worst batting average (.091). The Yankees had a record of 6-12-1 in games in which he pitched. Shawkey was the second oldest player on the team. He would go on to manage the team in 1930.

Urban Shocker
Age: 36
1927 Statistics: 18-6, 2.84 ERA

He made his ML debut with the Yankees on April 24, 1917, and was traded to St. Louis in 1919. When the spitball was abolished in 1920, Shocker was one of 17 pitchers who could still legally throw it. He was re-acquired December 17, 1924 for his second stint with the team. Heading into his 12th season, he owned a 169-111 career record, with a 3.20 ERA.

Shocker started slowly. On May 11 he had only a 3-3 record, before winning 15 of his final 18 decisions. He was one of four Yankees to pitch 200 innings in 1927. His ERA was third in the AL, and he was second in winning percentage (.750), a career high. A control pitcher, Shocker only allowed 1.85 walks per nine innings (lowest on the staff), and he only struck out 1.58 batters per nine innings (also lowest on the staff). His relief appearance on August 22, his 37th birthday, during a 9-4 loss at Cleveland, earned him the distinction of being the only pitcher to pitch on their birthday during the season. He was 5-0 against St. Louis (with a 2.07 ERA), tying him with Hoyt for best record against an opponent on the staff. On April 24, Shocker executed a perfect squeeze scoring Durst from third in the sixth inning during a 6-2 win over Washington. He only had one extra base hit, a double on May 11 in a 4-2 win at St. Louis. Shocker had three sacrifice hits on July 12 in a 7- 0 win at Cleveland. Shocker was the oldest player on the team. He had a heart disease which was limiting his effectiveness towards the end of the season. Therefore, he did not appear in the 1927 Series. He pitched two innings in 1928, and passed away September 9, 1928.

Myles Thomas
Age: 29
1927 Statistics: 7-4, 4.87 ERA

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Thomas attended Penn State University. He was obtained from Toronto of the International League, making his ML debut with the Yankees on April 18, 1926. He was 6-6 with a 4.23 ERA in 1926.

In just his second season, Thomas started nine games in 1927 with one complete game, a 2-1 victory at Philadelphia on June 1. June was his month, posting a 5-1 record with a 4.19 ERA in six starts and three relief appearances. He was 4-1 in 12 overall relief appearances in 1927. Thomas was second on the staff with four hitless relief appearances. The Yankees were 11-10 in games in which he pitched. He led all pitchers with a .333 batting average, including .357 at Yankee Stadium. Standing just 5' 9.5", Thomas was the shortest pitcher on the staff.