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Without Miller Huggins, the New York Yankees might be just another Major League franchise today, instead of the crown jewel of the baseball world. It was Huggins, after all, who convinced Yankees owner Jacob Ruppert to acquire Babe Ruth from the Boston Red Sox. And it was Huggins whose stern leadership reined in the Bambino's proclivity for reckless behavior so that the 1920s Yanks could reach their full potential—setting in motion all of the ballclub's successes to come. Indeed, before Huggins' 1918 arrival at the New York helm, the team had never won a pennant. But under his wise stewardship, with the invaluable advantage of having Ruth and later Lou Gehrig in the lineup, Huggins led the Yankees to six gonfalons and three world championships over the next 11 seasons. All this from an ornery little man who stood 5-foot-6 and was known as "Mighty Mite." Huggins began his career as a second baseman, logging 13 seasons (1904-1916) with the Cincinnati Reds and St. Louis Cardinals. A solid fielder and mediocre batter, Huggins' greatest attributes were his eye and his intellect. He led the league in walks four times, and once on base, he was apt to steal. A tactician at heart, he learned from the best: in Cincy, he was managed by Ned Hanlon; in St. Louis by Roger Bresnahan. When Bresnahan was relieved of his duties, "Hug" took over. He was a player/manager at first, then shrewdly gave over his second-sacking detail to an up-and-comer by the name of Rogers Hornsby. Soon after, American League president Ban Johnson recommended Huggins to Ruppert as a candidate for the Yankees' managerial post. Now in pinstripes, Huggins helped land pitchers Carl Mays and Waite Hoyt, and, despite Ruppert's financial trepidations, he personally courted Ruth in California for face-to-face negotiations. Through the ensuing years, theirs would be a contentious relationship, with Huggins angry over Ruth's many ego-driven transgressions, and Ruth resentful of the petite manager's powerful position. In 1925, the animosity reached a crescendo: Huggins suspended his premier player and fined him an unheard-of $5,000 for having been chronically late to batting practice. When the Babe complained and sought Huggins' ouster, Ruppert stood by his short-statured skipper. Ruth ultimately apologized. Although they would still quarrel regularly, Hug had at last established his dominance over the Yankees' star. The next three years saw the Bronx Bombers enjoy unprecedented success, capturing a trio of pennants and two championships—1927 and 1928. In the latter season, Huggins also scouted, signed and groomed Bill Dickey. But, sadly, the end of the first Yankees dynasty was near. Huggins died of a skin disease in 1929, and Ruth and company did not return to championship form until 1932. This 8" x 10" depiction features a Charles M. Conlon stamping -- as well as pencil notations -- on its back. "The Sporting News," which still exists today was founded in 1886 by Alfred H. Spink and became the preeminent American Publication covering baseball. This photograph came directly from the archives of the "Sporting News" and has been designated as such by the official Sporting News hologram that has been adhered to the reverse. This original hologram assures its provenance as being acquired directly from this historic archive.
New York Yankees Manager Miller Huggins Original Charles Conlon Photograph
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