One of my earliest childhood memories involves Yogi …I was at my grandparents place in about 1961 watching a baseball game on their fuzzy B+W TV (the vertical hold never worked flip … flip … flip) and couldn’t believe that a ‘cartoon’ was catching for the Yankees! I later learned, of course, that it was not a case of life imitating art but the other way around. The nick name ‘Yogi’ was given to him by his close childhood friend and next door neighbour Joe Garagiola because of the cross-legged fashion he would sit for team meetings.
It is somewhat ironic that his inadvertent wit may slightly over shadow his illustrious baseball career (arguably one of the greatest and most successful Catchers and Managers of all time) but then such is life … below is a toast and a compilation of his best quotes … what a gift …what a ball player … what a guy.
Yogi’s Greatest Hits
“This is like deja vu all over again.”
- “You can observe a lot just by watching.”
- “He must have made that before he died.” — Referring to a Steve McQueen movie.
- “I want to thank you for making this day necessary.” — On Yogi Berra Appreciation Day in St. Louis in 1947.
- “I’d find the fellow who lost it, and, if he was poor, I’d return it.” — When asked what he would do if he found a million dollars.
- “Think! How the hell are you gonna think and hit at the same time?”
- “You’ve got to be very careful if you don’t know where you’re going, because you might not get there.”
- “I knew I was going to take the wrong train, so I left early.”
“If you don’t know where you are going, you will wind up somewhere else.”
- “If you can’t imitate him, don’t copy him.”
- “You better cut the pizza in four pieces because I’m not hungry enough to eat six.”
- “Baseball is 90% mental — the other half is physical.”
- “It was impossible to get a conversation going; everybody was talking too much.”
- “Slump? I ain’t in no slump. I just ain’t hitting.”
- “A nickel isn’t worth a dime today.”
- “Nobody goes there anymore; it’s too crowded.”
- “It gets late early out there.” — Referring to the bad sun conditions in left field at the stadium.
- “When you come to a fork in the road, take it.”
- “You give 100 percent in the first half of the game, and if that isn’t enough in the second half you give what’s left.”
- “90% of the putts that are short don’t go in.”
- “I made a wrong mistake.”
- “Thanks, you don’t look so hot yourself.” — After being told he looked cool.
- “I always thought that record would stand until it was broken.”
“Yeah, but we’re making great time!” — In reply to “Hey Yogi, I think we’re lost.”
- “If the fans don’t come out to the ball park, you can’t stop them.”
- “Why buy good luggage? You only use it when you travel.”
- “It’s never happened in the World Series competition, and it still hasn’t.”
- “How long have you known me, Jack? And you still don’t know how to spell my name.” — Upon receiving a check from Jack Buck made out to “bearer.”
- “The other teams could make trouble for us if they win.”
- “He can run anytime he wants. I’m giving him the red light.” — On the acquisition of fleet Ricky Henderson.
- “It ain’t the heat; it’s the humility.”
- “The towels were so thick there I could hardly close my suitcase.”
- “You should always go to other people’s funerals; otherwise, they won’t come to yours.”
- “I didn’t really say everything I said.”