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 William Wilcy Moore

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William Wilcy Moore

  • Birth 20 May 1897 Bonita, Montague County, Texas, USA
  • Death 29 Mar 1963 Hollis, Harmon County, Oklahoma, USA
  • Burial Hollis, Harmon County, Oklahoma, USA
  • Memorial ID 13749861

Major League Baseball Player. Tthe son of a cotton farmer, his claim to fame in the Major League was as the highly effective relief pitcher for the 1927 New York Yankees 'Murderers Row' team. Born in Bonita, Texas, he started his baseball career pitching semipro until signed to a professional contract by Fort Worth of the Texas League in July of 1921. Forth Worth then sent him to Paris of the Texas-Oklahoma League for seasoning. Over the next three seasons he slowly advanced through the minors, making stops with Fort Worth, Ardmore and Okmulgee of the Western Association. In the Spring of 1925 he was sold to Greenville of the Sally League, (South Atlantic League). It was midway through the 1925 season that the wrist on his pitching hand was fractured by a batted ball during a game. When he began to pitch again, he found it uncomfortable to throw with his customary overhand delivery. In order to relieve pressure on his wrist, he began throwing sidearm. In so doing, Moore developed an even better curve ball and a devastating sinker. After losing the opening game of the 1926 season with Greenville, season, he reeled off an amazing 17 wins in a row, finishing the year with a 30-4 record overall. In the off season Yankees President Ed Barrow purchased Moore's contract on the theory that if any pitcher could compete and win in the highly competitive Sally League, then he surely could as least hold his own in the Majors. Moore went on to have one of the greatest seasons for a reliever in baseball history in 1927. The 30 year old rookie appeared in 50 games, 12 as a starter, and pitched to a 19-7 record with 13 saves. His ERA in the 213 innings he pitched was only 2.28. He continued his success in the World Series that Fall against the Pittsburgh Pirates as he pitched in two games, saving Game 1 for Waite Hoyt, and starting and winning Game 4, 4-3. Moore was never the same pitcher again for New York after that season, as he developed a tired arm, which he blamed on being overworked. He pitched in just 35 games in 1928, going only 4-4 with 2 saves. He was released after the 1929 season, but resurfaced with the Red Sox in 1930 after one year in the minors. With Boston his career was rejuvenated as he made his career high in appearances with 53 in 1931, going 11-13 overall with 10 saves in 185.3 innings of work. The Yankees reacquired him on August 1, 1932 for Gordon Rhodes to sure up their pitching for the pennant drive. In game 4 of the World Series he was the starter and winner, pitching 5.3 innings of ball while only giving up 2 hits. He was relieved by Herb Pennock in the game as the Yanks swept the Chicago Cubs 4-0. Moore was noted for being a terrible hitter, so much so that his teammate, Babe Ruth, made what he thought was a sure fire bet with him during the 1927 season. Ruth bet $300 to Moore's $15 that the reliever would not hit a homer all season. When Moore connected for a hime run, Ruth lost the bet. With the money from the bet, Moore bought two mules for his farm, naming them Babe and Ruth. He retired from baseball after the 1933 season to become a successful Cotton farmer, a profession that had learned from his father. During his Major League career he accrued a lifetime record of 51-44 with a 3.70 ERA and 49 saves in 261 league games. He died from cancer at the age of 65 in 1963.

Bio by: Frank Russo

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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Frank Russo
  • Added: 26 Mar 2006
  • Find A Grave Memorial 13749861
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for William Wilcy Moore (20 May 1897–29 Mar 1963), Find A Grave Memorial no. 13749861, citing Fairmount Cemetery, Hollis, Harmon County, Oklahoma, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .