Press Pass: Ralph Terry 5-8-20

After giving up the series winning home run in the 1960 World Series, Ralph Terry was given this advice by Casey Stengel, “That was a physical mistake. Forget it, Kid. Come back and have a good year next year.”

In a candid interview with Chris Ryan, Ralph Terry, who was an outstanding pitcher in the 1950s and 1960s, discussed the highs and lows of his eleven-year major league career. Terry was a two-time American League All Star, a two-time World Champion, and a World Series MVP. His most successful and most difficult periods were during his years with the New York Yankees in the 1960s.

Unfortunately, Ralph Terry is most famous for giving up the game winning homerun to Bill Mazeroski of the Pittsburgh Pirates in the seventh inning of the 1960 World Series. In the interview, Chris and Ralph get into the quirky, what if game situations that led up to one of the most famous walk-off homeruns in baseball history. Terry and his Yankee teammates were saddened for several reasons which you might not expect. Legendary Yankee manager Casey Stengel was fired after the 1960 series, but he gave Ralph Terry excellent advice which helped him to move on and to be a very successful pitcher in 1961, 1962, and 1963.

In fact, Terry shared that he holds the record for throwing the most “Golden Pitches” in baseball history. A Golden Pitch is a pitch which decides whether your team wins or loses a World Series. Terry has thrown eleven. Hall of Famer Christy Matthewson threw seven golden pitches.

Ralph Terry’s day of redemption came in the seventh game of the 1962 World Series. He pitched a complete game 1-0 shut out against the San Francisco Giants. In the interview, Terry shares the strategy and conditions involved in one of the most dramatic games in the history of the World Series. The Giants featured fantastic Hall of Fame hitters–Willie Mays, Orlando Cepeda, and Willie McCovey.

In the conclusion of the interview, Ralph Terry discusses how he would try to pitch to the great hitters of his time—Willie Mays, Roberto Clemente, Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle, Yogi Berra, and Roger Maris. While explaining why the Yankee teams of the early sixties were so successful, Ralph Terry discusses position by position how strong they were defensively. In the process, he makes a strong argument for why Roger Maris should be in the Hall of Fame. Ralph has a surprisingly open mind about whether Pete Rose or players who used performance enhancing drugs should be admitted to the Baseball Hall of Fame.