Yankee Slugger Bill "Moose" Skowron Dies At 81

Former New York Yankee Bill 'Moose' Skowron looks on during the teams 63rd Old Timers Day before the game against the Detroit Tigers at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Skowron hit over 200 home runs for four different teams in the 1950s and 1960s.

Bill Skowron, who was a five-time All-Star and played on World Series championship teams for both the Yankees and Dodgers, has died at the age of 81.

Skowron was born in Chicago, and nicknamed "Moose" not because he resembled the animal in any way, but because he had a short haircut as a child, which supposedly reminded his family of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini.

After playing college baseball at Purdue, Skowron signed with the Yankees in 1950 and became their more-or-less regular first baseman by 1955, although with manager Casey Stengel's complex platoon arrangements in those days, he never played more than 134 games in a season until 1960.

Skowron particularly shined in postseason play; in an era where "postseason" meant "World Series", he hit .293/.326/.519 in 39 games, with 39 hits and eight home runs. One of those home runs was particularly memorable; he homered and went 2-for-4 for the Dodgers in Game 2 of the 1963 World Series to help defeat his former team.

Later he played for his hometown White Sox and the Angels, finishing with an overall .282/.332/.459 line with 211 home runs. In recent years, Skowron worked as a community-relations representative for the White Sox, and occasionally appeared as a TV post-game analyst for the team.

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