Red Ruffing

Charles Herbert Ruffing
Inducted to the Hall of Fame in: 1967
Primary team: New York Yankees
Primary position: Pitcher

“That Ruffing is a wonder,” Hall of Fame slugger Jimmie Foxx once said. “Always in there winning that important game for you.” Indeed, Charles “Red” Ruffing was the epitome of a big-game pitcher.

A key right-handed pitcher for seven pennant winners with the Yankees, Ruffing won seven of his nine decisions in World Series play. In his postseason career, Ruffing posted a 2.63 ERA and helped New York win championships in 1932, 1936-39 and 1941. During the Yankees’ four consecutive title seasons from 1936-39, Ruffing won at least 20 games each year. Ruffing will forever be identified with the Yankees dynasty, but he actually started his career with the rival Red Sox in 1924. Boston traded him to the Yankees in 1930 for Cedric Durst and $50,000. Ruffing’s career blossomed in New York, where sluggers like Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig gave him plenty of run support.

Born in Granville, Ill., Ruffing lost four of the toes on his left foot in a mining accident as a youth. The accident hastened his transition from the outfield to the mound, but he remained dangerous with a bat in his hands. In 1932, Ruffing threw a complete-game shutout and hit a 10th-inning home run to give the Yankees a 1-0 win against the Washington Senators. In 1935, he led the Yankees in both wins (16) and batting average (.339 in 109 at-bats.) He finished his career with 36 home runs and a .269 batting average. Ruffing was a dominant innings-eater on the mound. He led the American League with 25 complete games in 1928, and led the circuit with five shutouts in 1939. In 1932, he paced the AL with 190 strikeouts.

After missing the 1943 and ‘44 seasons while serving his country in World War II, Ruffing returned to baseball at the age of 40 in 1945. He spent two more seasons with the Yankees before finishing his playing career with the White Sox in 1947. He returned to the field as the pitching coach for the Mets during their inaugural season of 1962.

"That Ruffing is a wonder. Always in there winning that important game for you. "
Jimmie Foxx

Career stats

ESSENTIAL STATS
Year Inducted: 1967
Primary Team: New York Yankees
Position Played: Pitcher
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Birth place: Granville, Illinois
Birth year: 1904
Died: 1986, Mayfield Heights, Ohio
Played for:
Boston Red Sox (1924-1930)
New York Yankees (1930-1942)
New York Yankees (1945-1946)
Chicago White Sox (1947)
CAREER AT A GLANCE
GamesG
624
HitsH
4284
RunsR
2115
Innings PitchedIP
4344
WinsW
273
LossesL
225
Winning %Winning %
.548
Games StartedGS
538
ERAERA
3.80
Complete GamesCG
335
ShutoutsSHO
45
WHIPWHIP
1.341
SavesSV
18
Earned RunsER
1833
WalksBB
1541
StrikeoutsSO
1987