RIP Clete Boyer

June 4, 2007 at 10:42 pm (Baseball, Life & Death)

Alba, Missouri lost one of their own today. Clete  Boyer died. He was the third brother [Cloyd and Ken] in his family to play in the majors and with all due respect to Graig Nettles, the best fielding 3rd baseman in Yankee history.


With all due respect to Brooks Robinson and Billy Cox, Clete Boyer was the best fielding 3rd baseman ever, I believe. [A’s Eric Chavez is creeping up on the list.]

With all due respect to Clete Boyer, his late brother Ken was a better all around 3rd baseman than either Clete or Brooks.

Ed Mathews was Ken’s superior [Ken was much better than Ron Santo] and Mike Schmidt was even better than Mathews.

Only a fair hitter [he did have a little pop in his bat-162 lifetime homers], Clete anchored the infield on the 1961 Bronx Bombers, the best team I ever saw play. His skills helped make them great.

Clete was the first American professional to be traded [from Hawaii in the PCL] to a Japanese league when he was dealt to the Tayio Whales for former Dodger John Werhas in 1971.

For years after his playing days were over Clete coached for Billy Martin. They were known to have hoisted a few. I’m about to hoist a brew myself in both their memories. And Ken’s memory too. Also Eddie Mathews and Billy Cox. RIP all.


  1. Ralph Zig Tyko said,

    … I’ve been thinking about the Boyer brothers’ hometown. It’s been 40 years since I was lucky enough to befriend Dave McKinley, a fellow airman at Travis Air Force Base. We worked together for a time for Sgt. Gabilando [also a great guy] and he would tell me stories about his hometown and their postmaster, his mom. He was an avid St. Louis Cardinals fan and I remember going to the Stick one cold San Francisco day with him and his wife. Dick [Ducky] Schofield popped for his Cards to beat the Giants, but in my heart I knew that Downtown Ollie Brown [Giants outfielder and one of my favorite Giants] was a much better nickname for a ballplayer than Ducky.
    Aside, Airman Mckinley, here’s to you and your hometown, Alba, Missouri.

  2. K said,

    Thanks. He was a great uncle too. They all have been.

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