Salvador Anthony Yvars (February 20, 1924 – December 10, 2008) was a professional baseball catcher. He played all or part of eight seasons in Major League Baseball, with the New York Giants from 1947 to 1953 and the St. Louis Cardinals from 1953 to 1954. Born in Manhattan's Little Italy to a Spanish gravedigger and an Italian laundress, he was a three-sport star at White Plains High School, playing football, basketball, and baseball. He originally signed with the Giants in 1942, and enlisted in the United States Army Air Forces shortly afterward. During his time in the Army, Yvars was effectively a test dummy, with him saying of his ability to handle the tests, "I could take six and a half G's without a pressure helmet."
After World War II, Yvars again played for the Giants' farm system. He played for Manchester of the New England League during the 1946 season, and the Jersey City Jerseys of the International League during the 1947 season. He made his major league debut on September 27, 1947 in the only game he played that season for the Giants. His lone hit of the season came off of Schoolboy Rowe, a single to left field. In 1948, Yvars played in 15 games and had a batting average of .211. He played three games in 1949 and nine in 1950 for the Giants.
During the 1951 New York Giants season, Yvars was the backup catcher behind Wes Westrum, and played in 25 games, hitting .317 during the season. He is best remembered as the player on the New York Giants who relayed stolen signals to his teammates awaiting in the batters box during the 1951 pennant-winning season.
After playing for the Giants, Yvars played for two more seasons with the Cardinals.
Sal Yvars died in Valhalla, New York aged 84. He is survived by his wife Anne, his brother Jack, and four children.
By Dean Hanley
Page : 1