Wally Pipp

Walter Clement Pipp (February 17, 1893 – January 11, 1965) was an American professional baseball player. A first baseman, Pipp played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Detroit Tigers, New York Yankees, and Cincinnati Reds between 1913 and 1928.

After appearing in 12 games for the Tigers in 1913 and playing in the minor leagues in 1914, he was purchased by the Yankees before the 1915 season. They made him their starting first baseman. He and Home Run Baker led an improved Yankee lineup that led the league in home runs. He led the American League in home runs in 1916 and 1917. With Babe Ruth, Bob Meusel, Joe Dugan, and Waite Hoyt, the Yankees won three consecutive American League pennants from 1921 through 1923, and won the 1923 World Series. In 1925, he lost his starting role to Lou Gehrig, after which he finished his major league career with Cincinnati.

Pipp is considered to be one of the best power hitters of the dead ball era. Pipp is now best remembered as the man who lost his starting role to Lou Gehrig at the beginning of Gehrig's streak of 2,130 consecutive games. According to a popular legend, Pipp asked to sit due to a headache.

By Dean Hanley

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