Lawrence Peter “Yogi” Berra was born on May 12, 1925 in St. Louis Missouri to Italian immigrant parents. He started playing baseball in the local legion leagues, where he learned the fundamentals of batting and catching.
Originally, Yogi Berra was overlooked by the St. Louis Cardinals in favor of his friend Joe Garagiola Sr., however that was some tricky business. Then president of the Cardinals Branch Rickey, knew he was going to be taking over the Brooklyn Dodgers the following season. He was so impressed with Berra that he was attempting to save him and sign him in Brooklyn as soon as he moved teams.
However, the New York Yankees beat him to the punch, signing Berra to a contract with a 500-dollar signing bonus before Rickey had the chance.
Yogi Berra played on the New York Yankees from the years 1946-1963. He was an MLB All Star for 15 of those seasons. He was also voted the American League MVP in 1951, 1954, and 1955. He hit the first ever pinch hit home run in World Series history in the year 1947.
After 17 years on the Yankees, he went on to be their manager in 1964. He only lasted a year there, siting that the Yankees players didn’t think he was ready to manage.
In 1965 he signed on to be a player/coach for the Mets. This only lasted one season however, because in 1966 he decided to step down as a player and focus on coaching. He coached for 5 more years for the Mets until in the year 1972 he was named manager. In the year 1976 he finally went back to the Yankees to coach. He coached until 1983 where he was named the Manager of the Yankees once again.
He managed the Yankees for two years until in 1986 he went to the Astros, as a coach. He coached there until 1989 when he finally retired.
In 1998 the Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center was opened at Montclair University in New Jersey. It is home to many famous artifacts, including the Mitt which Yogi Caught the for the only perfect game in World Series history.
Yogi Berra died in his sleep on September 22, 2015 of natural causes. On September 23, the Yankees wore his number (number 8) on their Jerseys in his memory, and that same day the Empire State Building was lit up in blue and white pinstripes.
During his life, Yogi Berra was famous for his “Yogi-isms” which were sayings he would come up with that were usually goofy and contradictory, but in their silliness, they held a lot of great meaning. Take a look at some of his most famous sayings, and choose which Yogi Berra quote you can relate to the most (or which one makes you chuckle).
1. Don’t travel through life aimlessly, have a goal in mind.
“If you don’t know where you are going, you might wind up somewhere else.” —Yogi Berra
2. People always show you who they are.
“You can observe a lot, just by watching”— Yogi Berra
3. Half of communication is listening.
“It was impossible to get a conversation going. Everyone was talking too much” —Yogi Berra
4. You can’t teach someone who doesn’t want to be taught.
“There are some people, if they don’t already know, you can’t tell ‘em.” —Yogi Berra
5. Take every chance you can.
“When you come to a fork in the road, take it” —Yogi Berra
6. Do the right thing because it is right, not because of a reward.
“Always go to other people’s funerals, otherwise they won’t come to yours” —Yogi Berra
7. No one is going to make you enjoy yourself, you have to do that on your own.
“If people don’t want to come out to the ballpark, nobody is gonna stop them.” —Yogi Berra
8. Don’t follow the crowd if you want to be somebody.
“Nobody goes there anymore, it’s too crowded” —Yogi Berra
9. Do not ever give up.
“It ain’t over, til it’s over” —Yogi Berra
10. Not everything that is said about you is true.
“I never said most of the things I said” —Yogi Berra
11. You are in control of what happens to you.
“Slump? I ain’t in no slump! I just ain’t hitting.” —Yogi Berra
12. Somethings aren’t meant to last.
“Congratulations! I knew the record would stand, until it was broken.” —Yogi Berra
13. Appreciate the imperfections.
“If the world were perfect, it wouldn’t be.” Yogi Berra
14. Take responsibility for your shortcomings.
“You wouldn’t have won, if we’d beaten you.” —Yogi Berra
15. Talent outweighs looks.
“So I’m ugly. So what? I never saw anyone hit with his face.”— Yogi Berra
16. Time flies when you’re having fun, so make sure you enjoy it.
“It gets late early out there” —Yogi Berra
17. Sometimes you need to trust your instincts.
“How can you think and hit at the same time?” —Yogi Berra
18. Monetary things will lose their value.
“A nickel ain’t worth a dime anymore” —Yogi Berra
19. Don’t imagine what things will be like, go out and do them.
“In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is” —Yogi Berra
20. Some things are worth giving 180 percent.
“Baseball is 90 percent mental. The other half is physical.” —Yogi Berra
If you’re looking for a little inspiration, we’ve got the best quotes to share and savor. For quotes from the most inspiring celebs, activists, and poets, look no further! You might even find the quote that motivates the best parts of your life (and love!) forever.
Kaitlin Kaiser is a writer who covers astrology, pop culture and relationship topics.