Though Bob Meusel had numbers superior to some Hall of Famers, he could have done even better, according to manager Miller Huggins and others, had it not been for his indifferent attitude. The younger brother of NL star Irish Meusel, Bob was a solid, all-around player, capable of hitting with power and for high average, and of stealing a base. Long Bob, at 6’3″, was the tallest member of the great 1927 Yankees, a muscular outfielder with one of the strongest throwing arms in the game.
Meusel batted .313 or better in seven of his first eight seasons. He struck out a league-high 88 times in 1921, and was one of the all-time strikeout victims in World Series play (24). He became the first Yankee to win a HR title batting righthanded exclusively, with 33 in 1925, the year Babe Ruth missed 50 games after his “big bellyache.” Meusel was also the 1925 AL RBI champ, with 138.
When pals Meusel and Ruth took part in a 1921 barnstorming tour against the wishes of Commissioner Landis, both were suspended for the first 39 days of the 1922 season. Meusel was a grim, unpopular character. In 1924, bat in hand, he charged Detroit pitcher King Cole following a close pitch. The ensuing riot was called one of the worst in modern baseball history, and resulted in a forfeit and heavy fines for the participants.
Meusel led the Yankees in stolen bases five times, with a high of 26 in 1924. He stole second, third, and home in a May 16, 1927 game, and pilfered home twice in WS play. He and Babe Herman are the only players to hit for the cycle three times. On September 5, 1921, he tied a ML record with four outfield assists in one game. He ranks among the all-time Yankee leaders in doubles (338), triples (87), RBI (1,005), and batting average (.311).