It was fifty years ago today- Saturday March 1, 1969- The great Mickey Mantle announced his retirement from baseball. The Mick said that ‘I can’t hit when I need to.” when he announced that he was leaving the game. At the time of his retirement he was third on the all-time home run list behind Babe Ruth and Willie Mays. He played all eighteen years with the New York Yankees. Mantle was a 20 time All-Star, he led the Yankees to 7 World Series Championships, was the AL MVP 3 times, in 1956 he won the Triple Crown. He finished his career with a .298 career batting average. He would be a first ballot inductee into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1974. Mantle’s career was hampered by injuries. He was 36 when he retired. One has to wonder if he could have avoided injuries and took better care of himself – he could have been the most talented player to ever play the game- what numbers would a healthy Mick have had? He may also have been the most popular player to ever play the game. Mickey Mantle died in 1995 at the age of 63.