When he was still a baby Yankee aspirant, Joe Pepitone had the pleasure of sitting next to Casey Stengel during a spring training game. Knowing Pepitone was a first base prospect, Stengel pointed toward Moose Skowron, the Yankees’ regular first baseman. “Watch this Mr. Skowron at first, Pepperone,” Stengel purred, using the malaprop by which he addressed the skinny Brooklynite.
In his self-lacerating memoir, Joe, You Coulda Made us Proud, Pepitone recalled the scene: As soon as Stengel advised him to watch the Moose, the Ol’ Perfesser dozed off. “Skowron moved like a dump truck,” Pepitone remembered, alluding to Skowron’s not-so-fast feet around the pad. But he picked a difficult throw over to first just in time to bag the hitter gunning it up the line.