Clarke, a native of St. Croix, Virgin Islands, took over for Bobby Richardson on
the Yankees in 1967 and became one of the league's more surehanded second basemen.
His .990 fielding average led the AL at second base in 1967, and he set an AL record
by leading in assists at second base six consecutive years, through 1972. He also
led in putouts from 1968 through 1971. A durable switch-hitter, he played in at least
143 games every year from '67 to 1973, and led the AL in at-bats in 1969-70. He had
151 career stolen bases. Though he never
batted higher than .285, he was a pesky
hitter; in 1970 he broke up three no-hitters in the ninth inning, thwarting bids
by Joe Niekro, Sonny Siebert, and Jim Rooker. (JJM)
FROM THE BASEBALL CHRONOLOGY
»August 29, 1967: The Red Sox tie an American League record it originally set on July 4, 1905, by playing 29 innings in a doubleheader. Boston wins the first against the Yankees 2–1, then drop the nightcap in 20 innings 4–3. The winning pitcher Fred Talbot has a single in 20th, off Darrell Brandon, to set up Horace Clarke's game-winning single. The game lasts 5:15 and is the 3rd game this year of 18 innings or more for New York.
»August 14, 1969: In a 3–2 win over the White Sox, the Yankees Horace Clarke triples with two on in the 9th, then scores the winning run on a passed ball. Wilbur Wood takes the loss while Jack Aker is the winner.
»July 2, 1970: Detroit's Joe Niekro no-hits the Yankees until Horace Clarke singles in the 9th inning. The Tigers win 5–0. This is the 3rd time in the month that Clarke has broken up a no-hitter, having spoiled bids by KC's Jim Rooker (June 4th) and Boston's Sonny Siebert (June 19th).
»September 30, 1971:
The Senators draw 14,000 for their final game in Washington, with another 4,000 crashing. Dick Bosman gives up homers to Bobby Murcer, Roy White, and Rusty Torres and the Nats are down 5–1 in the 6th. Mike Kekich then grooves a fastball for Frank Howard, who parks his 26th homer, and thanks ThurmanMunson as he crosses the plate. The Senators take a 7–5 lead, and after Murcer makes the 2nd out in the 9th, fans swarm onto the field, causing the game to be forfeited to the Yanks, 9–0. All records stand but reliever Paul Lindblad losses the W by not recording the 3rd out, batter Horace Clarke. Of the Senators, Jeff Burroughs will be the last to retire, finishing up in 1985.
»August 4, 1973:
In an outstanding relief performance, Yankee Lindy McDaniel comes to the rescue of Fritz Peterson, who exits with a muscle pull in the 2nd inning, and allows just one run in 13 innings to earn a 3–2 victory over the Tigers. Horace Clarke's home run is the game winner.