New York Yankees rookie player Yogi Berra (1925-2015) was honored with a Yogi Berra Night on June 6, 1947 at his old neighborhood in St. Louis, Missouri. Berra wrote in the book When You Come to a Fork in the Road, Take It! (2001) that he meant to say, “I want to thank everyone who made this night possible,” but actually said, “I want to thank everyone who made this night necessary.” The New York (NY) Times reported on June 12, 1947:
“The Yankee players are still discussing delightedly the speech of thanks the sheepish Yogi made in St. Louis, his home town, when the fans held a ‘Yogi Berra Night’ for him. The embarrassed Yogi grabbed the microphone, shuffled uneasily for a moment and blurted, ‘I wanna thank everyone for making this night necessary.’”
“I’d like to thank my parents for making this possible and my children for making it necessary” is a similar line from Danish and American pianist and comedian Victor Borge (1909-2000).
[This entry includes research from the Qute Investigator.]
Wikipedia: Yogi Berra
Lawrence Peter “Yogi” Berra (May 12, 1925 – September 22, 2015) was an American professional baseball catcher, manager, and coach who played 19 seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB) (1946–63, 1965) (all but the last for the New York Yankees). He was an 18-time All-Star and 10-time World Series champion as a player. Berra had a career batting average of .285, while compiling 358 home runs and 1,430 runs batted in. He is one of only five players to win the American League Most Valuable Player Award three times. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest catchers in baseball history, and was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1972.
25 May 1947, St. Louis (MO) Post-Dispatch, pg. 4E, col. 2:
“Yogi" Berra Night
To Be Held June 6
“Yogi” Berra, St. Louis boy, now an outfielder with the New York Yankees, will be honored by the Stockham Post of the American Legion when the New York team comes here, Friday, June 6, for a night game with the Browns.
Berra played with the Stockham Post team in American Legion baseball in 1941 and 1942.
The youngster will be presented with a gift by a committee of which Leo Brown is chairman.
12 June 1947, New York (NY) Times, “Sports of the Times: Short Shots in Sundry Directions” by Arthur Daley, pg. 34, col. 7:
The Yankee players are still discussing delightedly the speech of thanks the sheepish Yogi made in St. Louis, his home town, when the fans held a “Yogi Berra Night” for him. The embarrassed Yogi grabbed the microphone, shuffled uneasily for a moment and blurted, “I wanna thank everyone for making this night necessary.”
14 August 1947, The Statesman (Salem, OR), “Rollin’ Along” by Jerry Stone, pg. 10, col. 1:
There are some pretty literate guys in baseball but there also ain’t. At a recent Yogi Berra night, the Yankee catcher thanked “everybody for making this night necessary.”
When You Come to a Fork in the Road, Take It!:
Inspiration and Wisdom from One of Baseball’s Greatest Heroes
By Yogi Berra with Dave Kaplan
New York, NY: Hyperion
I didn’t do much better my rookie year when the Yankees were in St. Louis and my friends from The Hill, the neighborhood I grew up in, had a night for me at Sportsman’s (Pg. 30—ed.) Park. I asked Bobby Brown, my teammate, to write me a short speech. I had it typed on a car—“I want to thank everyone who made this night possible”—and must have gone over it a thousand times.
But when the announcer called me to the microphone, I somehow said, “I want to thank everyone who made this night necessary.”
20 Great Quotes From...Baseball: Yogi Berra Special!!
By Barney Corkhill , Senior Writer Sep 16, 2008
“I’d like to thank all those who made this night necessary."—Yogi Berra as a guest of honour at an awards banquet
USA Today—For The Win
The 50 greatest Yogi Berra quotes
By: Nate Scott | September 23, 2015 7:30 am
32. I’m a lucky guy and I’m happy to be with the Yankees. And I want to thank everyone for making this night necessary.
15 Brilliant Yogi Berra Quotes That Make Sense Even When They Don’t, Like “It Ain’t Over Till It’s Over”
By JOSEPHINE B. YURCABA Sep 23 2015
When he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1972, he thanked who he guessed he was supposed to thank:
I guess the first thing I should do is thank everybody who made this day necessary.