Don Zimmer Photos
Don was a three sport star (baseball, basketball and football) at Western Hills High School in Cincinnati, including starting as the school's varsity quarterback.
Zimmer played winter ball in Puerto Rico and Cuba during his minor league years.
On the dugout steps with a Cienfuegos teammate. In later years, Zimmer would always remark on the wonderful time he had playing in Cuba, and the fondness he had for the people and land.
1955 began with Don Zimmer in the Dodgers' starting lineup due to a Pee Wee Reese injury, and the Bums reeling off 10 straight wins. That's manager Walt Aston breaking a record over Zim's head. Aston let Zim stay in the lineup even after Reese was healed, until the Dodgers finally lost one.
Reese's return from injury in late April took his starting job away, yet Zim formed a close friendship with Pee Wee that would last a lifetime.
Member of Brooklyn Dodgers first championship club in 1955.
Son Tommy was a frequent sight at Spring Training games. Here, his proud papa shows him the ropes of playing shortshop, 1956.
It was Roy Campanella who gave Zim his "Popeye" nickname (for his large biceps and powerful swing as a young rookie). In this photo, Campy and Zim joke around after their big hits helped the Dodgers defeat the Reds on June 21, 1956.
Zim had a bright future ahead of him before a second career-threatening beaning in 1956.
These days, Zim likes to be the one sitting in the dugout spinning yarns. He learned from the greats, as this photo reveals. Dazzy Vance has his ear at a 1959 Old-Timers game. Rip Sewell, former manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates, is also pictured.
Zimmer was chosen in the 1962 expansion draft by the New York Mets. Because he lived nearby the team's spring training facility, he was asked to be the first person to model the Mets uniform. This photo, of Zim and his son Tommy, originates from that session.
After playing in only 14 games with the Mets, Zim was traded to the Chicago Cubs.
Zimmer remained good friends with Jackie Robinson even after Jackie's retirement. Zim was always thrilled when Jackie would ask to play a round of golf when visiting near Don's home in Treasure Island, Florida.
Zim's first managerial opportunity came with the San Diego Padres in 1972. The mustard and brown uniforms were less than flattering on his physique.
Zimmer excelled as a 3rd base coach, some calling him the best ever in this often thankless capacity.
With little talent on the roster, the Zim-managed Rangers of 1981-1982 didn't go far.
Zim has always been one to speak his mind to the men in blue.
Two great baseball minds, who've seen it all: Zim (as manager of the Cubs in 1989)
The "Boys of Zimmer" douse their daddy, as the 1989 Cubs squad claims the NL East pennant.
Tony LaRussa and Don Zimmer, two of the game's better minds, swap stories at the 1990 All-Star Game played at Wrigley Field.
"She means everything to me," Don says of wife Soot. Soot has been with Zim every step of his baseball career (shown here in 1991). The couple celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on August 16, 2011.
Zim joined the expansion Colorado Rockies as a coach in their inaugural year of 1993.
Two baseball icons, Don Zimmer and Tommy Lasorda.
Zimmer was Joe Torre's right-hand man, serving as Yankees bench coach from 1996 to 2003.
The Yankee braintrust of Joe Torre, Don Zimmer and pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre helped guide the team to a 1996 World Championship. The team would go on to win four World Series (1996, 1998, 1999, 2000) under their guidance.
Three photos from Zim's infamous scuffle with Pedro Martinez in Game 3 of 2003 ALCS.
Zim at Devil Rays Turn Back the Clock Night, June 23, 2007.
With the Tampa Bay Rays, Zim has served as Senior Baseball Advisor since 2004. This photo is from the 2008 season.
Zim made an appearance as an honorary coach at the Andre Dawson & Friends' Charity Softball Event held to celebrate Dawson's enshrinement in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The event was held July 28, 2010 at Alexian Field in Schaumburg, IL.
Zim was elected to the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame in 2010.
At Spring Training with the Tampa Bay Rays in 2012.
The Tampa Bay Rays honored Zimmer with a unique stadium giveaway, the Zim Bear. This cross between a bobblehead and beanie baby caused quite the stir when it was given to the first 10,000 fans to attend the June 29, 2012 Rays game, getting nationwide media attention.
Zim got into the spirit of things during the July 22, 2012 "Star Wars Night" at Tropicana Field. Though it's hard to imagine him as joining forces with Darth Maul and Darth Vader, you have to remember that he was employeed on more than one occassion by Steinbrenner and the Evil Empire.
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