OBITUARY: Johnny Blanchard of Wayzata, MN – former catcher for New York Yankees

Johnny Blanchard (February 26, 1933 – March 25, 2009), Wayzata resident and former Yankees outfielder and catcher died of a heart attack yesterday.

Blanchard was a professional baseball player who played in the Major Leagues primarily as an outfielder and catcher from 1955 and 1959-1965. Blanchard will always be remembered for his heroic play in the 1961 World Series. He hit 2 home runs in that series against the Cincinnati Reds and batted .400 for the entire series.

In his career, Blanchard appeared in the World Series 5 times for the Yankees and holds the Major League record with ten World Series pinch-hit at-bats. He also rubbed elbows and was buddies with Mickey Mantle, Yogi Berra, and Roger Marris. According to the Strib, he was also good enough to play for the Minneapolis Lakers, but was denied the opportunity by the Yankees.

Blanchard is survived by his wife Nancy of Wayzata, his sons Tim of Chanhassen, Paul of Marshall, Johnny of Minnetonka, and six grandchildren.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. Monday at St. Mary of the Lake Church, 105 N. Forestview Lane, Plymouth. Visitation will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Sunday at the David Lee Funeral Home, 1220 E. Wayzata Blvd., Wayzata.


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