MATTY ALOU WAY, INWOOD

by Kevin Walsh

Matty Alou (1938-2011) was a National League batting champion from the Dominican Republic. Though he never resided in New York City, Dominicans in Washington Heights and Inwood point with pride to his accomplishments. He was one of three brothers who had lengthy careers in Major League Baseball, with Felipe and Jesus Alou. All three broke in with the San Francisco Giants and appeared in the outfield together three times.

Matty Alou was a spare outfielder and occasional starter with the Giants until he was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1966, and he went on to lead the National League in batting with a .342 mark his first season with the team. He played for the New York Yankees in 1973, joining Felipe, who played for the Bombers from 1971-1973. Jesus, meanwhile, was a New York Met in 1975. Felipe went on to become a successful manager with the Montreal Expos, where he had the club in first place in 1994 only to see the season cancelled by a strike.

Matty Alou was rewarded with an honorary street renaming at Isham Street and Seaman Avenue in 2015, four years after his death.

If you’re looking for a successful major league player from northern Manhattan, look no further than Manny Ramirez, who immigrated from the Dominican with his family at age 13. It’s possible that his success with the Boston red Sox precludes him from being honored on a New York City street sign.

Check out the ForgottenBook, take a look at the gift shop, and as always, “comment…as you see fit.”

8/26/19

8 comments

Tom Walsh August 27, 2019 - 4:43 pm

Slight correction… the Three Alous appeared in the outfield together three times in 1963, but the brothers were never in the starting lineup together. The first time in the field was on Sept. 15th against the Pirates in Pittsburgh. On Sept. 10, they batted consecutively (Jesus and Matty as pinch hitters) against the Mets.

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Tal Barzilai August 29, 2019 - 6:35 pm

I do know that the Mets had Moises Alou for some seasons not that long ago, but he probably wasn’t related Matty Alou.

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Kevin Walsh August 30, 2019 - 9:59 pm

Moises was Matty’s nephew.

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Edward Findlay September 1, 2019 - 1:38 am

he’s Felipe’s son

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Andy August 29, 2019 - 9:43 pm

The Alou brothers do have a New York City connection, indeed adjacent to Inwood and Washington Heights. The New York Giants, whose Polo Grounds home park was located at 155th Street and 8th Avenue, signed both Matty Alou and his older brother Felipe before the team relocated to San Francisco in 1958. Jesus, the youngest of the trio, was not signed until after the team moved to the west coast.

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Andy August 29, 2019 - 9:50 pm

Speaking of successful major league players from northern Manhattan, prior to Manny Ramirez the most famous was the immortal Lou Gehrig, who was born in Yorkville and grew up in Washington Heights. He attended the long-vanished High School of Commerce where today’s Lincoln Center is located, and then went to Columbia University.

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Kirk May 4, 2020 - 2:27 am

RIP Matty. Will never forget the best hitting outfield in history, – Matty Alou, Roberto Clemente, and Wilver Stargell for Pittsburgh. Two HOFers and a
two-time All-Star, and NL batting champion, who batted .327 while playing for the Pirates from 1966-1970.

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SKTrySr. June 7, 2020 - 8:09 am

So, Lou Gehrig grew up on 172nd Street and Amsterdam and attended school at 182nd and Wadsworth…..Where’s Lou Gehrig way? matter of fact where is the street plaque in front of where 501 W. 172nd used to stand?

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