Nov. 29, 1976 - George Steinbrenner's Thanksgiving Day is complete with the signing of free-agent Reggie Jackson to a $3-million, five-year contract that included a Rolls-Royce.
Jackson, who spent the previous season with the Baltimore Orioles, later said the way Steinbrenner pursued him, it was "like trying to hustle a girl in a bar." Steinbrenner had signed pitcher Catfish Hunter as a free agent two years earlier, and his acquiring Jackson gave the Yankees one of the most feared sluggers in baseball and a top drawing card.
Embarrassed by the Cincinnati Reds' sweep of the Yankees in the 1976 World Series, Steinbrenner's first free-agent target was Bobby Grich. But when Grich signed with the California Angels, Steinbrenner set his sights on Jackson.
"The reason I'm a Yankee is that George Steinbrenner outhustled everybody else," Jackson said.
Odds 'n' Ends
Because of his father's stern ways, Steinbrenner was the only student in his public-school class to dress in a coat and tie.
As an assistant at Purdue in 1956, Steinbrenner coached Len Dawson, who later became a Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback with the Kansas City Chiefs.
One of the players Steinbrenner signed with the Cleveland Pipers was Jerry Lucas, who had just concluded his storybook Ohio State career. Lucas never played with the Pipers.
Besides being labeled "The Boss," the New York tabloids also called him Phineas T. Bluster, General Von Steingrabber and Babe Ruthless.
Five days after Billy Martin's resignation as manager in 1978, Steinbrenner announced Martin would return for the 1980 season. Martin returned in 1979, 1983, 1985 and 1988.
Steinbrenner had three managers in 1982: Bob Lemon, Gene Michael and Clyde King.
In 1983, Steinbrenner criticized AL president Lee MacPhail for his ruling in the "Pine Tar" game. MacPhail overturned the umpires' ruling, allowing a George Brett home run to stand after it had been determined Brett had too much pine tar on his bat.
Winfield was dubbed "Mr. May" by Steinbrenner in 1985.
Steinbrenner negotiated a 12-year television contract with Madison Square Garden network in 1988 that paid the Yankees an average of $40 million per season.
Fans at Yankee Stadium gave a standing ovation when it was announced on July 30, 1990 that Steinbrenner had signed an agreement banning him from running the Yankees for the rest of his life.
Gambler Howie Spira was sentenced to 2½ years in prison in 1991 for attempting to extort $110,000 from Steinbrenner.
American Shipbuilding, which Steinbrenner bought in 1967, filed for bankruptcy in 1993.
Steinbrenner was fined $50,000 for criticizing the umpiring during the 1995 division series between the Yankees and Mariners.
He was portrayed in the TV sitcom "Seinfeld."
Steinbrenner signed former Mets stars Darryl Strawberry and Dwight Gooden, both of whom had battled substance abuse, to contracts in the 1990s. Gooden pitched a no-hitter for the Yankees in 1996 and Strawberry contributed to three world championship teams.
In 1996, Steinbrenner moved the Yankees' spring training site from Ft. Lauderdale to Tampa, where he lives.
Yankees pitcher David Wells threatened to punch out Steinbrenner during a clubhouse argument in 1997.
In 1998, Steinbrenner was named to Baseball Hall of Fame's board of directors.
Steinbrenner has owned several racehorses. He has an 860-acre stud farm in Ocala, Fla., where he breeds horses.
Steinbrenner's tenure as owner of the Yankees is the longest in franchise history. The previous record was Col. Jacob Ruppert's 22 years in control.