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Subject: Charlie Silvera, Longtime Yankees backup catcher

Dead at 94
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Date Posted: Tuesday, September 10, 03:38:57am


The Giants on Monday asked fans to observe a moment of silence for Charlie Silvera, a San Francisco native and a longtime backup catcher to Yogi Berra for the Yankees during their postwar dynasty.

Silvera died at 94 Saturday night at his home in Millbrae, according to longtime friend Gary Hughes. Silvera’s wife of 70 years, Rose, told Hughes that her husband died peacefully of “old age.”

Silvera was one of three long-lived San Franciscans, all born within seven months in 1924, who eventually landed with the Yankees when the city was a pipeline of talent for teams back east, particularly New York.

The others were Jerry Coleman, who died in 2014, and Bobby Brown, who later became a dentist and president of the American League. All attended different high schools in the city. Silvera went to St. Ignatius, Coleman to Lowell and Brown to Galileo.

Silvera had just 484 plate appearances in nine seasons (1948-56) with the Yankees because Berra rarely took a day off. But Silvera said he loved the gig because the Yankees won the World Series six times during his tenure and the winners’ checks would match his annual salary.

Opponents derisively called Silvera “Yogi's caddie,” but he didn’t care.

He was the only one of the three San Franciscans to play for another club after the Yankees. He finished his career with the Cubs in 1957 and later scouted for them. In later years, Silvera was a fixture at what is now called Oracle Park.

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Bobby Brown, 94 is now the last Yankee from the 1940s (NT)95 on Oct. 25Wednesday, September 11, 01:34:03pm

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