The Top 10 Yogi Berra-isms

Yogi Berra died today at age 90.

How do you know Yogi Berra was one of the greats?

He was a Yankee, and San Francisco Giants fans still love the crap out of him.

Yes, the idiosyncratic Hall of Famer died at his home in New Jersey today, according to multiple news outlets. He was 90 years old.

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Berra, who helped the Yankees win 10 World Series championships between 1949 and 1965, was a formidable opponent in the batter's box: Of the 75 World Series games he played in, Berra struck out only 17 times.

But the slugger is perhaps best known -- certainly among the under-50 set -- for his way with words, both on and off the field. Whether Berra actually spoke every malapropism attributed to him out loud has been the subject of much speculation -- but there's no question the simple brilliance of some of his seemingly stupid lines came to define the player.

Here are 10 of our favorite Yogi-isms.

  1. “When you come to a fork in the road, take it.”

2. “You can observe a lot just by watching.” (Berra allegedly described his strategy as a manager this way.)

3. “Nobody goes there anymore. It’s too crowded.” (As San Francisco Chronicle writer Peter Hartlaub tweeted today, this first appeared in a Chronicle story in 1963.)

4. "Baseball is 90 percent mental and the other half is physical."

5. "Make a game plan and stick to it. Unless it's not working."

6. "A nickel ain't worth a dime anymore."

7. "Never answer an anonymous letter."

8. "It was impossible to get a conversation going. Everybody was talking too much."

9. "Always go to other people's funerals. Otherwise they won't go to yours."

10. "It ain't over 'til it's over."

But maybe the sweetest quote we've seen today comes from this 1999 interview Berra did with WNYC's Brian Lehrer. When Lehrer asked Berra what baseball advice he would give Lehrer's son, who had just turned 7, Berra said:

"Play hard, and work at it. And it don’t matter who wins – you’re not playing for your life out there. You have fun, that’s the thing."

Can't argue with that. A tip of the cap to you, Yogi.

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