Remembering Yogi, Play Ball!

yogi berra


Today is opening day across the nation for many devotees of the pastoral pastime.  We’ll throw back to my thoughts, written on the 2015 passing of Yogi Berra and how his many Yogi-isms apply to the markets and trading.

Enjoy and we wish you safe at home!

Best regards,


We are saddened this week at news of the passing of baseball’s legendary Lawrence Peter Berra, universally known as Yogi, at the age of 90.  Yogi was an apt moniker for the Hall of Fame icon of New York sports whose self-control, unifying presence, and good-humored philosophical approach to life can be compared to that of an actual yogi’s.

Reading through his Yogi-isms reminded me that many of them, whether they’re authentic or derived (“I never said most of the things I said,”), are applicable to markets and trading, as well as life.

“You can observe a lot by watching.”  Studying the character of the behavior of price movement reveals valuable information about the struggle between buyers and sellers.

“In baseball, you don’t know nothing.”  The only certainty in markets is that prices will fluctuate.  If you ever think you know what the market will do, you are in trouble.

“You have to be very careful if you don’t know where you’re going, because you might not get there.”  To achieve your trading objectives, you need a complete game plan for success.

“I ain’t in no slump.  I just ain’t hitting.”  Having a sound money management plan helps you survive strings of losing trades, so you don’t get knocked out and are around to reap the rewards of your winners.

“You only got one guy to concentrate on.  He throws the ball.” As a technical analyst, I ignore the noise spewing forth from financial media, instead focusing my attention on the movement of market price and the message that it is delivering.

“It aint over till it’s over.”  The trend is your friend until it isn’t anymore.

“Baseball is 90 percent mental.  The other half is physical.” You need to have both a psychological and financial tolerance for risk to be a successful speculator.  Controlling your emotions is essential.

“When you come to a fork in the road, take it.”  Often price makes a breakout as it approaches the apex of a consolidation pattern.

“Nobody goes there anymore, it’s too crowded.”  Yogi’s line about an Italian restaurant is applicable to the currency and financial markets, as we often see one side overcrowded with bulls or bears right before a reversal.

When Yogi was asked what makes a good manager, he replied, “A good ball club.”  And so it is with money managers and markets.

As an editor, my favorite Yogi-ism is this variation of the unverified story of the time Yogi looked at the box-score of yesterday’s game and complained to the sports editor of the Daily News, “I got three hits yesterday and here it only says two.”

The editor apologized, “I’m sorry, Yogi.  It was a typographical error.”

“It was not.  It was a clean single up the middle.”

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