Mantle replaced Joe DiMaggio in centerfield. Fans booed him for much of the first half of his career.
Mantle won the Triple Crown and the fans clamored for more. He had two MVP seasons before he was 26, and it still wasn't enough to make them forget he was replacing a legend.
After Mantle retired, his celebrity status continued. He drew large crowds to autograph shows and his baseball camps and appeared on TV talk shows and music videos.
Mantle became a chronic alcoholic after he retired. He was treated for alcoholism, and his damaged liver eventually was destroyed by cirrhosis, hepatitis C and the cancer that led to his death.
Mantle is the only switch-hitter to win the Triple Crown. He accomplished this in 1956 when he hit 52 home runs, batted .353 and had 130 RBI's. Mantle is one of only three Triple Crown Winners who also won a Gold Glove Award.
Mantle, when batting left-handed, was timed running from home-plate to first base in 3.1 seconds. It is the fastest time of any player in history.
Most Yankees fans were rooting for his Mantle to break the single season home run record the year Roger Maris did. An infection forced him out of the race in September, and he finished with 54 homers.
When Mantle had surgery to repair his torn ACL two years after the injury occured, there was no established procedure to fix a torn anterior cruciate ligament. Mantle's biographer believes he played on for the rest of his career.
Mantle was never considered amongst the great Yankee players during his time like Babe Ruth or Joe DiMaggio. It is surprising given he won 12 World Series in his first 14 years as a Yankee.
Mantle set records during his time on the highest stage. He hit 18 home runs over 65 World Series games.