Yanks Win Series, All-Around Fun Afternoon
Old Timer’s Day at Yankee Stadium is one of the days I mark on my little Yankees schedule. I just love seeing all the “old” guys come out, I love commenting on how high they wear their pants, and I love how the exciting atmosphere at the Stadium is transferred through the TV into my own home. I love Old Timers’ Day every year, but this year, it was even better than usual.
Old Timers’ Day is always fun for Yankees fans of all ages, but I think this time it was especially exciting for those of my generation: those who grew up during the dynasty of the late 90s. The return of Joe Torre, Lou Piniella (who I loved to watch as a manager when he has his…”episodes”) Bernie Williams, and Tino’s home run brought back many fond memories for me. Tino Martinez was my first ever favorite. He was the first player I remember seeing, and for that reason, he became my “favorite.” I remember crying when he went to the Cardinals, then my Dad bought me a Cardinals cap, which I would wear all the time along with my Tino Yankees tee. I remember being him for Halloween when I was in 2nd grade, I remember going to Tino Martinez Bobblehead day on my birthday in 2001 – I could go on and on. Seeing Tino play with Bernie, smile with Posada, and hit that homer…that alone made my day.
What made the day even more special was the ceremony honoring Gene Monahan. 49 years with this great organization…that is insane. And he has done a fantastic job throughout his time. He seems like a really sweet man, and I hope the Yankees can win it for him this year. Oh, and he was nervous about throwing out the ceremonial first pitch? Pshh…He threw a perfect strike! Maybe he can teach Barack Obama how to throw like a man…
Another thing about that first pitch: I liked how Jorge Posada had the honor of catching it. He looked so at home and at ease in his catcher’s gear, and throughout the entire day, he had a genuine ear-to-ear smile on his face. It was the happiest I saw Jorge all year, and that too reminded me of the past.
The Old Timers’ GAME is always fun. In the top of the first, Oscar Gamble led off with a single off Ron Guidry, followed by a LONG single by Jesse Barfield. Goose Gossage relieved Guidry, and got Lee Mazzilli to fly out to Bernie Williams (which set off the crowd). In the bottom of the first, David Wells served up a double to Bernie, and was then relieved by David Cone, whom Tino hit the 2-run bomb off. Tino would have loved hitting at this new ballpark. In the top of the 2nd, Doc Gooden and Jeff Nelson retired the side. Nelson then remained in the game, and pitched for the other team in the next half inning. I love how no rules are applied whatsoever to these games. They played another half inning, but there was no need to complete that inning because the BOMBERS were ahead of the CLIPPERS (lol). The Bombers beat the Clippers 2-0 on the strength of my Tino’s HR, while David Cone received the loss.
It was all fun and games during that game, but it would have been even more fun and games if Derek Jeter was there. I feel incredibly bad that he missed the day. And on his BIRTHDAY too…aww, Jeet. That calf better be healing up. Happy Belated Birthday, Derek! 37 years young.
As for the ACTUAL game that was played, it was intense. The Yankees didn’t get a man on base until the 5th inning, and by then they were down 3-0 and making me nervous that they wouldn’t win on a day that they really needed to. After Robbie Cano got the team’s first hit out of the way, Nick Swisher got them into the run column with his MONSTER 2-run homer. Then, my happy Jorge went deep back-to-back with Swish, tying up the game at 3.
Nova battled yesterday. After the Yankees worked so hard to tie up the game, he allowed a homer to Ty Wigginton (again) which gave the Rockies a 4-3 lead. But he stopped it there.
In the bottom of the 6th, Brett Gardner led off with a bunt single…perfect execution. He’s been playing like the player I always thought he was recently, and he’s finally starting to make me look good, instead of looking like I’m his little fangirl who thinks he can do no wrong. After that bunt, Gardner stole 2nd, which really set me off…I always thought speed was sexier than home runs (sorry Swish and Posada!). After a Granderson walk, A-Rod drove in the tying run with an RBI single.
In the 7th, Boone Logan actually did his job and retired the heavy hitting lefty, Carlos Gonzalez. In the bottom half of the inning, Eduardo Nunez drove in the go-ahead run with an RBI single. The Yankees FINALLY had a lead, and it was padded by Mark Teixeira’s homer in the 8th. Robertson and Mo finished up the remainder of the game. The Yankees won it 6-4, and with that win, won the series.
Currently, my Yanks are a half a game ahead of Baahston in the standings. With hitters like Nick Swisher, Jorge Posada, and Brett Gardner heating up as the weather does, and with Jeter and Colon soon to be activated, I’d say my boys are in good shape.
Tommy is my little brother. He’s a good kid. Tomorrow is Tommy’s birthday. He is going to be 15…not so little anymore.
Tommy’s favorite Yankee team was that magical team of 1998. All of his favorite players are no longer playing. Here are my little brother’s favorite Yankee players from his favorite Yankee team:
Tommy’s 5th Favorite – Ricky Ledee
Remember Ricky Ledee? The adorable little rookie sensataion? I liked him a lot, too. I remember when he got traded. He cried. And he kept his uniform with him. #17. Ledee was cute. I wonder what happened to him. He disappeared after 2007.
Tommy’s 4th Favorite – David Cone
David Cone…who doesn’t love this guy? He was such a crafty pitcher. And who is going to forget about that little perfecto he threw in 1999? Tommy and I were a little too young to really remember that game, but we’ve seen the Yankees Classics of it dozens of times. History like that never gets old. David Cone was one of our favorite commentators on the YES Network. Every time he was on, he was hilarious. He was always joking with Michael Kay, and somehow they always talked about how Cone has a wild night life. I don’t know what was more fun: watching him pitch or listening to him broadcast.
Tommy’s 3rd Favorite – Scott Brosius
Aw, Scottie. He was such a nice man. And he was so smooth at 3rd base. He was known for that barehanded grab on ground balls. I think his retirement stunned everyone. He retired after the 2001 season, when everyone was focusing on O’Neill’s retirement. Brosius was only 34 when he called it quits. Tommy was in shock when he heard Brosius wouldn’t be back. One thing me and Tommy have in common is that we get very attached to players very quickly.
Tommy’s 2nd Favorite – Paul O’Neill
Aah, the Warrior. Paul was always a pleasure to watch. Whether he was crushing the ball, or crushing the water cooler, O’Neill always made us smile. His retirement was a hard one to deal with. #21 hasn’t been worn since – well, aside from the 1 day LaTroy Hawkins wore it before getting booed out of it. The Yankees really should retire this number already. I thought they would do it at the opening of the new Yankee Stadium, but they didn’t. We’re waiting….
Tommy’s #1 Favorite Player….EVER – Bernie Williams
Bernie…oh, Bernie. He was the epitome of the Yankees. Bernie Williams was absolutely perfect. He was the nicest, most gentle soul and was a fantastic player. Bernie is a soft-spoken, peaceful kind of guy. He was so graceful on the field. His swing was so easy, and he ran like a gazelle. #51 will most definitely be retired, since Bernie has his name on the tops of almost every Yankee record list. Tommy and I, and probably every other Yankee fan, wish that Bernie was still playing. We’re sure he can still do it 🙂
Well, those are Tommy’s favorites from his favorite Yankee team. You might be wondering…who is his favorite Yankee of today? I’ll give you a hint: he’s crazy, just like my brother. Still don’t know?
I hope Tommy has a nice birthday tomorrow. I know he will. Me and my older brother got him a present that he’s been wanting for awhile. And no, it is not Yankee related. It’s a movie that he and I just get a kick out of:
BEST MOVIE EVER!!!
Also, tomorrow is the day that PITCHERS AND CATCHERS REPORT FOR THE YANKEES!!! OMG! Baseball is inching closer….