Archive for April, 2010

Today in Yankees History: Major League Baseball – it is a numbers game!

Posted by on Monday, 19 April, 2010

April 16, 2010
Yankee Stadium – The Bronx, New York
Today in Yankees History:
April 16, 1929

Both the Yankees and Cleveland Indians head into their respective Opening Day games with numbered uniforms. After the Yankees are rained out vs. Boston at Yankee Stadium, Cleveland becomes the first Major League Baseball team to permanently use uniform numbers.  The Yankees debut their numbers on April 18 vs. Boston.  The New York Yankees were the first team to honor their Legends by retiring a player’s number.  They have since retired:

#4 Lou Gehrig (1939)
#3 Babe Ruth (1948)
#5 Joe DiMaggio (1952)
#7 Mickey Mantle (1969)
#37 Casey Stengel (1970)
#8 Yogi Berra (1972)
#8 Bill Dickey (1972)
#16 Whitey Ford (1974)
#15 Thurman Munson (1979)
#9 Roger Maris (1984)
#32 Elson Howard (1984)
#10 Phil Rizzuto (1985)
#1 Billy Martin (1986)
#44 Reggie Jackson (1993)
#23 Don Mattingly (1997)
#49 Ron Guidry (2003)

Although #42 Jackie Robinson was retired throughout Major League Baseball in 1997, Yankees pitcher, closer Mariano Rivera remains the only active player and will be the last Major League Player to display #42 on his uniform.

The Cleveland Indians have retired the following numbers:

#19 Bob Feller (1957)
#5 Lou Boudreau (1970)
#3 Earl Averill (1975)
#18 Mel Harder (1990)
#14 Larry Doby (1994)
#42 Jackie Robinson (1997)
#21 Bob Lemon (1998)

Major  League Baseball – it is a numbers game.

Los Angeles Angels vs. New York Yankees 4/15/2010

Posted by on Thursday, 15 April, 2010

April 15, 2010

Los Angeles Angels vs. New York Yankees

Yankee Stadium – The Bronx, New York

Today, all Major League Baseball players and coaches and umpires pay tribute to Jackie Robinson by wearing number 42 on Jackie Robinson Day.  Number 42 was retired in 1997.  During the 2004 season Commissioner Bud Selig dedicated April 15th as Jackie Robinson Day.  Robinson played his first Major League game as a first baseman for the Brooklyn Dodgers at Ebbets Field, on April 15, 1947.  “When Jack stepped onto Ebbets Field he set a new course for American history both in the game and in society,” said Rachel Robinson.

The Jackie Robinson Foundation, established in 1973, celebrating its 63rd anniversary, provides four-year college scholarships, graduate school grants, including mentoring and leadership development opportunities to students who will serve as ambassadors of Jackie’s values.  Jackie Robinson’s belief was “A life is not important except in its impact on other lives.” Major League Baseball and the 30 Clubs sponsor more than 60 Jackie Robinson Scholars, to date 1400 scholarships have been provided.

The Robinson family, Jackie’s wife Rachel Robinson joined Major League Baseball in a special Jackie Robinson Day celebration at Yankee Stadium prior to the game vs. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Could National League player Jackie Robinson have envisioned commemorating his name in this 1.5 billion dollar American League ballpark?

The Yankees pitcher Mariano Rivera is the last active player wearing #42.  Although the number was retired throughout the Majors in 1997, players wearing the number at that time could continue using it.

The Yankees took the field for the final game of the three-game series with the Angels.  At the top of the 2nd inning the cheers were loud and clear as the Angels DH Hideki Matsui hit a long home run to centerfield.  Matsui, after playing the Yankee Stadium leftfield for 7 seasons was the 2009 World Series MVP contributing to the Yankees win with 3 home runs and 8 RBIs.  Matsui now plays with an Angels cap but continues a fan favorite in the Bronx.

Bottom of the 2nd inning, a Jackie Robinson namesake, Robinson Cano the Yankees 2nd baseman who wears #24, ties the score with a home run.  Top of the 3rd inning, another fan of #42, Yankees Captain, shortstop Derek Jeter blasts the 2nd home run of the game for the Yankees to take the lead 2-1.

Hideki Matsui walked to start the top of the Angels 4th inning.  The fan cheers were again loud and clear as Matsui was tagged out reaching for home plate by catcher Jorge Posada, to end the inning for the Angels.

Bottom of the 5th inning, Robinson Cano hits his 2nd home run in the game to earn Alex Rodriguez a run from 2nd base, putting the Yankees score 6-1.

Los Angeles scored a run in the 6th inning, but tonight the Angel bats were silenced by Yankees pitchers striking out 11, while allowing just 5 hits.

With the only player on the mound with the right to wear the #42 of Jackie Robinson, the Yankees closer Mariano Rivera faces one batter in the 9th inning to notch his 4th save of the season.

The luck of the draw?  Cuando Mariano Rivera llego a los Yankees en 1995, me confirmo Rivera que Pete Sheehy encargado de entregar los números a los peloteros, le puso el numero 42 en el uniforme de Rivera.  Fue una bendición.

New York Yankees    6

Los Angeles Angels 2

Winning Pitcher:  Phil Hughes (1-0)

Losing Pitcher:  Scott Kazmir (0-1)

Time of Game:  2:43  Attendance:  44,722

Washington Nationals vs. New York Mets 4/19/10

Posted by on Sunday, 11 April, 2010

April 9, 2010
Washington Nationals vs. New York Mets
Citi Field – Flushing, New York

This week the New York Mets opened their second season in their new ballpark Citi Field.

2009 was disappointing for the “Amazins” as they completed the season with 70 wins – 92 losses.  Injuries plagued the team and their dynamic lead off hitter shortstop Jose Reyes was a missing key.

2010 promises to be a new beginning for the Mets with changes on the field and pitching.  The Mets have 5 rookies on the team, the most in the majors.  20 year old rookies, infielder from Panama Ruben Tejada and Dominican pitcher Jenrry  Mejia are the youngest players in the Major Leagues.

The New York Mets have the most foreign-born players on their opening day roster; to include Dominican Republic, Mexico, Panama, Puerto Rico and Venezuela.

Let the games begin.
After winning their home opener vs. the Florida Marlins on April 5th with their Venezuelan ace, Johan Santana, the Mets lost the next two.

Prior to the three game series vs. Washington Nationals, the Mets held a press conference to report shortstop Jose Reyes would be joining the team on the field on Saturday.  After an eleven month absence due to a thyroid condition, Jose Reyes exclaimed “I’m finally going to be in New York again.  It was a tough year.  It’s an exciting day for me.”

Starting their 1st game of the season, Mike Pelfrey pitched for the Mets while Garrett Mock took the mound for the Nationals.

In the 2nd inning, the Washington Nationals took a 2 run lead when shortstop Ian Desmond hit a triple to left field scoring Adam Dunn and veteran catcher Ivan “pudge” Rodriguez.

The Mets rightfielder Jeff Francouer home run in the 2nd inning and a home run by catcher Rod Barajas in the 4th tied the game 2 – 2.

The cold wind blowing at Citi Field, pieces of paper in circular motion on the field.

After 3-1/3 innings of play, a call to the bullpen brings Miguel Batista to pitch for Washington.

Catcher Rod Barajas connected for his 2nd home run of the game giving the Mets the lead 3 -2.

With the wind playing games on this night, David Wright hits a long ball to left field, first thought to be a home run.  David Wright at 2nd base, Fernando Tatis hitting for Mike Jacobs drives Wright home and the Mets are 4 -2.   A Pitching change for Washington puts Tyler Walker on the mound who promptly serves Jeff Francoeur his 2nd home run of the game, scoring Fernando Tatis.  Mets 6 – Nationals 2.

The last time the Mets had multiple home runs by two players was 2006 in Arizona by Carlos Beltran and Carlos Delgado.

Bottom of the 8th inning, rookie shortstop Ruben Tejada gets his first Major League Baseball hit and the ball is promptly retired for him. It was a memorable game for the rookie, 2nd youngest player in the Major Leagues Ruben Tejada.  Yet, tonight he shuffles off to Buffalo.  Under his bet, his 1st hit, 1st run scored, 1st walk and he assists in making the final out of the game by throwing out Nationals Willie Taveras.  After the game we spoke to Ruben Tejada who spoke in Spanish “muy contento por la oportunidad.  Feliz por el equipo en la llegada de Jose Reyes.  Tranquilo con la decisión de seguir jugando en Buffalo (AAA), con el deseo de jugar mas fuerte.

Tomorrow #7, shortstop Jose Reyes will be in the New York Mets line-up.

Final score New York Mets 8 – Washington Nationals 2.
Winning Pitcher Mike Pelfrey (1-0)
Losing Pitcher Miguel Batista  (0-1)

Time of game:  3:06