Sunday, July 08, 2007


The Yankees had a first class Old Timers Day on Saturday at the cathedral in the Bronx. You saw the best of the old with the best of the new. On Sunday the Yankees staged an Old Timers Day for the ticket holders of the Staten Island Yankees at the Richmond County Savings Bank Ballpark. Evey ticket was given out in the minor league park, although several fans opted to stay home in the sweltering heat. The big problem quite a few players from the previous day were not on hand as well.

To be fair there were only some 20 players confirmed for the historic event which showcase a Yankee Old Timers Day away from Yankee Stadium for the first time in 61 years. The real problem was that the teams did not have enough pitchers or any catchers that could still squat. Half the players couldn't play and the other half were pushing 60.

They did put on a great exhibition despite the sweltering heat. Poor Al Downing (almost 70 years old), who played for the Yankees for 9 years and will be remembered in history for giving up Hank Aaron's 715th record breaking home run while a member of the Dodgers, pitched all 3 plus innings in the 90° heat despite having Ken Clay on the bench, who is at least 15 years his younger.

It was great to see the likes of Tommy Tresh and Doctor Bobby Brown. It was fantastic to see Don Larsen who threw the only perfect game in a World Series throw out the first pitch.

So due to the lack of capable bodies it was the Yankees Old Timers against the Yankee First Timers. The First Timers consisted of half the cast of ESPN's Mini Series The Bronx is Burning filled out by what I believe was SI Yankee employees. Erik Jensen, who played Thurman Munson in the mini series better be able to act. He sure as hell can't catch or hit. He was soon fired from his catching position by SI Yank mascot Red. They used an impersonator of Bob Sheppard, Yankee Stadium's pa announcer to to add flavor to the afternoon.

Hitting heroes were Darryl Strawberry, Gene Michael and Jesse Barfield but none of them were too a-fleet on the bases or in the field. Former Yankee captain Graig Nettles was on hand to coach first base but he did look like he could do better at 3rd than Jesse Barfield did. Overall it was an enjoyable afternoon but next time around they need to bring in some youth. The final score? Does it matter?

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