April 2010

Ringing in 2010

“This is insane. I can’t take my eyes off of it.”

Those were the words Nick Swisher used to describe his first World Series ring moments after receiving it earlier today.
The World Series ring was actually the second piece of jewelry the right fielder was given today — the first was an inexpensive give-away, which his teammates slipped into his ring box as a practical joke. 
For Swisher and every other Yankees player and coach — even those who already have several rings — today is an unforgettable day. 
It’s Opening Day at Yankee Stadium, and it’s ring day.
In an emotional pre-game ceremony, Yogi Berra and Whitey Ford presented Joe Girardi with the first World Series ring he won as a manager. Girardi then presented the team with their hardware.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many happy faces in one place,” Ford said. “Between Yogi and I, we’ve got almost 20 rings, but it never gets old.”
Yankees head athletic trainer Gene Monahan, who has not been with the team due to a serious illness, was on hand today. He received his ring from Girardi — and a standing ovation from the sell-out crowd.
As the Yankees coaches and players took hold of their rings, they ALL gravitated to and hugged the teary-eyed Monahan.
The final ring of the day was presented to Hideki Matsui — currently of the Anaheim Angels. When Matsui received his ring, the entire Yankees team converged on the middle of the baseball diamond and embraced the 2009 World Series MVP.
The word “unity” is inscribed on the 2009 World Series ring, and it belongs there.
The 2009 squad emerged victorious because of the cohesiveness they took to the field every day. Their show of support for Monahan and Matsui earlier today exemplified unity in every way, and it was the perfect reminder as to why the 2009 New York Yankees were World Champions.
–Alfred Santasiere III
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2010 New York Yankees Official Yearbook – ON SALE TOMORROW

If you are going to be at Yankee
Stadium for Opening Day (tomorrow) or for any other game this season, the 2010
New York Yankees Official Yearbook is a keepsake that you must have.

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Grand Debut

While the outcome of last night’s hard-fought season opener didn’t go the Yankees way, there were still plenty of bright spots and one very memorable moment.

In his first at-bat as a member of the New York Yankees, Curtis Granderson hit a towering home run to the deepest part of Fenway Park, a few feet to the right of the centerfield triangle. The long ball came in the second inning with two outs off Red Sox ace Josh Beckett.
In 2009, Granderson smacked 30 home runs while playing 81 home games in Detroit’s Comerica Park — which is commonly regarded as the most difficult stadium to go yard out of in the majors.
Of Granderson’s 30 homers in 2009, only two came at home. That statistic best illustrates just how limiting Detroit’s home ballpark is for power hitters.
Granderson approaches 2010 with a  sense of optimism, thanks to the fact that he will be playing 81 games in Yankee Stadium, which is far less imposing than Comerica Park.
Before Granderson takes his first swing at Yankee Stadium this year, he’ll have at least one home run under his belt. And if I had to guess, he’ll probably hit another one before week’s end.
–Alfred Santasiere III 
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