Sunday, July 3, 2016

Baseball, Hot Dogs & Apple Pie, But Mostly Baseball!

Hard not to think of America, right...

...lots of flag-waving this weekend and rightfully so.

We still do great things...

...along with all the embarrassing crap.

I was thinking about baseball, of course and they kind of ruined me this weekend by making the Yankees play out west.

Good, bad or indifferent...I love watching the Yankees play.

But I was thinking about great moments in the sport the other day because Cespedes of the Mets hit a home run that was estimated to have traveled about 460 feet.

The announcers were going crazy and I thought about Mantle, of course.

They say that he hit a ball that was estimated to have gone about 620 feet!

I still think that's the most amazing thing in sports.

620 feet!!!

Yet it got me thinking about my favorite baseball moments:

5). Reggie hits 3 to win Game 6 - This one was on my 13th birthday and Dad was the guy watching with me. We were simply amazed and so happy. The Yankees hadn't won a series in quite awhile (In Yankee land if you go more than 10 years it's way too long). When Reggie crossed the plate and then held up three fingers I swore he was looking straight at me and wishing me a happy birthday. Dad made salami sandwiches after the game - Dad made the best sandwiches ever.

4). Girardi Hits a Triple - 1996 was similar to 1978 because once again it had been too long since the Yankees won it all. And they would have won a couple in between, with Mattingly, if there had been the stupid wild card in the 80's. A few of those teams won more than 90 games and didn't qualify for the playoffs.

Anywhoha...

In Game 6 Joe Girardi (the current manager) hit a bases-clearing triple to essentially clinch the series against the hapless Braves. Girardi later said that the crowd was so loud that he could feel the base vibrating below his feet when he arrived at third.

I remember that one because I watched the clincher with Kathy and my brothers. We had a few beers and toasted the win.

3). Aaron F&*$ing Boone Beats the Red Sux - The Yankees didn't win the 2003 World Series. They lost to the Marlins in the worst World series ever (I still say the Marlins didn't hit more than 5 balls out of the infield) but before the series the Yankees came all the way back to beat Pedro and the Red Sux in Game 7. Aaron Boone hit a homer off of Tim Wakefield and that moment was cool because:

It was about 1:30 in the morning. I was alone in a hotel room. My brother, Jeff called before the ball settled in the stands. My brother John beeped in. Then my brother Jim beeped in. Finally, I answered the final call of that early morning...

...my Mom had beeped in and her and Dad were so excited.

Just a great moment.

2). Bucky F*&$ing Dent Beats the Red Sux - We've talked about this one. I was at a soccer game. Dad played hookey from work. My soccer coach broke the news that Dent had homered and I ran off the field and straight to him to get the news.

"Go after the ball!" He yelled.

"I don't care about the ball," I yelled back. "Did he really hit it out?"

When I got home, Dad made us another sandwich.

1). Matsui is a c&*#$%#^&* - The 2009 World Series. The Yankees had to win it that year! Our family was devastated that year when we lost Jeff. By October of that year I felt that the Yankees were entitled to win it.

They had to.

Somehow!

And Jeff had always hated Matsui.

He even had his son mention a vile curse word as he described the Japanese superstar.

So.

Game 6 against the hapless Phillies was all about Matsui.

6 RBI's and a huge home run.

When that ball landed in the stands I was in tears, of course, but it always felt, and still does, that I wasn't just watching that game with my beautiful wife and my boys.

I made a sandwich for my boys...

...when they won it.

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