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Monday, June 17, 2013

MY FAVORITE YANKEE MOMENTS

Each Yankees fan has a collection of Yankees moments that live in their memory as the most defining moments in their fandom. Some moments are simple and other moments are monumental. They are moments you think about with a smile, and maybe a happy little tear or two. These are my top five:

  • 5- October 16, 2003: Aaron Boone was not a player I was completely thrilled with. Honestly, his every at bat made me cringe a little. So in game 7 of the American League Championship, when it came down to Boone, I didn't know what to expect. I watch, from the sofa of my aunts living room, through my fingers. The game was in extra innings, and this was a do or die game against the Red Sox. I wanted the win! I remember praying to every deity I could think of. It's like everything went quiet for me, except the sound of the game. And then came the crack of the bat, and the roar of the crowd. Boone hit a walk off home run. The Yankees won the game and would be going to the World Series! 
  • 4- July 9, 2011: The 2011 season was weird. We were counting down to for Mariano Rivera to break the save record, we criticized Jorge Posada, and then there was the Derek Jeter hits record. Jeter had gotten hurt relatively close to making 3000. There was so much talk about whether or not it was time for him to hang up his cleats that season, it was dizzying. But in classic Jeter fashion, the Captain never gave the media more than they needed. He worked hard, and got back to the field, tearing it up. On July 9th, during the 3rd inning, in a game against the Tampa Rays and David Price, Jeter hit his 3000th hit in the form of a homer. Like Michael Kay said, it was "History, with an exclamation point!
  • 3- September 19, 2011: I've watched Mariano from the very beginning of his career. The very best thing the Yankees have done, was putting him in the bullpen. After Jeter got his 3000th hit, all eyes were on Mo and the save record. The fans wanted Mo on the mound as often as possible, because every save opportunity would get him closer to being the all time saves leader. The game was a make-up game against the last place Twins. The Yankees were leading early on 5-0, until AJ Burnett opened up the game for them. Going into the ninth inning, it was a 6-4 game. Mo would indeed get the opportunity to set a record. Everything went quickly after that. He had a 1-2-3 inning, and suddenly became the All Time Saves leader. The crowd absolutely erupted! His teammates made a mad dash to the mound to congratulate him. And possibly the most touching moment, was Jorge, who caught most of his saves, pushing Mo back on the mound so he could get the recognition he deserved. 
  • 2- September 21, 2011: Facebook can be weird. Sometimes you meet people that make you wish the Internet was never invented. But sometimes you get lucky and meet really awesome people, like my friend, and fellow BYB writer, Jeana. Jeana made a trip to New York in September of 2011, and we decided to meet up for a game. It was a long season for me. I absolutely adore Jorge, and he wasn't much of a fan favorite at the time. Regardless of what anyone thought, or said about Jorge, I kept saying the same thing. "Don't ever count Jorge out!" Jeana, and I sat in section 203 that night. We were already excited about being a part of Roll Call, and being surrounded by an awesome group of fans, the Bleacher Creatures. We sat there watching the game, but paying attention to the MLB scoreboard as well. We all knew that the Yankees had the opportunity to clinch the division that night. Jorge came in to pinch hit in the 8th, in what was already a close game. There was a quiet hush over the crowd for a moment, and then suddenly, Jorge hit a two run single, and the division was clinched. Jorge, who struggled, and was criticized all season, was our hero, and the roar from the crowd was deafening! It was absolutely incredible. 
  • 1- Game 5 of the Subway Series 2000 World Series: I write a lot about how I learned about baseball through my grandfather. We went to a lot of games together when I was younger, but time catches up to everyone, and eventually, he became too old to make the trip from our apartment in Flatbush, Brooklyn, to the stadium in the Bronx. He had a split disc in his spine, gout in one foot, and walked, slowly, with a limp. It often took him a half hour, to walk to our church, that was 5 minutes away. In 2000, when the Mets and the Yankees played each other in the World Series, we decided to watch every game together. He'd say that he didn't care who won, because both wins would be good for New York, but he would enjoy the series much better, if the Yankees won. Game 5 was late, and I had a long day at school. I ran to my room between the 8th and 9th innings. I put on the TV, just so I wouldn't miss a single moment of the game. I watched in my room as Mo took the mound, and listened to my grandfather cheer after every out. When the final out was recorded, my grandfather ran to my room, jumping up and down, screaming "Los Jankees ganaron! The Yankees won!" He grabbed me, hugged me, and then turned and walked away. It was the happiest I had seen him, after my grandmother's passing. It was also the last World Series he ever watched. The Yankees proved that New York City really was Yankeeland, and made my grandfather incredibly happy. 

Every fan has these personal moments. It was a little difficult to narrow it down to just five for me. I have been lucky enough to have a collection of these moments to reflect on, and share with you all. Some of my other favorites include the 1998 World Series, the Grand Slam Trifecta Game, Melky Cabrera hitting for the cycle, and Tino Martinez winning the 1997 Home Run Derby. What is your greatest Yankee moment?


Erica Morales
BYB Senior Writer
@e_morales1804



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