QUITE FRANKLY: I'll Always Remember Yankee Stadium

The day is finally here, September 21st, 2008. To most people, it's just another day but to Yankee fans,players, coaches and anyone ever associated with baseball, it's the end of an era. An era that can not possibly be replicated. There's no way to replace the memories and moments that this Yankee Stadium gave everyone since being opened in 1923. Now, tonight will be the last game ever played at Yankee Stadium. I can't believe it.

I, for now am against the idea of the new Yankee Stadium because one of the reasons why I love the Yankees is for the tradition that comes along with the franchise. That includes Yankee Stadium, the greatest place in the world. If you ever been to a Yankee game in October or been around the Stadium in the postseason you know how it is, nothing tops that feeling. Now, with the disappointing season the Yankees will not be going to the playoffs this year and there will be nothing to cheer about beyond tonight. While I'm sure many of you may have alot more memories of Yankee Stadium than I do, the recent Yankee dynasty gave me so many in so little time it's hard to remember them all. Here's a look at my top moments (in no particular order) Yankee Stadium moments.

- Red Sox Redemption: Game 7 of the 2004 ALCS
Yes, this is an anti-Yankee moment but it's still apart of Yankee Stadium history. I was working across the street that night and will never forget how quickly the Stadium emptied out from the disgust of Yankee fans who were witnessing the worse collapse in sports history. To see Red Sox fans celebrate that night all over 161st was disgusting and made me sick to my stomach. Nonetheless it was a memorable moment,

- Alex Rodriguez Magical Month of April 2007
On two seperate occasions last season Alex Rodriguez
answered the critics of not being able to hit in the clutch. April 7th he hit a walk off grand slam against the Balitmore Orioles to win the game. A week and a half later he hit another walk off homerun, this time a three-run homer against the Cleveland Indians. When he hit the homerun you couldn't believe what you were seeing, neither did the broadcasters, the players or A-Rod himself. We were witnessing something truly amazing happening and something you could never forget.

- October Delight:2001 World Series Games 4 and 5
In a time when New York needed a pick me up the Yankees gave everyone two of the most memorable nights in the history of baseball. With the Yankees down 2 games to 1, Tino Martinez came to the plate on October 31 2001 in Game 4. With two outs in the 9th inning and the Yankees trailing by 2 runs, Martinez with a runner on hit a home run to right center off Arizona Diamondbacks closer Byung-Hyun Kim. Derek Jeter followed a few innings later to win the game, the feat got Jeter the name of Mr. November. The very next night Scott Brosius hit a game tying two-run home run off of Kim with two outs in the 9th inning again. Announcers Joe Buck and Tim McCarver in shock at what they saw as deja vu hit Yankee Stadium. This was one of the most amazing feats considering they were done on back to back nights under the same exact circumstances.

- Aaron Bleeping Boone: Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS
This is probably the last real special and memorable moment in October for the House That Ruth Built. In a game that will forever be remembered for the second guessing of Grady Little and Pedro Martinez, Aaron Boone hit the first pitch he saw from Tim Wakefield into the left field seats to send the Yankees to the World Series. No one will ever forget this moment as it was one of the most unexpected occurrences in Yankee Stadium history.

- Postseason Baseball in July
July 1, 2004 was what I say was the best regular season game I ever saw. The Yanks and Red Sox played a true classic. Back and forth they went, the Yankees scored, the Red Sox answered. The Red Sox scored, the Yankees answered. A near triple play by A-Rod, Jeter diving into the stands to save the game in the 12th inning and coming up bloody, Manny Ramirez hit a monsterous homerun off of Tanyon Sturtze in the top of the 13th inning to put the Sox ahead, but in the bottom of the inning the Yanks were down to their last strike and started a rally. Ruben Sierra got a base hit up the middle, Miguel Cario delivered a clutch double that scored Sierra who never ran so fast in his life to tie the game and then John Flaherty got the game winning hit that bounced into the left field seats. Michael Kay called it the greatest game you'll ever see. I agree.

- Perfect Strangers
David Wells threw a perfect game on on May 17, 1998 being hungover against the Minnesota Twins. A year later on July 18, 1999 on "Yogi Berra Day" at the Stadium, David Cone pitched a perfect game against the Montréal Expos. What made it even more amazing, Don Larsen threw out the first pitch that day to Yogi Berra in memory of the perfect game Larsen threw in the 1956 World Series.




- Happy Days Are Here Again: 1996
After years of chasing the rest of the league and trying to restore the Yankee name, this Yankee team led by rookie Derek Jeter, set up man Mariano Rivera, superstar Bernie Williams and ace David Cone, the Yankees were the toast of baseball again. They brought pride back to the pinstripes as they won their 23rd World Series on October 16th 1996 when Mark Lemke's popup landed in Charlie Hayes' glove. The celebration with John Wettland's hand in the air signaling no. 1 and Paul O'Neill jumping on the mound of players and cartwheeling his way to the ground. As a 12-year old kid, I remember jumping so high I almost hit the ceiling and remember calling all my friends to share the glory of what I had saw. I never felt so prideful as I did that night. That night turned me into the huge Yankee fan that I am now.

Another 12 years later I am still the huge fan that jumped and screamed back in '96. With the Stadium closing down, it's a huge loss for me as well. I loved that place for so many reasons and tonight I will come to the reality that it's time to move on and start anew with the place across the street. It's going to beautiful there but it won't be the same. I hope Yankee Stadium can give me one more magical moment tonight before it closes the book on it's baseball history. It has to, it's Yankee Bleeping Stadium. If it doesn't I will still see it as the greatest place in the world, the way it's suppose to be seen by all.
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