Results tagged ‘ David Cone ’

Yankees pitch in to assemble USO Big Apple Packs

Yankee Stadium’s Great Hall will be the site starting at 10:30 p.m. Thursday where some 150 volunteers will help assemble approximately 5,000 USO Big Apple Packs for active servicemen and servicewomen.

Yankees front office employees, service members and veterans will be present to help prepare care packages for those serving in our Armed Forces. Additionally, volunteers from PepsiCo, FedEx, ESPN and Disney will also participate.

On hand to lend support to the cause will be Yankees manager Joe Girardi and former Yankees pitcher and current YES Network analyst David Cone. They will help assemble packs with various items, including Yankees memorabilia. The USO will distribute the packs to troops serving in remote units in Afghanistan during this holiday season.

The USO (United Service Organizations) lifts the spirits of America’s troops and their families millions of times each year at hundreds of places worldwide. It provides a touch of home through centers at airports and military bases stateside and abroad, quality entertainment and innovative programs and services. It also provides critical support to forward-deployed troops, military families, Wounded Warriors and their families and families of the fallen. For more information about the USO of Metropolitan New York, visit

Mo to be honored with Lou Gehrig Sports Award

Mariano Rivera will be honored at the 19th annual Lou Gehrig Sports Awards Benefit Thursday night at the New York Mariott Marquis at Broadway and West 45th Street.

Rivera, baseball’s all-time saves leader who ended a brilliant 19-season career in 2013, will receive the prestigious Lou Gehrig Sports Award along with formers Mets pitcher turned broadcaster Ron Darling and former Giants quarterback turned sportscaster Phil Simms.

Also to be honored will be former Eagles and Patriots fullback Kevin Turner, who is living with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, the disease that ended Gehrig’s life in 1941 and bears his name.

Former Yankees pitchers David Cone and Tommy John, who are past recipients and honorary board members, will also be in attendance. The master of ceremonies will be ESPN’s Jeremy Schaap.

“We are truly inspired by our honorees for their performance both on and off the field and are grateful to their support in helping to raise awareness of ALS,” said Dorine Gordon, president and chief executive officer of the ALS Association Greater New York Chapter. “We are pleased to be honoring these four athletes who through their character, courage and determination embody the legacy of Lou Gehrig.”

Yankees keep their manager for four more years

Well, that was quick. All things considered, the Yankees were fortunate to keep their manager in place in a relatively quick period of time during an off-season that promises to be busy. Surely a fourth year on the contract extension was a deal doer. Other clubs – notably the Cubs, Nationals and Reds – as well as a television network or two may have had designs on Girardi, but four-year contracts at seven figures per annum are hard to come by, so the Yankees were able to retain the guy they wanted to continue running the club before his current pact was to expire Oct. 31.

Girardi was deserving of the extension. Even with the World Series championship of 2009 at the top of his accomplishments, Joe’s effort with the 2013 Yankees may have been his best work. It certainly was his most arduous. With the abundance of injuries the Yankees had to deal with, just running out a healthy lineup every day was an ordeal for the manager.

Much was made in the media of Girardi’s Illinois background and ties to the Cubs as a fan while growing up and as a catcher as a player being a temptation for him to go off to Wrigley Field. On a conference phone hookup Wednesday, Girardi emphasized it was a family decision. Mom and the kids were A-OK with the Yankees and New York. The Girardi’s have made solid roots in Westchester County.

And let us not forget that Joe Girardi despite all the Cubs history has become a part of Yankees history as well. He fits in very well come Old Timers’ Day as a player who was part of three World Series championship clubs as a player (1996, ’98-99) as well as his one as a manager. He pointed out that in his conversation with the family that getting to manage in the same place for 10 years, which would be the case if Girardi fulfills the whole contract, is pretty special.

Over his first six years as Yankees manager the club has led the major leagues in home runs (1,236), ranked second in runs (4,884) and seventh in hits (8,836) and batting average (.265). The Yankees have also committed the fewest errors (484) over the span with a majors-best .986 team fielding percentage.

In 2013, Girardi did a good job getting the beaten-up Yankees to an 85-77 finish and third-place tie in the American League East with the Orioles. He got his 500th win as Yankees manager May 10 at Kansas City. The club made just 69 errors in 2013, the third-lowest total in the majors and tying the franchise record for fewest in a season (also 2010). Their .988 fielding percentage set a franchise record, fractionally better than their .988 mark in 2010.

In 2009, Girardi became the ninth Yankees manager to win a World Series, and just the fourth to do so in his postseason managerial debut, joining Casey Stengel (1949), Ralph Houk (1961) and Bob Lemon (1978). Girardi also joined Houk and Billy Martin as the only men to win World Series for the club as players and managers.

Girardi was named the 32nd manager of the Yankees Oct. 30, 2007, becoming the 17th Yankees manager to have played for the club and the fourth former Yankees catcher to skipper the team, joining Bill Dickey, Houk and Yogi Berra.

In 2006, Girardi was named National League Manager of the Year by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America after guiding the Marlins to a 78-84 record in his first season as a big league manager. With the award, he matched the Astros’ Hal Lanier (1986) and the Giants’ Dusty Baker (1993) as the only managers to win the honor in their managerial debuts.

In 15 major-league seasons as a catcher, Girardi played for the Cubs (1989-92 and 2000-02), Rockies (1993-95), Yankees (1996-99) and Cardinals (2003) and batted .267 with 454 runs, 186 doubles, 36 home runs and 422 RBI in 4,127 at-bats over 1,277 games. He had a .991 career fielding percentage and threw out 27.6 percent of potential base stealers. Girardi was named to the National League All-Star team in 2000 with the Cubs.

With the Yankees, Girardi was behind the plate for Dwight Gooden’s hitter May 14, 1996 against the Mariners and David Cone’s perfect game July 18, 1999 against the Expos. In World Series Game 6 against the Braves in 1996, Girardi tripled in the game’s first run in a three-run third inning off Greg Maddux as the Yankees clinched their first championship since 1978 with a 3-2 victory. He has a .566 winning percentage with a 642-492 record as a manager and is 21-17 in postseason play.

An august August for Nova

The Yankees would love for Ivan Nova to duplicate his August success in September. He will get his first start of this month Thursday night opposite Boston’s Jake Peavy in the opener of a four-game series against the Red Sox.

Last month was indeed august for Nova. The righthander had a 4-0 record with a 2.08 ERA and was a very deserving winner of the American League Pitcher of the Month Award, the first for a Yankees hurler since CC Sabathia in July 2011. Nova has been a key ingredient in the Yankees’ turnaround in recent weeks.

Among league leaders for August, Nova was first in ERA, tied for first in victories and starts (six) and tied for third in innings pitched (43 1/3) in which he walked 12 batters and struck out 31. Opponents batted .250 against him with only one home run – the fewest allowed per nine innings in the AL during the month.

Nova began his honored month with seven shutout innings at San Diego in a game the Yankees won, 3-0. He held the Padres to four hits with eight strikeouts. In his next start Aug. 9 against the Tigers at Yankee Stadium, Nova limited Detroit to one run on eight hits with seven strikeouts in eight innings but got a no-decision in a 4-3, 10-inning victory.

In defeating the Angels, 11-3, at the Stadium Aug. 14, Nova became the first Yankees pitcher to throw at least seven innings and allow three or fewer earned runs over seven consecutive starts – a run that began July 5 – since Sabathia in 2011 and the first Yankees righthander to do it since David Cone in 1998.

Nova capped it off with his first career complete-game shutout, a 2-0 three-hitter against the Orioles on the last day of the month. He walked one batter, hit two and struck out five.

Old-Timers’ Day June 23 at Yankee Stadium

Nearly 50 former Yankees players and managers will participate in festivities at the 67th annual Old-Timers’ Day Sunday, June 23, at Yankee Stadium. Ceremonies are scheduled to begin at 11:15 a.m. with the traditional Old-Timers’ game to follow, both of which will be aired exclusively on the YES Network.

The Yankees will play the Rays at 2:05 p.m., also on YES. Stadium gates will open to ticket-holding guests at 10 a.m. Fans are encouraged to be in their seats by 11 a.m. for the program.

The Old-Timers headliners are five Hall of Famers – Yogi Berra, Whitey Ford, Goose Gossage, Rickey Henderson and Reggie Jackson. Former Yankees and current YES broadcasters David Cone, John Flaherty, Paul O’Neill and Lou Piniella will also take part.

Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez, who helped lead the Yankees to three consecutive World Series titles from 1998-2000, will make his Old-Timers’ Day debut along with Flaherty, Brian Dorsett, Todd Greene, Scott Kamieniecki and Andy Phillips.

Joining the Hall of Famers and former Yankees on the baselines will be the widows of five legendary Yankees – Arlene Howard, widow of Elston Howard; Helen Hunter, widow of Jim “Catfish” Hunter; Jill Martin, widow of Billy Martin; Diana Munson, widow of Thurman Munson; and Kay Murcer, widow of Bobby Murcer.

Here is a list of those expected to attend:

Luis Arroyo, Steve Balboni, Jesse Barfield, Yogi Berra, Ron Blomberg, Brian Boehringer, Dr. Bobby Brown, Homer Bush, Chris Chambliss, Horace Clarke, Jerry Coleman, David Cone, Bucky Dent, Brian Dorsett, Al Downing, Brian Doyle, John Flaherty, Whitey Ford, Oscar Gamble, Joe Girardi, Rich “Goose” Gossage, Todd Greene, Ron Guidry, Charlie Hayes, Rickey Henderson, Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez, Sterling Hitchcock, Arlene Howard, Helen Hunter, Reggie Jackson, Scott Kamieniecki, Pat Kelly, Don Larsen, Graeme Lloyd, Hector Lopez, Jill Martin, Lee Mazzilli, Stump Merrill, Gene Michael, Gene Monahan, Diana Munson, Kay Murcer, Jeff Nelson, Paul O’Neill, Joe Pepitone, Andy Phillips, Lou Piniella, Willie Randolph, Bobby Richardson, Mickey Rivers, Mel Stottlemyre, Mike Torrez, David Wells, Roy White, Bernie Williams.

Pinstripe Bowl charity golf outing May 20

The New York Yankees Foundation will be the host of the third annual New York Yankees/New Era Pinstripe Bowl charity golf tournament, sponsored by UnitedHealthcare, Monday, May 20, at Westchester Country Club in Rye, N.Y.

Net proceeds from the event will benefit the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Pediatric Cancer Center, Tourette Syndrome Association of Central New Jersey, Boomer Esiason Foundation Fighting Cystic Fibrosis and UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation. More than 400 individuals have participated in the tournament the past two years, and in excess of $200,000 has been raised for charity.

Registration and lunch will begin at 11:30 a.m., followed by a 1:30 p.m. shotgun start for the scramble-format tournament. A cocktail reception, dinner and an awards presentation will take place at 6:30 p.m. For more information, fans can call (646) 977-8400.

This year’s event includes Yankees alumni and broadcasters, football Giants alumni and select head coaches from Big East football and basketball teams.

Among those scheduled to attend are Yankees president Randy Levine; general manager Brian Cashman; former Yankees players Ralph Branca, David Cone, John Flaherty, Ron Guidry, Pat Kelly, Lee Mazzilli and Mickey Rivers; former Giants players Mark Bavaro, Luke Petitigout and Amani Toomer; Rutgers head football coach Kyle Flood; Syracuse University athletic director Dr. Darryl Gross; Syracuse head football coach Scott Shafer; Princeton head basketball coach Mitch Henderson; CBS sportscaster Don Criqui; WABC-TV weatherman Bill Evans; Sports Illustrated writer Jack McCallum, ESPN analyst Jesse Palmer; WPLJ Radio personality Scott Shannon and New Era Cap Company chief executive officer Chris Koch.

Westchester Country Club offers two championship golf courses and a nine-hole executive course. The West Course continues to be a regular location for professional golf events, including the Westchester Classic, Buick Classic and most recently, The Barclays, the first of four stops on the FedEx Tour. Westchester Country Club was also the site of the Senior Players Championship in 2011.

The New Era Pinstripe Bowl will take place Saturday, Dec. 28, at Yankee Stadium, pitting a team from the Big East Conference against a representative from the Big 12 Conference.

Yanks in ALCS for 15th time

The 2012 American League Championship Series marks the 15th ALCS for the Yankees, whose record coming into this series is 11-3. This is their 10th ALCS appearance in the past 17 seasons and the third in manager Joe Girardi’s five-season tenure. He also led them into the second round of the playoffs in 2009 and ’10.

The Yankees improved their record to 6-4 in best-of-five Game 5s (4-4 in the AL Division Series Game 5s, plus victories in the 1976 and 1977 ALCS vs. Kansas City when the ALCS was a best-of 5. It went to best-of-7 in 1985). The Yankees are 12-11 in winner-take-all postseason games, 4-6 mark since 1995. Friday’s victory ended a three-game losing streak in such games (losses in 2011 ALDS Game 5 against the Tigers, 2005 ALDS Game 5 at Los Angeles and 2004 ALCS Game 7 against the Red Sox).

The Yankees have won five of their last seven overall postseason series since 2009. They are 11-7 in 18 Division Series (1981, 1995-2007, 2009-12) and improved to 44-32 in ALDS games. The Yanks are 12-6 in postseason games at the current Yankee Stadium and 114-70 (.620) all time in postseason home games. They improved to 7-3 in postseason games against Baltimore and 3-2 in postseason home games vs. the Orioles (won 1996 ALCS 4-1, going 1-1 at the Stadium).

Yankees starting pitchers combined for a 2-1 record and 2.04 ERA with 32 strikeouts in 39 2/3 innings and holding opponents to a .193 batting average in 145 at-bats. Yankees pitchers have allowed three or fewer runs in each of their past seven postseason games (since 2011 ALDS Game 4), tied for the second-longest such streak in club history.

Yankees base runners matched their ALDS single game high with two steals (Mark Teixeira and Curtis Granderson), doing so for the sixth time in franchise history and first since Oct. 9, 2010 in Game 3 against the Twins.

CC Sabathia has a 9-4 record with a 4.25 ERA over 103 2/3 innings in 18 postseason games, all but one as a starter. With the Yankees, Sabathia is 7-1 with a 3.09 ERA over 78 2/3 innings in 13 games, all but one as a starter. He won both of his career postseason starts with his team facing elimination. He also won Game 5 of the 2010 ALCS against the Rangers when the Yanks trailed in games, 3-1. CC is the second Yankees starter to throw a complete game in the ALDS. The other was David Wells Oct. 4, 1997 in Game 3 at Cleveland. Sabathia’s 17 2/3 innings were the most for a Yankees pitcher in ALDS, surpassing the previous mark of 15 2/3 by David Cone in 1995 against the Mariners.

Derek Jeter was 0-for-3 in Game 5, which ended his streak of four multi-hit games to start this postseason. It matched the longest such streak in club history. The others occurred in World Series play, by Babe Ruth against the Cardinals in 1928, Lou Gehrig against the Cubs in 1932 and Moose Skowron against the Pirates in 1960. Jeter is a career .343 hitter in 268 ALDS at-bats.

Kind of a perfect Sunday

I stopped in Sheppard’s Place, the media dining room behind the press box, to have breakfast Sunday with my pals Lee Mazzilli, John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman. At the table next to us were David Cone and David Wells, the former pitchers turned broadcasters.

Cone was at Yankee Stadium as part of the YES crew with Michael Kay and Paul O’Neill. Wells was here as Dick Stockton’s partner on the TBS telecast of the Yankees-Angels game. The two Davids, of course, pitched perfect games with the Yankees, Wells in 1998 against the Twins and Cone in 1999 against the old Expos (now the Nationals). Sterling broadcast them on the radio. Waldman was then covering for WFAN and I for the Hartford Courant.

O’Neill played right field in both those games. He also was the Reds’ right fielder in 1988 when Tom Browning pitched a perfect game against the Dodgers. Paulie is the only player in major-league history to have been on the winning side of three perfect games.

Also at the Stadium Sunday was the guy who was O’Neill’s opposite, the only player to have been on the losing side of three perfect games. Alfredo Griffin, the Angels’ first base coach, was a former shortstop who spent 18 seasons in the big leagues. He was the Dodgers’ shortstop in the Browning perfecto and also in the one the Expos’ Dennis Martinez pitched against Los Angeles in 1991. Griffin had been the shortstop for the Blue Jays in 1981 when the Indians’ Len Barker threw a perfect game against Toronto.

Another piece of trivia about that Browning perfect game: Vin Scully, the voice of the Dodgers, broadcast 19 no-hitters in his legendary career. It would have been an even 20, but he was not with the Dodgers for the Browning game because he was covering another game that night on assignment for NBC when it did national coverage Saturday afternoons and Monday nights.

How perfect is all that?

Yankees/Pinstripe golf outing next week

The New York Yankees Foundation will hold the second annual New York Yankees/New Era Pinstripe Bowl Charity Golf Tournament presented by United Healthcare Tuesday, May 15 at Forsgate Country Club in Monroe Township, N.J. Net proceeds will benefit the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Pediatric Cancer Center, the Tourette Syndrome Association of Central New Jersey, the Boomer Esiason Foundation Fighting Cystic Fibrosis and United Healthcare Children’s Foundation.

Registration for the scramble format along with lunch will begin at 11:00 a.m., followed by a 12:30 p.m. shotgun start. A cocktail reception, dinner and awards presentation will take place immediately following the conclusion of the tournament. For more information, fans should call (646) 977-8400.

Last year’s inaugural event, won by the WFAN/WCBS team led by former Giants quarterback Danny Kanell, had more than 270 participants and raised nearly $130,000 for charity. This year’s tournament will include Yankees alumni, coaches from Big East football and basketball teams, broadcasters and current and former Giants football players.

General manager Brian Cashman will lead a contingent of former Yankees players in the event that includes David Cone, John Flaherty, Lee Mazzilli, Jeff Nelson, Joe Pepitone, Mickey Rivers and Roy White.

Others to take part: current Giants players Lawrence Tynes and Zack DeOssie; former Giants coach Pat Flaherty; former Giants players Amani Toomer, Carl Banks, Mark Bavaro, Howard Cross and Luke Petitgout; Temple head football coach Steve Addazio and athletic director Bill Bradshaw; Rutgers head football coach Kyle Flood, former quarterback Mike Teel, head basketball coach Mike Rice and athletic director Tim Pernetti; University of Connecticut head football coach Paul Pasqualoni and athletic director Warden Manual; Lehigh athletic director Joe Sterrett; Princeton head football coach Mitch Henderson; Major League Baseball executive Kim Ng; former Syracuse quarterback Don McPherson; former Jets quarterback Boomer Esiason and his WFAN partner, Craig Carton; CBS sportscaster Don Criqui and musician Duncan Sheik.

2 rain delays stall CC’s shot at perfection

Watching the way the Mariners went out one at-bat after another so placidly Monday night, the thought of what CC Sabathia might do to that lineup Tuesday night was downright scary. Seattle has been a mysterious team in the second half. It was a .500 club until 17 games ago, all losses.

The latest came at the hand of Sabathia, who flirted with perfection into the seventh inning. Not even a half-hour rain delay could throw the lefthander off stride. CC continued to polish off his Cy Young Award credentials with seven masterful innings

The buzz in the crowd of 46,132 at Yankee Stadium began early as Sabathia set down the M’s with ease. With four strikeouts the first time through the order, CC only got better as he struck out the side in both the fourth and fifth innings.

The Yankees supplied Sabathia support with Curtis Granderson’s 28th home run, in the fourth, and added two more runs in the fifth on singles by Nick Swisher, Jorge Posada, Eric Chavez just off the disabled list and Brett Gardner and a run-producing infield out by Derek Jeter.

Challenging Sabathia for excitement, however, was a light show going on in the northwestern skies beyond left field, a strong indication that rain was on the way. It arrived after Sabathia struck out the first batter in the sixth and had the crowd moaning because who knew how long it would last and whether it might force CC out of the game?

It reminded me of David Cone’s perfect game in 1999 at the Stadium against the old Montreal Expos. That game was also halted by a rain delay, but Cone continued. In fact, he said later that he actually pitched better after the break in action because he was forced to re-focus.

Fortunately, the storm did not last long enough to force Yankees manager Joe Girardi to consider replacing Sabathia, which would not have been a popular move to say the least. The crowd let out a howl when CC returned to the mound after the 30-minute delay. He retired the two batters he faced to stay perfect through six innings.

Could he complete a Mount Rushmore of Yankees perfect game pitchers by joining Cone, Don Larsen and David Wells?

A leadoff strikeout of Ichiro Suzuki in the seventh was an encouraging sign even if the Ichiro of 2011 does not match the player we had watched the previous decade. Sabathia then fell behind 2-0 to Mariners shortstop Brendan Ryan. CC’s next pitch was 984-mph fastball towards the outside of the plate, but Ryan made solid contact and pulled it into left field for a clean single.

Sabathia was no longer perfect, but he was still commanding. He struck out the next two batters to end the inning and run his K total to a career-high 14.

A second rain delay before the Yankees batted in the seventh stopped play for 14 minutes. This time it appeared Sabathia was affected. After not walking a batter for seven innings, CC walked the bases full in the eighth.

David Robertson was brought in to do his magic trick and nearly succeeded with two strikeouts, but a bobbled grounder by Chavez at third lost any chance for a double play as a run scored on a fielder’s choice.

Still, that single by Ryan would be the only hit as Mariano Rivera completed matters with a perfect ninth that included two more strikeouts that brought the total to 18. That tied the club record for strikeouts in a nine-inning game. The other time was June 17, 1978 by one pitcher, Ron Guidry, against the Angels.

The run was a mere blemish on the performance by Sabathia, who improved his record to 15-5 with a 2.56 ERA. He has allowed only five runs in his past seven starts totaling 54 2/3 innings and is 6-1 with a 0.82 ERA. Remember, CC didn’t have a victory in his first four starts (0-1, 3 no-decisions), so he is 15-4 in 19 starts since April 23.

And to think that we are going to look back at this season and say somehow CC Sabathia did not make the All-Star team. I mean, didn’t the American League want to win?


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