Results tagged ‘ Yankee Stadium ’

Wild night at Dodger, er, Yankee Stadium

The Yankees find fans all over the map as they travel around North America during the season. The boosters are akin to Notre Dame’s famed subway alumni.

I recall a game at Anaheim in the early 1990s when Don Mattingly came off the bench at whacked a pinch-hit, three-run home run in the top of the ninth inning that pushed the Yankees into the lead of a game they eventually won. As Mattingly rounded the bases, the cheers from the Big A’s stands were so loud you would have sworn you were in the Bronx, which is about as far from Orange County, California, as you can get.

Whatever the venue, be it Baltimore’s Camden Yards, certainly Tampa Bay’s Tropicana Field or even Boston’s Fenway Park, pockets of Yankees fans abound in the stands. Well, a collection of boisterous Dodgers fans gave the Yankees at taste of their own medicine Monday night at Yankee Stadium in the opener of a three-game, inter-league series.

A cluster of Dodgers fans filled a sizeable portion of the seats along the third base to left field line. The group went even so far as to mimic the roll call of the Yankees’ bleacher creatures but by calling out the names of the Dodgers instead. When the Dodgers rallied for a run right off the bat in the first inning, it seemed more like Dodger Stadium than Yankee Stadium.

Yankees fans finally responded with loud boos when fans near the left field foul pole unveiled a blue “LA” banner amid a three-run rally by the Dodgers.

There is plenty of history between these clubs. After all, they have been paired in 11 World Series, the most of any two teams. When the Dodgers were still in Brooklyn prior to 1958, they faced the Yanks seven times in the Series and won only once, in 1955. Since they made Southern California home, the Dodgers split four Series against the Yankees, winning in 1963 and ’81 and losing in 1977 and ’78.

Unfortunately, the Yankees did not give their fans much reason to retaliate in the 8-2 loss that caused them to lose ground in the Wild Card race. The Yanks remained two games behind the Orioles and dropped a game behind the Tigers for the second Wild Card berth.

It was a rough night for the Baby Bombers. Right fielder Aaron Judge and catcher Gary Sanchez made errors that led to runs. Starting pitcher Bryan Mitchell could not get out of the third inning, although four of the six runs against him were not earned, due to the two errors. Tyler Austin wore the golden sombrero with four strikeouts. The most effective Yankees pitcher was lefthander Richard Bleier, who tossed four shutout innings of hitless relief. He walked one batter, hit one and struck out three.

The Yankees’ runs came on two long home runs. Starlin Castro’s 21st dinger of the season landed in the second deck in left field in the second inning. Judge bashed a 432-foot bomb into the left-center field bleachers in the fifth. The Dodgers countered with late-inning home runs by Yasiel Puig and Justin Turner, to the absolute delight of the Dodgers Blue crowd than drowned out Yankees Universe at least for one night.

Yankees observe 15th anniversary of 9/11

The Yankees observed the 15th anniversary of the terrorist attacks in New York City Sunday with a tasteful ceremony at Yankee Stadium before the game against the Rays.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi and relief pitcher Dellin Betances lay a wreath at the 9/11/01 Monument in Monument Park in honor of the men and women who lost their lives in the attack of the World Trade Center. In the pregame ceremony, the Yankees recognized servicemen and servicewomen from Walter Reed Hospital and the Fort Belvoir Wounded Warriors.

The New York Police Department’s Emerald Society Pipes and Drums paraded onto the field performing the Armed Forces Medley before a presentation of the colors by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Police Honor Guard.

Following a moment of silence, FDNY firefighter Frank Pizzaro sang the national anthem while fellow firefighters unfurled a giant American flag. It was the same one that was unfurled at the original Stadium in 2001 when President George W. Bush threw out the ceremonial first pitch prior to Game 3 of the World Series.

Baseball and bobbleheads

The Yankees returned to Yankee Stadium Monday to open a 10-game homestand that will feature a three-game series against the Blue Jays, a four-game set against the Rays and a three-game, inter-league encounter with the Dodgers.

Yankees Peanuts Bobblehead Night, the fifth in a series, will take place Thursday, Sept. 8. The first 18,000 people in attendance will receive a bobblehead, courtesty of MetLife. Two days later, the first 18,000 in attendance will receive a Dellin Betances Bobblehead, courtesy of AT&T.

The Betances bobblehead is part of the limited-edition collectible player bobbleheads, presented by AT&T. The set of four — Mickey Mantle Triple Crown June 24, Didi Gregorius Aug. 7, Betances Sept. 10 and Roger Maris Oct. 1 — is the fourth series in a collection of Yankees bobbleheads.

The Hard Rock Cafe presents Little Steven’s Underground Garage Concert Series, powered by JBL will continue in the Pepsi Food Court on the third-base side of the Field Level Friday, Sept. 9, with The Weeklings. The performance scheduled to take place from 5:30-6:15 p.m. Admission to the pregame concert is included with a valid game ticket for that date. More information on the series can be found at http://www.yankees.com/bands.

Ticket specials will run Monday, Sept. 5 (MasterCard $5, Military Personnel and Senior Citizen Game), Tuesday, Sept. 6 (Military Personnel Game), Wednesday, Sept. 7 (Military Personnel and Student Game), Thursday, Sept. 8 (Military Personnel and Senior Citizen Game), Saturday, Sept. 10 (Youth Game) and Sunday, Sept. 11 (Youth Game). For a complete list of ticket specials, including game dates, seating locations, and terms and conditions, fans should visit http://www.yankees.com/ticketspecials. Please note that all ticket specials are subject to availability.

The homestand will also feature the following promotional items and dates:

Tuesday, Sept. 6 – Yankees vs. Blue Jays, 7:05 p.m.
* Yankees T-shirt Night, presented by Sato, to the first 18,000 in attendance.

Wednesday, Sept. 7 – Yankees vs. Blue Jays, 7:05 p.m.
* Yankees Old-School T-shirt Night, presented by Goldenberg’s Peanut Chews, to the first 10,000 in attendance.

Friday, Sept. 9 – Yankees vs. Rays, 7:05 p.m.
* Yankees Ear Buds Night, presented by The Parking Spot, to the first 10,000 in attendance.

Tuesday, Sept. 13 – Yankees vs. Dodgers, 7:05 p.m.
* Yankees Knit Cap Night, presented by WFAN, to the first 18,000 in attendance.

Wednesday, Sept. 14 – Yankees vs. Dodgers, 4:05 p.m.
* Yankees T-shirt Day, presented by BASF, to the first 18,000 in attendance.

Tickets may be purchased online at http://www.yankees.com, http://www.yankeesbeisbol.com, at the Yankee Stadium Ticket Office, via Ticketmaster phone at 877-469-9849, Ticketmaster TTY at 800-943-4327 and at all Ticket Offices located within Yankees Clubhouse Shops. Fans with questions may call 212-YANKEES [926-5337] or email tickets@yankees.com.

For information on parking and public transportation options to Yankee Stadium, please visit http://www.yankees.com and click on the Yankee Stadium tab at the top of the page.

30 of final 36 games for Yanks vs. AL East

Friday night at Yankee Stadium the Yankees began a stretch in which they will play American League East opponents 30 times over the final 36 games of the regular season. A trip to Kansas City next week and an inter-league series at the Stadium next month against the Dodgers are the only games the Yanks have left against clubs outside their division.

The Yankees began play Friday night against the Orioles 5 1/2 games out of first place in the AL East and also 5 1/2 games behind for the second wild card slot. The Red Sox and the Blue Jays were tied for first in the division with the Orioles 1 1/2 games behind. The Yanks’ record against divisional opponents is 19-27 (.413).

Yankees manager Joe Girardi talked before the game about his club’s need to keep winning series to gain ground, but that alone will not get the Yankees back into serious contention for a playoff berth. Joe said that if the Yankees continue to win two out of three games they will gain ground because most of their opponents are those they are trying to catch.

Simple math explains, however, that if a team wins two of three games in a series it gains only one game in the standings. With about six weeks left on the schedule, the Yankees are going to need to pick up that pace.

Take the case of the defending World Series champion Royals, whom the Yanks will play next week. KC got back into the wild-card and AL Central races with a nine-game winning streak. That is the sort of stretch the Yankees will need to make foes tremble. The Yanks have not won more than five games in a row this year and have had only two five-game winning streaks all season.

The Orioles have presented a hurdle for the Yankees recently. The clubs have divided 10 games this season, but the Yankees have sustained five-game losing streaks against Baltimore each of the past three seasons (Sept. 8, 2015-May 3, 2016, July 13-Sept. 12, 2014, May 21-June 30, 2013) after having lost no more than four in a row to the O’s from 1998 through 2012. 

The Yanks are 18-26 in the past 44 meetings since June 21, 2014. They are 199-125-2 against Baltimore since the beginning of 1998, their most victories over any opponent in that span (next: 191-134 against the Rays). In 2015, the Yankees were 9-10 against the Orioles (7-3 at the Stadium, 2-7 at Camden Yards. The Yanks won five straight games from June 14-Sept. 7 before losing their final five match-ups beginning Sept. 8.

Between 2015 and 2014 (6-13), the Yankees lost consecutive season series to Baltimore for the first time since dropping three straight from 1980-82. It follows a streak of 16 consecutive non-losing seasons against the Birds from 1998-2013 (14-0-2), which was the longest active such streak for one team over another at the time, according to the Elias Sport Bureau.

Teixeira’s battered body told him it was time

Upon reflection of when his playing days were nearing an end, Yankees manager Joe Girardi recalled praying that it would be revealed to him when to retire. Then he hurt his back. The daily struggle to stay healthy was all he needed to know that the time to walk away had come.

It is never easy for a gifted athlete who has known success at a high level. Many of them need to have the uniform torn off them before they can admit it is over. Mark Teixeira was not like that. He was more like Girardi.

“My body can’t do it anymore,” Teixeira said before Friday night’s game at Yankee Stadium. “It has been a struggle to stay on the field the last three or four years.”

That is why Teixeira called a late-afternoon press conference where he announced that he will retire at the end of this season. With the Yankees in a period of transition, he did not want to be a distraction. Tex has dealt with neck and knee issues all year. In recent seasons, he has seen more of the trainer’s room that he would like.

I remember Don Mattingly telling me years ago when back issues pushed him towards retirement that it took so much more energy and work to get into the shape needed for the 162-game grind of the Major League Baseball schedule that he knew it was time to walk away, as difficult as that was to do.

“Every kid playing whiffle ball in the backyard or playing Little League, you dream of being a major league baseball player,” Teixeira said. “After 14 years it’s time for me to do something else and after this season I’m going to retire and do something else. I got to live out my dream and had more success than I could ever imagined, but it felt like it was the right time to step away from the game. I want to finish this season on a high note.”

Teixeira, who had a big game Wednesday night only to be on the sidelines again Thursday night because of a sore knee, talked it over with Girardi and told him how he was leaning.

“Are you sure,” Girardi said to Teixeira. “At this point in a season, players are banged up and think along those lines.”

Teixeira assured Girardi he was certain about his decision and then added, “I’ll do whatever you need me to do. What would that be?”

Girardi answered, “Play first base.”

So Teixeira was back in the lineup Friday night. He intends to play out the season as much as his aching knee and neck allow. Tex has been playing with a cartilage tear in his right knee since early June. His neck sprain is a chronic condition.

It was just a year ago that a trimmed-down Teixeira belted 31 home runs and was in the discussion for American League Most Valuable Player consideration entering August, but a foul ball off his knee caused more damage that originally thought that ended his season prematurely.

He has struggled offensively much of this season and entered play Friday night batting .198 with 10 home runs and 27 RBI. Tex has picked it up lately. He has reached safely in six consecutive plate appearances and eight of his past nine. He was on base in nine of 13 plate appearances in his three Subway Series games against the Mets. Over his past eight games, Teixeira has had a slash line of .333/.484/.542 with five runs, two doubles, one home run and four RBI in 24 at-bats.

His 400th career double Tuesday night at Citi Field made him the first switch-hitter in major league history with 400 career doubles and 400 career home runs. His 404 homers rank fifth on the switch hitter list behind Mickey Mantle (536), Eddie Murray (504), Chipper Jones (468) and former Yankees teammate Carlos Beltran (415).

Teixeira grew up a Murray fan in Annapolis, Md., and was encouraged to switch-hit by his father, whom he thanked in a tearful address. “I need to let you know,” he said. “The Teixeira’s are cryers.”

He thanked the Rangers, who drafted him in the first round and signed him in 2001, and Buck Showalter, his manager in Texas who showed patience after Teixeira started his career with 15 hitless at-bats but finished the season with 26 home runs. He called second stop Atlanta his second home since he attended Georgia Tech and married a Georgia girl. He thanked the Angels for “two fabulous months” in 2008 and giving him his first taste of postseason play.

But it was his time with the Yankees that he loved most. Signing an eight-year contract prior to the 2009 season, he finished second in the MVP race that year with a 39-homer, 122-RBI output for the most recent Yankees team to win the World Series.

“2009 was a whirlwind, winning the World Series in the first year of the new Stadium,” Teixeira said. “I probably didn’t appreciate it as much at the time because you think you’ll win three or four more.”

The only personal achievement Teixeira mentioned was the pride he had in having eight seasons of more than 30 homers and 100 RBI.

Yet all that seemed so far away as the injuries piled up. And with free agency lurking after season’s end, Teixeira decided this was the moment to call it a career once the schedule is finished.

“Being a free agent at season’s end, and being 36, retirement is always in the back of your mind,” he said. “If I have to grind through the season not being healthy, I’d rather be somewhere else. I did not want to be a distraction. I would miss my kids way too much to be in some training room in Detroit not knowing if I can play while they’re in Little League or a play or something.”

With the Yankees in this period of transition, there is always the possibility a contending team might be interested in a player who won five Gold Glove and three Silver Slugger Awards and was a three-time All-Star.

“There has been no conversation about a trade, but I want to retire as a Yankee,” Teixeira said. “There is something about the Yankees. When you play against them you want to beat them or play well at Yankee Stadium. It was an unbelievable blessing to get to wear the pinstripes every day.”

Tex also had a message to Yankees fans: “They are the greatest fans in the world. I was far from perfect, but I appreciated your support. I gave you everything I had. It wasn’t always enough, but I tried very hard and am proud to have such fans rooting for the Yankees.”

And soon he will be among them.

“I’ll be watching,” Teixeira said. “I’ll be a Yankees fan forever.”

Star Wars Night highlights current homestand

Wednesday night’s Game 3 of the 2016 Subway Series began a five-game homestand during which the Yankees will have their first Yankee Stadium Star Wars Night Friday when the Indians with former Yankees relief pitcher Andrew Miller follow the Mets into the Bronx.

As part of the festivities, an assortment of Star Wars characters will be present at various locations throughout the Stadium to interact with fans from approximately 5 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. and again for about 45 minutes after the first pitch. In addition, the first 18,000 people in attendance will receive a R2-D2 Yankees Knit Cap.

Didi Gregorius Bobblehead Day will take place Sunday. The first 18,000 people in attendance will receive a bobblehead. The Gregorius bobblehead is part of the limited-edition collectible player bobbleheads, presented by AT&T. The set of four — Mickey Mantle Triple Crown June 24, Gregorius Aug. 7, Dellin Betances Sept. 10 and Roger Maris Oct. 1 — is the fourth series in a collection of Yankees bobbleheads.

The Hard Rock Cafe presents Little Steven’s Underground Garage Concert Series, powered by JBL, will continue in the Pepsi Food Court on the third-base side of the Field Level Friday with The Grip Weeds. The performance is scheduled to take place from 5:30-6:15 p.m. Admission to the pregame concert is included with a valid game ticket for that date. Future acts are scheduled to perform throughout the summer. More information on the series can be found at http://www.yankees.com/bands.

Ticket specials will run Saturday and Sunday (both Youth Games). For a complete list of ticket specials, including game dates, seating locations, and terms and conditions, fans should visit http://www.yankees.com/ticketspecials. Please note that all ticket specials are subject to availability.

Tickets may be purchased online at http://www.yankees.com, http://www.yankeesbeisbol.com, at the Yankee Stadium Ticket Office, via Ticketmaster phone at 877-469-9849, Ticketmaster TTY at 800-943-4327 and at all Ticket Offices located within Yankees Clubhouse Shops. Fans with questions may call 212-YANKEES [926-5337] or email tickets@yankees.com.

For information on parking and public transportation options to Yankee Stadium, please visit http://www.yankees.com and click on the Yankee Stadium tab at the top of the page.

Bowl tickets pre-sale for YU members Tuesday

Tickets for the 2016 New Era Pinstripe Bowl and the 2016 Ram-Crusader Cup will both go on sale to the general public at http://www.yankees.com/football and http://www.ticketmaster.com at 10a.m. Thursday, July 21.

The New Era Pinstripe Bowl is scheduled to kick off at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 28, at Yankee Stadium and will pit schools representing the Big Ten Conference and the Atlantic Coast Conference. The Ram-Crusader Cup has a 3 p.m. kickoff at the Stadium Saturday, Nov. 12, between the Fordham Rams and the Holy Cross Crusaders.

Yankees Season Ticket Licensees (Premium, Suite, Full and Partial), Yankees Universe members, and Yankees Group Leaders will have the opportunity to take part in a special pre-on-sale for both games beginning Tuesday, July 19, the details of which can be found at http://www.yankees.com/football.

MasterCard cardholders can take advantage of a special MasterCard exclusive pre-on-sale for each game from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday, July 20. MasterCard is the preferred card of the New Era Pinstripe Bowl.

Established in 2010, the New Era Pinstripe Bowl has featured some of the most memorable moments in recent college football history. This year’s game will be nationally televised by ESPN, which has also secured national and local radio rights for ESPN Radio.

For up-to-the-moment information regarding the game, fans are encouraged to visit http://www.pinstripebowl.com, the official website of the New Era Pinstripe Bowl, and follow the Bowl game’s official Twitter and Instagram accounts – @PinstripeBowl.

The 31st Ram-Crusader Cup will be the first to take place at the current Stadium. The schools previously met once at the original Stadium Nov. 10, 1923 with Holy Cross defeating Fordham, 23-7.

This year’s game will mark Fordham’s 22nd appearance in the Stadium and first since 1946, having gone 12-8-1 at the prior venue. For Holy Cross, it will be their first appearance at the Stadium since 1940, previously amassing a 2-0-1 record at the original location.

Stiff competition in post-break homestand

Vacation time is over for the Yankees, who returned home Friday night after the All-Star break to open a 10-game homestand beginning with a three-game series against the rival Red Sox. It will not get any easier for the Yankees as two division leaders, the Orioles (American League East) and the Giants (National League West) come into Yankee Stadium.

The Yankees will pay tribute to the Special Operations Warrior Foundation and the United States Armed Forces with Military Appreciation Day Saturday, July 23. Ceremonies will begin approximately at 3 p.m., prior to the scheduled 4:05 game against the Giants. As part of the festivities, the Gold Team of the United States Army Golden Knights will parachute into the Stadium.

Following the jump, the Special Operations Warrior Foundation and a Gold Star family will be recognized in a special ceremony at the plate and a group of future soldiers will be sworn in on-field. Also taking part in the day’s ceremonies will be U.S. Army Special Operations Command Lieutenant General Kenny Tovo, who will throw out the ceremonial first pitch; country music recording artist and former Army Ranger, Keni Thomas, who will sing the national anthem; and U.S. Navy Petty Officer Yarrick Connor, who will sing God Bless America.

The Hard Rock Cafe presents Little Steven’s Underground Garage Concert Series, powered by JBL will continue in the Pepsi Food Court on the third-base side of the Field Level Friday, July 15, with Jeremy and the Harlequins, and Friday, July 22, with Soraia. The performances will take place from 5 to 6 p.m. Admission to the pregame concert is included with a valid game ticket for that date. Future acts are currently scheduled to perform throughout the summer. More information on the series can be found at http://www.yankees.com/bands.

Ticket specials will run Monday, July 18 (Military Personnel Game); Tuesday, July 19 (Military Personnel Game); Wednesday, July 20 (Military Personnel and Student Game); Thursday, July 21 (MasterCard Half-Price, Military Personnel, Senior Citizen and Youth Game) and Saturday, July 23 (Military Personnel Game).

For a complete list of ticket specials, including game dates, seating locations, and terms and conditions, fans should visit http://www.yankees.com/ticketspecials. Please note that all ticket specials are subject to availability.

The homestand will also feature the following promotional items and dates:

Monday, July 18 – Yankees vs. Orioles, 7:05 p.m.

Cap Night, presented by Canon, to the first 18,000 in attendance.

Tuesday, July 19 – Yankees vs. Orioles, 7:05 p.m.

Collectible Cup Night, presented by Premio Foods, to the first 25,000 in attendance.

Wednesday, July 20 – Yankees vs. Orioles, 7:05 p.m.
Cap Night, presented by Cooper Tire, to the first 18,000 in attendance.

Friday, July 22 – Yankees vs. Giants, 7:05 p.m.

David and Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell e-book Giveaway Night, presented by Hachette Book Group, to the first 10,000 in attendance.

Saturday, July 23 – Yankees vs. Giants, 4:05 p.m.

Camo Baseball Cap Day, presented by Budweiser, to the first 18,000 in attendance, 21 and older.

Tickets may be purchased online at http://www.yankees.com, http://www.yankeesbeisbol.com, at the Yankee Stadium Ticket Office, via Ticketmaster phone at (877) 469-9849, Ticketmaster TTY at (800) 943-4327 and at all Ticket Offices located within Yankees Clubhouse Shops. Fans with questions may call (212) YANKEES [926-5337] or email tickets@yankees.com.

For information on parking and public transportation options to Yankee Stadium, please visit http://www.yankees.com and click on the Yankee Stadium tab at the top of the page.

Yankees in ticket partnership with StubHub

Earlier this week, the Yankees announced a landmark, multi-year sponsorship agreement with StubHub that designated it as the team’s official fan-to-fan ticket resale marketplace.

The new product will allow StubHub to be completely integrated into the Yankees’ ticket system, replacing the Yankees Ticket Exchange. The new system will be fully integrated and operational by Thursday, July 7. The first ticket availability will be for the Friday, July 15, game and extend through the remainder of the 2016 schedule.

“We are committed to providing our fans with a first-class ticket experience, and offering the safest, most secure and efficient platform for our fans to sell and purchase tickets,” team president Randy Levine said. “This new product was the result of many productive discussions with StubHub, which will allow them to fully integrate into our ticket system. We are confident this collaboration will best protect our fans in the resale ticket marketplace.”

Said StubHub president Scott Cutler, “The New York Yankees are one of the preeminent brands in professional sports, and we are thrilled to join with them to create a best-in-class fan experience. StubHub’s goal is to ensure that fans have access to games that they love to attend, and I’d like to thank both the Yankees and MLB Advanced Media for their willingness to come to the table and reach a positive solution for all parties.”

The custom sponsorship deal will provide new features and functionality that will greatly enhance the consumer experience, which will lead to increased user efficiency and fan safety and protection. These added features will prevent speculative selling, adhere to the Yankees’ advertising resale price policy, generate verified bar/QR codes, and provide fully integrated mobile capacity, for the safest and most secure way to transmit tickets.

The Yankees introduced a mobile ticket system this year, and the agreement with StubHub will adhere to the existing mobile ticket policy. All tickets delivered will be mobile. Tickets will operate on both iOS and Android devices. Users can post hard stock tickets, but upon being sold all will be converted to mobile format.

To date, more than 250,000 fans have entered Yankee Stadium using mobile tickets (primary and secondary combined), and by the end of this season, the team expects to have welcomed more than 600,000 mobile ticket users. This anticipated number is expected to be the largest among all teams in baseball.

With this new, technology-led sponsorship, the Yankees will join the longstanding StubHub arrangement that is in place with MLB Advanced Media. While other secondary resale platforms will continue to remain an option for fans to buy and resell Yankees tickets, only StubHub will be fully integrated with the Yankees.

As part of the sponsorship agreement with the Yankees, StubHub will receive full marketing and sponsorship benefits, including in-stadium signage, suite access and use of official team marks.

Mickey still packs ’em in

After all these years, Mickey Mantle remains a draw at Yankee Stadium. Forty-eight years after he last played for the Yankees and 21 years after his death, the Mick helped fill the seats at the Stadium Friday night.

Two of Mickey’s sons, Danny and David, threw out ceremonial first pitches before the Yankees’ game against the Twins. With all the construction around the Stadium these days, getting to the park on time is quite a chore, particularly on Friday nights. But the stands were filling up pretty well before Masahiro Tanaka unleashed the game’s first pitch.

The attraction was a bobblehead promotion depicting Mickey Mantle wearing a gold crown to symbolize his winning major league baseball’s triple crown for hitting 50 years ago for leading the American League in 1956 in batting average (.353), home runs (52) and runs batted in (130), which earned him the first of his three AL Most Valuable Player Awards.

The bobbleheads were distributed to the first 18,000 people in attendance. No wonder so many arrived so early.