Many of us were surprised, but more people were upset with the several inches of snow we saw when we all woke up yesterday, because Monday, March 31 was a special for sports fans; it was baseball’s opening day.
Opening Day has, and always will be a reminder that spring is just around the corner, if it hasn’t arrived already. But let’s face it; this is New England, where it’s more common for us to have a white Easter than it is to have a white Christmas.
The New York Yankees open their season tonight in Houston, so they had nothing to worry about. The Boston Red Sox kicked of the defense of their World Series title yesterday in Baltimore with a 2-1 loss to the Orioles. Baltimore didn’t get any snow. The New York Mets hosted the Washington Nationals at Citi Field yesterday, but by time the national anthem had been sung, the sky was blue and the grass was green. The grass was green no thanks to spray paint, but hey, gotta do what ya gotta do…
One of my favorite memories as a Yankees fan is watching their home opener from 1996. Like I said before, baseball means spring is around the corner. Well it wasn’t on April 9, 1996. The game time temperature was a brisk 38 degrees, and a light, yet steady snowfall was occurring. Andy Pettitte took the to the mound and lasted 6 and 1/3 innings while striking out 6 batters and giving up 6 hits and 3 runs. The image of watching Pettite breathe into his hand while snow fell at Yankee Stadium has stuck with me to this day.
There’s another image of former Yankees manager Joe Torre talking with then Yankees catcher and future Yankees manager Joe Girardi at home plate with snowflakes dotting the photo.
The Yankees would go on to win the game 7-3, and that season would lead to a World Series victory, and then some.
While there was not significant accumulation on the day in 1996 like there was here today, there was something significant about that day; it was Derek Jeter’s first Opening Day as a New York Yankee.
Either way, it’s officially baseball season. Snow has no business getting in the way of that.
Sources; baseball-almanac.com, ESPN.com, BleacherReport.c om