I love hometowns, especially the hometowns of baseball players. Hank Aaron is from Mobile, Alabama, Mickey Mantle grew up in Commerce, Oklahoma, Cool Papa Bell was born in Starkville, Mississippi and Roberto Clemente came from Carolina, Puerto Rico. They are all places I have never been, but can see clearly in my mind.
I like running lineups through my head:
Number 18, Johnny Damon from Fort Riley, Kansas. Centerfield.
Number 2, Derek Jeter from Pequannock, New Jersey. Shortstop.
Number 53, Bobby Abreu from Aragua, Venezuela. Rightfield.
Number 13, Alex Rodriguez from New York, New York. Third base.
Number 25, Jason Giambi from West Covina, California. Designated hitter.
Number 55, Hideki Matsui from Kanazawa, Japan. Leftfield.
Number 20, Jorge Posada from Santurce, Puerto Rico. Catcher.
Number 22, Robinson Cano from San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic. Second base.
And rounding out the order:
Number 12, Andy Phillips from Tuscaloosa, Alabama. First base.
Today’s starting pitcher, warming up in the bullpen:
Number 40, Chien-Ming Wang from Tainan, Taiwan.
Of, course, there is:
Andy Pettitte from Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Mike Mussina from Williamsport, Pennsylvania; Kei Igawa from Oarai, Japan; Melky Cabrera from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; Doug Mientkiewicz from Toledo, Ohio; Brian Bruney from Astoria, Oregon; Mike Myers from Arlington Heights, Illinois; Scott Proctor from Stuart, Florida; Carl Pavano from New Britain, Connecticut; Will Nieves from San Juan, Puerto Rico; Kyle Farnsworth from Wichita, Kansas; Luis Vizcaino from Bani, Dominican Republic; Chris Britton from Hollywood, Florida; Josh Phelps from Anchorage, Alaska; Jeff Karstens from San Diego, California; Darrell Rasner from Carson City, Nevada; Humberto Sanchez from the Bronx, New York; Miguel Cairo from Anaco, Venezuela.
You can’t forget: Bernie Williams from San Juan, Puerto Rico.
And, finally, Mariano Rivera, from Panama City, Panama.
Yeah, I can see them all…