Johnny Blevins was going through the motions on the 2 train this morning. He started by mimicking a big right-handed swing and then broke into a homerun trot that took him through the subway car and finished with an extended fist.
“I love Shelley Duncan,” Blevins says. “That guy is a blast to watch.”
Blevins has all the Yankee moves.
“Run through the batting order,” he says.
Blevins jumps into the lefty’s stance and waggles his hands that are holding an imaginary bat.
Blevins flips to the right side, holds up his hand and gently slides into position. A perfect inside-out swing rockets a single into right field. He finishes at first base with a sweeping clap.
“I’m the best at doing Jeter,” Blevins says. “It’s because I’ve been watching him for so long.”
But Jeter wasn’t the first one he imitated.
“I started with El Duque,” Blevins explains. “I loved the high kick and decided to try it. It’s harder than it looks, but I got pretty good after awhile. Then I picked up Paul O’Neill. Mostly his batting-helmet throws when he made an out, but I got his swing down, too.”
He has it all down these days.
“Keep going with the hitters,” Blevins says.
“Bobby Abreu… Alex Rodriguez… Jason Giambi… Jorge Posada: lefty and righty… Hideki Matsui… Robinson Cano… Melky Cabrera: lefty and righty…”
“Go through the pitchers,” Blevins orders.
“Chien-Ming Wang… Andy Pettitte… Mike Mussina… Phil Hughes… Joba Chamberlain… Ian Kennedy… Kyle Farnsworth... Brian Bruney...”
“And the best for last,” Blevins says.
Blevins looks in for the sign, spits, comes set, and then fires an exploding cutter that finishes the hitter and the game. He walks slowly off the mound and extends his hand.
“Congratulations,” he says.
That’s as good as it gets on the 2 train.