The Opening Day scorecards are rolling off the press this morning.
The ink is still drying on the names of 26 men – including Andy Pettitte, who will be added to the roster on Saturday – from 25 towns in seven different countries that will represent a city of immigrants. New York is home to everyone from everywhere.
This is our baseball team:
Johnny Damon from Fort Riley, Kansas: It feels like he’s been a Yankee forever.
Derek Jeter from Pequannock, New Jersey: The Captain means everything to this team and this city.
Bobby Abreu from Maracay, Venezuela: A man who was born to hit third in this lineup.
Alex Rodriguez from New York, New York: His big bat is always the key to the season.
Jason Giambi from West Covina, California: He might be the most dangerous hitter in this lineup. And that’s saying something.
Robinson Cano from San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic: This guy could complete a double play with the D train barreling down on him.
Jorge Posada from Santurce, Puerto Rico: The team’s fire and toughness.
Hideki Matsui from Kanazawa, Japan: A perfect baseball player.
Melky Cabrera from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic: The kid with the style and the smile.
Chien-Ming Wang from Tainan, Taiwan: Opening Day at Yankee Stadium is the game he’s waited all winter for.
Shelley Duncan from Tucson, Arizona: Big swings. Big hits. Big celebrations.
Wilson Betemit from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic: Ready to live up to all that promise.
Morgan Ensberg from Redondo Beach, California: A tough right-handed hitter that adds depth to a relentless lineup.
Jose Molina from Baymon, Puerto Rico: A great backup for one of the greats.
Mike Mussina from Williamsport, Pennsylvania: He has grown into the leader of this pitching staff.
Phil Hughes from Mission Viejo, California: Pete Abraham of the Journal News calls him “The Franchise” and that sounds good to me.
Ian Kennedy from Huntington Beach, California: His pinpoint control hits the Bronx on Friday night.
Andy Pettitte from Baton Rouge, Louisiana: The big lefty will be here on Saturday.
Jonathan Albaladejo from San Juan, Puerto Rico: Sometimes a player just needs a chance. He’s got the talent to make the most of it.
Ross Ohlendorf from Austin, Texas: Some are impressed with his Princeton degree. I prefer his hard sinker.
Billy Traber from Torrance, California: He gets big outs against tough lefties.
Brian Bruney from Astoria, Oregon: I like his attitude and love his fastball.
LaTroy Hawkins from Gary, Indiana: A great teammate and a great pitcher who will quickly become a favorite in the Bronx.
Kyle Farnsworth from Wichita, Kansas: Coming in at 99 mph.
Joba Chamberlain from Lincoln, Nebraska: Coming in at 100 mph.
Mariano Rivera from Panama City, Panama: Game Over.