Phil Coke worked efficiently in his first Yankee Stadium appearance. He jumped to the top step of the dugout and fielded baseballs in the rain. Then he ducked back into the dugout with an armload, signed each one and redistributed them to the fans. This was done over and over until everyone was satisfied.
Coke smiled and waved and was ready to head back to the clubhouse when a small group behind home plate caught his eye. He nodded, walked through the puddles and went to work with no cover.
He cradled each item – balls, baseball cards, photos, scorecards – in his hand and bent at the waist to shield them from the rain. He signed again and again until everyone here was satisfied, too.
An efficient performance for the lefty from Sonora, California.