Yesterday belonged to us kids.
It was a day before cable television and video games when we spent summers watching baseball. Mom would send us off with a paper sack stuffed with one of her famous tuna-fish sandwiches and a couple of apples and we would return with a beat-up scorecard and popcorn stuck between our teeth.
It was a day to get into the ballpark early like the old times when you could slip through a delivery gate with the beer kegs and watch early batting practice.
It was a day to see Derek Jeter take his turn in the cage and slash line drives all over the field. And a day to watch Alex Rodriguez flick balls over the wall with ease and to see Jason Giambi hit some deep into the upper deck and you had to smile when Xavier Nady unloaded three-straight blasts to center.
It was a day to watch the pitchers shag in the outfield and see Damaso Marte and Joba Chamberlain and Mariano Rivera work the right-field crowd. And it was a day to laugh every time Marte caught a fly ball behind his back.
It was a day to watch night slip over the Stadium and see big-leaguers hang on the rail and sit on top of the dugout while the legends lit up the field.
Then it was time to see Johnny Damon and Jose Molina hit big homers and have Andy Pettitte give us everything, again.
And it was a night to pump your fist when Phil Coke got a big out to end the sixth and a night to see Joba mow ‘em down before Mariano ended it like he always does: brilliantly.
It was a night to get home late with a beat-up scorecard and popcorn stuck between your teeth.
And it was a time for us kids to remember how much we love this game.