Bubba Crosby, ca. 2004
This week, YES has been showing some "Yankees Classics" from the last couple of years. Seems like whenever I catch a "Yankees Classic," it's either from the dynasty years, or from this year. But Friday, there was a game from 2004, and tonight, there's one from 2005.
The one they showed Friday was this one
, from July 1, 2004. The one where Jeter went face-first into the stands.
Bubba came in as a pinch-runner for Matsui in the bottom of the 9th. He didn't get far, though. Ruben Sierra struck out, then Kenny Lofton grounded out, ending the inning.
Bubba ended up playing CF. He came to bat at the bottom of the 10th. One on, two outs. Very high-pressure situation for rookie Bubba. Bobby Murcer, a long time Bubba fan, commented that Mattingly thought Bubba could one day be a great hitter.
In the end, Bubba drew a walk. Didn't win the game, as a hit would have (A-Rod was on 3B), but it was a perfectly respectable performance. He took 2B on defensive indifference. Unfortunately, Bernie Williams came up next and grounded out, stranding the runners.
In the top of the 11th, Bubba was charged with his only error of the year (he has only two in his major league career). With Ortiz on 1B, Manny singled to right center. Bubba fielded the ball on a hop, and threw it all the way in to 3B. It was right on line, but A-Rod couldn't get it, with Ortiz sliding in and the ball taking a hop in front of the bag. It got past him, and Manny got to 2B.
I don't know if I'd rule it an error. In any case, it was a very impressive throw. Bubba was pretty deep in right center, and he threw it all the way in and across to 3B, very accuratedly. He's got an arm.
Bubba grounded out in his next at bat, and was moved to LF (with Bernie in CF). With Jeter out after flying head first into the stands, the substitutions got wild. Giambi, then weak and ill, hit for Jeter. Sheff played 3B, A-Rod played SS. Things looked grim when Manny homered in the top of the 13th. But salvation came in the bottom of the 13th, from the unlikeliest sources: Miguel Cairo hit a double, scoring Ruben Sierra, then John Flaherty hit another double, scoring Cairo. That's right, the heroes of the game: Cairo and Flaherty. The YAN-KEES win!
But yeesh, Bubba's sideburns were scary back then. He didn't need a wig when they dressed all the rookies up like Elvis at the end of the season...Didn't sideburns like this go out of style, like, before Bubba was born? ;-)
The "Classic" they showed tonight was this one
, from April 26, 2005. The game against the Angels, where A-Rod hit three homers and had 10 RBIs. He really seemed like a different player back then, on offense and defense. For whatever reason, he seems to have lost a lot of his confidence this year.
Bubba came in as a pinch-runner for Bernie, then took over CF. He was still wearing his pants high then. That's about all I noticed in his brief appearance.
And I'd forgotten that Carl Pavano pitched that game. He went seven innings, then turned it over to Colter Bean