Joe Girardi left the ballpark with the game ball (given to him by Mariano Rivera) and the lineup cards.
â€œSpecial,â€ he said. â€œIt reminded me when I used to catch Mo and what a great feeling it was when the door opened and he came in. I had that same feeling tonight.
â€œYou look forward to this day from the time I signed as manager on November. You do all the preparation up to spring training and during spring training. I saw it pay off tonight. Itâ€™s an unbelievable feeling when you actually get to play for real because thatâ€™s what you work for.â€
The Yankees have a new scoreboard in right field with a countdown of regular-season games. After the fifth inning, when the game was official, they showed George Steinbrenner on the scoreboard pulling a lever to move the number from 81 to 80.
I guess we’ll find out, but I assume they’ll have some sort of celebrity or former player perform that duty at every home game.
A few other impressions: It was a one-run game and the Big G stayed out there on defense. He moved pretty well tonight and made several nice plays in the field. If he stays healthy (and that’s in doubt), he could have a big season. … Bobby Abreu scored from first and Johnny Damon tripled. All that running they did this spring seems to have paid off. … Beating Roy Hallday was huge considering he last lost to the Yanks in 2004. … CMW really dealt against a team that tormented him last season (0-2, 6.35 in three starts last season). He gave up six hits but two were in the infield. I think he broke at least four bats. Two runs over seven innings against Roy Halladay? That’s an ace.
Thanks for all the comments tonight and please check out the paper tomorrow. We’ll have wall-to-wall coverage from the four writers who were here tonight.