Baseball is back in the Bronx. The Yankees play their home opener this afternoon, facing Albert Pujols and the new-look Angels with a 1:05 first pitch.
“It just never seems like the season officially gets underway until you have the home opener,” Derek Jeter said. “That’s how I’ve always felt. It’s special. It’s fun. It’s a great atmosphere. It’s something that we all look forward to. We usually get at least a couple of Opening Days over the course of a season, but it just doesn’t feel like it gets underway until we get the one at home.”
The Yankees got to town after Wednesday’s series finale in Baltimore. They got settled into their homes and apartments yesterday, had a homecoming dinner last night, and now it’s back to work.
“We’ve been away so long, it’s like we haven’t started the season yet,” Mariano Rivera said. “… It will be good when you see those (new players) seeing the Stadium, seeing the Stadium packed, the noise and everything that comes with New York. It’s wonderful. We have a lot of guys that will see that for the first time.”
I will not be seeing it. After covering all of spring training, I’m taking these next few games off. Yesterday I walked into my apartment for the first time since February 6, so I’m still figuring out my way around. Brian Heyman will be take you all through today’s game, and I’ll see you in a few days.
“It seems like we’ve been gone forever,” Joe Girardi said. “I think we’re all anxious to get back and play at home, in front of our home crowd. We’re fortunate. Wherever we travel, we still have a lot of fans, but home is still home.”