Today is the 18th anniversary of my 21st birthday and in honor of this special occasion, I thought it would be fun to see how the Yankees have fared on August 26 during my lifetime because it’s all about me today. Isn’t that how usually birthdays work?
Now, I obviously won’t be writing about every single game because this isn’t Grantland and I don’t think I am capable of writing something that long but what am I going to do is look at specific years during my lifetime – mostly milestone birthdays like 10, Sweet 16, 21, 25, etc. and at certain years in their history (mostly World Series winning years) and record the results.
Let’s get to it and start off with the day of my birth, shall we?
I actually was born while the Yankees dropped their game to the Minnesota Twins at Metropolitan Stadium in Minneapolis – the game began at 7:30 CT, ended two hours and 43 minutes later and I was born at 10:50 P.M. ET. My dad actually had plans to hang out with his softball team that night at a local bar to watch the Yankee game after they had won their softball game and it just so happened that the bar was around the corner from the hospital. See how considerate I was? He didn’t have to go far.
Anyway, I was off to a great start as a Yankee fan. It was bad enough they played their home games in Shea Stadium that season while the old girl was being refurbished but they lost in Minnesota that night in front of a crowd of less than 10,000.
Check out the starting lineup:
|Roy White DH|
|Elliott Maddox CF|
|Bobby Murcer RF|
|Lou Piniella LF|
|Thurman Munson C|
|Graig Nettles 3B|
|Chris Chambliss 1B|
|Sandy Alomar 2B|
|Jim Mason SS|
A lot of familiar names there but they dropped the game 7-6. Doc Medich, who started the game, gave up six runs in 5.1 innings of work. Good job, Doc!
August 26, 1979 – 5th birthday
It was a Sunday and there’s no boxscore for this one because they were rained out in Minnesota. The makeup game was on September 20 and Dave Righetti was beaten in his second career start.
August 26, 1984 – 10th birthday
They won and my favorite player hit a homerun! I actually remember this watching because my dad claimed that Don Mattingly hit his home run for my birthday. Dave Winfield, who was my brother’s favorite player in the 1980′s, also hit a homerun that day but it wasn’t for his birthday because he was born in April.
August 26, 1987 – 13th birthday
Another off day?! What in the world?
August 26, 1990 – Sweet 16
This is tremendous because the 1990 Yankees were not good and they actually won on a walk-off single by Steve Sax. Gary Sheffield started for the Brewers and played third base, Dan Plesac was the losing pitcher and it was his ninth blown save of the season and sixth loss.
I mean look at who appeared in this game!
|Roberto Kelly CF|
|Oscar Azocar LF|
|Matt Nokes DH|
|Randy Velarde PH|
|Kevin Maas 1B|
|Jesse Barfield RF|
|Rick Cerone C|
|Jim Leyritz 3B|
|Alvaro Espinoza SS|
|Mel Hall PH|
|Steve Balboni PH|
|Wayne Tolleson PR-SS|
|Steve Sax 2B|
After this game, the Yankees were 53-73 and 16 games back in the Division standings. Oof.
August 26, 1992 – 18th birthday
Hmmm, another 4-3 win against the Brewers. Is it a sign? Or does it just mean that the Brewers were bad? Scott Kamieniecki earned only his fourth win of the season (he was 4-10 at this point in 1992) and Danny Tartabull knocked in all four runs thanks to a third inning grand slam.
August 26, 1995 – 21st birthday
I remember being out and about in Oswego on my 21st birthday and being annoyed when I went to the pizza place for a late night, post-drinking snack and saw that the Yankees lost this one 7-0. Damn you, Sterling Hitchcock.
August 26, 1999 – 25th birthday
They didn’t play on my 25th birthday because it was an off day, again. They played in Texas in the early part of the week and were heading home for a series against Seattle. It’s a good thing it was an off day because it rained like crazy on that particular birthday. I’ll never forget it because it was the summer I started working at NBC and I got to work at 8:10 after commuting from Rockland County while a bunch of people who lived in the city got to work 2-3 hours late because the rapid rain had flooded some subway tunnels. My boss was chastising everyone for being late and praising me for being way early on my birthday.
August 26, 2004 – 30th birthday
Another winner! I wasn’t home for this one because I was out celebrating the big 3-0 but I remember being happy when I saw that they won.
August 26, 2009 – 35th birthday
I went to this game with my parents and brother. This is when we were sitting out in Section 305 of the upper deck (we were there in 2009 and 2010) and I had my birthday put up on the scoreboard. Of course, as I was trying to get a picture of my name on the board, my phone was being a pill. Luckily, my brother got a picture of me trying to get a picture of my name. And the funniest thing was that after my name appeared, I was getting tweets from other people at the game who said they saw it. Success!
Oh right, the game.
Andy Pettitte won the game, Jorge Posada and Jerry Hairston each hit home runs and I was happy because that victory snapped a three game losing streak on my birthday. (They lost to Boston in 2008, Detroit in 2007 and to Anaheim in 2006.)
They’re 19-15 on my birthday during my lifetime. A few days were missed either due to scheduled off days, rainouts and the occasional strike like in 1994 when the last game of the year was played earlier in August.
More results on August 26 in Yankees’ history:
1923 – They lost 4-3 to the Indians.
1927 – They won 8-6 over Detroit.
1947 – They lost 4-3 to the St. Louis Browns.
1961 – They beat the Kansas City Athletics 5-1.
1978 – They beat Oakland 5-4.
1996 – The lost 2-1 to Seattle.
1998 – They split a doubleheader against Anaheim. They lost the first game 6-4 and won the second game 7-6.
2000 – They beat Oakland 10-6.
2005 – (This isn’t significant for any reason other than the fact that I was at this game) They won 5-1 over the Royals thanks to two home runsby Bernie Williams.