The late offense that saved Nate Eovaldi from a loss after he surrendered five runs to the Astros over five innings, largely on two home runs, would prove illusory later in the season, but the solid bullpen work that ensured the victory on April 7, 2016, would be a club feature all year. Starlin Castro and Mark Teixeira homers (two in his first two games wearing the pinstripes for Castro) supplied the comeback offense in the 8-5 victory, but the three-hit, no-run relief from Kirby Yates, Chasen Shreve, Dellin Betances, and Andrew Miller carried the day.
Carrying on the kind of career that had him homering in his first ever big-league game and going 5-for-5 on the day he took aim at 3,000 hits, Derek Jeter doubled leading off the home fifth, starting the game-winning two-run rally in what would be, we all knew, his last home opener, as the Yanks beat Baltimore 4-2 behind Huroki Kuroda on April 7, 2014.
At school in D.C. at the time, I was able to attend the home opener as my New York Yankees played the Senators in RFK Stadium on April 7, 1969. It’s no surprise that Bobby Murcer hit the first of back-to-back homers that led the Yanks and Mel Stottlemyre to a victory over Camilo Pascual of the home-standing Senators, but the following jack was supplied by third baseman Jerry Kenney, one of his only two on the year. Think pleasant thoughts and recall Kenney as a coin spent to get the great Graig Nettles; try to forget that he served as the starting third baseman for the 1970 New York Yankees while hitting only .193.
April 7 is the birthday of John Ganzel in 1874. A member of the New York Highlanders in their inaugural season in 1903, John hit the team’s first home run 22 games into the campaign. The team hit 18 taters as a group that year. He is the brother of “Chick” Ganzel and uncle of player Babe Ganzel.
Read more history for April 7 on TakeHimDowntown.com