The Yankees showed up dressed to impress on Friday for Game 5 of the ALDS with a jersey sleeve tribute to the legendary Whitey Ford.
The Yankees and the Major League Baseball family lost a stalwart and a connection to a bygone era on Thursday night, as lefty Whitey Ford passed away at the age of 91.
According to Aaron Boone, Ford and his family were reportedly watching New York’s Game 4 victory while he died peacefully, a tragic reminder of his eternal devotion to the team, and his place in their history.
With the team in San Diego for the deciding game of an extremely taut ALDS battle with the Rays, the Yanks needed to swiftly whip up a tribute to their fallen star without much material or plotting.
Luckily, the staff came together, and created some beauties for the season-defining contest. Each and every Yankee is rocking a Ford tribute patch under their Hank Steinbrenner “HGS” patches on the left arm of their jerseys, showing his No. 16 as prominently as possible.
You want a reminder of how huge Ford is for the Pinstripes? You won’t have to look very far.
The crafty lefty won nearly every big game of the Yankees’ 1950s dynasty, breaking the consecutive scoreless innings record once held by none other than moundsman Babe Ruth. Only fitting that a Yankee would break Ruth’s mark, which was set in Boston during what feels like an entirely different lifetime for the Bambino.
He also remains the franchise’s all-time wins leader with an absolutely ridiculous 236-106 win-loss record. A six-time World Champion, there was no mound too pressurized for the Astoria native and lifelong Yankee fan.
With every step the Yankees players take on Friday, they’ll be thinking of Whitey’s impact, as well as reminding every viewer of the history of this important franchise.
Though they won’t be playing a single postseason game at Yankee Stadium in front of their ravenous fans this year, this ingenuity proves they can still take a piece of their history along for the ride.