Josiah and I had a great time at the Jays game last night. Seats right above the Yankees dugout, a game ball tossed to Josiah from a Yankees player, and Leafs backup goalie Curtis Joseph a few rows ahead of us – not even a Yankees grand slam in the tenth inning could wreck that.
One of the best moments on field was when Jays manager Cito Gaston yanked Jays pitcher A.J. Burnett at the start of the ninth inning before he had thrown a pitch. Why not make the switch between innings? Because Gaston wanted the crowd to have a chance to applaud Burnett, who may have played his last game with the Jays. The Star reports:
Jays manager Cito Gaston put aside baseball’s etiquette for a moment to make it happen….
But at the start of the ninth, Burnett again walked to the mound. He warmed up for a moment. Then, before he could throw a pitch, Gaston came out to replace him.
As he began the short walk to the dugout, the love-in kicked off. First, the cheers swelled. Burnett, in his usual pose – staring straight at the ground – looked up tentatively. Then he waved a few times. The noise got louder. He pumped his fist. After he sat down, the fans began to chant his name. Burnett came out for the curtain call, tipping his cap. He looked carefully around, as if trying to embed the memory.
Nice moment and classy move in what turned out to be a good game, despite the loss.