The Yankees have played more than 100 Opening Days in their franchise history. They open the 2017 MLB season with a loss on the road to the Tampa Bay Rays on April 2. Here’s a look at some fun facts and interesting tidbits about the Yankees’ performance historically on Opening Day.
(Credit: AP)The home opener in 1978 at Yankee Stadium is the only time the Yankees did not throw a ceremonial first pitch on Opening Day. Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris raised the 1977 championship flag instead.
(Credit: Bruce Gilbert)The Yankees are 63-51-1 all-time on Opening Day heading into 2016. They are 35-17-1 at home and 28-34 on the road.
(Credit: AP / Ben Margot)There have been four grand slams hit by Yankees on Opening Day, the latest being Alex Rodriguez on April 3, 2006. He did it in the second inning off Oakland’s Barry Zito.
(Credit: AP / John Rooney)For seven consecutive years (1939-45), New York City Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia threw out the first pitch in the Yankees’ home opener. It’s the longest streak for the ceremonial event in franchise history.
(Credit: AP / Julie Jacobson)The Yankees are 2-1 in the home openers of their new stadiums, winning in 1923 and 1976 and losing in 2009.
(Credit: AP / Adam Nade)The biggest Opening Day crowd at the remodeled Yankee Stadium (1976-2008) was 56,717 on April 10, 1998, against Oakland. The Yankees won that game, 17-13. Despite the 30 runs and 32 hits combined, there was only one home run — a three-run shot by Tino Martinez.
(Credit: Jim McIsaac)Alex Rodriguez hit safely in all nine of his 10 Opening Day appearances for the Yankees. He went 15-for-38 (.394 average) with two home runs and nine RBIs.
(Credit: Newsday / Paul J. Bereswill )Bob Sheppard’s first Opening Day as Yankee Stadium public address announcer was April 17, 1951. Among the names in the lineup that day for the Yankees’ 5-0 win over the Red Sox were Phil Rizzuto, Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio and Yogi Berra. Ted Williams was in Boston’s lineup.
(Credit: AP / Harry Harris)The first appearance of the designated hitter occurred on April 6, 1973, when the Yankees’ Ron Blomberg walked in the first inning at Fenway Park against the Red Sox.
(Credit: Getty Images / Brian Blanco)The Yankees’ 7-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays on April 2, 2017 was their sixth straight loss on Opening Day — a franchise record.
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