To the right, we see Dan Pasqua, a Yonkers born, north Jersey bred, homegrown outfielder for the Yankees during the 1985, '86, and'87 seasons. Despite the unorthodox batting stance displayed here, Pasqua had some pop, knocking 42 homers in 746 career AB with the Yanks, and posting an impressive 0.210 IsoP during his time in the Bronx. Following the '87 season Pasqua was shipped off to the White Sox for pitcher Rich Dotson, who went on to have a disastrous year plus stint in pinstripes. Pasqua spent the remaining seven years of his career on the south side of Chicago, leading the '88 ChiSox with 20 home runs. As a measure of revenge against his hometown team, Pasqua absolutely torched the Yankees for the remainder of his career, hitting .349/.430/.620 against them in 149 PA.
I've been borderline giddy for about the past twenty four hours. The spring weather has been outstanding over the past several days. I've been able to catch up on sleep from my lost weekend in Montreal. I had been looking forward to yesterday's Future Stars game since the outset of Spring Training. And I've been looking forward to tonight's game since the last piece of ticker tape fell five months ago.
I'm also happy because it's Easter. It's the biggest holiday of the year for Christians around the world (including the Greek Orthodox this year, as they often have it fall on a different date) and I'll be observing and celebrating the holiday accordingly.
I suppose that, without getting blasphemous or dragging the blog into a religion conversation, I find it appropriate that this year Easter - the biggest holiday for my religion - and Opening Day - the biggest day of the year for my secular religion - fall on the same date. Both days offer hope and anticipation of what's to come. Both are rites of spring that I look forward to each year. Both are preceded by long stretches of preparation. In fact, Ash Wednesday, the official start of Lent, fell on February 17th this year - the same day pitchers and catchers reported to Steinbrenner Field.
Or maybe I'm just waxing poetic. If I am, forgive me. I'm just excited to eat, drink, be merry, and watch Opening Night.
Dan Pasqua spent the final full minor league season of his career, 1984, with the Yankees' AA affiliate in Nashville, TN and led the Southern League with 33 HR. So, in recognition of his last name, his time in Nashville, and today being Easter, here's the Yonder Mountain String Band with "East Nashville Easter":