NEW YORK -- As the countdown to the final game at Yankee Stadium comes to an end tonight, and the Bombers take the field for the last time in baseball's Cathedral, fans can relive some of the classic games that took place in the historic ballpark.
BaseballChannel.TV is airing 18 consecutive hours of classic Yankee Stadium contests and footage as a tribute to the Stadium and the impact it's had. Programming began at 12:01 a.m. ET and runs through 6 p.m.
A building filled with memories, Yankee Stadium has been the site of countless memorable moments and players who left their mark on the sport's history. Today's shows and replays will give viewers a chance to look back as the ballpark prepares to close its doors for the final time.
They can see David Wells drop to his knees after he retired 27 straight batters in 1998 to earn a perfect game, or Dwight Gooden's 135-pitch no-hitter in 1996 to pick up his first win in 23 months. Another featured contest will showcase Roger Clemens as he took on the Twins in 2003 and came away with his 300th career win and 4,000th career strikeout, the only time in history a player has reached both milestones in the same game.
Fans will be able to cap off the festivities by reliving Reggie Jackson's awesome October feat. They can watch Mr. October blast three first-pitch home runs in Game 6 against of the 1977 World Series to give the Yankees the championship over the Dodgers.
Some of the classic games to be featured became famous because of a single instant or play. And during the 1996 American League Championship Series, it was a young fan who made the game memorable. When Derek Jeter sent a ball flying to right field, 12-year-old Jeffrey Maier reached over the wall to pull it over the fence before Baltimore outfielder Tony Tarasco could grab it. The homer tied the game and put the Yankees in position to win as Bernie Williams delivered the walk-off shot in the 11th inning.
Jeter earned the nickname "Mr. November" in another spotlighted matchup during Game 4 of the 2001 World Series against the Diamondbacks on Halloween. With two outs in the ninth inning, Tino Martinez blasted a two-run homer to tie the game. Mariano Rivera retired the side in the following frame, and just as the clock ticked past midnight and into November, Jeter slugged a home run that earned the Yankees the walk-off win.
|BaseballChannel.TV schedule (All times ET)|
|Midnight || May 17, 1998: Baseball immortality! David Wells' perfect game|
|2 a.m. ||May 14, 1996: Dwight Gooden's no-hitter|
|4:15 a.m. || 1999 World Series, Game 4: Roger Clemens & Mariano Rivera combine to lead Yanks to title|
|5:45 a.m. || 2000 World Series, Game 2: Subway series intensity: Clemens vs. Piazza|
|7:45 a.m. ||1996 World Series, Game 6: Yankees put away "the team of the '90s"
|10 a.m. || June 8, 1969 Mickey Mantle day|
|11 a.m. || 2001 World Series, Game 4: Tino Martinez's HR in the 9th sets stage for Derek Jeter's "Mr. November" game-winner|
|2 p.m. ||2003 ALCS, Game 7: Babe, Bucky. BOONE! Aaron's 11th-inning blast sinks Sox|
|4:30 p.m. ||1977 World Series Game 6: Reggie's 3 home runs |
And fans are sure to remember the recent classic in 2003 during Game 7 of the ALCS when the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry intensified with a trip to the World Series on the line. A pitching duel between Roger Clemens and Pedro Martinez lived up to the billing, and the teams remained deadlocked after nine innings. But Aaron Boone cemented his place in history as he clobbered a walk-off home run off of Boston's Tim Wakefield to put the Yankees on top.
Of more recent vintage, BaseballChannel.TV will highlight the 2008 All-Star Game at the stadium, the festivities and the epic performance of Josh Hamilton in the Home Run Derby.
The replays will be sprinkled with short features, including Baseball's Best Moments and "Yankee Stadium Memories." Current and former players, from the Yankees and visiting clubs all know the history of the Cathedral, and BaseballChannel.TV's programming will give viewers a taste of the unforgettable events that took place at the ballpark before it closes its doors for good.
Samantha Newman is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.