NEW YORK -- "New York is definitely the capital of baseball," said newly reelected New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to a mass of exuberant citizens flocked around City Hall at the end of Friday's World Series championship ticker-tape parade.
This is what they were hoping for. The cast of the "Jersey Boys" Broadway smash-hit musical warmed them up, and it all ended with Jay-Z performing the song that is on the airwaves around the clock in the Big Apple: "Empire State of Mind."
In between, the crowd heard from speakers, including Derek Jeter, Yankees general partner Hal Steinbrenner, manager Joe Girardi, Bloomberg and Yankees broadcasters Michael Kay and John Sterling. Here is what they had to say to a throng that filled the streets to watch on giant video monitors amidst the piles of confetti:
"I would also like to thank the mayor, the city of New York and the greatest fans in the world for this wonderful parade and party today. Thank you. The thing I love about this club is, I think they took on the pulse of the city of New York. This was a club that never gave up, even when things were down. This was a club that always had heart, always showed confidence in their abilities and never stopped fighting. And I think that's because of the fans in New York.
"I got a call from The Boss [owner George Steinbrenner] today, and he told me this morning, he said, 'The only thing greater than this celebration is doing it two years in a row.' So he asked me to remind everyone: pitchers and catchers report in 96 days, be ready to defend it."
"I tell you what, it's been too long, hasn't it? It feels good to be back, thank you. On behalf of our entire team -- I'm just up here, I'm just a spokesperson for the team right now -- but on behalf of the team, we want to thank everyone who came out here today. What a parade. It's unbelievable. We really forgot how great it feels. Thank you.
"I know we closed the old stadium and talked about the fans. You're taking the memories from one stadium to the next. You guys definitely did not disappoint us. So this year is for the fans, and especially for The Boss, who's back home with the entire Steinbrenner family. Thank you."
"It's great to be back. On behalf of the whole organization, I'd like to start by thanking Mayor Bloomberg and his entire staff for all of the work they did today. It's hard to believe it's been nine years, but having been nine years, you forget just how magical this is. Thank you to all you New Yorkers, all you fans -- you're the greatest fans in the world.
"Without you fans, none of this would be possible. You've supported us all year long, throughout the bad times and the good times -- and there were some down times. But you kept coming out and you kept supporting us.
"This one is for my dad ... but it's really for you as much as it is for the team and this entire organization, so thanks to all of you out there. My family has always made a commitment to field a championship-caliber team, and I promise you as I stand here today that will never change, and with a little bit of luck, I hope we will be standing right here a year from today."
Mayor Michael Bloomberg
"I told Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter that his team played a great Series. I told him only one team can win the trophy. But I didn't want them to go home empty-handed. So I had a gift idea. I'm sending Jimmy Rollins a brand-new crystal ball."
Bloomberg called Hal Steinbrenner back up to the stage after distributing a key to the city to each member of the Yankees.
"In addition to the key we just gave you," Bloomberg told him, "I just want to ask you to accept another one for someone who couldn't be here today. The biggest Yankee of them all, The Boss, your father, Mr. George Steinbrenner."
Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.