Fort Lauderdale, FL
Park # 39
What I Remember
Among the list of figures I need to research while putting the final touches on In League with America, how many first pitches we threw, However, I will never forget the first one, it was 30 years ago today in Fort Lauderdale.
I recall that we were a little surprised not to find a bigger crowd for a Saturday night game in a metropolitan area of several million people but we soon learned that small crowds are a fact of life in the Florida State League. The month of March has a combination that is hard to live up to in the Sunshine State, the weather is perfect, sunny and warm but usually not too hot and major league players are on honing their skills on the field.
But from mid April through August temperatures go up and the level of play, let’s just say its another level, and so the big spring training parks are often mostly empty for Florida State League play.
Baseball City Royals 5 Fort Lauderdale Yankees 3 (10 Inns)
The Box: (Click the arrows to see more images)
Not only did we get to throw out the first pitch in Fort Lauderdale, the Yankees staff also got us a hotel room for the night and given that our bank account was nearly down to zero at that point it was much appreciated.