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#29 Greatest HR in Yankee History

October 17, 2012

Jim Leyritz | ALDS Game 2 | vs. Seattle Mariners | 10/4/1995

In a wild 5 hour, 12 minute marathon at Yankee Stadium, Jim Leyritz sent the 57,126 fans home happy with a 2-run home run in the 15th inning.  Don Mattingly’s last game in Yankee Stadium had to be memorable, didn’t it?  After 14 years in the pinstripes the humble 1st baseman from Evansville, Indiana became one of the most beloved Yankees of all-time.  In the 6th he enjoyed his signature moment of his only postseason appearance, a solo blast into the right field bleachers that shook Yankee Stadium to its venerable foundation.  The homer gave the Yanks a 3-2 edge, which the M’s took back in the 7th on a single by Luis Sojo and a sacrifice fly by Ken Griffey, Jr.  In the Yanks’ half of the 7th Paul O’Neill hit a home run of his own to tie the game at 4 and set the stage for the miraculous finish that followed.

4 scoreless innings went by before Griffey, Jr., in what was quickly becoming his personal coming out party, hit his 3rd home run of the series off of John Wetteland.  Ruben Sierra made sure Mattingly did not leave the Stadium with a loss, doubling down the right field line with 2 outs in the Yankee half of the 12th.  The hit scored Jorge Posada from 2nd base, but Bernie Williams was gunned down at the plate, moving the game into the 13th.  Wednesday night became Thursday morning as the American League foes battled on.  In the 15th, with Tim Belcher on the mound, Pat Kelly walked after a Mattingly groundout, brining Leyritz to the plate.  The back-up catcher had only 1 hit in 7 at bats that postseason, but oh, what a hit it was.  After working a 3-1 count, Leyritz took his patented high leg-kick and crushed a ball to deep right field that won the game, 7-5, sending the Bronx faithful into a frenzy.

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