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One of the Yes Network's most aired shows are their Yankee Classics.  Generally, during the regular season on off days and mornings before a game when there was none the day before, you can catch the Yankees Classics.  Then they fill up a lot of the schedule with them during the off-season.  As a Yankee fan, I think it's a great idea, although the ranking of some games as "Classics" can sometimes be questions.

Well, this is an attempt to log as many of the Yankee Classics that have been shown including some commentary and rankings on whether they really are classics or...not so much.

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Regular Season vs. National League
1977 All-Star Game
Tuesday, July 19, 1977
Final Score: 7-5
Yankee Classic Rating (1 low to 10 high): 8
Notable for being the first "Yankee Classic" where the Yankee players lost.  Of course, it was an all-star game, so it meant nothing.  Ahhh, the good old days.  Commentary aside, this was aired in 2008, the last year of the original Yankee Stadium, when baseball said goodbye with one more big event at Major League Baseball's grandest venue.  YES thought it would be interesting to show the last previous all-star game at Yankee Stadium which was held in 1977.  They were right.  In addition to 17 Hall-of-Famers (at the time this was written), five Yankee players were in the game:  Willie Randolph (starting at 2nd, batting second), Reggie Jackson (starting in right, batting 6th), Graig Nettles, Thurman Munson and Sparky Lyle (all reserves.)

Willie Randolph went 1-for-5 (yeah, he played the whole game!) with an RBI single off Tom Seaver in the seventh.  Reggie went 1-for-2 with a strikeout and a single in the second off N.L. Starter Don Sutton.  Graig Nettles entered the game in the 7th and went 0-for-2.  Thurman pinch hit for Sparkly Lyle with two-out and nobody on in the bottom of the ninth and struck out against...Rich Gossage who, two batters earlier, surrendered a two-run home run to George Scott.

Sparky Lyle came in to start the eighth inning with the N.L. leading 5-3.  He quickly gave up a double to Garry Templeton, then hit Jerry Morales.  After a wild pitch moved the runners up, Dave Winfield connected for a two-run single to break the game open.  Reggie Smith followed with a single before Sparkly settled down to get a double play and retire the next four batters after that.

Now, I already mentioned Gossage and Winfield.  In addition to the five Yankees in this game, there were also ten players that would go on to become Yankees at some point in the future: Gossage, Winfield,  Ken Griffey, John Candelaria, Rick Reuschel, Butch Wynegar, Ruppert Jones, Bert Campaneris, Dave LaRoche and Frank Tanana.  Going one step further...future Yankee announcer Ken Singleton also played in the game.

If only A.L. starter Jim Palmer didn't get bombed for four runs in the first inning (including two home runs: a lead-off to Joe Morgan and a two-run shot by Greg Luzinski) it might have been a better game with a better ending.  The A.L. pulled to 5-3 in the seventh, but then...well, I already went over Sparky Lyle's appearance.  Definitely worth a watch from a historical aspect, but it's unlikely to get additional airings anytime soon.  At least until there's another all-star game in Yankee Stadium.


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