Thursday, July 22, 2010

Magical run for Yankee rookie Colin Curtis

You can’t blame Colin Curtis for thinking that life is but a dream.

The 25-year-old rookie joined the New York Yankees less than a month ago, but has been in the middle of some of the biggest moments of the Yankees season. Yesterday, in pinch hitting for the ejected Brett Gardner, he had to go up to the plate with a 0-2 count and a tough reliever on the mound. Unfazed, he worked the count to 3-2 and then blasted a Scot Shields fastball over the right-field wall for his first big-league homer, making a tight lead over the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim a lot more comfortable.

Although the turn of events that led to his surprise plate appearance happened very quickly (due to Gardner's uncalled for speedy hook), we probably shouldn't have been surprised to see Curtis thrive in that situation. While he hasn't played much, the youngster has proven to be clutch in his short big-league career, going 4 for 8 in pinch-hitting appearances. He's only had 27 at-bats, but has knocked in seven runs, including his feisty at-bat against 300-pound Los Angeles Dodgers closer Jonathan Broxton to tie that Sunday night baseball game that led to one of the best comeback wins of the season for the Yankees.

What makes his story even more compelling is the fact that Curtis would not even be here if he hadn't beaten testicular cancer as a teenager (hear his remarkable story in his own words). For him to overcome a life-threatening disease at such a young age and go on to live a happy, productive life makes you cheer for him even harder.

Despite Brian Cashman's quest to strengthen his bench, I'm rooting for the rookie’s magical run in the big leagues to continue.

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