Yankees to retire Nos. 20, 46, 51 this season, honor Willie Randolph with plaque in Monument Park

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(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Gosh. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

After about 24 hours of rumors, the Yankees have made it official this afternoon. Nos. 20, 46, and 51 will be retired this season in honor of Jorge Posada, Andy Pettitte, and Bernie Williams, the team announced. Willie Randolph will also be honored with a plaque in Monument Park. The Yankees didn’t say anything about Derek Jeter in the press release. His day is probably coming in 2016.

Here are the dates for the individual ceremonies this summer:

  • Williams: Sunday, May 24th
  • Randolph: Saturday, June 20th (Old Timers’ Day)
  • Posada: Saturday, August 22nd
  • Pettitte: Sunday, August 23rd

We heard Pettitte’s number was being retired yesterday, when his son Josh spilled the beans. Earlier today we heard Posada and Williams were “likely” to have their numbers retired as well. The Yankees retired Joe Torre’s No. 6 last year, and when they made the official announcement, they said Bernie would be honored in some way this season. Now we know the details.

It goes without saying Posada, Bernie, and Pettitte are all deserving of having their numbers retired. All three are borderline Hall of Famers — Williams has already fallen off the ballot, however, and I think Posada has a better chance of getting in than Pettitte, personally — and were linchpins during the most recent Yankees dynasty. They’re all homegrown, they were all star-caliber performers … what’s not to love about that?

(Getty)
(Getty)

As for Randolph, it’s about damn time he is being honored. He was a catalyst atop New York’s lineup from 1976-88 and is the franchise’s all-time leader in games (1,694) and WAR (53.6) by a second baseman. As I wrote during Retro Week two weeks ago, Randolph’s path to greatness was unique for his era — he was an on-base guy and a defense-first player — but he was he was great nonetheless. The team isn’t retiring his old No. 30 but a plaque is a fine honor.

Once Jeter’s No. 2 is inevitably retired in a year or two, the Yankees will have officially closed the book on the most recent dynasty and honored all the deserving members in some way. Mariano Rivera and Torre had their numbers retired the last two years and both Tino Martinez and Paul O’Neill received plaques in Monument Park last year. Once No. 2 is taken out of circulation, it figures to be a while until another number is retired or another plaque is added to Monument Park.

Nos. 51, 20, and 46 will be the 18th, 19th, and 20th retired numbers in team history, respectively. Nos. 1 (Billy Martin), 3 (Babe Ruth), 4 (Lou Gehrig), 5 (Joe DiMaggio), 6 (Torre), 7 (Mickey Mantle), 8 (Yogi Berra and Bill Dickey), 9 (Roger Maris), 10 (Phil Rizzuto), 15 (Thurman Munson), 16 (Whitey Ford), 23 (Don Mattingly), 32 (Elston Howard), 37 (Casey Stengel), 42 (Rivera and Jackie Robinson), 44 (Reggie Jackson), 49 (Ron Guidry) are all retired.

Previewing the Yanks' few Spring Training position battles
Monday Night Open Thread
  • Alex Reddardriguez

    This is 100% the right decision. The Core 4 and Bernie all deserve to have their numbers retired. Willie deserves a plaque. Paulie should have #21 retired. Jeter and Mariano will have monuments.

    • mattpat11

      Hopefully nobody gets a monument for a long time

      • Preston

        Jeter is getting a monument.

      • Preston

        Jeter is getting a monument.

        • tbone1570

          The protocol the Yanks follow is that monuments are only erected for deceased people.So there should be a long wait for Jeter’s monument.

          • Moncada’s Codpiece

            Yeah, easy to forget sometimes. Plaques, monuments, numbers, machine guns…so many honors.

      • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

        Why would you want that? If they were able to retire numbers 20-90 in the next 30 years, that would be great.

        • mattpat11

          They only give monuments to dead people

        • Moncada’s Codpiece

          Danny Tartabull Day will be this Tuesday in the Peekskill Metro North parking lot.

          • Jorge Steinbrenner

            Chuck Cary Day? May 24th. My place.

          • cashmoney

            Follow by John habyan- a celebration at new canaan bathroom stall third on the left.

    • LazerTown

      You start running out of numbers if you give it to every halfway decent player. Rather be cautious now than unretire numbers. If you try and unretire numbers you just look like an ass.

  • mattpat11

    Awesome. I’d also really like to see them do something for Bobby Murcer

  • Christian Yaple

    Stop the fucking madness with the numbers. Give them plaques, fine. But numbers? Slow the fuck down. Stop trying to do these obvious as hell cash grabs.

  • The Shanesaw

    When the hell is enough retired numbers enough?

  • Michael Berkowitz

    Finally, Bernie and Willie. I’m a little iffy on Jorge getting his number retired. After Jeter, maybe a “no more number retirements” policy, like the Giants have.

  • pfoj

    Well, I’ll be there August 22 and at that point I may as well grab an AirBnB and stick around for Andy’s day. I know these ceremonies are shameless cash grabs, but I’m helpless.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      I stayed in a great Airbnb apartment in the heart of Williamsburg a couple of months ago, if you need a recommendation.

      • Moncada’s Codpiece

        How much would something like that go for these days? Family’s place in Astoria would be super cramped for any potential visits longer than overnight.

        • Jorge Steinbrenner

          Depends on a ton of things. Just go to the site and go to town.

          I always look for places with a solid amount of reviews.

      • pfoj

        Yes please.

  • Jack

    It obviously seems kind of ridiculous that they are retiring these many numbers so quickly (mariano, jeter, torre, posada, bernie, pettitte) but who is next in line to have their number retired? Not one player on the MLB roster has even a small shot (except maybe tanaka?). There will probably not be another retired jersey for 25 years. Also, how often does a 20-year stretch of play like the yankees just had come along? Each one of these guys were great and belong in monument park.

    • Pete22

      Arod, Clemens, Mussina, Matsui, CC all have a case. Before anyone scoffs at ARod he is the Yankees WAR leader the past 10 years.

      Up and coming, Tanaka, Pineda. Severino, Judge. Bird, Ref, Didi, Ellsbury, Gardner, Betances and Moncada depending on health and development and performance

      So in 25 years more than 1/3 of the numbers below 100 may be retired

      • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

        CC has no case, honestly.

        • Jorge Steinbrenner

          Yeah. None of those are happening.

      • pfoj

        CC would need to go on for another five years as a significantly above average pitcher and be an integral piece to at least one more championship before he’s even in the conversation.
        For the rest of that list, A-Rod and Clemens won’t get it for character issues. Mussina doesn’t have a ring and isn’t anywhere near as beloved as Mattingly, he doesn’t have a chance. If Tino and O’Neill don’t get numbers retired then Matsui doesn’t stand a chance himself.

        The young guys are all possible I guess, but I’d set the over under there at .5 retired numbers from that group and feel comfortable taking the under.

  • Jorge Steinbrenner

    Pretty soon, the retired numbers will stretch out to “Beers of the World.”

    It’s a bit of overkill, but whatever. I figured they’d get to all of these numbers eventually anyway.

    So when do we get the “trying to drive up attendance” theory? It’s 4:14 PM as I type this. 4:30?

    • Moncada’s Codpiece

      A true rant on it? I’ll go 4:45 (Eastern). Price Is Right rules?

      Everyone can slot in 15 minute intervals. Winner gets internet fame. And we all know that’s something not just anybody can attain.

      • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

        I’ve got 5:15. But it’s not a rant, just a post on why Moncada should get his number retired and biceps into a monument.

        • Moncada’s Codpiece

          His biceps each get their own numbers.

          • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

            Retire them too.

      • Moncada’s Codpiece

        Well, I’m out.

    • cashmoney

      Fette Sau is I all remember… and a place only serves meatballs and gravy. But yeah, Williamsburg reminds me of East village plus greenwich and battery park all roll into one.

      • Jorge Steinbrenner

        Fette Sau is excellent. That area has changed a TON, though, even in the past two years. It’s become swanky to almost ridiculous extremes, in places.

        • cashmoney

          It’s cheaper to find a place on upper east side than w I been told. yeah tremendous changes, in no small part to the waterfront area.

          • Jorge Steinbrenner

            Lack of zoning as well.

            Not gon lie. Still love it, but I have to shake my head sometimes.

            Back to disrespecting Bernie.

        • Moncada’s Codpiece

          Still hard for me to put “swank” and Billyberg in the same sentence, even though I know that’s been the case for a while now.

          Sigh, I miss the way things were in 1996.

          • Jorge Steinbrenner

            Wythe and Kent are Tribeca at this point.

            • Moncada’s Codpiece

              Gross. I can appreciate Tribeca for whatever it is, but it can stay there.

  • Moncada’s Codpiece

    Cue the rage. Of course, a lot of it is to sell tickets and merch. The Yankees are a business, after all.

  • Preston

    Why are Jorge and Andy talking? Why are they ignoring Bernie? Why is everybody ignoring Bernie? He was a key to the dynasty!

    • pfoj

      They’re shunning him for wearing jeans.

    • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

      Bernie who? What did he do for the dynasty? Bake them burgers to keep the real stars and players happy?

      • Jorge Steinbrenner

        Bernie is the LaTroy to Chuck Cary’s Paulie.

  • Monterocouldstillbedinero

    Bucky Dent-step up and have a day on us! We’ll retire your # too! It will be great when we eventually retire 1-25 (that’s right Tex, you too!) but skip 13.

  • Slu

    Anyone that gets worked up one way or another about retired numbers needs to find something else to do.

  • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

    So when does Yoan Moncada’s number get retired? August 24th?

    • pfoj

      Well, they have to assign one to him first. So, the day after that happens.

      • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

        I’m assuming it’s going to be a sign, HoF induction, number retired deal in the same day?

        • Squats F9er

          Sounds like a busy day. I hope that there is some time for Hannah Davis.

          • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

            I don’t know, I feel like she’d ugly up the entire day after starting off with Moncada.

        • pfoj

          The canonization will have to wait for the next day.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      They’ve scheduled it already…..at Petco Park. BOOM.

      • HoopDreams

        Terry will walk there and give us a first hand review of the festivities

        • Jorge Steinbrenner

          All in racial code. Yes.

    • I am Brett Godner

      Probably the same year as they retire Yadier Alvarez’s. It will be nice for them to be able to share the honor.

  • ScottinSJ

    I’m upset that Willie’s day is being lumped in with Old Timers’ Day. Have the Yankees learned nothing? They are missing the opportunity to pack the house on some otherwise non-eventful weekend day. Where’s the marketing savvy here? Someone failed.

    • Pete22

      Your talking about an organization that does not interact with fans and has close to the lowest number of tweets among all MLB teams per FG. Out of touch.

      • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

        Who cares how many times the Yankees tweet? How ridiculous.

        • LazerTown

          Because they show TWTW.

          • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

            This graph has to be legit, I mean, it’s a graph!

        • Jorge Steinbrenner

          They’re behind Chelsea Handler, Miley Cyrus, and Bruce Willis’s daughter on tweeting topless shots. Cashman failed.

      • Moncada’s Codpiece

        Twitter? Alrighty, then.

  • Tony Wilson

    Nice to hear all the core members of the latest Yankee dynasty will be honored.

  • SweetSpot

    Jared Burton! World Series here we come. (off topic but could not restrain my excitement)

    • Tony Wilson

      Lol

    • ScottinSJ

      I think I’d rather have Tim Burton and his newest film idea: The Nightmare After Jeter.

  • dotpatrick

    Kind of wish they waited a year and honored Jeter, Posada, Pettite, Mo and Bernie in the same year. Those guys accomplished so much together during that dominant stretch and that would have been really cool.

    • ScottinSJ

      They need to draw the fans in 2015. This has nothing to do with sentimentality.

      • RetroRob

        Never has.

  • Giuseppe Franco

    Can’t wait for the day they honor Clay Bellinger.

    • ScottinSJ

      It’s coming. They’ll start with invites to Old Timers’ Day. Then, they’ll have some clever artist put together a Clay-mation depiction of all of his best moments. They’ll show it on the big screen, to be followed by the retirement of his number 12. The pride of Oneonta should and will get his due. I give it 4 years max.

  • Jman1213

    I wouldn’t call Pettitte a borderline HOFer. He was a very good pitcher, yes. But the Hall calls for greatness, and he just wasn’t great.

  • Sir Didi Odell Nakamura Jr

    I just wanted to say that it’s extremely stupid how some of you think that they are retiring numbers as a ploy to make money. That’s utterly ridiculous. No franchise is going to retire numbers to put butts in the seats and make cash, that’s extremely stupid to say. I will say that it’s completely possible that they pushed the retirements a year or two earlier than they had wanted to try and get money now. They would’ve retired all the numbers anyway, be it in 2020 or 2015.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner

      Also, if it’s a strategy:

      1. It’s a really good one.
      2. There’s no other franchise that could pull it off because of, you know, success.

    • Pete22

      You live in a different universe than I. The bar has been lowered for more cash IMO.

    • RetroRob

      I agree with you in the sense that retiring Posada’s number isn’t unto itself going to make money to a substantial enough degree. That’s not why they are doing it. Yet there is a moneymaking element at play. For example, the HOF (the one in Cooperstown) wasn’t created to elect the greatest players ever. It is was created to help market the game. Related, the Yankees retirement of numbers, and the mythmaking that goes with it, is about marketing the Yankees. So, agreed, Posada’s number itself is not about making money, but the retirement of numbers, giving plaques and days is about perpetuating the mystique of the NY Yankees brand, and in that there is much money to be made. Posada as a member of the Core Four, and Bernie are members of the last great Yankees dynasty. The Yankees will play off of that for decades to come, and that’s what this is all about, including giving Tino a plaque.

  • RetroRob

    I have a tendency to push against the retirement of numbers, being in the camp that I’d be fine if they only retired Jeter’s and Mo’s (obviously retired already). More plaques, less numbers. That said, no issue with retiring Andy, Jorge and Bernie’s numbers. All three are borderline HOFers, with the general narrative being they are on the wrong side of the bar, yet an unbiased look based on the history of the HOF says they probably are right at or above the HOF bar. None would lower it, yet the standard to make the HOF today is higher than it’s ever been, so I don’t expect them to be elected. Bernie was dismissed quickly, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Andy and Jorge are also. That all said, I do think all three of them will be elected by some future version of the veteran’s committee, probably based on lobbying by Mo and Derek, and the passage of time that will embellish that Yankee dynasty. I could be wrong on that, but it’s something that won’t happen for a number of decades.

    For those concerned about the retirement of too many numbers, I wouldn’t be. The Yankees should have more retired numbers than other teams, and who really cares if future Yankees have more numbers in the 30s, 40, 50s, etc.? Hell, let someone be the first triple digit! It’s the player and his accomplishments that define the number. Looking at the entire history of the NY Yankees, there isn’t a comparable group of players who haven’t been honored. Homegrown Yankees, borderline HOFers, key members of a true dynasty. As fans, we should hope we are blessed again with five homegrown players like Mo, Derek, Andy, Bernie, and Jorge who together have both the career success and the team success to have their numbers retired.

    • Farewell Mo and Jeet

      I agree the number retiring should probably be limited and one way to limit it would be for just HOFers. If they are retiring the numbers of Bernie, Pettitte and Posada however, IMO, they should too for Randolph who was a part of 2 world champions and had arguably as good if not a better career than the other 3.

    • Pete22

      I agree with most of your comment. Have to argue about Andy. He is not a borderline HOF’er IMO (only 1 of 5 of the HOF predictors has him in). Had 3 outstanding years with the Yankees, otherwise was a proverbial league average innings eater. Not to say that’s not valuable just not retire number stuff. He also left the team for less money and may have cost the Yankees another championship by doing so, and of course, there is the PED taint. Yeah, ok, he was honest about it, but then so was Giambi and the Yankees looked into getting out of his contract (so much for honesty pays)

      • Farewell Mo and Jeet

        Andy Pettittie: 68.4 career WAR, 3.85 ERA, 3.70 FIP, 86 ERA-, 84 FIP-.
        Tom Glavine: 64.3 career WAR, 3.54 ERA, 3.95 FIP, 86 ERA-, 94 FIP-

        Explain to me how Pettitte isn’t a HOFer and Glavine got in on the first ballot?? Only possible explanation would be the bullshit anti-PED crusaders keeping him out.

        • Pete22

          Glavine had a 8 year stretch Any never came close to with a 138 ERA+ from 91-98.

          Andy best 7-8 year stretch was a 119 ERA+.

          Glavine also won 300 games, so that why he got in. He may not get in, at least not on the 1st round without the wins. He was also w/o PED taint. Glavine won 2 Cy Youngs, Andy none

          Andy had a better finish to his career than Glavine. Glavines last 6 years hurt some of his rate stats and Andy boosted his counting stats relative to Glavine with a better finish (war).

          • Farewell Mo and Jeet

            I assume you realize, the difference between 256 and 305 wins should be insignificant in regard to HOF admission. It’s also cherry picking pointing out Glavine’s best 8 year stretch vs Pettitte’s especially since it’s pretty much a total career achievement honor and not just who had the highest peak.

  • Pete22

    Shots fired here

    “”Congrats to 46. Yankees retiring his number. Hopefully they don’t retire it like his HGH testimony,” Knoblauch tweeted on his official Twitter account Sunday.”

    • Farewell Mo and Jeet

      That was a pathetic twitter exchange by a bitter and pathetic person. Sad to see what Knoblauch has become.

      • RetroRob

        That is pretty sad. Knoblauch also failed a test, so it almost feels like he’s angry he’s been shunned, but Andy is being honored. The fact that he can’t see why Andy exists in a different part of the Yankees universe, and the baseball universe than he does is sad or at the least says something about his mindset. Since he failed a PED test, he should be happy when other players can rise above their failed test because it might ultimately help him.

        • Pete22

          He also had his Twins ceremony cancelled for domestic assault. He had to remind someone he also failed a test on the twitter exchange when the person said he might have reached 1B with PED’s. Pretty surprising. Must be a history we don’t know about

          • RetroRob

            I forgot about the domestic assault issue. Makes it even more strange.

            • Farewell Mo and Jeet

              Has to be some history between the two because Knoblauch couldn’t possibly think his 4 seasons with the Yankees, 2 of which were horrendous, merits anywhere near the same esteem as compared to Pettitte.

              • RetroRob

                Really, it’s hard to guess what’s going on inside his head. There definitely has to be some bad blood there. Calling out a player and a former teammate when his team announces basically the highest honor they can give him is strange and petty.

                • Dave Guarnieri

                  Knoblauch is a bitter prick. Andy played as big a role in the Yankee glory years as Bernie or Posada but made a bad choice in choosing pals (Oh Roger).

                  That said, the Yankee motives are selfish here.

  • EndlessMikeJr

    No stars,A-Rod scrutiny, Rotation ??,no true homerun hitters of course they are gonna retire these numbers.You need something to watch this team thats not really good,is a little boring and filled with ????.

  • David Fishbein

    As a Yankee fan dating back to 1983 when I was just 7 years old.. a true Yankee fan.. I went through the Paul Zuevella years.. The Andy Hawkins no hitter that he lost because of mike blowers 4 errors in the game.. I am so sick of hearing this “core 4” statement.. I believe it’s an insult to BERNIE BASEBALL cause the Yankees easily win 2 less World Series with out him on their team through those years.. And let’s be honest the only reason it’s not the Fab 5 is because of them bums in Michigan

  • Dave Guarnieri

    An attendance grab pure and simple. I loved all these guys but really, the motivation behind this is pretty transparent. I hope the fans will use the same restraint Hal used over the winter with budget. We have spent a lot of money on bad teams, so its time to conserve.

    If they don’t win, stay home. Just being prudent. Cashman executed, under orders, terrific financial restraint. I’ll be doing the same. The Yankees need talent, not 4 more glorified old timer reunions.

    And Willie, who apparently does not have the resume to be rehired as a coach, but he gets a day and a plaque? Love ya Willie but I’ll have to watch it on TV, ONCE.

  • Dave Guarnieri

    An attendance grab pure and simple. I loved all these guys but really, the motivation behind this is pretty transparent. I hope the fans will use the same restraint Hal used over the winter with budget. We have spent a lot of money on bad teams, so its time to conserve.

    If they don’t win, stay home. Just being prudent. Cashman executed, under orders, terrific financial restraint. I’ll be doing the same. The Yankees need talent, not 4 more glorified old timer reunions.

    And Willie, who apparently does not have the resume to be rehired as a coach, but he gets a day and a plaque? Love ya Willie but I’ll have to watch it on TV, ONCE.

  • Rob Shepheard

    I watched my 1st baseball game (1st by choice) at 4 yrs old…of was a Yankees game. I immediately became Thurman Munson’s biggest fan, and he was baseball to me…until Willie Randolph took the field in Pinstripes for the first time. 40 years later, and Willie is STILL my all-time favorite player. He never was the focal point of the team, and didn’t get the headlines that Reggie, Pinella, Goose, Thurmon, Catfish, Donnie Baseball, or Dent got…but he played his ass off EVERY GAME, and could turn a DP or get a needed base hit in the clutch almost at will. I averaged above .300 during my baseball playing days (5-15 yrs old), but I was barely average defensively; something that killed me because Willie was so good in the field. He won’t ever make the HoF & his number won’t be retired, but he most definitely deserves that plaque in Monument Park.