November 6 – Happy Birthday Chad Curtis
Curtis had three productive seasons in pinstripes from 1997 through 1999 as the team’s top reserve outfielder. His two home runs in the third game of the 1999 World Series, which included a bottom-of-the-tenth-inning walk-off blast, helped the Yankees sweep the Braves. Born in Marion, IN in 1968, Chad may have had one problem not too many Yankees have experienced during the past 14 years. The rumor was that he and Derek Jeter did not like each other. His problems with the Yankees’ all-time hit leader stemmed from Jeter’s behavior during an August 1999 game between New York and Seattle. There was a brawl between the two teams during the game and instead of getting in the middle of it, Jeter and the Mariners’ Alex Rodriguez stayed off to the side of the action, pretty much making believe they were holding onto each other. Curtis thought Jeter should have worked harder to defend his teammates during the melee and told the shortstop that not once but twice after the incident including once in the Yankee locker room within earshot of reporters. Jeter did not appreciate the criticism and from that point onward, barely spoke to Curtis again. Yankee management then made sure that Jeter would not have to go out of his way to avoid or ignore Curtis any longer when they traded the outfielder to Texas after that 1999 World Series.