Yankees’ New Monument Park Hints at Another Retired Number

See that right there?! Yep.Photo courtesy of the New York Yankees

When we first saw the photo of the new Yankee Stadium’s Monument Park last week, we were bummed to learn that it has been moved from its quirky current home in left–center field to a charmless spot underneath the restaurant, in the center-field batter’s eye. But after seeing the photo again on Curbed today, we noticed something much more uplifting: To the right of the number 42 — which was added to park last season to commemorate the 60th anniversary of Jackie Robinson’s debut — there’s another plaque! Might we presume it’s for another retired number the Yankees are expecting to add by 2009? It likely won’t be Paul O’Neill’s number 21, which the Yankees issued to Morgan Ensberg this spring after having kept the digits out of circulation for the past six seasons. And though Joe Torre’s number 6 will surely be retired eventually, it won’t be this season, since he’ll be managing the Dodgers. So since we’re sure nothing in this photo was left to chance, we’ll take this to be confirmation that Bernie Williams’s number 51 will be retired this summer. The Yankees have hinted in recent months that they would do something for Williams, though new boss Hank Steinbrenner has kept any details quiet, saying only, “Obviously, Bernie is special to us.” We just hope Bernie finds out without needing a magnifying glass. —Joe DeLessio

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