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My Night Before Christmas

My Night Before Christmas

By Paul Semendinger

(Originally published on December 24, 2020)


“Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the town People hoped and wished for that team of renown. The roster was being built by B. Cashman with great care, With hopes that new players would soon be there; The fans (young and old) were all snug in their beds; With visions of championships dancing in their heads. And mamma in her flannels, and I in my NY hat Were thinking of spring and Judge’s first at bat, When outside of the house there came such a clatter, I sprang from the couch to see what was the matter. I rushed to the window and tore open the curtain This Christmas dream was coming true… of this I was certain! The lights on the houses brightened all the streets To make it still seem like noon – oh it was neat! When what to my wondering eyes did appear, But collection of ballplayers – all coming so near! Walking fast with a steady leader in the center I knew in a moment that must be Steinbrenner. More rapid than Blue Jays his players… they came, And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name: ”Now, Torres! Now Gio! Giancarlo! Chad Green!” It was the Yankees, all of them, I mean! “Come Hicks, On Gerrit, Hurry over old Zack” And it was then that saw Hal with his sack. “To the top of the standings! To the top of them all! We’re going to be the best in all of baseball.” And then, in an instant, I knew the great news. The Yankees were all in, they shared my hopeful views. As I drew in my head, and was turning around, In the front door came Hal without even a sound. He was dressed all in pinstripes, from his head to his toe With speed he rushed over, his face all aglow. The collection of players had followed him in They all seemed determined, but Cashman wore a grin. His eyes—how they twinkled! His smile was knowing It felt like ball season, even though it was snowing. He was focused, and ready, a darn good old GM He looked said, “And you must be Dr. Sem.” A wink of his eye and a twist of his head Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread; He reached in his case and said, “I need a pitcher” And handed me a contract saying, “This will make you richer.” Into my arms, those papers, that contract, I took As my hands, and my whole body, quivered and shook, “We need your skills, your right arm, you’ll do fine, Now take this Mont Blanc and sign on the line.” And giving a nod, all the players they cheered. They wanted me on the team. They seemed so sincere. I signed the big contract and was now a New York Yank It was to Cash and Hal… and God that I thanked. And then in an instant, they dashed out to the cold It was on to the Bronx… that’s what I was told. And I them heard them exclaim, as they marched out of sight— “Merry Christmas to all, have a great night… We’ll see you in February in Spring Training,” (they said) “Now get your rest… We have a big season ahead!”


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