If not for Long Islander Mike Messina, Derek Jeter may never have been nicknamed “Mr. November.”
As Halloween night approached midnight, and November lurked seconds away, Jeter came to the plate at Yankee Stadium. It was Game 4 of the 2001 World Series against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The score was tied at 2 in the bottom of the ninth.
Meanwhile, in the Yankees’ control room, Messina, who works in the scoreboard and video production department, mentioned to his colleague Jim Shutterly that they should put “Welcome to November baseball” up on the scoreboard as the clock struck midnight.
Midnight arrived, as did MLB’s first time playing in November.
Shutterly followed Messina’s suggestion. And shortly after midnight, Jeter, with his inside-out swing, took Byung-Hyun Kim’s 3-and-2 pitch over the rightfield wall to even the series at two games apiece.
A fan quickly scribbled “Mr. November” on a sign that was captured on the Fox television broadcast, eliciting then-Yankees radio announcer Michael Kay to say, “He is Mr. November.”
Messina, 52, who is in his 21st season with the Yankees, has seen his fair share of memorable moments. And not…
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