BOSTON (CBS SF) — When San Francisco Giants rookie outfielder Mike Yastrzemski walked in Fenway Park Tuesday, memories filled his mind and a smile crept across his face.
A “Yaz” was once again in the park. There was a feeling of being home again.
“I got to walk in here by myself when I got to the field,” he told reporters as he sat in the dugout. “There was a lot of memories of being in the stands, being in the stands for the World Series, being in the stands for the ’99 Home Run Derby. The All-Star Game. Being with family at games and those things overwhelmed me more than actually playing here.”
“Playing here is cool and I see it as part of my job, something I always wanted to do so that doesn’t overwhelm me. But being in a setting I have so many fond memories with friends, family and then having them be here is special.”
What also is special to Boston fans is that a Yastremski will once again be patrolling the outfield. Mike’s grandfather, Carl, was one of most revered players in Boston history.
“Everyone dreams about going home and playing in front of their hometown,” he said. “To be here and to just have make this trip is special.”
When asked how he’ll feel being in the same outfield, his grandfather once starred in, the younger Yastrzemski answered: “That makes it a little more special for the fans than for me. It is great for the experience.”
Yastrzemski said he was in high school when he began to realize just how great his grandfather had been.
“I was probably in high school when I realized the magnitude of the impact he (his grandfather) had on the city,” the Giants rookie said. “You always hold a special place in your heart for your grandfather and to have him be able to be here is awesome.”
Yastrzemski said he honestly doesn’t know how he will react the first time he walks up to the plate Tuesday night.
“I don’t get wrapped up in moments very easily,” he said. “I trained my whole life to block out situations…I think tonight I need to take a step back and get lost in maybe one of the moments and let myself appreciate it and experience it. And then we can get back to business.”
In a special moment during the 4th inning of Tuesday’s game, Yastrzemski hit a homer to center field to put the Giants up 5-1. It was his 20th of the season.