Attending the Padres’ run to the World Series in San Diego back in 1998, members of the Yankees’ upper brass saw how enthusiastically the crowd reacted when Hoffman entered to AC/DC’s “Hells Bells.”
“The Yankees executives who were there saw the great entrance and said, ‘Wow, we need something like that for Mo,’” Bonner said.
Bonner started with the team in 1999, so among the first orders issued to him and scoreboard assistant Joe Pullia were to find a suitable song that would accompany Rivera on his charge out of the bullpen.
Before “Enter Sandman,” two Guns N’ Roses songs—“Welcome to the Jungle” and “Paradise City”—were actually used in games early in 1999, to lukewarm reception.
“It just didn’t have that feel,” Bonner said.
Mike Luzzi, then a freelance crew member with the scoreboard team who was also working at MTV, agreed.
“They were trying a bunch of different songs, and I remember yelling at the guys, ‘Nobody’s going to catch on to this. It’s not working,’” Luzzi said.
So on a Saturday morning, Luzzi lugged his own CD case to Yankee Stadium from Manhattan, pointing to Metallica’s self-titled 1991 album and suggesting everyone listen to the first track on the disc.
“We needed something cooler, more ominous,” said Luzzi, now a vice president at Turner Sports. “Our job was to try and get the building rocking. The gist of it worked, beginning to put the other club to sleep.”
The opening lyrics seemed appropriate to accompany Rivera’s now-legendary cutter: “Say your prayers little one, don’t forget my son, to include everyone, I tuck you in, warm within, keep you free from sin, ‘til the Sandman he comes.”
Posted: September 16, 2011 at 02:02 AM | 10 comment(s)
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