For the second time in a week, Dwight “Doc” Gooden, the Cy Young Award winning pitcher who threw heat on the mound for the New York Mets and Yankees visited the Bronx. Last week, Gooden helped distribute toys for needy youngsters at the annual Christmas party at the Kips Bay Boys & Girls Club in Castle Hill.
Wednesday evening at the TM Baseball Academy on Seabury Avenue, Gooden unknown to most of the aspiring ballplayers from a new generation, conducted baseball instruction for all age groups.
He talked about his experiences of pitching on the big stage in New York, the emotions of signing a contract with the Yankees and eventually throwing a no-hitter in the Bronx.
Said Gooden, a columnist now with NY Sportsday “It’s always good to talk to youngsters about baseball and not making mistakes in life. I enjoy this and will do more. Baseball is a great game for youngsters and a learning experience.”
He got emotional when discussing how George Steinbrenner, the late Yankees owner was willing to give him a second chance when other teams would not. The Yankees signed Gooden to a contract after battling substance abuse issues and he would later culminate his award winning career and tossed a no-hitter in Yankees pinstripes in the Bronx.
TM Baseball is a community-oriented facility that offers instruction for boys and girls, ages of 5-18 years old, and sponsors organized teams that participate in Summer Leagues around the tri-state area as well as travel teams.
The instructional evening of baseball was organized by TM Baseball founders Jessy and Tony Melendez, Ray Negron, a New York Yankees consultant and Hank’s Yanks, a community initiative of Yankees co-owner Hank Steinbrenner.
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