Todd Frazier grew up in Toms River, New Jersey as a fan of baseball. He liked the Yankees and Red Sox. He loved watching Trot Nixon face Roger Clemens. When his team won the Little League World Series, he got to stand next to Derek Jeter on the field before a Yankees game.
He made his home Yankee debut against a Reds team that drafted him and called him up to the show in 2011. He
was an All-Star in 2014 when he was able to play in front of his home fans in the Midsummer Classic, a 2014 season in which he hit 35 home runs.
Now Frazier is a Yankee and he had to figure out what to do for the roll call from the bleacher creatures.
“I was asking everybody what to do,” Frazier said after the Yankees 4-2 win over the Reds on Tuesday night. “I couldn’t think of anything and I sort of gave that Shooter McGavin kind of thing.”
Jordan Montgomery was in the middle of throwing a pitch, so Frazier was able to milk the cheers a moment longer, and his Happy Gilmore reference went over well.
“A couple of guys liked it, so I guess I gotta go with that from now on,” Frazier said.
Right after that, Cincinnati speedster Billy Hamilton hit a grounder to third and Frazier threw him out.
“It took a little pressure off and away we went,” Frazier said.
It was Frazier’s first at-bat at Yankee Stadium as a member of the Yankees that will go on the highlight or blooper reel. Three singles loaded the bases with nobody out in the bottom of the second. He received a nice hand from the crowd, including friends and family from New Jerey. Frazier worked the count to 3-1 against Reds starter Luis Castillo, a memorable name in the Bronx.
Maybe it would be a grand entrance for the new Yankee.
Instead, Frazier hit a one-hopper to short, and a 6-3-5-6 triple play was started. It was only the seventh time since 1930 that a run scored on a triple play, and the first since 2006.
“I think I might have set a record for first ever at-bat with the Yankees getting a triple play, that’s gotta be a record,” Frazier said. “It’s funny to laugh about it now but at the time I was a little upset.”
The new third baseman mentioned that Brett Gardner was laughing at him and that another teammate asked for the ball.
“We got a run in but hopefully that doesn’t ever happen again,” Frazier said.
Things got better at the plate, as he singled to left in his next at-bat. Frazier drew a walk in his third plate appearance of the night.
Montgomery pitched a gem, and the bullpen was able to hold on as the Yankees won their first game back in the Bronx after a long road trip.
The personable third baseman who has played in at least 150 games in each of the last four seasons will likely be popular with fans. He spoke to the media after the game with his three-year-old son, Blake, sitting in his dad’s chair by the locker.
“Just a really great experience, not just for me, but for my family and friends,” Frazier said of the homecoming.