George Steinbrenner gets his place alongside Babe Ruth and Mickey Mantle in Yankee Stadium’s Monument Park today as the New York Yankees honor their late owner before the start of a four-game series against Tampa Bay.
Steinbrenner was 80 when he died July 13, seven months after the 37th anniversary of his ownership. The team won seven World Series championships and 11 American League titles during his tenure as principal owner.
A ceremony to unveil Steinbrenner’s monument will start tonight at 7 p.m., 30 minutes before the scheduled start of the Yankees’ game against the Rays.
New York holds a half-game lead over Tampa Bay for both the AL Eastern Division lead and the best overall record in Major League Baseball. The Rays have won eight of the first 14 games between the division rivals this season.
Monument Park is an open-air shrine beyond the center-field wall in the new Yankee Stadium.
Originally built during the renovation of the old stadium in the late 1970s, the park has monuments for Ruth, Mantle, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio and manager Miller Huggins. All are members of baseball’s Hall of Fame.
There also are plaques commemorating players and managers with retired numbers, front-office leaders, team broadcasters and three Popes -- Paul VI, John Paul II and Benedict XVI -- who celebrated Mass at the stadium.
The Yankees said Steinbrenner’s wife, Joan, and all four of the couple’s children -- Hal, Hank, Jennifer and Jessica -- are scheduled to attend the ceremony. Steinbrenner’s granddaughter, Haley Swindal, will sing God Bless America after the top half of the seventh inning.