New York Yankees: Jorge Posada Confirms the Core Four Is Now a Dynamic Duo

Rick Weiner@RickWeinerNYFeatured ColumnistNovember 10, 2011

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 25:  Jorge Posada #20 of the New York Yankees waves to the crowd after hitting a 2 RBI home run in the third inning against the Boston Red Sox on September 25, 2011 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images

And then there were two.

In an announcement that should come as a surprise to no one, yesterday Jorge Posada acknowledged that he will not be returning to the New York Yankees for his 18th season in pinstripes.

He has not decided whether or not he wants to continue playing or if he is even willing to put on a different uniform, something he says he will likely debate until February.

While many members of the media and some fans have vilified Posada for his lackluster defensive abilities and lucrative contracts, there is a segment of fans who were behind Jorge up until his last at-bat.

To understand why, we need to put things in perspective.

From 1930 up until 1979, a span of nearly 50 years, Yankee fans were spoiled.

While the team had many highs and lows and saw multiple Hall of Fame players take the field in "The House that Ruth Built," there was never a question about the men behind the plate.

Whether it was Bill Dickey, Yogi Berra, Elston Howard or Thurman Munson, there was always a "big-time" player calling the game for the Yankees.

For fans, such as myself, who were born in the early-to-mid 1970's, we only knew of these legendary Yankees by name.

Very few of us have any real memory of Munson, if we saw him play at all, and certainly only knew the rest by reputation or appearances at Old Timer's Day.

Those of us who grew up with the team during the 1980's were subjected to mediocre play behind the plate. Players such as Butch Wynegar, Don Slaught, Mark Salas, Bob Geren and Rick Cerone were the catchers that we knew.

While each one certainly had their moments, none were at the level of those who came before them.

When Mike Stanley arrived in 1992, things began to look up. Finally, we had a catcher behind the plate who was not just an average player.

But for as good as Stanley was, he was not going to go down in the annals of Yankee lore as a "Yankee great."

Jorge would appear in nine games from 1995 to 1996, but it was not until 1997 that we were formally introduced to this 25-year-old switch hitter.

Everyone knows how the story goes—Posada would become a key component of the Yankees success and one of the best at the position during his time. His name litters the Yankee all-time leader boards in multiple categories.

For this group of fans that I speak of, to us, Jorge Posada was our Yogi Berra.

So Jorge, know that while some may have written you off long ago, you have a core group of fans who always had your back.

We look forward to welcoming you back on Old Timer's Day, whether it be in 2012 or five years from now.

We look forward to celebrating with you on "Jorge Posada Day," when your No. 20 takes it's rightful place amongst the greats to don the Yankee pinstripes.

And for the nearly two decades of your life that you gave us, we say thank you.