As a switch-hitting Gold Glover who manned the hallowed ground that is centerfield in Yankee Stadium during the team’s late-’90s dynasty, Bernie Williams was undoubtedly deserving of having his No. 51 retired by the team.
But while his overall numbers fell a little short of being Cooperstown worthy, the Puerto Rico native received a tremendous honor nonetheless on this day in béisbol, Sept. 1, 2011.
Williams was among several players inducted into the Latino Baseball Hall of Fame’s Class of 2012 — contemporary and old-timers — who were honored at a ceremony in La Romana, Dominican Republic the following February.
The Class of 2012 also included Manny Trillo (Venezuela), Aurelio Rodriguez (Mexico), Ben Oglivie (Panama) and Tony Peña (Dominican Republic).
Also on this day: In 1986, Oakland A’s outfielder Jose Canseco continued to dazzle fans on his way to Rookie of the Year honors with a 4-for-5 game against the Yankees that included a home run. He became the first player in either league to reach 100 RBI.
And in 2008, Adrian Beltre of the Mariners hit for the cycle while going 5-for-6 to help beat the Rangers, 12-6.
— Robert Dominguez
Robert Dominguez is the author of “Bronx Bummers: The Unofficial History of the New York Yankees’ Bad Boys, Blunders and Brawls” and writer of the upcoming “El Salón: The Trials and Triumphs of Baseball’s Latino Hall of Famers.”
Photo: clare_and_ben — Under Creative Commons License