Yankees Introduce 'The Bronx Bracket': Fans to Pick Greatest Moment in Franchise History

Max Goodman

"Who decides the greatest moment in Yankees history? You do."

Yankees fans around the world will have to wait a little longer for Opening Day this season, but starting Thursday morning, they can keep themselves busy by picking their favorite moments in franchise history.

In 'The Bronx Bracket' – a bracket-style tournament identical to the NCAA Tournament's format – fans will have an opportunity to vote on each matchup, slowly narrowing down from 64 viable options to one greatest moment in Yankees history.

The team teased the tourney on Wednesday night, posting a video explaining the four eras of team history that will be included. Starting Thursday morning at 10 a.m. ET, two matchups of historic moments from each of the club's four eras will be up for debate. Fans can vote up to three times on Twitter, Facebook and the Yankees' Instagram Story.

In the first and oldest quadrant, fans will choose between moments from Yankees Origins – a period stretching from 1903 to 1948. 

Will the No. 1 seed – Joe DiMaggio's iconic 56-game hitting streak – survive over classic moments like New York acquiring Babe Ruth from Boston? Or will a double-digit seed – like Lou Gehrig's streak of consecutive games played – pull off an upset from an 11 spot?

Also included is Ruth calling his shot and the 1923 Bronx Bombers winning the franchise's first World Series title.

Next up is Mid-Century Marvels, ranging from 1949 to 1975. 

The top seed in this region is Don Larsen's perfect game thrown in the 1956 World Series. Pretty tough to top, right? Larsen's performance is on a crash course to go up against Mickey Mantle's Triple Crown from that same year and a moment that forever changed the organization's trajectory: George Steinbrenner purchasing the Yankees.

In the third corner of the bracket is The Reign Of The Boss (1976 to 2000).

From all-time performances on the mound (perfect games thrown by David Cone and David Wells as well as three no hitters and an 18 strikeout game by Ron Guidry) to some of the most clutch home runs in Yankees history (Bucky Dent's homer at Fenway Park in 1978 and Chris Chambliss' blast to win the pennant in '76). 

Can any of those upset the No. 1 seed – the Yankees' three-peat of World Series titles from 1998 to 2000?  The second seed is pretty dangerous as well (Reggie Jackson's three homer game in the '77 World Series).

Lastly, from 2001 to Present Day, it's the fourth and final quadrant: Expanding An Empire.

Almost half of the eligible moments here are memorable plays and performances from Derek Jeter. You'll also be able to choose from Mariano Rivera becoming the all-time saves leader as well as New York's 27th title in 2009. 

The top seed here is Aaron Boone's Game 7 walk-off homer to send the Bombers to the 2003 World Series. That play that's scheduled to air on MLB's Facebook page Thursday afternoon as part of the league's 'Opening Day at Home' initiative.

In a few weeks, the greatest moment in the history of baseball's most storied franchise will be crowned... Which will you choose?

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For more from Max Goodman, follow him on Twitter @MaxTGoodman. Follow ITP on Twitter @SI_Yankees and Facebook @SIYankees

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