Former New York Yankees first
baseman Don Mattingly will be
honored by the Nashville Sounds
next week when the team retires
the No. 18 he wore here during
the 1981 season.
Mattingly will become the first ex-Sound to have his
number retired. He is scheduled to attend the
ceremonies at Greer Stadium, which will take place
prior to the Aug. 12 game with the New Orleans
"We think it's important that, even though we've had a
lot of change in the last three years, we not forget the
first 20 years," said Steve Selby, director of media
relations for the Sounds and instrumental in setting up
"One way to do that is to honor some of the guys that
have gone on to distinguish themselves. We feel
Donnie is an excellent individual to have back as the
first. We're pleased he's decided to come. He's a
very private person, but our understanding is that he
was very excited when the news got to him."
In his only season with the Sounds -- when the team
was the Yankees' Class AA affiliate in the Southern
League -- Mattingly batted .315 with seven home
runs and 98 RBI.
Three seasons later, in 1984, Mattingly hit .343 to
win the American League batting championship and
was named an all-star. The following year, he earned
AL Most Valuable Player honors with a .324
average, 35 homers, a league-high 145 RBI and 48
For his major league career, which ended following
the 1996 season, Mattingly ranks among the
Yankees' all-time leaders in games played, at-bats,
runs, hits, homers, RBI, batting average and total
bases, and his 442 career doubles are second in the
team's history to Lou Gehrig. He also holds the
franchise's single-season records for hits and doubles.
The most recent captain of the Yankees (1991-95),
Mattingly's No. 23 was retired by the Yankees in
Fans attending the Aug. 12 game will receive
commemorative reprints of Mattingly's 1981 Sounds
baseball card. Mattingly will be presented with a
framed No. 18 jersey, and a banner with "18" will be
displayed in a prominent place in Greer Stadium.
"We hope this is the first of several special events to
honor former Sounds players," Selby said.
By Maurice Patton / Sports Writer
Copyright 1999 by The Tennessean