06/04/08 5:27 PM ET
Red Carpet to roll through Manhattan
By Jon Blau / Special to MLB.com
"Four-hundred-and-fifty-seven feet," he said, as visiting teams always joked about settling for a well-hit double in front of New York outfielder Roy White rather than wishing for a home run.
The memories of the fences, along with White and other Yankees, many whose faces still grace the walls of the New York's most hallowed grounds, remain a grand image in Robinson's mind. And for the 79th All-Star Game at Yankee Stadium, the final goodbye will only be more spectacular, as a 95,000-square-foot red carpet will line the streets of Sixth Avenue for an estimated 18 blocks.
There, at the MLB All-Star Game Red Carpet Parade Presented by Chevy -- the longest parade ever hosted by MLB -- Hall of Famers will be only a few lanes away from the nearest passersby.
"There were no red carpets in the old days," Robinson, a 1982 inductee into the Hall of Fame, said with a smile. "You just went out and played the game. We had a lot of pride in playing the game, too."
The pregame event will begin at 1 p.m. and will last two hours before the Tuesday, July 15 All-Star Game.
"The 2008 All-Star Game will showcase one of the largest turnouts of Hall of Fame members -- the game's living legends -- ever," said Jane Forbes Clark, Chairman of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. "We are thankful to Major League Baseball for saluting the Hall of Fame and Baseball's greatest players on the grand stage of the All-Star Game in the final year of one of baseball's most glorious fields, Yankee Stadium."
MLB mascots will also be in attendance, passing out gifts to fans in line for the parade. The festivities will then re-air on FOX at 7 p.m., and be hosted by FOX anchor Chris Rose as a lead-in to the 8 p.m. game.
Major League Baseball vice president of business Tim Brosnan compared the coming pregame spectacle to the "Canyon of Heroes," as he predicted it will be one of the most memorable displays in the history of the city.
He said the parade will start on the corner of 40th Street and Sixth Avenue, and will make its way up to 58th Street and Sixth Avenue. The Hall of Famers will be escorted in open-back Chevy trucks and will be viewable for the public on hand.
"In some places there will be three lanes, or even two," Brosnan said, "and in some instances you might be only a barricade away from one of the greatest stars in our game."
Jon Blau is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.