John Flaherty delivered the keynote speech at the Rockland Economic Development Corporation's annual awards luncheon Friday at the IBM Executive Conference Center in Palisades
Flaherty, who grew up in West Nyack, played in Major League Baseball for 14 years for five teams, including a three-year stint with the New York Yankees. Before he spoke on Friday, a video was shown of arguably Flaherty’s most well known moment as a Yankee: his walk-off RBI single to beat the Boston Red Sox in the 13th inning of a game on July 1, 2004.
The video showed the entire at-bat, including Flaherty’s statistics up to that point in the season.
“When I see that video, I see a .153 batting average on July 1st, which is not good when you’re a couple months into the season,” Flaherty said to open his speech.
Flaherty went on to detail his route from West Nyack Little League to the pros. Flaherty, who now lives in Pearl River, is an analyst with the YES Network and a part-owner of the Rockland Boulders.
“One of the greatest things that’s happened to me in my retirement from baseball is being part of the Rockland Boulders,” Flaherty said.
“It was my wife who talked me into it. She said, ‘John, there aren’t too many opportunities in Rockland County for families who spend quality time together and, more importantly, affordable quality time together going to a ballgame.’ I know it going to Yankee Stadium 70 times a year, how expensive it is, and I get my tickets for free. It’s still parking and the whole nine yards. It costs a lot of money.”
Additionally, the REDC also honored four companies at the luncheon:
Manufacturer of the Year
- Nice-Park Products, Inc., of Orangeburg
Service Provider of the Year
- Center For Safety and Change, Inc., of New City
Entrepreneur of the Year
- Malcolm McLaren of the McLaren Engineering Group, of West Nyack
Award of Distinction
- Dr. Margaret Mary Fitzpatrick, of St. Thomas Aquinas College, of Sparkill