LEFTOVERS: Evil Empire turns over new leaf

Maybe the Evil Empire isn’t so evil after all.

In the wake of the tragic events at Monday’s Boston Marathon, the New York Yankees wanted to let their archrivals — the Red Sox and their fans — know they weren’t forgotten. A message at the top of Yankee Stadium on Tuesday depicted both teams’ logos with the message “UNITED WE STAND.”

And in what might be the ultimate tribute to Red Sox fans, the Yankees played Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline,” which has been an eighth-inning tradition at Fenway Park since the late 1990s, during the third inning of Tuesday’s game with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

“Hands … touchin’ hands. Reachin’ out … touchin’ me, touchin’ you.”

Diamond, born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., indeed was touched by the Yankees’ gesture. In a tweet Tuesday, he said: “Thank you NY Yankees for playing ‘Sweet Caroline’ for the people of Boston. You scored a home run in my heart. With respect, Neil.”

The Yankees weren’t the only team to play “Sweet Caroline” on Tuesday. In Chicago, Oakland, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Atlanta, Miami and Los Angeles, good times never seemed so good, so good, so good, so good.

“I think it’s important that we recognize that we’re all behind the people in Boston and everyone that was involved,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi told MLB.com. “You think about that being a song that’s a tradition there, it’s special to Fenway Park and the people of Boston. We’re behind them. Put the baseball teams aside, we want to be there for them.”

■ THE NEW BACHELOR? — Could one of Adam Scott’s perks from winning the Masters be a new love interest?

The producers of the reality TV show “The Bachelor” say they are interested in the 32-year-old Australian, who played one season at UNLV. E! broke the story Tuesday on its website that Scott is a target for the show.

And while it might be intriguing to see how he handles himself in a hot tub with some gorgeous babe, Scott might be better served cashing in on his fame with a seven-figure deal from a golf equipment company. Less scandal that way — right, Tiger?

■ REMEMBERING PAT — Pat Summerall, the longtime voice of NFL games on CBS and Fox, also was a good football player.

He was a solid kicker, and his 49-yard field goal in the snow for the New York Giants in 1958 helped defeat the Cleveland Browns in the regular season’s final game to force a playoff for the Eastern Conference title and ultimately get New York into the NFL title game against the Baltimore Colts in what football folks like to refer to as “The Greatest Game Ever Played.”

But Summerall, who died Tuesday at age 82, had another memorable on-the-field moment. In 1955 as a member of the Chicago Cardinals, Summerall intercepted a pass against the Pittsburgh Steelers and raced 26 yards for the only touchdown of his 10-year career.

The Cardinals weren’t good that year, finishing 4-7-1 and missing the playoffs. But Summerall put that behind him, as he became a legendary broadcaster who added a healthy dose of dignity to every game he worked.


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