By RONALD BLUM, AP Sports Writer
NEW YORK (AP) _ Sonia Sotomayor traded benches for a day, joining the New York Yankees’ Bleacher Creatures.
The Supreme Court justice and Bronx native attended the Yankees’ game against Baltimore on Wednesday and sat in Section 203 of the right-field stands for the first-inning “Roll Call” of New York’s starting lineup.
Usually seen on the Supreme Court bench next to Stephen Breyer, she sat next to “Bald Vinny” Milano in a section where tickets cost $20 and $23.
“The first thing I said to her was, `I’m probably going to be the loudest guy you meet today, but I’m absolutely speechless,”’ Milano said. “I don’t think she knew before she got here what she was in for.”
The Yankees said Sotomayor moved to better seats after Roll Call. She also attended the Yankees’ game at the Washington Nationals on June 15. Before that, she threw out the ceremonial first pitch for a game against Boston at Yankee Stadium on Sept. 26, 2009.
In 1995 as a U.S. District Judge, she issued an injunction that led to the end of a 7 1-2 month strike by the baseball players’ union.
Milano, who lives in Bellmore, N.Y., gave her a Creatures lapel pin membership badge, which she said she will pass along to a nephew who collects her mementos in a scrap book.
“You never know,” Milano said, with a laugh. “She’s not a bad friend to have.”
AP freelance writer Doug Gould contributed to this report.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)