The New York Jets coach is a baseball nerd.
“I love coaching football, don’t get me wrong,” Ryan said. “But I just love baseball.” …
As the son of a longtime N.F.L. coach, Ryan traveled a lot during his childhood. Instead of being conditioned to support one team, he cheered for several. He liked the Mets, the Yankees and the Cubs, attending games during Buddy’s coaching stops in New York and Chicago. He was riveted when Tom Seaver faced Bob Gibson at Shea Stadium, but his most memorable moment in the stands came on April 7, 1977, when he was 14 and living with Doris and Rob in Toronto.
Ryan skipped school to sit in the bleachers at the Blue Jays’ inaugural game, at Exhibition Stadium. When he corralled about 10 balls during batting practice, he sensed it would be a good day.
“I can tell you anything about it,” Ryan said, and so he did. He remembers the volatile weather — “it was sunny, it rained, it snowed” — that Blue Jays first baseman Doug Ault clubbed two homers, and that Ken Brett was the losing pitcher for the Chicago White Sox in a 9-5 Toronto victory.