Kennedy's dilemma: Pinstripes or tux?
Long-standing date for nuptials coincides with postseason
NEW YORK -- If Ian Kennedy was surprised by the dizzying speed that shot him from Minor League hopeful to hotly hyped rookie, he wasn't alone.
Turns out his fiancée wasn't quite expecting it, either.
Kennedy and fiancée Allison Jaskowiak have their wedding planned for Oct. 6, in St. Louis -- smack in the middle of the playoffs. It's a date they'd set long before Kennedy made his debut in pinstripes last Saturday, and one that may have implications beyond "death do us part."
"She doesn't want to think about it, because it's kind of difficult to do," Kennedy said. "I know [the Yankees] can figure it out, but I try not to think about it, because she might get upset."
Odds are, it won't be a problem. No American League Division Series game is scheduled for that Saturday, as all four American League teams are slated to play the day before and the day after. If Kennedy makes the 25-man postseason roster -- and it's looking increasingly likely that he might -- he could feasibly still make the trip.
So much for the honeymoon.
Kennedy and Jaskowiak met at the University of Southern California, where Jaskowiak is a fifth-year senior on the women's basketball team. Her season opens in early November, so postponing the wedding would be a tricky maneuver.
Kennedy never envisioned the date being a problem after starting the season with Class A Tampa. He expected to be with Double-A Trenton by season's end, but no higher, in just his first full professional year after the Yankees took him in the first round of the 2006 First-Year Player Draft.
Yet he didn't give the Yankees much reason to delay his progress. Kennedy spent roughly two months in Tampa before jumping to Trenton, where his stay was even briefer. He then flew through a brief stretch with Triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre before making his Yankees debut last Saturday.
Seven innings and one run later, his spot in the rotation looks as though it could be permanent. Roger Clemens' injury and Mike Mussina's general ineffectiveness have only helped to solidify Kennedy's spot with the team, making it ever more likely that he'll still be around come October.
There's not much precedent there, and Kennedy knows it. The most famous September callup to flourish on a postseason roster was Francisco Rodriguez, who won five playoff games -- two of them against the Yankees -- in guiding the Angels to their 2002 World Series title.
Regardless of whether or not Kennedy can follow suit, the thought will surely make him sweat for much of the final month. He could be in pinstripes. He could be in a tux. Right now, neither he nor manager Joe Torre have any idea.
"I didn't get one of the invitations," Torre joked. "We just hope his prospective wife is very understanding."
Anthony DiComo is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.