PATERSON, New Jersey (WABC) -- Some local youth baseball players with big league dreams hit the field for major league training at Hinchliffe Park in Paterson as part of Yankees Hope Week.
The Paterson Divas and the Silk City Bombers received some valuable lessons from members of the Bronx Bombers.
"It was pretty fun meeting the Yankees and they also made me laugh and giggle," Emma Moya said.
"We played with baseballs, I don't really catch with baseballs but I caught a lot," Amiyah Maldonado said.
Yankee players like Jose Trevino, Gleyber Torres and Nestor Cortez were moving the teams through the paces and honored to be in Hinchliffe Stadium on the 76th anniversary of Larry Doby becoming the first Black player in the American League.
"We're just happy, overjoyed, like I said, my family is happy, everybody is just excited," said Larry Doby's grandson Scott Hutchines.
Yankees Baseball Operations Senior Advisor Omar Minaya has watched Hinchliffe transform from a wasteland to a promise land for sports in Paterson and said it was good for players and kids to realize the importance of this newly remodeled stadium.
"This is what I know is the Yankees foundation, this is an ideal place to be today," Minaya said.
Hinchliffe is one of two stadiums in the country still around that once hosted the Negro Leagues. The mayor, who is a rabid Mets fan, was thanking the pinstripes for their support.
"They're investing in our youth, and I feel like that is a worthy investment, the return on the investment is that they beat the streets and that they have something very productive and positive to do," Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh said.
As for the Yankee players, this day with the kids was a treat and they understood the importance of bringing hope to Hinchliffe.
"I'm happy to be here and happy to share my knowledge and just be on this field," Yankee pitcher Nestor Cortes said.
"This has been one of the most fun weeks just to get out, interact with kids, interact with anybody in the community, I think it's big," Yankee catcher Jose Trevino said.
This is the 14th year the Yankees have done Hope Week, and this time they made dreams come true for kids in Paterson.
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