NEW YORK -- David Cone may not be a native New Yorker, but his credentials make him just about the next-closest thing.
The five-time World Series champion and former Yankee and Met made an appearance as a guest bartender at a jam-packed Foley's New York Pub and Restaurant on Thursday night in Manhattan, with all proceeds from his shift going to benefit those victimized by Hurricane Sandy and the storms that affected the Northeast in the last few weeks.
For a celebrated pitcher with All-Star appearances, World Series rings, a Cy Young Award and a perfect game to boot, this was a first.
"We all were looking for a way to help," Cone said. "This actually originated on Twitter. Some people who were following picked up on Foley's offer to do this tonight and sort of challenged me. So I said, 'OK, I'm in.'"
Foley's owner Shaun Clancy said the the bar made an open invitation, via social media, to a number of local sports celebrities to man the bar for a night with 100 percent of the bar's proceeds going to help residents in need.
With the bar's ties to the baseball community and sports world, he suspected someone would jump at the opportunity.
"I'm every bit enamored with him doing this as he is of me letting him do it," Clancy said of Cone's stint. "It's kind of mutual from that point of view. But we're all here to help. We're having a benefit for people five miles from here, 10 miles from here, who are living in tents tonight. And it's 30 degrees outside. Anything we can do to help."
Cone was born and raised in Kansas City, and was drafted in the third round of the 1981 First-Year Player Draft by the Royals, for whom he debuted in 1986.
He was traded to the Mets in 1987, at which time he got his first taste of life as a ballplayer in New York. He spent parts of the next six seasons with the Mets before also logging parts of six seasons with the Yankees from 1995-2000, when he was an instrumental piece of the Yankees' rotation during four World Series seasons.
In those years -- and now as an analyst for the YES Network -- he has had plenty of opportunities to learn what New Yorkers are all about and how they weather such storms.
"The stories are endless, and they keep coming in," Cone said of breadth of the storm's damage. "I don't think we know the full extent yet. ... But New Yorkers are the toughest anywhere. Certainly in this country. They just rally around these sorts of things."