Apparently, the significance of a World Series ring is hard to put your finger on.

To CC Sabathia, it's "corny" and not meant to be worn.

To Andy Pettitte, it's something to be stashed away in a safe until your wife redoes the den and puts it in a proper display case.

To Joba Chamberlain, it's something to present to your beloved father as a token of all he's done for you.

What does it mean to the rest of the world champion 2009 Yankees? Those on this year's team - plus one old friend who just happens to be coming to town - will find out this afternoon when they receive their World Series rings before the Yankees' home opener against the Angels at Yankee Stadium.

Pettitte, who will be receiving his fifth World Series ring, will throw the first pitch of the game, but not before Bernie Williams (four rings) throws the ceremonial first pitch.

But Williams won't take the mound until the current champion Yankees are handed their hardware in a ceremony presided over by Hall of Famers Yogi Berra (10 rings as a Yankees player) and Whitey Ford (six rings).

Joe Girardi, who has three rings as a player, will get his first as a manager.

"I think the true enjoyment will come in handing out the rings to the guys," he said. "Being able to hand out the rings with Yogi and Whitey, who know everything there is to know about a championship ring, I think that's when the true emotions will set in for me."

It should be an emotional day on many levels:

Longtime beloved trainer Gene Monahan will make an appearance; Monahan missed his first spring training in 48 years because of a serious illness.

Owner George Steinbrenner also is expected to attend in what likely will be one of only a handful of appearances in the Bronx this season.

Thanks to fortunate scheduling, World Series MVP Hideki Matsui will be present as the Angels' designated hitter. Girardi confirmed that the popular Godzilla, whom the Yankees chose not to re-sign in the offseason, will be invited to take part in the ring ceremony even though he now plays for the day's enemy.

"I think it's great that he's going to be here," Girardi said. "You wish all the guys could be here. To me, it's going to be good to see him and be able to give him that ring because it's well-deserved. I think it's fitting that he's here."

After the champion Yankees get their rings, they'll try to figure out what to do with them. Sabathia, who spent the early part of Monday pitching baseballs to Regis Philbin during a TV appearance, clearly was the least interested in putting his on. "I will never wear it," he said. "It will probably be displayed at my house, but I'll never put it on.''

When asked why, he said: "It is kind of corny, I guess. Who wears a World Series ring?''

One person who will - for about a week - is Chamberlain. Then he plans to give it to his father, Harlan, who also is expected to attend the opener.

Pettitte doesn't plan to wear his. "I'm not a big ring guy," he said.

But just because he has to pitch about 40 minutes after the ceremony begins at 12:30 p.m., that doesn't mean he's not interested in being part of it.

"Today, I've been thinking about that," he said. "I don't want to interrupt getting ready to pitch a big-league ballgame, because that's the most important part. I'm going to try to figure out a way to at least get out there and get my ring."

Notes & quotes: Chamberlain's mother, Jackie Standley, was sentenced to four years of probation Monday in Lincoln, Neb., for a felony drug charge. Standley, 45, was arrested last May after selling a gram of methamphetamine to an undercover officer at her Lincoln residence. She pleaded no contest last fall to delivering a controlled substance. - AP

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