Journal Regulars columnist Jim Wharton of Sioux City takes you along on a 14-day bus trip to 10 different Major League Baseball stadiums and games this month.
June 17 New York City, N.Y.
Wednesday night's venue was Yankee Stadium, a $1 billion reproduction that literally was built in the shadow of the venerable old Yankee Stadium. Our traveling troupe went SD-IA wild and rode the #4 train from Battery Park to the stadium. I’ve ridden the subway many times, but for most of our group this was their maiden voyage. Happy to report all travelers are accounted for!
We burned the day riding busses, boats and trains and waiting in lines that snaked as far as the eye could see. Here’s some free travel advice that the NYC Chamber of Commerce won’t appreciate – STAY AWAY FROM NEW YORK CITY IN THE SUMMER. The city and all its attractions are packed and the going is slow. As one who is suspected of having A.D.D., standing in line for well over an hour to get back from Ellis Island to Battery Park via a U. S. Park Service boat is maddening.
Once we got to Yankee Stadium, my outlook on the world changed.
For the first time in six games, the teams held batting practice and the Yankee Stadium customer service crew was kind enough to let us move from our seats to seats in the lower bowl where we could be closer to the BP.
Our seats in section 227B were very good. One foul ball landed about 4 to 5 rows from us and we saw another great game that ended in a 2-1 Yankee victory.
Concessions consultant Mark is still basking in the glory of having his picture published as part of yesterday’s blog so input from him tonight was minimal. It was just your basic Italian sausage, Nathan’s Crinkle Fries, popcorn and soft serve ice cream night. Nothing that knocked your socks off. Maybe we’re getting weary of ballpark food.
Concessions grade B
Here are my favorite things about the Yankee Stadium experience.
• The gentleman sitting next to me was from New Jersey and had his two young sons and their friend with him. When he learned our group from SD-IA was in the house, he couldn’t have been nicer. Thanks for being a great fan.
• I finally had a chance to boo A-Rod and it sure did a lot of good. He had two hits.
• The music was incredible. Three examples:
o In the top of the 7th, the P.A. roared with The Village People’s "YMCA." The ground crew, as they drug the field, took part in the choreography. They were great!
o This was our sixth game and every game has featured a veteran of a foreign war as the game stops, the soldier is introduced and the fans all stand and salute these warriors. Tonight we honored a WW2 veteran with the Kate Smith version of "God Bless America." It was a very special moment.
o Finally, when the Yankees radio announcer wails "Yankees Win ... Yaaaaaannnnkees Win ...," the next thing you hear is Frank Sinatra singing "New York, New York." The whole stadium does its best Blue Eyes imitation. Very cool.
No game tomorrow so we’re going to explore the city. That means I’m going to take a day off from blogging.
I’ll be back with you Friday-Saturday when I finally get to see my boys – the St. Louis Cardinals - in Philadelphia.
Tell your friends about Extra Innings and thanks for reading.
Good night from New York City.