Yankee Stadium Visit on 6/17

I took my younger daughter to Yankee Stadium last night here’s my review of the trip/adventure.

Yankee Stadium from Google imagesConsidering I’m a lifelong Met fan, I thought it was pretty brave of me to make the venture “to the house that George Built” – The NEW Yankee Stadium. On the whole I was absolutely impressed with the layout and the convenience factor of the Stadium. I just had and issue with the policy of  “being only allowed to watch batting practice of the NY Yankees and not the visiting team”. More on that in  a little bit.

I was also impressed with the fact that here were many many employees carrying around placards – “May I help you? .  Nice touch!

From where we live in Monmouth County, it took only about an hour (No traffic on George Washington Bridge – Thank God).  Parking was easy ($19 – which I thought was pretty steep). I guess that’s the going rate for parking at most stadiums this days. Who knows?

My daughter and I were in pursuit of an Yankee Hat and we finally bought one at a stall near the stadium. I was not about to pay $25 to $30 for an “officially licensed” overpriced MLB souvenir.

Tip to the frugal: Walk a few blocks from the stadium under the elevated trains and you will find excellent and cheap souvenirs (t-shirts ($5), pins, hats,  Books, and of course Hot Dogs!)

Best and cheapest meal: 2 Hot dogs and a soda for $4.00 on the local streets.  Of course that does not guarantee you that you will not be tempted by the overpriced meals in the Stadium!

When you walk into the Statdium you truly are amazed at the history of the Yankees.  Even as I am not a Yankee follower/fan, I was amazed by the historical banners of the players that line the main level. Sent Chills down my spine!

Very nice touch that photographers take complimentary pictures that you can pick up at the yankees photo’s website next day! You can just walk around and have as many pictures taken to your hearts content! The picture takers give you a card with the gallery # and you can retrieve your pictures the next day! Very nice!

Now back to the Batting Practice issue.  It seems that the Yankee policy is to only allow fans to go to the ground level seats for  –> YANKEE BATTING PRACTICE.  Once the Yankee batting practice is over you are shooe’d back to your seats. What’s with this? I go this curt response from one of the ushers: “Go Ask George”.  Hmm.. I looked around but couldn’t locate him.

Players in right field were great, they were tossing balls into the stands, but unfortunately, my daughter and I were not amongst the chosen. I was thinking about offering my pinky (a pink high bouncing ball) as a trade to the players, but I couldn’t get their attention. Also my daughter didn’t want to part with her $1 pinky ball.

So we ventured way up, up, and up to our nose bleed seats  by 3rd base. Our $20 seats were the second row from the last row on the top most seats of the stadium.. I can remember when these seats at Shea used to cost $1.50.  Again I digress, as I ‘ve not gone to a “new” ballbark and baseball venue in a long long time!

We watched a few innings and we got restless so we walked around the stadium. I gotta tell you. To really appreciate Yankee Stadium, you have to go to every level and walk each level’s promenade level.  Plenty of Elevators and stairs available.. Like that!

I think we must have walked at least 5 miles. The problem with the walking is that it makes you hungry, which in turn makes you want to eat more! I guess yesterday was a bad day for my weight loss plan.

We never went back to our self re-assigned seats for an inning or so after which  but we continued to explore the stadium and we ended up by “Monument Park” and the bleachers. I really think that these “bench type” seats are the best seats in the house.. Even though you can only see half the field..

BTW: note to self. I should not say out loud (on the phone) , “I’m glad the Yankees are losing”. Guaranteed to get dirty looks from the Yankee fans.  I gotta admire the restraint of the individuals who I said this behind.. they turned around and said to my daughter —> “You dad really doesn’t like the Yankee’s does he”? LOL

Another Tip: When you go to Yankee stadium for the first time, make sure you go to “Monument’s park” immediately. It’s only open for like an hour and a half once the gates open. We were late and could only look at it from afar.

Overall the trip to Yankee Stadium was great! I think I’ll even start rooting for the Yankees! What did I just say?

The reason I’m saying this is that, I learned a valuable lesson from my 10 year old last night. Just as she is a true Yankee fan, she also roots for my team (the metsies). So why can’t I be a dual fan like she is? I honestly couldn’t answer her with a straight face. So I’m going to make a genuine effort to at least tolerate the Yankees. Yet, I will still never have an Yankee  logo on any articles of clothing. Now that’s going too far.

I’ll absolutely go to NEW Yankee Stadium again. Especially when it’s for the subway series sor the Mets can beat up on the Yankees. Especially after the 15 – 0 trouncing we took last week during the start of inter-league play!

New York Mets – Deja Vu All over again

You know something, I waited almost 24 hours before I posted this entry about my Mets. Another year and they broke my heart. Last year I promised myself that I wouldn’t go down that path of optimism that this year was going to be different. Well it wasn’t.

The Mets wasted another 5 months of my time following them and hoping that their kismet and or fate would be different from 2007. Well as you know it was not.

I started getting a sense of Deja Vu when they couldn’t hold a 2 run lead in the 9th against the hated Braves. That’s when I should have packed it in and called it a day, but being a die-hard Met fan, I just didn’t believe the number of on-line surveys done by SNY NY that a majority of Mets fans didn’t believe they’s make the post season. I didn’t read the mets blogs. I didn’t listen to my wife, who told me to stop wasting my time on this team. I just sat there like a lump on a log and took it. As a life long Mets fan, this is our kismet I guess.

To have 18 pitchers in the bullpen and not one candidate to replace Billy Wagner is just pathetic. Not to say Billy would have fared much better, knowing the number of saves he blew and his perfomance at the All Star Game.

Watching the Mets day in day out (blow wins) was like watching the same cast of characters and reliving “ground hog day” day after day after day.

Gone are the days of $1.50 general admission seats which I paid when the Mets were absolutely pathetic (in the 70’s), Shea has said it’s goodbye. Willie has been set free. Yet the cast remained the same. I’m suddenly feeling empathy for poor Willie. He was set free, I really don’t see what he could have done differently in 2007 or this year to make this bunch of underachievers, achieve….

I’m actually thinking (yes it is possible) that unless the Mets show me a reason for hope, next year, they will have to earn my loyalty. What a concept. A team earning a fan’s loyalty. Yet knowing my nature, I’ll be the jumping on the bandwagon, when they sign an over priced reliever over the winter. If they sign someone like Johann, we may have a chance to make 3rd place. Notice I didn’t even say Wildcard.

I do hope they dump some of the dead weight they have… Alou, Castillo, Heilmann (I’ve really seen enough of his dazed look). I think Minaya should just line up the truck and except for Reyes and Wright, nobody is untouchable.

Do you think that they will see the jewels they have in Argenes Reyes, Murphy, Evans? Or will they ship them out for over the hill injury prone situation players?

Of course, the Mets will sign another aging superstar, who’s beyond his prime (Write in your selection here: ____________ here).

There I feel much better now, venting my frustration at this franchise that has never had a no hitter. A franchise that seems to give the word “choke” a new dimension.

Yet you know something? I’ll still be watching my Metsies next year in their new digs (Citfield).

I may even spend the $100 or so to take my kids to CitiField there with optimisim that this will be our year. Similar to the chant of “Remember the Alamo”, we can all together say “Remember 1986”. Isn’t this what Keith and Ron were talking about over and over again over the month of September?

Hey you know what? I’m suddenly starting feel the aura of optimisim for 2009. I can almost feel the wave of “change” that’s coming. I can hardly wait for next year when the Metsies take the field in their new ballpark!

I guess, I’m just another Met fan that needs therapy more than their bullpen, who can’t seem to get anyone out without giving up the game tying or losing home run..

All together now: “Lets Go Mets!” “Let’s Go Mets!”.

Now I feel much better and I know that 2009 will end on a happier notes for us die hard mets fans. Well at least I hope so. No wait, I pray that they do.. There I go again, being sentimental, about my Metsies..