Sunday, September 21, 2008
The Real Yankee Stadium
UPDATE: The Yankees did a good job with the pre-game ceremonies. Somehow I'd forgotten, until I watched the pre-game, that I went to the final game of the old, old Stadium, and got to walk out to the monuments after the game.
THAT'S what the Stadium looked like when I was a kid. There was a lot more shock and awe than in the concrete remodeling Steinbrenner made in the 1970s.
As you can see, not all the games were crowded. Even on Saturday afternoons, you could often easily get three seats to yourself in the upper deck. During rallies, the procedure was to hold the seats to each side of you and smash them up and down in unison with the rest of the crowd. A few hundred people doing that could make a lot of noise.
My brother and I would catch double headers in the bleachers — 18 innings in the sun for $1. The monuments were still on the field (during the renovation, the Yankees moved the center field fence in 50 feet, so that monuments were behind the wall).
We once saw Bobby Murcer chase down a fly that bounced right behind them. He sped around the monuments and faced the center field wall, anticipating the rebound off the wall. But it bounced past him, and he wheeled around and dashed towards the ball. It bounced of the monuments and back to him, and ran around to the side to see where to throw the ball. I think it was an inside the park home run.
Today, Andy Pettitte starts and Mo will throw the last pitch. Before the game, Bernie will stand in center field again. I wish I could be there. Andy hasn't pitched well lately, but he was a big part of all their seasons when they were winning. Bernie and Mo are probably the two most popular Yankees from that time, and deservedly so. This will be very different from the game I went to a few days ago, which just didn't have an end of an era feel.
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Lou Pinella hit that inside the park HR with the Royals
Posted by: John at May 16, 2009 3:22:17 AM