Sunday, March 30, 2008


Being I have been a fan for quite a while I started calling the stadium the "new" stadium since it reopened in 1976. I wonder what I will call it now? Andy Pettitte pitched 6 shut out inning in the intersquad game and declared himself fit to pitch Saturday against Tampa Bay.

Friday, March 28, 2008

The Game of My Lifetime...

Frank Midolo AKA FrankieYankee
AKA The Big Guy With The Blue Jacket

I have received an I-Tunes gift card from my in-laws for my birthday, and decided to use it yesterday. I have a lot of music on my I-Pod, basically everything I want, so I decided to browse through some video stuff. Of course the first thing I went to was Yankee video's, and I downloaded 2003 ALCS, Game 7, the Aaron Boone game. The video comes in full of the entire game and post game interviews and stuff which was pretty cool.

Have you ever watched an old game, and you know the outcome, but you still get mad at how the game is going? That was me yesterday. Trot Nixon hits that 2-run HR, off Clemens, and I have to hear Joe Buck, "At the track, GONE." Oh was I mad. As the game goes on the Sox take the 4-0 lead, and now I'm fuming. Giambi hits a dart over the center field fence, off Pedro, and then again bombs one to CF, off him again in the 7th cutting the lead to 4-2. Wells comes in and throws a hanging curveball to Big Sloppy that shoots out of the park. 5-2 Sox. At this point of the game, I still couldnt believe how the Yanks game back and won this game. Down 5-2, bottom of the 8th, 1 out, nobody on base, and Pedro pitching an excellent game. Then steps up Jeter. Double over Nixon's head(should have caught that ball), Bernie base hit makes it 5-3. That's all for Pedro right? WRONG. Watching it again, what the hell was Grady Little thinking? Emberee was up and ready for the lefty Matsui. Pedro stays in, Matsui rockets a double down the 1st base line. 2nd and 3rd. Up comes Posada and Grady keeps Pedro in, flair to center field, TIE GAME. 5-5. Posada's emotions gave me chills, I was on the train watching this on a little I-Pod screen, holding in all my emotions. It was awesome.

A question came into my mind, as I was watching Pedro implode. How good was life in the baseball world, pre the 2004 debacle? Man was it sweet. The "1918" chants, and knowing the Red Sox season will ALWAYS, end in a disaster.

Before this whole steroid mess, lawsuits, congressional hearings, and all this other stuff that has impacted baseball in a negative way. Man, I felt good. Mo pitches 3 spectacular innings, and then Aaron Boone steps up to the plate. First pitch from Wakefield, "and the Yankees are going to the World Series." What a moment. I got off the train, and walked home with a pep in my step. Opening day is only 4 days away I said to myself. I want that feeling again, that special feeling that doesnt come around to often, when rooting for your sports teams.

Boone said after the game "This is just stupid." Your telling me Aaron? This was the greatest baseball game of my lifetime, of course if your a Yankee fan.

I want that feeling again.

Thursday, March 27, 2008


By Barry Spencer

Along with the Yankees, we are about to embark on an historical season, never before seen, and never to be seen again. By us anyway.I am talking about the realization of a season of "lasts" in the Cathedral. The first of which is upcoming in a few days.

The last opening day in "The House That Ruth Built".At this particular time, it would be prudent for us to sit back, and breathe in this thought.

A reflection if you will. And I'm not sure I can do it justice.While on the outskirts of this historic phenomenon, I will still feel the gravity of it. But I want you to know, it is those of you who are regulars, and semi-regulars, and past regulars, and past semi-regulars, that will encompass most of my thoughts as the season wears on. It is something many will find difficult to put into words. And that's probably as it should be. It will be a "you had to be there" kind a thing.

Guys like Skinny, that used to vendor at the stadium, and now laments the idea of how money has taken much of the family joy away from a game that was built for it.

Guys like Asbury, who will connect with fellow board members on train platforms on the way back home from games.Guys like Jimbue. Who's memories at the stadium are frequently expressed and welcomed on this board. (I won't say how far back it dates. Not sure they had calendars back then. Sun dials or somethin'.)

Guys like Phil, who I figure is well connected at the stadium.

And Lefty, who can probably tell you the pitch count on the batter when Jackie Robinson stole home.It's a forgone conclusion the reunion will be something special. An effort should be made to contact Zbi maybe. Certainly not my call. But all you reunion regulars should make special plans for this year. It will be a reunion of joy and sadness together. As it should be when special friends get together for an occaision that will never be equaled. Kudo's to Brian for having the foresight to realize the difficulty in group ticket sales this year, and getting that job done with expediency.

And lastly, and maybe most importanly, our own scribe Dan McCourt, aka Knuckles. A man I once knew Yankinit to call the "best Yankee fan I've ever known".

I know he's a man of deep emotion, and strong passions. This will be a tumultuous and emotional year for him as every time he walks out of box 622, he knows it will be the last time on that date forever. He will be in my thoughts the most. Politically, he's pretty whacked , but I can't argue with Yankinit's assessment.

And my thoughts will also be on the great George Steinbrenner. The memories he must carry I can't even fathom. And in the twilight of his great career, it won't be easy.

I also know there are many more of you that go to the games at the stadium, and only mention it in passing from time to time. JohnM comes to mind here.

My apologies for those I've missed or don't know about. It is my hope you will share memories from your visits, both good and bad, as the season wears on. This will be the year for it. It will indeed be a season of lasts. Each and every day. Each and every game, will be a last of some kind, if not only the date itself.

But it will not be just us that will be saying goodbye to a tradition that dates almost an entire century. It will also be a country saying goodbye. It will be the globe saying goodbye. Because I don't care where you go, what language you speak, what color of your skin, or what corner of the globe you call home. Every ball fan knows the New York Yankees. And they know they play in Yankee Stadium. The thought almost takes my breath away.And then there's the players. What emotions they will feel. Derek's last game winning hit. (Somebody get me that ball, will ya?) The Yankees last shutout. The Yankees last loss, their last win, the last home run, the last extra inning game, the last stolen base, the last strikeout, the last walk, and on and on and on. Much of this will happen without anyone realizing it, but it will be etched in timeless baseball lore as all great things are in this, the greatest game of all.

There will be books written about it. Videos made of it. Millions made from it. And all these things are as it should be. Anything less would be a pox on the game, the team and the structure that is Yankee Stadium.We already have a team and a stadium for the ages.

It is my fervent desire this year, above all other years I have rooted my beloved team, they make this a season for the ages too.Their motivation is nothing short of historic.


Sunday, March 16, 2008


With the surplus of Yankee Stadium books this season it is very refreshing to pick up a book that previews the Yankees final season at the cathedral in Da Bronx.

Cecilia Tan, (Why I Like Baseball) has once again gathered the finest in Yankee writers in this fine collection. While it deals mainly with the present it doesn't ignore the future nor the past. Back again is the fine work of Dan McCourt (aka Knuckles, on BTB and publisher of Take Him Downtown) he contributes a great article on last season's debacle and takes us way back to 1978 like you have never seen before.

Cecilia's writing makes you long for Opening Day. While the controversial Dan Graziano of the Star Ledger tell us about the new Circus in Town ala The Bronx Zoo. Dan Schlossberg pays tribute to the late Scooter, Phil Rizzuto. It is tearful at times but a great tribute nevertheless. Plus he looks at the now generation including new skipper Joe Girardi.
Mark C. Healy and Sweeny Murti, in separate pieces, look back and pay tribute to Joe Torre and his era. I could go on and on, but the best thing would be to go out and buy this fine work. You won't be able to put it down. A fine analogy by a bunch of fine writers.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Sunday, March 02, 2008


Well he may not be there on Opening Day but the Voice of Yankee Stadium just may be there when they close the doors. Bob Sheppard, the Yankees' venerable public address announcer, recently signed a two-year extension. While last October's case of pneumonia took a great deal out of him - Shepherd, believed to be 97, should return about two months into the regular season, so he can also be there for the lat Old Timers Day at Yankee Stadium. Either way we couldn't close up shop without him.