Last night, I made my official debut in Yankee Stadium, taking my sister for her upcoming birthday. Ever since last season, when I snatched up all the games the Yankees had $5 seats, I wanted to go to the new building. When I missed out on the $5 seats this year, I thought I would only go to one game and try to get upper deck behind home plate. However, looking up Stubhub, I saw that someone was selling right field box seats for $18 each, so I quickly bought them and went to last night's game.
We got there at about 4:30 because I wanted to soak in the building, both inside and outside. I walked through the Babe Ruth Plaza and around until we reached one of the gates. Walking inside, I saw we were in left field and you easily see the field from anywhere in the corridor, which is very wide, reminded me of the Prudential Center when I go to Seton Hall games. It was good to get in at left field, because we were able take a look around in the stadium and get a glimpse of the sightlines.
Eventually we reached our seats and the Yankees were taking batting practice. It was quite entertaining as Damaso Marte and Edwar Ramirez basically tried to outdo each other in shagging fly balls, with Marte being the Kevin McHale to Ramirez's Kent Benson (I'm sure no one who's reading knows who Kent Benson is, nuff said). Jonathan Alabadejo signed some autographs from at the right field wall, but most importantly, my sister ended up getting a ball from Xavier Nady when it was hit just shy of the stands and would of come to me if it went over. After the Yankees finished, the A's started batting practice and while my sister stayed looking for another ball, I took a seat and finally got a chance to soak in the stadium.
Looking around, it seemed to me that while everything in the stands was different, it was very familiar as well. The Yankees essentially modernized the classic stadium, keeping the dimensions and the seats for the most part were where the old stadium had them. It's also very nice to see the old frieze wrapped around the top of the building. However, the old stadium didn't have what looks like the biggest HDTV in history for the videoboard, plus they have an improved out of town scoreboard, with updated situations, and they have it closed captioned for the deaf. A bonus for the box seats is a TV above our seats where we can watch to see if a strike's a strike and other things that you see during an at bat.
The one thing that about the new building I don't like, there are too many inconviences. Everything that is said about the prices are true. I had a philly cheese steak that cost $10, though it was delicious and I felt that was money well spent. Then I took a look at the store and I know that I'll never buy anything there, since I prefer jersey, not T-shirts and the hats are overpriced. The Bleacher Creatures as any Yankee fan knows always chant "Box Seats Suck" and I don't blame them. Their seats are still benches (which I'm sure they aren't irate about) while I got to sit in a cushioned seat. However, the seats close to home plate (which had numerous empty seats) are a whole another level. They can't be reached from our seats, maybe enter where the players do and is only missing a moat to further the elitest perception of those seats. I don't blame companies from not wanting to be seen there.
Throughout the game, Nick Swisher seemed to be engaging everyone in the outfield during down time. He has become my favorite Yankee aside from Derek Jeter and that would be the case if he finished at .250 with only 20 hrs. Johnny Damon's HR came right over our section and my looked at the big screen and said she saw us in there on the replay. Also, poor Ryan Sweeney, he was mercilessly hecked and I wouldn't merciless if it didn't look like it bothered him, but he couldn't get off the field any quicker and was done as a hitter after the 5th inning. Of course, when the guy with a Capo Jeter jersey wanted the Bleachers to join them, they directed their chants at "Capo". Remember, if you sitting in box seats, don't even think of trying to get the Bleacher Creatures to join you, especially when they are open and have beer.
After Mo came in and the game was over, the exit was much quicker than ever and so was my first night at Yankee Stadium. I'm going back, maybe to strictly these games against the Oaklands and Baltimores so I possibly can get these outfield seats at discount. That way, I can finish the sightseeing that I have not begun to start.