There’s nothing sinister or modern about conducting business at a ballgame: salesmen making pitches to potential clients who happen to be sports fans makes a lot of sense. In fact, when I owned the weekly New York Press, we sprung for season tickets and the investment—about $15,000—was recouped by the successful wooing of new advertisers by the end of May, a most pleasant set of circumstances. Yet one of the glories of Yankee Stadium, even in the 1990s, was the congregation of a legitimate mixture of people from all sorts of backgrounds. You’d see, all in one section, guys in suits trying not to get mustard on their ties along with wholesome families, bare-chested youths with “Jeter Rules” painted on their bodies and older New Yorkers, scorecards in hand, who might engage in conversation about seeing Joe DiMaggio’s graceful defense in center field or seeing Phil Rizzuto on the subway before a game.He's right. It's a battle already long lost, but he's right.
Maybe this is alarmism run amok, but if the reports about outrageous ticket prices are correct, it’s possible that in the future Yankee Stadium will be populated by the elite alone, which pretty much sucks. And, just like the Boston fans who’ve been priced out of Fenway Park and flock to other stadiums to see the Sox play, displaced Yankee diehards will be on the move as well.
Monday, July 14, 2008
All Hail Yankee Stadium
Russ Smith is having none of it, however, mostly on egalitarian grounds, as the old ballpark becomes a place to network on an expense account as opposed to toss back beers and jeer: