Why Yankee Stadium Should Still Be The Yankees’ Home

Do you remember the glory days? Because I don’t.

Born in the summer of 1998 and first intently following the Yankees in 2006, I never witnessed the Bomber’s dynasty of the late-90s. Though my suffering was rewarded with being there to watch them win #27, it wasn’t at Yankee Stadium. It was at the “new” Cathedral.

A stadium with less seating, a moat dividing the blue from the white collared, and ticket prices that make a baseball game seem like front row tickets to The Rolling Stones, has turned the experience of a day at Yankee Stadium into a day of spending, sushi, and empty seats. Don’t get me wrong, the new place is one of the better modern and beautiful sports arenas around, but this article is more of a rant on how the old house – The House That Ruth Built – should have never closed its doors in the first place.

In the past five years, New Yorkers have seen Yankee Stadium, Shea Stadium, and Giants Stadium close and be teared down for newer replacements. Three iconic, legendary and historic arenas, turned to parking lots and (in Yankee Stadium’s case), a high school baseball field. Some fans you talk to love the new facilities. The more space, the new scoreboards, food, shops – it’s a good argument. But what I’m really trying to figure out here, is if the Yankees can spend $1.3 billion on a completely new stadium, how much would it have cost to just renovate the old one?

I mean, it’s almost comical to think Fenway Park is turning 100, and not stopping there. Continual dedicated renovations season after season has made the 37,000 seat ballpark, according to the Red Sox, able to stand for another 50 years or so. That’s great for the game and for Boston, so, why couldn’t New York have done the same? That’s what bugs me here.

The old stadium was a place of warmth, closeness, tradition, and most of all, history. From The Bat and to the upper deck that seemingly hung over the players, Yankee Stadium was one of my favorite places in the world, if not the favorite. Yes, there were few bathrooms. The concourses were cramped and falling apart. And a myriad of other problems arose in its final decades. But it was something that could have been fixed. The old stadium, could have still been THE Stadium.

I’m no architect, but I don’t think it would have been a real challenge, realistically. Put the frieze back on top of the stadium, replace the seats, add new bathrooms/clubs/amenities, and maybe paint the stadium a tannish color to make it seem like the pre-1973 version, and basically, there you go. How much would that have cost? I’m sure not $1.3 billion. And I’m sure it would have allowed Yankee Stadium to stand for many more years to come, than to close after 85 years and let the runt of all baseball stadiums, Fenway, and the Red Sox, stay in their historic stadium much longer.

I can go on for hours, but you got things to do, people to see, as do I. But it is an utter disgrace to me that Yankee Stadium no longer stands, when it was so easy and possible to let it do so far after 2008. Oh well. See you at the World Series. Only $1,500 for a seat in the nosebleeds!

Posted on March 17, 2012, in Personal Opinion and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Brian, even though I have shoes and a belt older than you, I think you have a good handle on how some of the older fans feel of The Stadium and the mystic of the place. The Stadium has been home to some of the greatest players in the world and more WS games and wins then any other place in sports.
    The new place is very nice and clean but, it’s not The Stadium.
    The place Mickey came so close to have one of his home runs go out, the place Don Larson pitched the only perfect game in WS history, the place Mickey set the record for HR in the WS, the place Whitey Ford set the WS record for losses and Wins, the place that had 26 WS teams as their home team.
    Baseball history is not complete without the Stadium being a big part!

  2. Brian…
    My comment was ment as an enviable complement, wishing some one could/would say that about me.
    I say this because, my wife (The Boss) said it looked like I was being hard on you because of your age…not ment to be. In fact you have a view of the team some of us older guys don’t have, it’s called, a young fans view. 🙂

  3. German Rivera III

    Randomly came across this blog while in the shower…(don’t judge me lol) I read through 3 posts before getting to this one, I think, and was so stunned I had read it three times and do the math. 1998. Wow. Your writing skills are awesome! Well beyond your years. Reading through these I pictured a person of about 28-35. And it’s not just your style and grammar. It’s your grasp of the subject matter as well. This post in particular is how a lot of Yankees fans feel. The “House that Ruth built” could’ve been renovated, could’ve been updated with more modern amenities and things could’ve been fixed. In the end they thought they could get more out of a new stadium. Thankfully some seats have started to fill up during bigger games but there are times the stadium looks empty. I went to a sox Yankees game in ’09 that was packed, but the Sox game the night before was half full. And, sadly, there were a good number of sox fans that same night. Most times those fans are drowned out by the deafening noise created by the hometown team, but these fans could be heard chanting “Yankees suck” on TV. Perhaps the Stienbrenners thought that the people of New York were going to be able to overcome a terrible economy and be able to afford those tickets, or maybe they’re just greedy. While I appreciate the championship team they’re able to put on the field year after year, I think it’s a shame the ticket prices are beyond most what the average fan can afford.

    Anyway, kudos (or props or whatever you kids say these days lol) to you sir for a fantastic blog. I will be bookmarking and adding too my RSS feed!


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