sdelmonte: (Take Me Out to the Ballgame)
[personal profile] sdelmonte
Went to today's Mets game. Which they won.

Some observations from my first day game at the new stadium.

If you go to a day game in the summer and want to avoid the sun, get seats in the upper rows of any section. Barring that, sit in left field, and you will lose the sun as the afternoon passes. I had a seat on the right field side, at field level. I understand now why the tickets were at half off at StubHub.

Happily, there is a lot of shade in the new park, and concourses that are open everyplace but behind home plate at the field level. So after five innings, I roamed about a bit, watched from the upper deck and from left field before returning to a space on the concourse behind my seat. it seems that they don't care where you stand. I approve.

I also visited the "clubs" for people who buy tickets above a certain level. Nice that there is air conditioning and a place to sit on something softer than ballparks chairs, but ignoring that there is no kosher food in these clubs, none of them have good views of the field. One has NO view of the field. I would rather sweat and watch the game than be cooler and watch on a TV. But I think it's a concession to how people go to the ballpark now. Some people want to see every pitch. Some want to go for a day out, and don't care about the game so much. It's not how I would ever watch, but if it fills and park, so be it.

The vibe there by day is much more inviting than in the evening. I guess the park needs abundant natural light. At night last year, it was just okay. Today it feel like a ballpark. Not a cathedral of baseball, which is how the old and new Yankee Stadia were and are. But just a place to watch a game if you choose. It's still not a thing of beauty, but neither is it as overstuffed with history and ceremony (real and imagined) as YankeeLand. It suits baseball, even if it needs more Mets signage.

I really wish, however, that the Mets didn't start imitating the Yankees in singing God Bless America at the seventh inning stretch. It's really not that good or inspiring. Isn't one bad national anthem enough. (Give me America the Beautiful any time.)

Coincidentally, it was Jewish Heritage Day. Which meant a Jewish choir and an a capella group performed before the game. I really don't know what purpose this served, though the park was overflowing with religious Jews. But then it always seems to, being so close to my neighborhood. If only they told the PA guy how to pronounce "mah nishmah."

I will also note that there is not an endless flow of noise and video between innings, which is something that I hate at Yankee Stadium. The Mets, no matter what they get wrong on the field and in the front office, get this right.

The game itself was a typical Mets game of late, light on hitting and heavy on good pitching, from this year's biggest pleasant surprise, RA Dickey. He was great, not just pitching well but driving in two runs. Otherwise, the Mets are a mediocre club. Not painfully bad, but nothing really exciting either. As such, the overall air in the park was one of people having fun and rooting on the team but not one of expectation or of anger. This is about what I expected.

And I am now 2-0 in the new park. I hope that keeps up.
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Alex W

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