The pump don’t work ’cause the vandals took the handles

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Tier Reserve Section 8, Row O, Seats 9-11 (Photo on flickr by Ben K.)

Shortly before the 8th inning tonight, a small piece of metal went flying past me and landed on the back of the Cubs’ fan sitting in front of me. “Can you pass that back here?” a voice behind me shouted.

When we examined the projectile, we saw it was a silver seat plaque with a black 13 on it from one of the Yankee Stadium seatbacks. As the people around me handed this erstwhile souvenir of a doomed stadium back to the person who worked to pry it off, my thoughts jumped back to Opening Day when the Yankees announced the arrests of two people attempting to steal parts of Yankee Stadium. For the sake of the people sitting behind me, I wondered if the security guards had noticed.

Approximately five minutes later, I wondered no longer. Three Yankee Stadium security guards and a cadre of New York City police officers converged on Row O in Section 8 of the Tier Reserve. The perps tried to flee. One of them darted across the aisle until either an undercover office or a Good Samaritan stopped the kid and handed him over to the cops. The accomplices were carted off, and as everyone left in handcuffs, I realized that these vandals would be in a lot of trouble over what amounted to a flimsy piece of metal.

New York Magazine this week has printed a piece about the selling of Yankee Stadium and the price people will pay to acquire a piece of the House that Ruth Built. These kids — souvenir-hunters who announced their collecting attentions to anyone in earshot — are going to pay with marks on their records and public service or even jail time. They were caught prying seat numbers off their seats with a knife, and the glare of the lights and camera flashbulbs hit that tool. They could face weapons charges and probably won’t be allowed back in Yankee Stadium. The lesson is, of course, that Yankee Stadium vandalism is stupid, and it just isn’t worth it. Undercover cops and eagle-eyed security guards have the place covered.

Meanwhile, on the field, the Yanks sent something of a message to Victor Zambrano Scott Kazmir and the first-place Rays. The Yanks, of course, won’t back down, and behind eight four-hit innings from Andy Pettitte, the Bombers beat Tampa 5-0. Andy Pettitte is now 7-1 with a 3.55 ERA over his last 10 starts, and Robinson Cano continued his hot hitting with a 2-for-4 evening.

Four other Yankees had two hits apiece, including a huge two-out, two-run double from Derek (who did manage to fulfill his GIDP quota for the night). Melky Cabrera homered after a three strike-out evening, and A-Rod went 0-for-4 in the first game after news of his divorce hit. Good game. Good win. We’ll do it again at 1:05 p.m. today.

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  • dan

    Excuse my ignorance, but what is this title referencing?

  • john

    i bet those kids need the money because of their own financial situations. don’t be so judgmental.

    people don’t “hustle” without a reason.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

      They did it to have a souvenir of the stadium. They were talking about it. They weren’t trying to sell anything. They were just simply trying to steal something valuable from the stadium. Who said anything about hustling?

    • Rich

      The logical extension of your post would be to embark on a slippery slope that would excuse a lot of bad behavior.

    • mustang

      Being in a bad financial situations does not excuse bad behavior. Growing up in a poor area in the Bronx did not give me the right to steal.
      All that being said Ben K was not being judgmental he was making the point for anyone here that might be thinking of doing same thing to simply don’t it’s just not worth it.
      It’s a good heads up.

    • http://metslider metslider

      yeah john they were so poor they were at a baseball game in yankee stadium.

  • dkidd

    check out the new york magazine article for an awesome pic of a family happily carting off a couple of seats when the stadium shut down in 73 (74?)

  • steve s

    Question. I was at the game too and saw something. Was one of the kids wearing a red shirt with a lot of cops following? (Upper deck behind home plate)

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

      Yes one of the kids was indeed wearing a red shirt, steve. Where were you sitting?

      • steve s

        My dad was able to get awesome tickets from a friend. 8th row behind the dugout. (Believe me, I never sit that close; usually Tier Reserve)

  • TurnTwo

    great win last night. crisp baseball is fun to watch.

    are we going to get a separate thread later to vent about how the Cubs were handed Rich Harden on a silver platter, or should we just do that in here?

    • TurnTwo

      not sure if it was expanded upon elsewhere, and im sure it was last night somewhere, but ill just throw this in here.

      as best i can figure, the comparable package from the yankees would have been Melky or Gardner, IPK, Alberto Gonzalez, and a low A prospect with a reasonable ceiling.

      seem fair?

      • Chris

        Sean Gallagher might have more value than IPK right now – he’s younger and has had success this year at both AAA and the majors. I’m not sure about Josh Donaldson… he was a fairly highly regarded prospect coming into the season, but has pretty much sucked in A ball.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

      Eh, if Billy Beane was willing to sell as low as we think on Harden, there’s definitely a good reason, and I’m sure some of that has to do with the fact that Harden has 26 starts over the last three seasons combined and has already exceeded his 2007 innings pitched totals by 50 IP.

      • TurnTwo

        but you know what surprises me? there are a number of columnists who rate this as a win for Beane.

        my guess is that he certainly knows something we dont, and got back 2 MLB ready players, however marginally good they project to be, right now before Harden’s shoulder goes in the tank before August.

  • Chris

    Was it just me, or did Jeter look like he was having trouble running? When he was thrown out at home and when he scored it seemed like he might be injured and having trouble running at 100%.

    • http://2009 Haggs

      I agree.

      He just kind of phoned it in on that slide home. He went right into the tag instead trying to swerve away from it. He’s usually a better baserunner than that. I know Upton has a gun but that was a two out hit, he should have scored.

      And when he slide home safely, he got up like an old man with arthritis.

  • Manimal

    Derek Jerer better watch out.

    • TurnTwo

      ?

  • Geno

    Look out kid, they keep it all hid…

  • tommiesmithjohncarlos
  • john

    damn i was just trying to make the point of “what the hell’s the big deal”

    honestly, it’s a piece of metal. who the hell important sat there that we preserve it? did babe ruth make that piece of metal? did he make that seat? just a manifestation of crooked government dealings (look at the new yankee stadium) and capital exploitation (selling seats as “memorabilia” are you KIDDING. it’s a SEAT. Oh and field dirt for 20 bucks?). I just don’t understand why there are just so many judgmental people out there who come up with conclusions like “just because you’re poor doesn’t mean you can steal” and “slippery slope” from what i’ve said.

    To some of my fellow Yankee fans, you need to take a chill pill. The Yankees have won 4 games straight, maybe it’s time to be benevolent and just say “f*ck it, it doesn’t matter anyway”

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