Bronx baseball businesses cast a wary eye toward 2009

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Everyone knows Stan’s. The sports bar and merchandise stores lie under the elevated tracks of the 4 train, across River Ave. from Yankee Stadium. But when the Yankees move north across 161st St. next year, the businesses will be on unchartered territories. The center of action around the stadium will shift uptown, and a trip to Stan’s won’t be on the way to the stadium.

Yesterday, at the game, my dad wondered how this move would impact local businesses, and I thought that tradition would maintain these places. Lisa Kennelly spoke to the local business owners, and they’re not as confident as I am. The Yankees are opening up restaurants, steak houses and Martini Bars at the new stadium and will become a high-powered and wealthy competitor to the local business across the street.

The bars are confident that they’ll attract enough business to stay open, but the merchandise retailers fear that fans won’t want to walk a block or two out of the way for items they can buy at the Stadium. “If fans can go directly to the stadium and shop for everything, they may just stay there,” Joe Bastone of the Yankee Tavern said to Kennelly.

Hopefully, these businesses can survive. A trip to Stan’s has long been a part of the journey up to Yankee Stadium, but with the center of attention moving up the block, it’s going to be an uphill climb for these Bronx baseball businesses.

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How we met Joba's mother
  • pat

    somethin tells me joey from the bronx and sal from brooklyn arent gonna be rushing out to go grab a few martinis after a day game, I think they’ll be alright.

  • Baseballnation

    They’ll be alright, but far from the thriving buisness they share now. From a buisness standpoint it’s probably best to sell high on the property value rather than see a drop of profit come next april.

  • Scott from 3 Kids Tickets

    I disagree. In the beginning pople will still go to Stan’s and the other places, but within a year or 2 they will be gone. When the action moves, the old places always die off. Think about the strip shoping areas that closed up when the malls came in. The Yankees will have beer joints and places to hang out if not right away, eventually.
    Believe me, I have frequented these places 1000 times and have no desire to see them go – but that’s business.


    • tommiesmithjohncarlos

      Like I said in a previous thread… they’re not moving to New Jersey, they’re moving across a street. We’re talking about less than 100 yards here. There’s Yankee shops and bars on the North side of 161 that have operated for a while without being literally across the street from the Stadium… I think Billy’s and Stan’s will be fine, as long as they continue to put out a quality entertainment experience. New Yorkers will walk an extra block for a good time and a good beer at a good price.

  • TurnTwo

    i think they’ll be fine, but i can understand their worry. the yankees trumpeted the idea that building a new stadium would be of great benefit to the fans and the neighborhood businesses, and then loaded up the place with direct competition to the mom and pop establishments.

    i’m sure the regular joe schmoe fans arent going to be able to frequent the martini bar or the steakhouse, etc, due to the anticipated prices they’re going to charge.

    as long as Stan’s, and the surrounding bars/pubs/etc keep their prices where they are, and maybe even offer more specials (two fers, happy hours) they’ll certainly get my business, even if i only go two or three times a year.

  • Adam

    the yankee tavern will always be an inexpensive alternative to the overpriced stadium food, no matter how good it may be.

    • JeffG

      I’ll be going to Yankee Tavern next year too cause I doubt the bartenders in the new stadium or any other people the Yanks have on for service will be half as good as what you get anywhere else on the planet. Compared to the Tavern where they are good and pick up your occasional drink the stadium help is helpless.
      I mean come on… how ridiculous is it waiting 30 minutes in a line when you have the slowest people on earth crawling to get your order? – That crap really kills me.

  • usty

    The action is moving 1 block up town. Plus the new Metro North station (when it opens) will increase the foot traffic past where the Stadium used to be. I think they’ll be fine as well.

    • Ben K.

      Actually, the Metro North station will decrease traffic on River Ave. The entrance to Metro-North is being designed to let people out where home plate currently is at Yankee Stadium. That’s a significantly far walk to River Ave.

      • usty

        oh really? I wasn’t aware of that. Thanks for setting me straight.

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos

        Ben, since when is ONE BLOCK a “significantly far walk”?

        From the spot where the Metro North bridge will put you back at street level, it is literally the exact same distance to walk to Stan’s as it is to walk to the new Stadium.

  • desus

    This article fails to keep in mind the ridiculously high prices for beer and food that the new stadium will demand. Right now McDonalds is a block away from the stadium and is ALWAYS packed before games. People will walk a block or two over when the price difference is $5 or more.

    Also Stan’s has a great pre and post game atmosphere that I seriously doubt any restaurant in the new stadium will be able to recreate.

  • jsbrendog

    its cool, cause randy levine and lonn trost say the new stadium is great for the bronx.

  • LiveFromNewYork

    I can’t see fans not going there. These are fun places to go before the game.

  • DonnieBaseballHallOfFameDotCom

    I guess I am in the minority here but I go to baseball games to watch the game. All the above mentioned places are crass and tacky and I do not care if they go out of business.

    Why would I rather buy merch from a guy in a store than at Yankee Stadium? Why would I prefer to buy bad food from a “local” guy?

    I will not be frequenting the martini bar, but I may go to the steakhouse if its any good, if its not I wont be going more than once.

  • Steve

    Some of the local vendors might want to consider charging less than $5 for a hot dog if their walking traffic decreases. I don’t know what the rents are like over there, maybe they need to charge those kinds of prices but on my way to the stadium I’m constantly amazed that the places outside the stadium charge the same prices as you pay inside the stadium.

    • Steve

      BTW-Not the push carts, the stores.