(click image of a much larger view)
That sorry excuse for a panoramic shot of the New Stadium was taken by me, from our seats while the Yankees were taking batting practice before today’s game. Sheesh, you’d think I’d remember to at least get home plate in the picture, huh?
Luckily, I did manage to get some good shots of The Great Hall, which has banners of everyone from Reggie Jackson to Paul O’Neill, Donnie Baseball to Thurman Munson, and everyone in between. A banner alone couldn’t hold Reggie’s ego, so got his own wall as well. The screen in center field is frickin’ huge, just massive. The obstructed view seats in right and left fields are pretty bad though, and the TV screens really don’t help.
The position players stretched before the game while the pitchers played catch. Jose Veras played catch with Edwar Ramirez, CC Sabathia with Chien-Ming Wang, Andy Pettitte with someone I forgot, Joba Chamberlain with Brian Bruney, and Phil Coke with Dan Giese. Afterwards the starting rotation got together for a quick chat.
Coolest moment of the day: I was wandering around before the game, and as I walked past the entrance to the luxury suites Pilot Chesley Sullenberger walked out of the suite and took a look at The Great Hall. He’s the guy that landed the plane on the Hudson a few weeks back (I’m sure you knew that already), and threw out the first pitch. I did my best to grab a picture of him talking to some people who stopped to say hi as I went up the escalator. Very cool.
You can check out my entire set of photos via my Flickr slideshow. Ben will upload his pictures at some point for you to see as well.
As far as the actual Stadium goes, the biggest problem I had with it was the levels of the sound system. We were sitting directly below a speaker, and my Mo, it was deafeningly. To whoever the lady is that goes about the Stadium asking people trivia questions and what not … don’t talk so damn loud, the person is right next you! The sound system went completely silent in the sixth inning, and stayed that way for the rest of the game. It’s a good thing they played these two games, now they have a chance to fix that.
Other than the PA system, the place was amazing. Monument Park seems a little too hidden, it would be nice to have it on full display as it was at the Old Stadium. The upper deck isn’t nearly as steep as it was across the street, and I like the look of the dark blue seats. I’m sure some people will bitch and moan about tiny little things, but overall the place is phenomenal. I look forward to watching baseball there for the rest of my life.
Here’s your open thread for the night. The Devils and Islanders are both in action, as are both Final Four games. Anything goes here, just be nice.