Monday, September 22, 2008

"I'm sorry to see it over"

Yogi Berra, wearing his old Yankee uniform, #8, got the last word on the closing of the Stadium: "I'm sorry to see it over." This from the fella who said "it ain't over 'til it's over."

Well, Yankees fans, it's over. The Stadium is no more. The Yanks played their last game, and won (thank God!) 7-3 over the Orioles.

It is so hard to believe that we'll never see the boys in pinstripes play in the House that Ruth built ever again. We have so many fond memories there over so many years.

The best game that we ever attended was Game 4 of the 2001 World Series against the Diamondbacks. We are eternally grateful for those lower box seats to Lee Ann Daly of ESPN, who is now head of marketing at Thomson Reuters (you rock Lee Ann!). The World Series that year had been postponed because of 9/11, and so Game 4 wasn't played until Halloween night. The game went past midnight, and when the clock struck 12:00 midnight, we looked up at the scoreboard which read "Welcome to November baseball."

The World Series had never been played in November before, and probably never will be again. The specialness of that night was heightened by the American flag which flew right in front of us, the very same flag that had been found in the rubble from the World Trade buildings.

This was also one of the first times "God Bless America" was sung during the 7th inning stretch of a baseball game. And it also when Tino Martinez, facing two outs in the bottom of the ninth, hit a two-run homer off Byung-Hyun Kimto to tie the game.

The next inning, Derek Jeter hit a solo shot to win it with a walk-off homer.

The Stadium went beserk. We saw cops hugging and kissing fans, jumping up and down with them, yelling as loud as they could as Derek rounded the bases, his fist pumping the November air.

We'll never forget buying round after round of drinks for NYFD firemen in the bars behind the Stadium after the game, as we toasted to their fellow firefighters who they had just lost in the World Trade bombings.

In the TV spot that we did about The Stadium (which you can see at, we loved what announcers Michael Kay and Al Traugwig had to say about the place: "You don't have to say Yankee Stadium. This is The Stadium. Ballet's got Lincoln Center, Opera's got the Met. This is it. This is the address for the greatest things that have ever happened in baseball."

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