Going to the baseball game yesterday I noticed the new ads on the 86th Street subway turnstiles. It was my ninth Yankee opener, my first one was 1963, Milt Pappas beat Whitey Ford, Boog Powell hit two homers and Mantle hit one. At 9 years old, I was a seasoned fan but that was my first opener.
I still can't get over the terrible 1973 renovation much less that they teared down the entire old Yankee Stadium. Still, there is something inside me that loves the ritual of the opening of the baseball season. It confirms there will be warmth, water fountains will open in the parks and I'll smell the oil I rub into my Catfish Hunter glove.
I don't like pictures of Guiliani inside the ballpark, I miss the quiet in between innings marred by offensive World Wrestling Federation loud commercials. Didn't we pay handsomely for our seat, isn't a $12 beer and a $5 frank reason to stop kicking the fans when they're down? That will not change so I make the best of it and enjoy the baseball: Curtis Granderson's fielding & hitting and terrific Yankee relief pitching.
With the cool wet weather, I felt like the Giants should have been down there playing the Cowboys, but the Yankees provided me with my sixth victory in nine openers. A win always makes the ride home on the #4 sweet.