Reds game #2 for 2012 – Yankee Stadium

21 05 2012

I went to my 2nd Reds game of the season this past Friday.  This one wasn’t at Great American Ballpark, and it wasn’t even against a National League team – it was actually the first interleague game of the year.  The Reds played at the new Yankee Stadium for the first time ever, and my wife and I drove down to the Bronx to see them play.  I’d hoped to go to two games this weekend – but the Bronson Arroyo / Andy Pettitte matchup intrigued me the most.  How would Pettitte do in his second start back?  Would A-Rod try to turn back time and knock the ball out of Arroyo’s glove on the way to first?

I had also hoped to go to the Cueto / Sabathia matchup on Sunday, but really didn’t have the time to justify the hour drive there and (more importantly) the drive back, which Friday night took nearly 2 hours, required a lengthy detour up to the Tappan Zee Bridge that was still far better than the 25 minutes where I thought I could get to the George Washington Bridge – which included a 15 minute timeframe where we moved less than a block.  One of the scarier times I’ve ever been in my car, because I felt completely claustrophobic and powerless.  Anyways, bottom line, I only got the first game.

We had great seats in the 2nd row of left field; but not bleachers – the pregnant wife definitely needs a back to her seat!  I got them on stubhub the night before at $60 a pop – and we were pleasantly surprised they had seat backs.  I was surprised the number of Reds fans I saw there – not like it wasn’t a home Yankee crowd, but I would say over 10% was wearing Cincinnati gear.  And it seems like they were all treated well – well, everyone except the guy I saw who wore a Red Sox jersey in the bleachers to a Yankee-Reds game (not sure what his deal was – but that’s just dumb).

It was a real pitching matchup, and Arroyo did very well for 7 innings.  He gave up only 1 run on a ground out in those 7 innings, and got the first 2 batters out in the 8th.  Unfortunately, Pettitte was even better, giving up 4 hits and no runs in 8 innings.  It looked like Arroyo was going to get one of those dreaded 8-inning, complete game losses.  Unfortunately, after those first 2 outs, he gave an absolute bomb to Robbie Cano and then gave up a 2-run line drive homer to Raul Ibanez.  All of a sudden it was 4-0 and the Reds chance was gone, too.

The Reds lost that game, but they took the next two from the Yanks and are now a couple of games above .500 and only a half game behind St. Louis for the division lead.  However, I’ve realized that they are far from a balanced offensive team.  Basically, it seems like the Reds don’t have a great chance of winning unless Votto or Bruce produce, even if they get a great pitching performance.  That’s a tough formula to win much more than half of your games.  I’m confident in Votto being consistent – he’s produced at a superstar level for 3+ years now.  Bruce, not so much.  At least on Sunday, Ryan Ludwick and Brandon Phillips got in on the action, so maybe one of them will get hot.

Anyways, it was a fun trip to the Stadium, loss by the Reds notwithstanding.  I’m a Reds fan first and foremost.  But even if they lose, I can still appreciate seeing a beloved Yankee like Pettitte pitch a dominant game.  Winning the next two sure helped 😉  Also, I got to sample some of the Yankee stadium ballpark fare.  I found a “retro” beer stand in the Great Hall (shown above) – it apparently used to server some cooler options than it does now.  Rolling Rock and PBR aren’t what I consider “great retro beers”.  More like “beers that weren’t that good back in the day but have been subsequently marketed up”.  They had Ballantine, though, which I’d never had or even heard of, so I tried that.  I had one of the Lobel’s sandwiches at the stand just behind left field, which is always good.  And (as dessert!) I also had a Nathan’s Famous, which I’ve always felt was up there as the best “standard” hot dog you can get at a ballgame.  Win or lose, it was a beautiful evening, and I won’t complain about seeing good baseball under those circumstances.  All in all, a fun trip to the park!



2 responses

21 05 2012

Great post, the park looks really nice. I was lucky enough to make it to the old Yankee Stadium when I was a kid, but haven’t seen the new park yet. Sucks that the Reds lost but you got to see a pretty good game regardless.

21 05 2012

It is pretty nice – the older one was better though. I think it would have been worth keeping the history alive for another couple of decades. But I guess I’m not the one paying for it…

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