It just got hotter and hotter yesterday, then out of nowhere, the wind picked up, the heavens opened, and it was cool for a while. But that was just as I was on my way up to The Bronx to go and see the New York Yankees vs Minnesota Twins. I’m totally a novice when it comes to understanding how baseball works. Over the past week, I’ve seen snatches of it on TV and I’ve slowly worked out the basics.
Outside the stadium, it’s just like going to a football game. Loads of people milling around, drinking beer, folks selling merchandise, ticket touts touting tickets. Inside the stadium, I got a little bronze statuette of some old Yankees player that they were giving away to the first 18,000 spectators (which, after the game, were desperately sought by statuette-less children and parents). And then… the hot dogs and beer.
How different to going to a football match that was. People coming ’round every five minutes or so selling hot dogs, beer, cola, peanuts, candy floss… rather than “excuse me excuse me sorry excuse me sorry excuse me”-ing your way out to an aisle, then having to queue for ages to get a drink like what happens at a football match in Berlin.
So, the game’s about to begin. But first, of course, the national anthem which seems like a pretty popular song. Just like The Macarena or something. And it was sung very very passionately with a bit of vibrato by a finely moustachioed gent behind me.
And they’re off. And good Lord they throw that ball fast! 90-odd mph sometimes. And the batting chap is pretty close, so he doesn’t have much time to react.
The game itself was quite long (nearly four hours). The Twins were 1-0 up in the 3rd innings and it stayed that way for quite a while. Then in the 7th innings, they got three more. Yankees heading for defeat.
Out of nowhere, half way through the 7th innings, just before the Yankees were to bat, the game stopped, everyone got on their feet again and sang God Bless America. Cue quizzical look on my face.
Two more for the Twins in the 8th, but then the Yankees got three, making it a bit more interesting… but to no avail: another run the Twins and the game finished 7-3.
And after stopping to spend more money on merchandise, everyone traipsed back to the subway, but this guy still seemed happy after the defeat.
Considering I knew virtually fuck-all about the game, I really had a lot of fun there.
I wonder if they show baseball on German TV…
Finally, here’s a photo of a pitch invader being carted off by security and the police. He managed to get a good slide into second base before they caught him…