That title came from Joel Sherman’s fingers in his latest column.
The claustrophobic feeling an opponent encountered in tough times is gone forever now. The upper deck no longer drapes over the action, but is rather higher and inclined away from the field. The bleachers -- and their creatures -- are now further recessed. The Yanks have played class warfare with their tickets and the result is that their most ardent fans -- those who helped create a 10th-man feel across the street -- will have to all bring microphones to be heard in full in this facility.
Those fans are rumors now to the visiting team. Indians starter Cliff Lee faced runners in scoring position in each of the first five innings. Yet the game might as well have been in Cleveland for all the hostility that reached him. On the other side of 161st Street, Lee would have been made to feel like a gladiator awaiting the lions, the fans in his ear, making him battle for concentration while also coping with the Yankees lineup.
And I agree with every word.
Listen, it’s no secret that the upper deck was pushed back. We’ve seen the plans since 2006. But to actually see and hear a real game yesterday was mind-boggling.
Another thing that stood out to me was the attendance figure. Yesterday’s game was attended by 48,271 people. Last year’s home opener drew over 55,000 people. Games this year could be in 30,000s against a weak opponent on a weekday night game. For a team that consistently drew 4 million people for the last few seasons of the old building, this is a scary thought. I hope they realize what they’ve done.