No matter how hard things got, there was always you. When we sat in the bleachers watching a last place team, it was worth it because of you. When we had to live with disappointments like Andy Hawkins losing a no-hitter, we always had you. And in these last few years of prosperity, you shined all the brighter, proving to the country that there truly is only one “stadium”. You can keep your parks and fields. I got a stadium. And not just a stadium, THE stadium.
Even though money and space has kept us apart more than together these last few years, my affection for you has never diminished. Sure there is nothing quite like a trip to seeing my old friend, but you always seemed to love the television cameras as well. And the cameras loved you right back. Even those never lucky enough to visit the greatest baseball field in history knew what you were all about.
I’ll admit that I did not come to see you this season and say goodbye. It was just too hard for me. Seeing that gorgeous field and touching the monuments to our past heroes was something I didn’t want to forever remember as a sad event. Instead I have nothing but fond memories. Do you remember that day when I was only maybe 8 years old, when Dad, my brother, and I came to see the Yanks play the Royals in the blistering July heat? I know our boys lost by a bunch, but this kid was thrilled just to see Reggie hit a couple into the right field bleachers. Or how about that time I came to see you for game 6 of the 2000 ALCS? We all knew the Mets were waiting for us, but we needed to win and close out the Mariners. When David Justice launched a ball into the upper deck to take the lead, I could feel the floor shaking under my seat. I could just tell you were lovin’ it!
I’ve never been one for tearful goodbyes, but as these current Yankees departed your company last night with the high class defined by that uniform for last time, I could feel a tear fall down my cheek. Fare thee well, my old friend. And thank you for all you have given me. You will never be forgotten.
by David McBride