Beer and Baseball in America

Beer and baseball.  Can you think of two things in this country that go better together?  The two have lived a symbiotic relationship for decades.  I grew up a Yankees fan, thanks be to God, and I remember after a homerun Phil Rizzuto would declared it “Miller Time”.  In the 1950’s, a giant Ballantine Ale banner adorned centerfield at the big ballpark in the Bronx declaring itself the “Stadium Favorite”.  Despite the exorbitant cost, and missing at least a half an inning on line at the concession stand, a game just ain’t a game without a beer.

IronPigs Outfield

So you can imagine my delight last night as I entered Coca-Cola Park, the home of the AAA Lehigh Valley IronPigs, and while strolling to my seat saw a stand selling beer direct from the Bethlehem BrewWorks.  A pint of a delicious red lager, followed by a pint of the Pig Pen Pils, and I was a man enjoying life the way it was meant to be!

Minor League baseball does a lot of things well.  The tickets are priced right, the games are fun and exciting, and stadiums usually attempt to bring in a bit of the local culture.  Whoever decided to go get this beer deserves my thanks and admiration.

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Posted by: David McBride

Goodbye to the big ballpark in the Bronx

Well, old friend, I guess this is goodbye.  Throughout my life, there have been few I have looked forward to seeing more than you.  Each year when winter would finally break, nothing brought a smile to my face like the site of you on opening day.  What will the world be like now without you?

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.

Yankee Stadium

Yankee 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

Published in: on September 22, 2008 at 9:45 am  Leave a Comment  
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Crews perform some important extra work on the new Yankee Stadium

Are you a baseball fan like me?  Perhaps considered by loved ones to be a bit…what’s the phrase…fixated on baseball?  Are you the kind of fan who can more easily recall dates of no-hitters than birthdays of relatives?  Then you will probably, like me, perfectly understand this story from the AP regarding some extra work that needed to be performed on the new Yankee Stadium.

It appears that a construction worker, who roots for the Boston Red Sox and only worked at the stadium for one day, buried a David Ortiz jersey in the concrete below the stadium.  When Yankees official found this out, they remedied the potential calamity.

A construction worker’s bid to curse the New York Yankees by planting a Boston Red Sox jersey in their new stadium was foiled when the home team removed the offending shirt from its burial spot.

After locating the shirt in a service corridor behind what will be a restaurant in the new Yankee Stadium, construction workers jackhammered through the concrete Sunday and pulled it out.

Okay, for those of you who are snickering and think this ridiculous, you obviously do not understand the power of curses and superstition in baseball.  You never step on the foul line when coming off the field, you don’t even think about uttering the words “no-hitter” before it’s over, you never talk about winning a postseason series until it the last out is made, and you never, ever disrespect the power of bad mojo. 

Ask the generations of Red Sox fans who saw their team fall on their collective faces for over 80 years if they respect curses.  Ask the Cubs fans who still anguish every year over their losing team if they respect curses.  As a third generation Yankee fanatic I applaud the Yanks for taking care of this potential disaster.  A little extra jack hammering to rid our beloved team of decades of bad mojo can never be a bad thing.

Posted by: David McBride, Marketing Director – American Public House Review

Published in: on April 14, 2008 at 9:28 am  Leave a Comment  
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