There have been two games played at the new Yankee Stadium, far too few to pass any judgement on the place and what it will be like for fans. The reason they played the two games against the Cubs was to iron out all the details and problems, after all.
My opinion — and this seems to be the general impression — is that it’s a marvelous stadium.
But based on e-mails that have been coming in by the dozens, there are some odd quirks about the Stadium that the team probably needs to address.
• The net behind home plate: Let’s see, the Yankees own a good chunk of YES. The success of the network accounts for a large percentage of the team’s worth. So how in the world did they build a stadium that ruined an important camera angle? The excuse du jour is that the net was constructed with the safety of the fans in mind. How about cutting down the height of the net and having it stretch over the seats as it did at the old stadium. Would that work?
I have no idea. But it’s embarrassing that a team that owns a television network built a stadium that is not conducive to televising games. Somebody really botched that up. They need to get it fixed.
• The obstructed view seats in the bleachers: It was not the best idea to plunk a sports bar down in the middle of the bleachers and create hundreds of seats that can’t see either right field or left field. The team has tried to remedy that. But the televisions placed there to compensate aren’t angled correctly.
• The huge black curtain on the field level: Behind home plate on the field level is this giant black shower curtain. I noticed it because it’s right near the press gate. It’s like the Wizard of Oz. Apparently it’s supposed to provide a backdrop for infielders to see the ball off the bat. But given how they’ve slavishly catered to the wealthy, you have to wonder whether it’s to keep the great unwashed from peering down at the good seats. Regardless, it looks silly.
• The out-of-town scoreboard: Is it too much to ask that a stadium have one scoreboard dedicated to other games? Just two teams, the score and the inning. Save the little diagrams. Just give us the scores. Having a board rotating four games at a time is not good enough.
• Retired numbers: They’re hidden away in Monument Park, tucked underneath the sports bar. How about you leave them there but also display the numbers somewhere else where people can see them without having to stand in line? There has to be some place in that giant park where this can be done. I can’t think of a single park or arena where the retired numbers aren’t on display for all to see.
The Stadium will change over the days, months and years to come as the Yankees correct what didn’t work in the first place Hopefully they take a very proactive approach to some of these issues.