Wednesday, September 10, 2008

2008 09 07 Shea Stadium Visit

Things have gone rather poorly for the Phils since winning the early Sunday game at Shea. The Phils were 1 game back of the Mets at the time, but that deficit has grown to three games. However, this cannot erase the good time that was had on our trip to New York. What follows is a review largely composed immediately following the trip.

Our trip to New York to check out the Phils and Mets was a good time all around. Team Phungo got to check out Shea Stadium before it closed, There was great weather, and The Phils Won.

We made the sound decision to not embark on a trip to New York on Saturday and fortunately the game was postponed long before the scheduled start time. Sunday provided much better post-hurricane weather and with many fans not present due to the move of the game, we were able to move to improved seats in the shade and behind the plate. Shea Stadium is simply what it is, an older symmetric stadium that doesn't have either the personality of an older stadium nor the fancy comforts of a newer stadium. We were in the upper level where concessions were fairly limited. There was a good dose of Nathan's products, including a Corn Dog, which was tasty although a bit greasy. Beers went for $8 a bottle, the limited selection did include the local Brooklyn Lager. Transportation to the park is only $2 via the 7 train from Manhattan, which is about a half hour ride.
This is the big scoreboard in Shea's Right Centerfield.
The completion of the early contest on Sunday meant there were but 14 remaining games at Shea. The Mets marked the occasion by having the son of Gil Hodges (his name escapes me now) remove the #15 and reveal #14, which was Gil Hodges uniform number as the Manager of the '69 Miracle Mets.
Hodges' 14 is one of three numbers retired by the Mets, the other are Casey Stengel's 37 and Tom Seaver's 41. The Mets as with all Major League teams have also retired Jackie Robinson's #42. The Shea Final Season Banner can be seen at the Left of the Photo. Hodges hit 370 homers during an 18 year career which he finished as a Met in 1963. The bulk of his career was spent with the Brooklyn and LA Dodgers with whom he played for World Champions in both cities.
1959 Topps #270 Gil Hodges

Hodges number isn't retired by the Mets for the two season that he spent as a player but for the 1969 season when he was the manager of the Miracle Mets. The 69 team along with the 86 Mets and several other NL and Divisional crown winning teams are
recognized with banners beyond the outfield wall at Shea.
Notice that there in no 2007 Banner on that wall!

This is roughly the spot where Bill Buckner let that grounder bounce through the five hole during game 6 of the '86 World Series.
The Arthur Ashe Tennis center is located on the opposite side of the rail line from Shea. The Men's semis of the US Open were occurring during the Phils Mets game, you can see the jumbo-tron above the stadium. I blew up the shot and I think that might be Christie Brinkley on the screen. In the left center portion of the shot you can see the globe created for the 1964 Worlds Fair.
Here is a slightly closer look at the globe.
and Finally, next time we see the Mets it will likely be in the new Citi Field.


Ballparkdigest
is an excellent resource for stadium information here is a link to their Shea Stadium Page.

The only other thing we had time for in our New York excursion was dinner at Anthony Bourdain's Les Halles.We were in a rush to get to the train after dinner so I did not get a picture. The restaurant was pricey as expected but very nice, with good food and great service.

1 comment:

fielderschoice said...

Sounds like a great trip! I've never been to Shea; it's one of only two stadiums on the East Coast that I've never been to (the other is the atrocity in Miami). I love Citizens Bank Park in Philly. I'm hoping that I'll have a chance to check out both NY stadiums next year.

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2008 World Champions