Sunday, May 31, 2009

Ticket Lottery and Schedule Update

I didn't post this as quickly as everyone else because frankly, I don't care about Mets-Yankees any more. We'll see how many others do care. Before you read any further or decide to pass, I haven't seen this posted anywhere else, and before you buy tickets - the Sunday Mets-Yankees game at Citi Field has been selected by ESPN and is now an 8:05pm start!

The Mets have their annual online ticket lottery registration. I linked to the Press Release so you can read the details if you haven't already.

June will be an interesting month in the battle of the new stadiums in New York City. Mets fans, at least some, some vocal, have voiced a displeasure with Citi Field. I hear that the new Yankee Stadium isn't that great either (I have yet to set foot in that building). I've also heard of some Yankee fans who think Citi Field is better (having asked one who's been to both). Both stadia suffer from some of the same problems (our friends at MetsPolice have covered this - a lot).

But we're coming up on the annual weekend where Mets fans make the road trip to the Bronx (and by the way, there are now Metro North trains that go directly to the big eyesore in the Bronx) - that road trip takes place June 12-14, 2 weekends from now. And 2 weeks later, Yankee fans will make their annual trip to Queens to see Citi Field (June 26-28).

It should be real interesting to hear comparisons of the two ballparks from die-hards of each team.

As far as anyone caring about Mets-Yankees, it wasn't that long ago when FOX televised both scheduled Saturday games (doubleheaders aside) and ESPN televised both scheduled Sunday games, leaving the scheduled Friday night games to be a viewers' choice night choosing between the Yankees broadcast and the Mets broadcast. I noticed on the schedule this year, FOX gets one Saturday game and MLB Network gets the other (a Saturday night Mets-Yankees extravaganza at Citi Field), ESPN gets one Sunday game (with no fanfare, it's the Sunday game at Citi Field that's on your schedule as a 1:10pm game) and TBS has the other. (My original point here was that neither Sunday game was picked by ESPN, but as I noted at the top of this post, the Sunday game at Shea was quietly picked to be a night game).

Friday, May 29, 2009

Photos of Shea

In looking for the aerial photos of the Shea parking lot, I found this link to ALL the Shea/Citi Field photos from Chopper 880's Tom Kaminski.

Both nostalgic, and it can help us see what parts of Shea we're walking over when entering/exiting Citi Field from the LF side.

Are the Shea markings in the wrong place?

I saw this item over on, based on an email from a reader, who thinks that the base markings from Shea, now in the parking lot, are misplaced. I don't exactly disagree with that sentiment. More to come.

Calling all Mets fans - we need your help, again!

Inspired by some posts on where the idea is brought up that we all write letters to the Mets to voice our displeasure with Citi Field, I have my second letter to the New York Mets. I really does hurt that I actually feel I need to write them because they did wrong. But I need to do it. (Since my first published draft, the Mets have added the championship banners to the stadium but tucked them way in the back, almost on 126th street itself.)

My second letter, and the first using all original wording, is about the lack of "Mets" inside Citi Field. I'll post it here, but I don't want to put it in the mail yet. I need a chance to proof-read it to make sure it makes sense (something I do with lot of thing I write), but I also want to see if there's any input from fellow fans on either content or verbal structure or just something that I forgot.
    Dear New York Mets – To whom it may concern,

    I am writing to voice my displeasure with Citi Field, and specifically, the lack of a "Mets" feel as one walks around the ballpark and looks out to the field. It's everything that was advertised, but advertising can be misleading. Needless to say, I was very disappointed and disgusted walking around the ballpark the few times I've been there and feeling that more was done to reflect the history of the Brooklyn Dodgers than the New York Mets, the team that calls that building home.

    Where is the display of Mets team colors around the stadium? Why are the championship "banners" tucked in away in the back? Why do I walk around wondering who's home this really is? I know it takes some time to feel "at home" in a new location, but I've moved in/out of enough college dorms and apartments to know that it feels more at home when your stuff is there. I didn't see any of that "Mets stuff" in the new ballpark. There was nothing walking around the concourses to remind me the history of the New York Mets.

    Where was the legacy of important Mets figures? Where is the legacy of Shea Stadium? Shea had those nice murals of Mets history on the facade inside the seating bowl. All those vinyl banner-type hangings with photos of different moments in Mets history, even the ones with just the Mets logos or the neon figures that identified Shea. Where are all of them? I didn't see anything hanging from the rafters inside Citi Field and I didn't see any of the different Mets logos along any of the infield or outfield walls or on the scoreboards and facades. Why aren't those wall painted in "Mets blue"? I certainly found it disturbing that so many elements of the Mets and their history were put up for sale/auction at the end of last season when the ballpark closed. A lot of those pieces SHOULD have been brought over to Citi Field and used as decorations (the analogy that I like to use is that when you move, you don't sell or toss the kids' pictures, you bring them with you and hang them up).

    I know there's a little bit, like new player picture-banners hanging outside the stadium, the old home run apple, the Shea scoreboard skyline, and the championship banners, but it's a big ballpark and they get lost and feel like token gestures to the fans. Why is there no "Shea club" to go along with the "Ebbets club" and "Sterling club"? Who were Ebbets and Sterling in relation to Mets history? Why is there no "Gil Hodges (bullpen) bridge"? Why isn't the area behind home plate on the Promenade concourse called "Casey Stengel Plaza"? Why change the names from "Loge", "Mezzanine", and "Upper Deck" to "Excelsior" and "Promenade" (realizing that one name would need to be dropped)?

    I ask a lot of questions because there are so many pieces that simply disgust me about the ballpark. I hope from my complaints, you find both an awareness of the mistakes that were made and some solutions.

Caroline is not so sweet

MetsGrrl doesn't like it. BrooklynMetFan has a petition to stop it.

Do you like having Sweet Caroline as a sing-along at Mets games?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Banners are Up, sort of

From Matthew Cerrone on,
    The Mets put their championship pennants under the bridge, above the bullpens and the old Home Run Apple, facing the Bullpen Entrance:

    I’m glad they’re on dispay, but I don’t understand why they chose to put them in a place that is hidden from the stands.

    I liked being able to see them from the field, like it was at Shea, and in pretty much every other ballpark.

I agree with Matt. I also don't understand why the took so long to get there. But maybe, just maybe, the Mets are starting to listen to the fans.

Friday, May 22, 2009

The Mets are just a .500 team

Before I say any more, let me preface this by saying this - a good team/player can have a bad game or bad stretch, and similarly, a bad team/player can look good for a period of time. When you have a real .500 team (give or take a few games), you get enough stretches like that that it balances out what looks like, on paper, either a really good team or a really bad team. The Mets, on paper, looked like a really good team. They have had stretches this season where they just didn't show it, and times where they did. Hence, I call them a .500 team. It's different than the .500 team that played out 161 3/4 games last year (yes, I know they were a bit over .500, but not much, and one more good stretch than bad accounts for it).

Another factor of a .500 team, that I do see in the Mets, is some really strong points and some really weak points.

  • They're strong in starting pitching. Really strong at the top of the rotation, and with Ollie Perez sitting in sunny Florida working out his "injury", I really don't see a weakness here. Remember, you won't get 162 quality starts. Sometimes, a pitcher can be distracted by mini-earthquakes on the pitchers mound in a city that's physically always on the move. Sometimes, he just won't have his curve ball. That's ok. Move on.
    Grade: A

  • The bullpen is better than it was last season, so far. It will always be fresher at the start of the season than it will be in August and September. It has to be. But last season's bullpen, almost an entirely different set of arms, was supposed to be good too. This year's home makeover version has been good, but not great. Something is wrong with J.J. Putz. Either with his head, his shoulder, or both. Bobby Parnell has been great in the 7th, and can mature into a more important role someday. K-Rod can be dominating some nights and a bit scary on others. Sean Green has probably been the most consistent weak link. Some days, pitching bad is infectious.
    Grade: B+

  • The defense has seen a topic of discussion. The Daniel Murphy experiment in LF was a complete failure. That definitely cost the Mets a few games. Funny thing is, I don't remember this being an issue last season. David Wright needs a week's vacation from 3B. I still contend a shoulder or arm injury that either the fans/media don't know about, or one that nobody knows about. He can't seem to get a throw all the way to first on the fly to make it easy for the first baseman. Carlos Delgado made him look good there, and we'll miss him for the next couple months. Beltran has been outstanding, and better when the other outfielders can get out of his way. And nothing else stands out to me there. Let's see how Sheffield handles playing every day in LF and Church and Reed split right.
    Grade: B-

  • The offense, at times, has lacked the clutch hit (and usually with David Wright batting that month), and at times, didn't have that pop out of the box. And don't forget that 7 game HR-less stretch on the West Coast.
    Grade: B

  • They lack depth. I'll skip over the bench and go right for depth. It's a system-wide problem. We have an infielder go down, so we call up an outfielder. And we're asking to do it again with Reyes's injury. We couldn't find a left fielder worth a damn. And he was moved to firstbase, after a week without a real firstbaseman (and nobody in the minor leagues seemed to be able to do the job). We got lucky at catcher with Omir Santos. Damn lucky. We couldn't seem to find someone satisfying to play for Reyes at shortstop.
    Grade: C

  • Management. So bad, that some fans want us to go to Japan to change the tone of the club. That's another post. Player management, position management, and injury management. I'm not sure which has been worse. Injury management is the same medical staff that mis-treated Ryan Church last year. Well, I wrote about that a few days ago. Field management has been on the level of Willie Randolph's club (and that's no complement). You can't over use the bullpen in April and May. You need them in September. This is where we need the most a fresh new look.
    Grade: C-

The Zen of Bobby V

I saw this article on about former Mets Manager and fan favorite Bobby Valentine.

A few things struck me in the article. One is how the fans rallied around a cause with signs and t-shirts. MetsGrrl, are you listening? The other, and bigger one, is what Bobby V. has done in Chiba.
    In his seventh season with the Marines, the charismatic Valentine has long been a fan favorite in Japan. That's not only for what he's done on the field -- the Marines won the Japan Series championship in 2005 -- but also because he's made significant progress in making Japanese baseball more fan-friendly.

    Valentine's presence is felt everywhere at Chiba Marine Stadium. There is a special section of the stadium where kids can sit in the "Bobby Seats" free of charge and a street near the stadium has been renamed Valentine Way.

A lot of fans wanted to see him back with the Mets, but his fan-friendly ways would never work in the dysfunctional world of Fred and Jeff Wilpon. I don't see much coincidence in that Fred Wilpon took over as the sole owner of the Mets the same year that Bobby V. was fired (and replaced with Art Howe).

Monday, May 18, 2009

Calling Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard

Oy. This is getting bad. And fast! First, it was Schneider, and then, long ago, it was Pelfrey - thank God that cleared up without costing too much. Then it was an "injury" for Perez. That's being worked on. In the last 8 days, Delgado, Reyes, and now Cora. The 2nd quarter of the Mets season (starting technically this coming weekend) will look nothing like the 1st. A review comes this weekend.

Reyes - at first, we thought it was punishment. But 2 games. 3 games. Oy. 5 games, and the backup shortstop goes down. Not really punishment. Jose, we need you.

Delgado - they should have planned for this one. It's not much of a shock. But the Mets, from the majors to the St. Lucie team, doesn't seem to have a real first baseman who can be called up, so they bring up an outfielder (actually, coming off the DL). If this lack of depth costs them the season, this one's squarely on Omar. I still think with the nagging nature of his injury, before the surgery piece came out, he should have been DL'd a week ago when he re-aggrivated it, allowed to have 2 weeks rest without costing the team a spot on the bench, and then evaluate, instead of sitting for a week and holding down the bench. The end result would have been the same for him, but maybe we'd have an extra pinch hitter to help us in those games. On the flip side, I hear Port St. Lucie is really nice this time of year, and has more Mets stuff in it right now than Citi Field does.

Cora - shit! I was out watching sitcoms and all the sudden, his injury was DL-worthy. We seem to have plenty of middle infielders to call up. Thank God Castillo is healthy and playing well. Let me say that again. Thank God Luis Castillo is healthy and playing well.

Ramon Martinez is back, and if Dodger Stadium was any further away from the airport, he wouldn't be in the starting lineup. 20 minutes before first pitch he arrived. I don't even like being at the park that late. So much for moving the AAA affiliate out of the Pacific Coast League.

Write The Mets

The Mets may actually be listening to the fans. Time will tell. But last week, they sent out a survey via email to select fans, which you can take here, thanks to some fan who posted the link on Twitter. They ask questions mostly about the uniforms. has been on top of that (with a couple of posts actually) and was even talking bad uniforms before the survey came out.

But what's important to see is that the Mets seem to have open ears now, and if you want to voice concerns (and I think there's a few things that need to be voiced), this may be a good time to do so. The last page in the survey is an open form to add whatever other comments you like. They also ask about a name for the bridge in right-center field, so we know there's more than just new marketing uniform ideas on their mind.

Together, we can make a difference.

Send your own letter in one of the following ways:

Snail mail:
New York Mets
Citi Field
Roosevelt Avenue
Flushing, NY 11368-1699

Via email at:
fanfeedback AT (replace AT with @)

Via web form on

Friday, May 15, 2009

Calling All Mets Fans - We Need Your Help

This is a call to action that was first started on this morning.

If you are looking for changes at Citi Field, such as restoring the access to the dugouts for Batting Practice to try to get autographs and see players up close, please follow Caryn's lead and write a letter to the Mets.

I intend to do so myself this weekend.

Send your own letter in one of the following ways:

Snail mail:
New York Mets
Citi Field
Roosevelt Avenue
Flushing, NY 11368-1699

Via email at:
fanfeedback AT (replace AT with @)

Via web form on

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Branch Rickey discusses a new baseball league

I must share this post that I found on Newsday columnist Neil Best's blog.

Branch Rickey is discussing the new (now defunct) Continental Baseball League in 1959 on the TV show What's My Line.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Something borrowed, Something blue

Let me borrow an observation from Metstradamus, at the bottom of his post, where he observes the following:
    Now, check the helmet that [Metstradamus] bought the ice cream in:

    If you said "Hey wait a minute, that's an interlocking NY painted over the Final Season at Shea logo", give yourself a big round of applause. Then laugh.

    Then cry.

    Seriously? A paint job over a plastic cup? Was it sponsored by Spongetech?

I think it's the only thing painted blue in the entire stadium.

For Sale

I don't want to get on my Shea memorabilia soap box, but I'm looking through the auction site and there's a few things that should have been moved to Citi Field instead of being sold/auctioned to fans.

  1. SHEA STADIUM AUCTION:1986 NL East Celebration Diamond Club Restaurant Framed Photo - this should be hanging somewhere inside Citi Field and not up for sale.

  2. SHEA STADIUM AUCTION: 1988 N.L. East Division Champions Sign - this, along with its friends, belong on the wall at Citi Field.

  3. SHEA STADIUM AUCTION: 2000 National League Champions Flag - I know one of these flies at Citi Field

Sorry Mr. Wilpon, but this constitutes treason!

Running Bases

In addition to attending a game inside Chez Amazin' last night, I had a chance to walk out to the parking lot to see where Shea Stadium's bases and pitcher's mound were located.

Go to the 3B side of the Promenade, where the ticket windows are. Go to the outfield side (left if you're looking at the ballpark) to where you see one of the staircases and gates (if you've hit the VIP entrance, you've gone too far). get even with the staircase that's on the home plate side, just next to the Citi Field map and ticket windows. Walk straight away from the ballpark to the parking lot. About 400 feet away is second base, and the rest are in line from there.

When I found the markings, two things seemed wrong to me. It's probably just my perception and inability to judge distance. The bases seemed less than 90 feet apart from each other. But I'm looking in an open parking lot and not in the context of a baseball field/stadium (which I haven't been on an MLB size diamond on the diamond itself in a long time). They diamond as a whole seemed too close to Citi Field. Again, same perception or lack thereof. I know that the batter's eye from Shea almost bumped up against Citi Field, on what is now the big sidewalk outside the ticket windows. I need to find aerial shots of them together and Citi by itself to judge better. The one thing I wouldn't want to see, but would help greatly with the perception would be a chalk outline of Shea, marking the playing surface features and the exterior wall of the stadium. I could have walked 410 feet from home plate through second base towards the new ballpark (where it's a perfect 90 degree angle with the outside wall), but I stopped counting at 14 paces and got on line to go inside. I did exit from the stairwell that lets out right in that line, probably 450 feed from Shea's home plate.

I have pictures of it on my camera, but nothing that you haven't already seen elsewhere.

Thoughts from Sec 405

At the game and getting to the game, I took about a page's worth of notes on Citi Field from my second real game experience and third trip there overall. I'll leave my evaluation of the club and last night's gritty 10 inning win for my quarterly review this weekend.

  • Coming off the train, I saw more blue and orange on the LIRR platform than I did inside the Mets ballpark. The color scheme must look really weird to those coming in for the US Open Tennis in August/September who are unfamiliar with the local baseball team. I like the blue and orange at the train, but it shouldn't be the only time I see those colors all night.

  • BP really just sucks when you can't get over to the dugout. That, for me, was half the fun. The players just don't come over to the area down the RF line all that much.

  • I found out first hand that a grown man of 6'0" could bend over from the first row of seats to the field to pick up a baseball. Just one of those random balls lying of the grass behind 1B that was kicked over by one of the trainers.

  • The ribs at Blue Smoke in CF are good. No line at all at about 5:15pm, and they were steaming hot inside the container. I'm going to try different foods each time I go. I still felt the need for a foot-long hot dog before the game though.

  • I got to walk through the Promenade Club, now that it seems to be open to any fan. Nothing special, at least not for me. I'd rather be at my seat watching a game.

  • I did get to check out some views from different RF seating areas in the Promenade. The difference between the "infield" seats and "outfield" seats on the 1B/RF side, besides the price, is that the "outfield" seats cannot see the RF corner (at a minimum) or any of RF (at the worst place). The "infield" seats are far enough away from the angling of the far RF seats that it never creates a problem, while the "outfield" seats are either part of the problem or very much obstructed by it. That seemed to go for both the "box" seats (400s) and "reserved" (500s). It's a shame. At Shea, the only difference between the two, aside from the seats near the foul poll, was just distance from home plate.

  • Those LED ribbons, while the do obstruct some views, are not as bad as I had first thought. Most of the obstruction from my seat was the angling of the seats in RF blocking the view of the corner.

  • The Amtrak Acela club seems to have a brick oven. I sat directly across from it in RF, and could see a flame through the window. I will probably never get in to eat there.

  • I've seen this noted in other places, but I'll say it here too. There is no place to see the lineups at all times before or during the game. The RF scoreboard screen which shows it is also used for replays, ads, and other info. Even before the game, they put it up and take it away. That's how those new scoreboard video screens are - different from the older ones like we had at Shea where the lineups and out of town scores were on the side of the scoreboard, which was eventually upgraded to show video. Those flag poles block the view of that RF scoreboard when you're sitting on the 1B/RF side of the park. It's annoying.

  • The RF corner design on the Field Level seems to invite some obstructions.

  • I don't know if it was me, but there were some parts of the Promenade reserved seats on the 3B/LF side that seemed to have very little usable light.

  • I noticed that the entrance from the concourse to the Promenade reserved seating behind home plate (above the clubs) uses the old style where you enter into the middle of the section instead of from below it. It takes away some seats, but doesn't obstruct anything. Premium seating of course.

  • Looking over to the LF landing area in the Promenade, those last 3 sections in fair territory, it looked like the plexiglass is lower on those staircases than it is on any of the other staircases on the Promenade. Lower plexiglass makes less obstruction...maybe.

  • The scoreboard uses different graphics for the players each time through the lineup (like first at bat is something with the Tops logo, third at bat is something with Citi Field in the background, etc.) One of the at bats, it's "Vote for xxx" for the All-Star game. I didn't check my ballot, but I didn't think reserves would be there, yet I saw "Vote for Tatis", "Vote for Cora", and "Vote for Santos". I should have paid attention when Pelfrey got up in that turn through the batting order to see if they had "Vote for Pelfrey" when pitchers aren't even on the ballot.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Heading out to Chez

I'm heading out of work in a few minutes to catch the bus to the train to Penn Station to make the 3:49 train out to "Mets-Willets Point", whatever that is. Game number 2 for me at the new ball yard. We'll see if anything is different and if anything is better that the first game. Big Pelf again. My first, and so far only night game scheduled this season.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Going Home

I saw this on a couple of Mets blogs today. I'll link to them both, as they show different pictures. First, from The 'Ropolitans, and second from

Update - 5:04pm:
Check out Mets Merized Online for more pictures of each marker. Of course, they came from StadiumPage.

The Mets have marked the site of Home Plate from Shea Stadium somewhere in the parking lot. I'll be heading to the game tomorrow and I can try to check it out on my own.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

More ideas for Citi Field

A follow-up to my post Re-built this Citi. This came from a friend of mine a while back.

  1. Get a bar or bar & grill at Citi Field, one that's open to all fans after a game, and name it The Happy Recap. Make it a post-game destination, especially for those taking the train home (and not drinking and driving).

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Booster Seats

I was catching up on my reading and came across this paragraph in Newday's Neil Best's column from February 26. Neil is the sports media columnist who also tackles such socially relevant issues as new stadia and ticket sales.
    Some fans have expressed concern about obstructed views from the first row of the promenade level of Citi caused by ribbon boards affixed to the facade, just below the railing.

    "If you're a shorter person it could be an issue," [Mets Executive VP Dave] Howard said, "but we think that can be addressed in some way with booster pads . . . For most adults it should not be an issue, and if it becomes an issue we'll have the means to address it."

This was Dave Howard talking to Neil back in late February. Dave, why don't you meet me at my seat in the second row of the Promenade on Tuesday night and we'll discuss getting a 6'0" adult a booster pad.

An interview with an author

I can't think of a good way to preface this other than saying here, read this interview over at, where writer Regis Courtemanche interviewed author, blogger, and Mets fan Greg Prince about his book Faith and Fear in Flushing: An Intense Personal History.

Read the interview and buy the book. But don't spoil the ending for me, I'm not quite there yet.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Are the Marx Brothers handling Oliver Perez?

Well, it's official. Ollie Perez to the DL. Maybe he'll be shuffled off to Buffalo. Then he has a phantom ice pack on his knee. Oh no, he's ok. He'll just be demoted to the bullpen. Oh wait, they have their stories straight and his knee has been a problem all year going back to Spring Training. So Ollie's on a plane to Port St. Lucie. At least we get Jon Niese up to start Friday.

I am really starting to think Chico Marx is leading the communication. Nobody could mangle the English language like Chico Marx.

The part I wanted to show runs from about 1:30 into the clip to about 4:00, but you could just watch it all. This is from the Marx Brothers movie Monkey Business.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


I took the headline from the NY Post itself. Of course, the Post is playing off the fact that the Mets have banned the local newspapers from the clubhouse in a "see no evil, hear no evil" censorship.

These are pretty funny.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Judge This Book By Its Cover

I meant to post this last night. I'm just relaying information from another blog that came out last night.

Noted author and Mets fan has a new book coming out. The Last Days of Shea: Delight and Despair in the life of a Mets fan. That's not new news anymore. We've known about his book for a while. Yesterday on his blog, Dana showed the world the cover. It's beautiful.

Let's dissect it. He has a great picture of Shea, with a beautiful blue partly cloudy sky serving as backdrop for the text. It's Shea, beautiful old Shea, with its symmetry and geometry as seen from probably the last row in the Upper Deck straight behind home plate. And the kicker - there's no Citi Field in the background.

I've always said that no good photo of Shea has Citi Field in the background. He used what I consider to be a classic shot of Shea (of any ballpark really) - what I call the "postcard shot". Get as high up as necessary to get the widest shot, as even as possible with the line drawn from home plate, through the pitcher's mound, and straight away center field, and shoot, and in the age of digital cameras and large memory sticks, shoot a lot.

I actually have a 1000 piece puzzle, put together and framed, in my living room, of Shea Stadium from a photo taken at the 2005 Home Opener from a similar vantage point. Just about any photo taken from there before the construction will be beautiful. You can buy the puzzle at for a lot less than I paid for it in Port St. Lucie last year.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

follow up to the Obstructed views

As a follow-up to my earlier post there's a lot to fix, I found some photos of Shea that showed the railings. I liked the ones that were at Shea because they blended in with the seats and were not obtrusive. has been following this post as well.

We see Shea's Upper Deck and Mezzanine walkways up close and we can see how the railings and steps were just not in the way.

I think I figured out the scam

OK. I think I figured this out. The Mets put in these wide open concourses, with views of the field in most places (when you're not behind a condiment stand or staircase (the ones to the seats above that obstruct on two levels), or what Dave Howard likes to call, an "obstruction"). But how is it better than Shea if people are in their seats watching the game? The Mets added so many (too many) clubs and restaurant-type places, things we basically didn't have at Shea (at least in volume and design). Even ones for the paying customers in the Upper Deck (or "Promenade" as they call it). But how is it better than Shea if people are in their seats watching the game?

Well, here's the scam. The Mets built the obstructed views so that they want you to walk around the concourses, spend money on concessions/souvenirs, and enter the clubs and buy an expensive lunch or dinner and watch the game in their comforts. It wasn't by accident.

One other thought related to scams. The Mets must not be getting much of the money generated by fees for buying Mets tickets online. I bought a single $20 ticket for a game that cost me $31 (more if I wanted to print at home). If they were getting a large cut of that, they'd be pushing people towards individual tickets instead of full and partial season ticket plans.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Re-Built this Citi

Of course the title of the post is a play on the name of this song from the group Starship from 1985.

The Mets are on a short road trip now, a longer one later in the month, and while they're away, I have some ideas on how Fred Wilpon & Co. can vandalize Chez Amazin' to make it work better for Mets fans, along with some other random thoughts about our new ballpark.

  • Dave Howard did say the dark green seats came from the Polo Grounds. He lied about obstructed views, but we'll take his word on this. My dad didn't seem to remember that detail of the park where he went to see Willie Mays play in person back in the '50s (The Polo Grounds may have ever only been seen in black & white). I'm ok with that. The orange/blue/green/red scheme from Shea may not look that good at Citi Field.

  • Did you know that in a hockey arena, it's impossible to see the ice-side of every piece of the boards when sitting in the stands, as well as the puck or players when played on the ice against the boards? Think about it. The nature of the boards and the fact that you're always behind one side of them creates a natural obstruction. And nobody seems to complain, because the only seats that can fix that are either suites below ice level with windows into the boards, or seats vertically above the ice surface, but not sticking out over it. don't look down.
    I bring that up because with seats in fair territory at Chez Amazin', it stands to reason that some parts of the outfield wall would not be visible below. We've never had a lot of fair territory seats before. From the bleachers at Shea, I could not see the LF wall. I didn't complain about it. Of course, when third base or home plate are obstructed from your LF seats, that is a problem.

Now to some things we can do to fix Chez Amazin'...

  1. Get some mets logos along the walls. Use the different logos (our version of the interlocking NY, script Mets, baseball/skyline logo, I've seen other ballparks put the team's logo(s) around the wall and/or behind home plate. Only one needs to be inview of the TV camera behind the batter.

  2. I've said it before, the championship banners from the Shea outfield wall should be on the wall at Citi Field. There's no real reason that they aren't there.

  3. And I've said this before too. The Shea scoreboard skyline should be in a place where it can be seen better from the seats, rather than being stuck BEHIND the CF scoreboard

  4. Name the bridge after Gil Hodges. I heard Howie Rose say it on WFAN the other day, and I think I've read it on a few blogs. It doesn't take much to do

  5. Name some concession stand or area in the promenade after Shea, or after something from Shea. Having the old HR apple is good, but we want more of Shea.

  6. Mets colors are blue and orange. We need some blue. The foul poles are orange (just like at Shea, and the only orange ones in the league). The OF wall has the orange stripe. Add some blue. It came from the dodgers, so Mr. Wilpon should be ok with it. Blue can be somewhere inside the stadium. It doesn't need to be visible on the field of play.

  7. Name the escalators on the RF side after top Mets right fielders (Strawberry, Art Shamsky, etc.), and do the same in LF and CF. Ya, take the Mookie Wilson escalator from behind the big scoreboard up to the Excelsior level and take the Tommie Agee escalator up to the Promenade to the seats under the out of town scoreboard.

  8. Name the patio above the Rotunda after some Mets catchers (because it's behind home plate), or even better, name it Casey Stengel Plaza (like the street name outside somewhere). How about calling it Mike Piazza?

  9. Hang banners of Mets logos and/or Mets players and/or Mets moments inside the stadium, like we had at Shea (like what was sold from Shea). They can hang from the ceilings and stay 7 or 8 feet above ground, especially in the field level concourse, and be out of the way. Other concourses too if height permits. Don't use the tacky black and white ones either. I'll sell back the one I bought for $3,000.

  10. Name the part of flushing bay visible from the RF seats over the LF wall after Kevin McReynolds. McReynolds cove (like McCovey cove). OK, that was pushing it.

  11. What about a Mets Shoe-polishing stand? That would be a start.

  12. Get a bar or bar & grill at Citi Field, one that's open to all fans after a game, and name it The Happy Recap. Make it a post-game destination, especially for those taking the train home (and not drinking and driving).