Monday, July 11, 2011

From Bleachers to Box Seats

Sweet Suite 16!!

Gina and I made our way to Yankee Stadium early on Sunday morning after the disappointment of Friday night's rainout and the elation of Saturday's historic events. We were unfortunately a day late to witness history, but we were so happy for Derek and the way he accomplished his 3,000th hit in grand fashion, and we were also excited for our first glimpse of a luxury box at the Stadium.

We took the Yankee Clipper from New Haven to the Bronx and arrived at the Stadium at around 11:30. We quickly made our way to one of the stadium stores and purchased our grey Jeter 3,000 shirts:

Then we made our way to the secret luxury box entrance. It looked secret to us anyway. There was an escalator near the store going up from the main level to the suite level. Then it looks like you're entering the offices of some very classy business. All glass doors and blue carpets. An attendant opened the door, looked at our tickets and then let us into the suite level! Wow, he didn't know what havoc he was releasing into this quiet, serene, almost museum like corridor.

We began to make our way towards suite sixteen. The muted light and extreme quiet of the corridor was strange to us. It didn't even feel like we were in a baseball stadium. Along the way, each suite is numbered with a blue, florescent light with block numbers that look like the away jersey type. And next to each suite is a plaque listing Yankees players that have worn that number. There are also beautiful, framed pictures of some of the players that have worn that number. We passed by the picture of Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth, where just a day earlier, we had seen Dr. Charles Jeter interviewed in front of by Kim Jones.

The moment came, we entered suite sixteen and pretty much lost our minds! Immediately to the right there was a private bathroom, then a kitchenette with an island, refrigerated drawers full of beer and soda, then a little living room area with a leather couch and two leather swivel chairs. A coffee table with Jeter 3,000 programs on it, chips and popcorn. Pizza, hot dogs, french fries, salad for the taking. A bar area with windows facing out towards the first baseline, and a door leading outside to two rows of seats. Two flat screen TVs re-playing the Jeter 3,000 special on YES. Amazing! Gina and I were overwhelmed. We snapped about 15 pictures of the room and us touching stuff in the room before our attendant for the day, John, came in. We quickly stifled our erratic behavior and tried to act like adults, probably unsuccessfully.

Our next order of business was exploration. We started to stroll down the hall and take in all the framed pictures on the walls. All of the attendants throughout the halls were very friendly. A photographer stopped us and asked if we wanted to take a picture in front of one of the framed photos. We said we wanted to stand in front of a Jeter picture. One of the attendants said there was a great photo near suite 51, so we walked all the way around with our personal photographer. She snapped shots of us in front of Jeter, Teixeira, and Bobby Murcer, and basically spent about 20 minutes walking around with us and feeding our frenzy.

Once we returned to suite sixteen and the game started, it was a Derek Jeter love-fest from then on. His first at-bat was amazing. The crowd went crazy when Bob Sheppard's voice announced him. Chants of Derek Jeter could be heard throughout the stadium. Derek ended up striking out his first at-bat, but that didn't stop the crowd from cheering it anyway. Here's a video of his at-bat, the first after the magical day he had on Saturday (excuse the shaky video at times & the loss of picture for a moment when a foul ball came right at us):

The game was so exciting. A great pitcher's duel between Sabathia and Shields. A complete game shutout by our big guy (and all-star) CC, some pie in there at the end. A 1-0 gem won by the Yanks! Unfortunately, it was also one of the shortest games either of us could ever remember! We had to leave the lap of luxury much too soon for our liking; but it was an unreal experience that neither of us will soon forget. See our picture slideshow below.

-- Dana

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