Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.
Howie Rose missed 1964 Shea opener, but not Citi's
For my Tuesday newspaper column, I spoke to several broadcasters before Monday night's opener at Citi Field, notably Howie Rose, who had to stay home from the Shea opener in 1964 because of measles, but finally (partially) made up for it by emceeing the ceremonies at Citi.
Here is an obituary I wrote about Harry Kalas, including observations from Rose and Gary Cohen.
Click below for random stuff from my visit to Citi, starring Erin Andrews, Len Berman, Jerry Coleman and Jerry Seinfeld.I had a pleasant chat with ESPN's Erin Andrews before the game. We had spoken on the phone before, but never in person. She told me how much the old and new home run apples weigh, the latter being many times heavier. She indicated she will be doing less baseball than usual this season, but that she would be at Yankee Stadium April 20.
Len Berman told me his last day at Channel 4 will be next week.
Jerry Seinfeld bought a suite at the super-duper, extra-special, ultra-expensive Sterling Suites level, where there are only 10 of them. He still was sitting in the first row, outside the suite itself, in the ninth inning, true fan that he is.
The scene on the No. 7 platform was shockingly civil and uncrowded when I arrived about five minutes after the final out. My goal is to NEVER drive to Citi Field or new Yankee Stadium until I die or the stadiums are torn down, whichever comes first.
I saw Padres announcer and former Yankee Jerry Coleman on the F Train after the game. Always cool to see an 85-year-old announcer on the subway at 11 o'clock at night. I overheard him complaining to his family about fans standing in front of him during the game, blocking his view of the action.
Rose told me before the game he is not concerned about fans blocking his view from the home radio booth, which was a problem during the recent exhibitions against the Bosox. He said he was confident security personnel would keep the area clear.
The extremely exclusive Delta Sky 360 Club was mostly empty late in the game, with ticket holders presumably in their seats, while the somewhat less exclusive Caesars Club three levels up was very busy with people eating and drinking and not watching the game when I walked through in the seventh. Not sure what to make of that.
The elevators to the press and suite levels are faster than the notorious dinosaur at Shea, but they are too small and too few.
SNY's booth is surprisingly small - smaller than the visiting TV booth at Citi, and narrower than the old home booth at Shea.
Bob Wolff recalled the late Harry Kalas as one of the last of an old-school breed of announcers with classic, commanding voices.
Newsday provided thorough coverage of the evening with a large, high-quality roster of journalists on the scene.
It really was quite the festive atmosphere.
Somehow I suspect the Yankees will manage one of their own Thursday.