Those that follow me on Facebook have requested I post the article I wrote for the Brooklyn College Excelsior. It was my first article and it was published yesterday.
Here is the unedited version. Unfortuntately, I do not have a copy of the paper with me and I really need to finish up two papers and a blog for two other classes. So here it is. If you want to read the edited version, just leave a comment and I’ll post it later this week. Thanks!
So much has been made about the two new ballparks here in New York City. Many have questioned whether or not Citi Field is better than the new Yankee Stadium. Personally, Citi Field is nicer to look at. Even some Yankee fans will attest to that. Yet it seems one park has cursed its home team while the other has prospered like it usually does during the regular season.
Some worried the ghosts of the old Yankee Stadium would not transfer to the new ballpark. After all, what is Yankee Stadium without their ghosts, for all the help they’ve been since 2001. I mean a loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks in ’01. Losing the ALCS in Game 7 to the Boston Red Sox back in 2004. Where were the ghosts then?
The date April 25, 2009 has significance here in New York. It was the night the well known Houston preacher Joel Osteen came to Yankee Stadium to preach. He beat out the Rolling Stones for the honor. Actually, Osteen mentioned the Yankees had called him to come and preach. I guess they felt they needed a blessing.
It was called, “Night of Hope”. Hope was definitely what most people need at this point. Most Mets and Yankee fans alike, however, were hoping their respective teams would make it to the playoffs this year since one team missed it last year and the other team missed the last two years on the last day of the season.
In closing his message for the night, Osteen said he would pray for the Yankees and the organization much to the chagrin of Mets fans throughout the ballpark. They could be heard yelling “no” all the way to the high heavens. So much to their dismay, Osteen prayed for a blessing on the Yankees. It seems to have worked. Even Alex Rodriguez has behaved himself since the steroid scandal. Now the Yankees are on their way to the playoffs. Maybe this is the year they make it to the World Series and actually win, even with A-Rod on the team.
The Mets on the other hand have been hit with more drama than you would get in a week’s worth of soap operas. From the players being injured to Omar Minaya’s attack on a beat writer to the new ballpark falling apart, it has been one embarrassment after another for everyone in Mets fandom.
The season is not even over and a total of five players already had season ending surgery: Johan Santana, Oliver Perez, Jonathan Niese, Alex Cora and Fernando Martinez. All five, including the prospects Niese and Martinez, hope to be back in time for Spring Training.
Where does their curse begin? The day they decided to go corporate and forget their history.
I agree with the Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Giants being honored through Citi Field. After all, had it not been for those two teams, the New York Mets would not even exist. The colors the Mets wear are in memory of those former New York teams, the blue for the Brooklyn Dodger and the orange for the New York Giants. The problem begins when they failed to pay homage to the history of the New York Mets.
At the beginning of the season, you could have walked through Citi Field and never have guessed it was home of the New York Mets who actually have won two World Championships.
Where were the pictures of the ball going through Bill Buckner’s legs that allowed the Mets a reprieve and go to a Game 7 and Jesse Orosco on his knees on the pitcher’s mound with his fists in the air celebrating the last out of the 1986 World Series which the Mets had won?
Most Mets fans remember Game five of the 1969 World Series where Jerry Koosman jumped into the arms of Jerry Grote after he got the last out to win the Series. Where is that picture? Where are the 1969 and 1986 World Series trophies?
The Mets have said repeatedly they are working on making Citi Field more Mets oriented.
Well Mr. Wilpon, too little too late. The damage is already done. The season is over. The ghost of William Shea is not too pleased with you. Neither is beloved broadcaster Bob Murphy, players Tug McGraw, Tommy Agee, and Donn Clendenon. You have cursed this ballpark and this team with the exclusion of all things New York Mets.
Mets fans raise your glasses! Here’s to 2010! At least, we hope so.