FRIDAYS ARE FOR FRANK: “There Used To Be A Ballpark”

FRIDAYS ARE FOR FRANK: “There Used To Be A Ballpark”

Baseball is back!!!

The regular season of MLB is under way, as the New York Yankees and National League Champion New York Mets return to action here in the area.

There Used to Be a Ballpark” was written by Joe Raposo and recorded by Frank Sinatra for his 1973 album, Ol’ Blue Eyes Is Back.

Many speculated that the song was an obvious homage to the Brooklyn Dodgers’ Ebbett’s Field, but Raposo once told Larry King that the song was actually about the Polo Grounds—home of the New York Giants until 1957, as well as the Yankees from 1913-1922 and even the Mets from 1962 through 1964.

Of course the Yankees have a new stadium, right across from the old one in the Bronx—although many fans feel may as well be in Short Hills. Sterile and commercialized, the new stadium is plagued by an overall absence of character.

And it’s expensive—even by New York standards.

There was a time when playing in the Bronx was a frightening prospect to road teams. Beyond the legendary tales of Bleacher Creatures and flying batteries, “the House That Ruth Built” was LOUD and boisterous—packed game after game with passionate fans of all socioeconomic backgrounds, coming together for a shared love of Yankee baseball. Nowadays, it feels more like a trip to the mall.

Comedian John Oliver took issue with the Yankees and their cumbersome, elitist ticketing policies, admittedly designed to economically segregate ticket buyers—as evidenced by an interview on WFAN in which Yankees COO Lonn Trost said:

“The problem below market at a certain point is that if you buy a ticket in a very premium location and pay a substantial amount of money. It’s not that we don’t want that fan to sell it, but that fan is sitting there having paid a substantial amount of money for a ticket and (another) fan picks it up for a buck-and-a-half and sits there, and it’s frustrating to the purchaser of the full amount. And quite frankly the fan may be someone who has never sat in a premium location. So that’s a frustration to our existing fan base.”

A lot of the “existing fan base” is re-evaluating things after a statement like that. There used to be a ballpark where all were welcome…

Authored by: hMAG