Even though the O's won't even sniff the playoffs this season, and the Yankees are making their usual second-half run, it was still fun to watch the O's beat the crap out of the Yankees and Mike Mussina in person at Yankee Stadium last night, 13-4.
Mr. & Mrs. Bad Oriole were dressed in O's gear, hopped on the B-train and got off at Yankee Stadium ready to enjoy the sites and sounds of love-it-or-hate-it, the most historical baseball stadium in America.
There were a lot of O's fans in attendance and surprisingly, the jabs from Yankee fans were sparse. I guess they were still hungover from taking 2 out of 3 against the Red Sox over the weekend or they don't consider the O's rivals anymore.
I can't blame them. Even the Devil Rays have become more of a threat. This year, the O's have been more like pesky houseflies to the Yankees, managing to post a respectful 6-4 record against the Bronx Bombers so far this year.
Anyway, our seats were a row from the top of the stadium, just a few feet below the Empire State Building. OK, maybe not but it sure as hell felt that way. Actually, the seats weren't that bad. Yeah they were high, but it did give me a bird's eye view of the stadium.
I wasn't able to get into Monument Park, as the ticket-taker told me it was closed (maybe it's because I was an O's fan) and I read something about making an appointment to tour it somewhere too. Oh well. Did I really need to be reminded how great the Yankees are?
I don't think so.
The game started off with disappointment, as Brian Roberts walked in the top of the first inning and was eventually thrown out at the plate on a horrible call by Juan Samuel, the third-base coach, who gave him the green light as the throw was caught by the cut off man. But in the second inning, the bats exploded for four runs as Kevin Millar hit a 3-run homerun, followed by a solo shot from Ramon Hernandez.
The O's got two more in the fifth inning, knocking former Oriole Mike Mussina out of the game. Then in the sixth, with the bases juiced, Adam Jones crushed a grand-slam off of David Robertson to put the game away at 11-0.
Meanwhile, Jeremy Guthrie was coasting. He allowed only 1 hit through six innings until he gave up a solo homerun to Xavier Nady in the seventh. Dave Trembley made a questionable call, taking out Guthrie after the homerun. Guthrie had only just reached the 100 pitch mark and the score was 11-1.
Trembley brought in mop-up guy Lance Cormier who promptly gave up three runs without recording an out. He was yanked in favor of Randor Bierd, who squashed any Yanks fans' hopes of an epic comeback.
The O's got two more runs in the top of the eight on a two-run homerun by Aubrey Huff before Jamie Walker finished off the Yanks in the bottom of the ninth.
My impressions of Yankee Stadium are surprisingly pleasant. The fans were respectful and the stadium, while old, was still very capable of handling a baseball game. The Yankee history is dripping from every rafter and still exists under every seat in the stadium and taking the subway to the Bronx has somewhat of a ritual feel to it.
I'm glad I got to see it for myself before it was replaced by the new Yankee Stadium which is in the process of being built across the street, but I do have to say that we as Orioles fans should appreciate Camden Yards even more, as it still is, in my opinion, the best stadium in America.