Field box 5

One weekday in the early 1990s (way too senile to remember which season), one of my close friends and I decided to take in that night’s Yankees game. As any baseball fan reading this knows, the Yankees were pretty brutal in the early 1990s, so getting tickets wasn’t an issue. However, both of us were going to be pushing first-pitch time. So, rather than getting the tickets up at the Stadium, I went to the Yankees Clubhouse Store at lunchtime to fetch them.

Everyone has their preferences on where they like to sit for baseball games. My preference is behind home plate, no matter what level. I love being as close to home plate as I can, even if I’m in the nosebleeds. It’s especially helpful at Yankee Stadium, as the way the ballpark is built, if you sit down one of the lines, you lose your view of most of the corner of whatever side you’re sitting on (if you’re sitting by first base, you can’t see the right-field line).

So upon arriving at the Yankees Clubhouse Store, I asked for my usual: two as close to home plate as possible, any level. I usually ended up in the tier boxes or reserves, occasionally getting lucky enough to secure a main box.

Not on this night: “I have two in field box 5.” Field box 5 is on field level (duh), right behind home plate, and generally the dominion of corporate season-ticket holders, so I figured the guy at the ticket counter was pulling my chain. “Yeah, right, do I get to manage the team, too?” was my smart-assed reply.

However, he was actually serious. And even though $46 was a ton of money to shell out for a ballgame at that point in time, I took the plunge and bought them, and it was a great night. It was a lot of fun to be in seats that close. I’ve been to more than 1,000 games and rarely gotten that opportunity.

So why am I suddenly babbling about getting great seats to a game more than 10 years ago? Shut up and read, and I’ll tell you.

When I realized that the gloomy weather forecast for this past weekend was completely inaccurate, I briefly thought about going to Saturday’s game. I don’t have any weekend tickets, so I went online out of curiosity to see what was available. I didn’t think I’d find anyone to go with on such short notice, so I searched for one ticket, best available, again not expecting anything wonderful to pop up.

After going through the annoying Ticketmaster process of having to type in the two words that appear as an optical illusion, as well as the obligatory two-minute wait, anyone care to take a wild guess what seat popped up? If you said field box 5, you win the prize.

However, there was no repeat of the glorious excursion of several years ago. Why? The ticket would have cost me $325. Wow. Just wow. I mean, everyone knows costs have skyrocketed for sports tickets, but wow.

And Lord only knows what the equivalent of field box 5 will cost next year, when the Yankees move into their new ballpark across the street.

$325? Wow.

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