Baseball's Bullies
March 31st, 2008

If the dreary weather that rained out today’s opening game was not enough to dampen the spirits of Yankee fans, they might want to look at Harvey Aronton’s column in today’s Times. Even if the Yankees win on the field, they are losers at home, Aronton writes.

As the Yankees sought a new stadium, the columnist says, city officials endorsed a plan that let them build on — and destroy — Macombs Dam Park. “In stages, the park was shuttered, the people of what is often called the poorest Congressional district in America, thrown out at home,” with ball fields, handball and basketball courts closed “to make way for another sure sign of artistic urban development, Garage A.”

While the parks department has vowed to replace the facilities, it will not be the same, Aronton writes. The park will be divided — something he likens to Central Park being broken up — and rooftop artificial turf ball fields will replace real grass and dirt ones on the ground.

This all could have been avoided, Aronton says, if the city had insisted the Yankees build on the site of the exiting stadium and play at Shea Stadium for two years during construction. But the city lacked that kind of backbone, and so Aronton concludes, we have “a deplorable situation. We may be impressed, even awed, by what is said to be progress. We cannot be proud.”

By on March 31, 2008, 2:51 pm
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