Outdoor Game at Yankee Stadium?

Yankee Stadium.  It is one of the magical kingdom’s of baseball.  It is known as ‘The House that Ruth Built’  and can be lubed in with Fenway Park in Boston and Wrigley Field in Chicago as one of baseball’s most sacred stadiums.

That very same Yankee Stadium is now being discussed by the New York Rangers management and New York Yankees management as a venue for an outdoor NHL hockey game.

The big issue with this notion is that the time frame for this game between the New York Rangers and an opponent to be named later is sometime in 2009 and it would look to be the final sporting event in the historic stadium.

As NHL broadcasting legend Howie Meeker always used to say. “Stop it right there!”  The final sporting event in Yankee Stadium, where the likes of Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, Yogi Berra and Roger Maris -to name a select few- turned that stadium into a city icon as recognizable as the Statue of Liberty, might be a hockey game?

I love hockey, and I sincerely believe it to be the greatest sport ever invented, but I can appreciate and cherish the history of another great game in baseball.

Yankee Stadium is a baseball stadium.  It would be sacrilegious to have a hockey game in that stadium in the first place, it may very well prove as the apocalypse of the sporting world if a hockey game is the final sporting event in that cathedral.  It would show disrespect to the Yankee greats who played the game of baseball in that stadium and turned it into what it is today. 

Could you have imagined if the Toronto Blue Jays wanted to play an indoor baseball game against the New York Yankees in the old Maple Leaf Gardens?  The City of Toronto and all the Maple Leaf greats -and yes, even though the Leafs are a despised organization, they have had greats- would be up in arms in disgust at this notion. 

I am all for playing hockey outdoors.  The NHL was lucky in Edmonton and Buffalo that the climate allowed for somewhat favourable conditions, and no one can argue with the success of both outdoor games in the new century of hockey. 

Should there be more outdoor games in the NHL?  Absolutely.  Should the NHL, the New York Rangers or the Boston Bruins or the Chicago Blackhawks play a game in some of the legendary ball parks of our time that where helped built by the great legends of the game of baseball?  No.  Not a chance.

As mentioned before, it would be sacrilegious.  If you believe in the Gods of Baseball, who they might be is up to you, they would find a way to make a hockey game in Yankee Stadium a disaster.  If you thought the Curse of the Bambino was bad for all the Boston Red Sox faithful, could you imagine his wrath should hockey be played in the house that He built?

It’s Just One Of Those Saturday’s

TV footballDo you ever have one of those Saturday’s where you just get up out of bed at the crack of noon, walk sorely to the couch in the television room, turn on the T.V. and realize that today is going to be a great day for watching sports?

Well, if you haven’t had one of those days in a while than you are in luck, my friends.

Not only is there a load of sports on the tube, but many of the games being played today have playoff implications. The New York Yankees are trying to keep pace with the Boston Red Sox in the American League East, as they take on the Toronto Blue Jays in the second game of a four-game series. The Jays have been officially eliminated from the playoff race, but have won four games in a row and have played a role in deciding who wins the A.L. East.

Just so you know, the Bo Sox are playing the Tampa Bay Devil Rays today as well.

Then there is college football. Maybe the game to watch will be the Penn State Nittany Lions taking on the Michigan Wolverines. Now, if you want far superior coverage of college ball, consult my colleague Thomas Miller. Needless to say there are a lot of college games on television today, and if you remembered, then you’ll have a six-pack and about three bags of chips and dip ready just for this special occasion.

BC Lions SaskatchewanNow, baseball and college ball obviously are the big sporting events of the day. But we cannot overlook the Canadian Football League. Perhaps the game-of-the-year will be on T.V. tonight. The B.C. Lions will take on the Saskatchewan Roughriders in a battle for first place in the West Division from the often hostile and intense confines of Mosaic Stadium in Regina.

The Lions sit atop the west with a record 7-3-1, while the Roughriders sit at 7-4-0 and just one point back of the Lions for first place in the division. The two teams have clashed twice this season, both contests resulting in rather uninteresting blowouts for each team. In July, the Lions dismantled the Roughriders 14-12, but the win came at a price as Lions quarterback, Dave Dickenson suffered a concussion. The second game of the season between the two came in August, as the Roughriders got their revenge, suffocating the Lions to a 21-9 game at B.C. Place. Replacement quarterback Jarious Jackson threw for less than 50 per cent (16-38) while tossing three interceptions.

Perhaps third time is a charm, as these two western titans will deliver a memorable performance for the Rider Nation and Lions fans on this Sporting Saturday.

Finally, there will be Vancouver Canucks hockey on television. Yes, that is right. The reigning Northwest Division Champs will play their fourth exhibition game of the season as they take on the Sharks in San Jose. Do not be fooled. Although it is exhibition, thousands will tune in for their weekly fix of Canucks hockey, even though most in the line-up will not be on the opening night roster come Oct. 5. Just remember, if hockey is on Canadian television, people will watch it. That rule is as certain is death and taxes.

So there you go. There are still more sporting events taking place today than what has been covered in this blog. Those beers in the fridge, the chips and dip and copious amounts of chicken wings are just calling out your name. Get comfy on the couch, dust off the clicker, gather some snacks, and enjoy all the sport on television you possibly can.

We don’t get these days all that often.

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