- Greg Venuto
Yankee Stadium - New York Yankees
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 3.57
Yankee Stadium 1 E 161st St Bronx, NY 10451
Year Opened: 2009
New York’s Crown Jewel
Yankee Stadium is the home field for the New York Yankees of Major League Baseball (MLB) and New York City FC of Major League Soccer (MLS), as well as being the host stadium for the annual Pinstripe Bowl game. It replaced the original Yankee Stadium (although that can be thought of as Yankee Stadium 1 and 2…..long story.) in 2009.
Currently, the amount of seats continues to decrease while the number of luxury seating and special viewing areas continues to increase.
Food & Beverage 5
Some of the popular food options include Nathan’s Famous hot dogs, Lobel’s steak sandwich, and Mighty Quinn’s BBQ.
Recent additions include Buffalo Wild Wings, Haru Sushi, and Benihana. The beer selection at Yankee Stadium includes the NY Pinstripe Pilsner from New York’s Blue Point Brewing Company.
A large Blue Point can is $14.99, Stella Artois $14.49, and Michelob and Bud $13.59. Souvenir Soda is $6.39 and Poland Spring Water $5.29.
A bucket of 3 chicken sliders or 6 chicken tenders with fries is $20.49. Garlic Fries is a really popular choice at $8.79 and a Hot Pretzel is $5.39. Please remember you can bring in one sealed bottle of water and food in a clear plastic bag. A great way to offset some of the costly food options especially for families.
The “moat” seating area between the bases takes away some of the excitement as the more enthusiastic fans are kept out of those seats. Often some of the best seats are empty and quiet.
Centerfield Scoreboard is huge and one of the best in MLB. The ground crew still dances to the Village People’s YMCA while sweeping the infield after the 6th inning. It may seem like a tired tradition, dating back to 1996, but the fans still get into it.
Two major attractions are Monument Park and the Yankees Museum. Monument Park closes 45 minutes prior to game time. The Museum is opened from 90 minutes before the game through the end of the 8th inning.
The nearby neighborhood offers little reason to hang out before or after games. There are a few restaurants and sports bars, but other than that not many places to congregate. The area is much safer than it was in the 70s and 80s thanks to a heavy police presence on game days and more people around.
Three choices for pre-and post-game food and drink are Stan’s Sports Bar and The Dugout right across from the Stadium and The Yankee Tavern.
Yankee fans were spoiled by all the success of the late 90s and early 2000s and expect the team to be in the playoffs every year. The Yankees have gone without a World Series since 2009 and the stadium has suffered from a lack of buzz.
The Legend Suites are often half full this year and the Yankees have not been able to generate the interest of past championship contenders.
There are not as many “Bleacher Creatures” as in the past, although the team’s slow start and COVID restrictions this year dampened their enthusiasm. Excitement seems to be coming back as the calendar turned to August.
Yankee Stadium is easy to get to and best accessed by train via Metro North or Subway. The D, B, and No. 4 all stop at the ballyard. No. 4 is the elevated line with the D & B underground The B train only runs on weekdays.. All Metro-North lines (Hudson, Harlem & New Haven) stop at the Yankee Stadium. The Hudson Line offers the best access as no transfer at 125th Street is needed. Inbound to Yankee Stadium most Harlem and New Haven line trains require fans to detrain at 125th street and wait for a train going northbound one stop to the Stadium. In the evening, most trains run direct, but on weeknights, fans may have to wait till the game ends to get a direct train or choose to go back to 125th to wait for a northbound train.
The Deegan Expressway offers access to Yankee Stadium but can get congested especially on weeknights. Another entry point is the Grand Concourse from the north and sometimes fans can luck out and get a free spot or there are a few garages about 7-10 minute walk from the Stadium that is less expensive than the ones next to or connected to the Stadium.
Yankee Stadium has four gate locations for entry and exit: Gate 2, adjacent to left field: Enter via Jerome Avenue and East 164th Street Gate 4, behind home plate: Enter via East 161st Street and Macombs Dam Bridge Gate 6, adjacent to right field: Enter via East 161st Street and River Avenue Gate 8, adjacent to center field: Enter via River Avenue and East 164th Street
Gate 2 often experiences long lines as it is closest to the subway walk toward Gates 4 & 6 for easier access.
Return on Investment 3
Tickets are for the most part expensive and some sections are outrageous.
Yankees do tend to run some specials including about 5-8 $5 games a year for upper-level seats on a weeknight typically in April to early June. Another worthwhile offer is half price Mondays.
The Pinstripe Pass is a bargain at $15 and includes a general admission standing room only ticket to the Stadium with your first drink included (a 12 oz. domestic beer, Pepsi product or Poland Spring bottled water).
Seats in the Upper Level right behind home plate (Grandstand) are nice but still much higher than they were in the previous Yankee Stadium. The main level is for the most part is excellent, but costly.
As an example, a September weekend series vs. Cleveland will run $385-510 for a seat in the Delta Suites, $260-285 for Field Level between the bases, Main Level is $50-160 and Grandstand on the 3rd deck is a bargain at $10-35. Bleachers are about $20-30.
The Stadium does a good job of blending old and new. Monument Park and the Museum are impressive as well as the bars in left and right center where young people enjoy congregating. The old-style hand-operated auxiliary scoreboards are a nice touch.
The stadium gets much attention for the iconic white fenced overhangs (frieze) of the stadium, which give the park its unique look.
Yankee Stadium overall is impressive and a must-see for baseball enthusiasts. It can be a bit too much splash and often tries too hard to remove as much money as possible from your wallet. Some detractors also say it’s too much of a museum and not enough of a conventional ballpark.