Feeling I was failing as a father for having not taken my 11 year old son to a Major League Baseball game, we scored primo tickets (provided by my wife’s business colleague) and all four of us saw the Yanks last night.

The pressing question for old-school New Yorkers like myself with memories at the old stadium: Is it the same? Yes, only better. The old stadium had become steeped with a unique smell; a melange of urine, beer and BO. The new stadium has “new stadium smell”.

The old stadium is draped in scaffolding, tarp and mesh and looks like a sorry, haunted arena in the process of being dismantled. If you take the train, you walk by it to arrive at the shining new beacon of America’s past-time and the new home of baseball’s greatest dynasty.

I’m not even a huge fan, having soured at the strike of ’94, but I am not exaggerating when I tell you the hair on my arms was standing up as I got into the halls of the stadium and again when we arrived at Section 123.

Joy quickly turned to horror. A loud-mouth, obnoxious, stereotypical local sports fan from New York (pronounced New Yawk in this case) seated directly behind me decided to hold us all captive : “Come ON DEREK, HIT the BAWL right DOWN ‘DA MIDDLE. ” “MELKY – what ARE YOU SWINGING at? Dat was over ya head- ya don’t swing at a pitch OVER YA HEAD”. I know uppercase text is shouting, that’s the point.

We get it, we’re close enough that they can hear you. No one else around is displaying this kind of low-brow behaviour.

This alone is a compelling reason to sit home in front of the TV in the comfort of your home (if you are so inclined) with the noticeable distinction that baseball is far more engaging at the ballpark. It was a horse race combined with a home run slug fest. A great night out.