Take the train to the game, as it’s part of the Big Apple game-day experience, and convenient too, dropping you off right outside the park. Once you get your bearings, take a lap around the new Yankee Stadium to take it all in; the exterior more resembles the stadium Ruth played in than the just-closed version, which had been almost completely reconstructed in the 1970s.
While you’re walking, grab a grilled sausage with peppers and onions from one of the street vendors; they’re better than the dogs inside and will provide a foundation for your next stop, which is Yankee Tavern, a haven for hardcore Yankees fans where they’ve been packing them in since 1923.
Babe Ruth supposedly popped in for an occasional beer. Leave time before opening pitch to do some exploring of the new park including the Great Hall, which is full of gigantic photos of former Bomber greats. One of the great features of the new place is that you can do an uninterrupted 360-degree tour, so just keep walking.
Monument Park, the tribute to Yankee greats beyond the outfield walls, made the trip from the old stadium and is fascinating even if you have just a passing interest in baseball history. It’s open to the public until 45 minutes before game time.
The food at the park is much improved, so come hungry. Highlights include fresh deli sandwiches and grilled Nathan’s hot dogs. Beer will set you back $9 or more, so make it worthwhile with a Brooklyn Lager, offered at some specialty stands. Wrong borough, but tasty brew.
During the game, look for Freddy, the rabid fan/unofficial mascot who roams the stands carrying a ‘Freddy Sez’ sign, a pan, and a spoon. Clang his pan with the spoon to help fire-up the Yanks.
As the Yanks close out another win and Frank Sinatra croons, "New York, New York," head across the street to Stan’s for a celebratory drink. It’ll be packed, but Stan’s is a classic joint and worth the effort.
If your stomach is telling you it’s dinner time, get in a cab, or hop back on the train, and head a little ways north to Little Italy in the Bronx—located in the Belmont neighborhood along Arthur Avenue. It has superb restaurants as well as Italian bakeries and delis. Try Roberto’s, which has been rated one of the finest Italian restaurants in the city.
Once you’ve pushed back from the table, get back on the train or in a cab and head into Manhattan to close out the night.
- Yankee Tavern, 72 East 161st Street, 718-292-6130
- Stan’s Sports Bar, 836 River Ave., 718-993-5548
- Roberto’s, 603 Crescent Ave., 718-733-9503