Tagged: Barnes & Noble

The Yankees, The New Stadium, The Great Fans

I missed the game yesterday, since I was flying cross-country, but I’m glad I did. I mean, really. The Nationals? Losing the series? Getting shutdown by a rookie pitcher who had never won a major league game before? I say to the Yankees:

STOP THE MADNESS!

For starters, give A-Rod a day off or three. The Yankees said, while he was rehabbing from the hip surgery: “We’ll probably play him sporadically, use him as DH every now and then, and rest him.” Hello? He hasn’t had a day off since the day he came back. As soon as Jeter’s ankle is OK, use Pena at third for awhile, would you please?
If Gardner has a concussion, even a mild one, don’t send him out there for any reason. And why no MRI?
Do something about Joba. Yes, he’s young. Yes, he’s still growing/learning/adjusting. But clearly, he’s struggling more often than not. Fix it!
Bring up Kei Igawa. No, that’s not a typo. You paid for him. He’s tearing it up in Scranton. Make him a long man in the pen and let him get major league hitters out.
That’s it for the moment. On to more pleasant things.
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There I am outside Stan’s Bar in the Bronx just before my signing on Wednesday. I’m wearing my Mariano Rivera jersey, of course.
The first person I saw was the lovely and talented MLBlogger Vanessa of “Flair for the Dramatic.” I turned the She-Fan Cam on her immediately. Note the subway noise – a little Bronx flavor.
Once inside the bar, the folks at Stan’s, who were fantastic, let Barnes & Noble set up their table and get the books all stacked and ready. It was quiet there at 3:30, but it wasn’t long before the joint was jumping.
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Here’s a pic of me with Vanessa, Serena (“Traveling Baseball Babes”) and Bernadette (“This Fan’s Life” and “Lady at the Bat”).
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Also stopping by and snagging a copy of the book were the daughter and sister of “Generation Third” Yankees blogger Chris.

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Then along came a she-fan named Samantha who wanted to buy the book AND be interviewed by the She-Fan Cam. I was happy to step outside and oblige. (Note: more subway noise.)
It was fun to meet the bloggers and commenters whose names I’ve been seeing for so long, including “Cheshirecat.”
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Not everyone wanted to buy the book. Here’s a guy who gave it a look, then said, “My wife hates baseball. She’d never read this.” LOL.
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At six o’clock, it was on to the new Stadium! I admit it was an emotional experience to pass the old place and see that the demolition has begun. Sob. But the new place beckoned.
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And I just couldn’t resist having Michael take a picture of me with “Jeter” in front of the team store.
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Now, it was time to go inside for the first time and watch the Yanks take on the Nationals. I have to say that the Great Hall took my breath away. It was that impressive with all the photos of Yankees legends – a cathedral indeed.
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I gave myself the tour and, although the stadium still has that “new car” smell with everything looking sparkling clean and polished, I thought it was beautiful. Plenty of time for the dents and dings that give a ballpark its character.
Michael and I scoped out the food choices, of which there are many, and decided to eat near our section, 323, up in the Terrace. We wandered over to a place called the Jim Beam Lounge and were told we needed a special ticket to get in. Huh?
“You have to be in section 323,” said the guy standing guard.
Obviously, we happened to land in the right section and got in to the restaurant. But still. Why limit people’s access?
There was a full bar and the Food Network concession. Michael ordered a truly delicious burger and fries – no greasy little patty on a crummy bun – and I had a really good grilled chicken sandwich with goat cheese and a spicy tomato sauce. I stopped at the bar and got a glass of red wine (yes, I know I’m a wuss, but I hate beer) and we put everything on a tray and started to walk to our seats…..until we were stopped by the guy at the door.
“You can’t take wine to your seats,” he said.
“Um, people can drink a million beers but I can’t bring this thimble full of wine?” I asked.
“Right.”
I don’t know if it was a city ordinance or just a Yankees thing, but it was annoying.
Our seats, on the other hand, were a joy – behind home plate to the third base side. And they were the cushy, padded ones just like they have down on the field level for the swells! I felt like I was sitting in a Barcalounger, and I made a discovery: It’s really nice to sit in comfortable seats!
Mostly, what struck me was that the field was gorgeous. Seriously. After all the negative things I’ve heard, I couldn’t get over what a great job the Yankees did in replicating and even improving on the old place. That huge, hi-def screen alone is worth the trip.
We had a surprise visit from Alex of the MLBlog “River Avenue” who showed up with the balls he’d managed to snag before the game.
The game itself was pretty discouraging, since the Yankees didn’t do anything to generate much crowd excitement. My friend Patty from the New York Times joined us, and I asked her if she thought the Yanks would make a comeback, among other things.
Patty was wrong and, although Gardner was at third with one out in the ninth and A-Rod was on first, Cano grounded into a double play to end the game. If A-Rod had only stolen second…
Oh, well. It was a great trip and I enjoyed being in the Bronx again. I’m hoping to come back later this summer and go to more games at the new Stadium. (I think I’ll stop calling it that; it’s the Stadium, period.) Yes, it’s pricey and there are adjustments to be made. But what an amazing place to watch baseball. I highly recommend it.

Meet Me At Stan’s!

Just a little programming note…

I’ll be signing copies of “She-Fan” at the one and only Stan’s Bar across from the old Yankee Stadium!
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When? Wednesday, June 17th, 3:30-5:30 p.m. – before the Yanks-Nats game.
How? The Bay Plaza Barnes & Noble in the Bronx will be on hand to sell books.
Why? Because I’m going to the game that night, so why not meet and greet before the first pitch?
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Stan’s is an institution among Yankee fans and those visiting the Stadium, and the event should be a lot of fun. Stop by and say hello and spread the word!

Never Dull In Yankeeville

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According to this report on MLB.com, the Yankees are considering whether to insert a confidentiality clause in the contracts of players, managers and coaches in the wake of Torre’s book. Sounds like an overreaction, but it doesn’t surprise me. There’s been a lot of finger-pointing over the last few days; when Jeff Nelson and Boomer Wells hit the airwaves to discuss the breached “code of silence,” you know things have gotten out of hand. But a confidentiality clause? In baseball? Seriously?
It’s very common for employees of celebrities to sign such agreements – specifically so they won’t write books about their experience. But a ballplayer? A manager? Come on. I can certainly understand the impulse to want to enforce the rule: What happens in the clubhouse stays in the clubhouse. But I’d also hate to be deprived of such wonderful entertainment as “Ball Four” and “The Bronx Zoo.” And rather than create a climate of trust, wouldn’t a confidentiality clause engender a mood of mistrust in the organization – that a guy’s freedom of speech is being denied? No small matter.
I say the Yankees should lower the volume. The furor over Torre’s book won’t last past the next news cycle or two. Once he’s in Arizona presiding over the Dodgers’ spring training camp, that’ll be that.
And speaking of spring training, I got my tickets yesterday for the March 6th game against the Tigers. Sweet!
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They’re in section 104, row MM. I’ll be looking right out over my new first baseman.
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In my fantasy, here’s what’ll happen when I get to Tampa.
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I’ll have my Barnes & Noble signing that afternoon, then head to Steinbrenner Field.
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When I get to the ballpark, my Yankees will be thrilled to see me. (I said it was a fantasy, O.K.?)
Jeter will give me a fist pump.
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Jorge will break out in joyous laughter.
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CC and AJ will look at each other and say simultaneously, “So this is the She-Fan our wives keep telling us about – the one who’s taking them shopping.”
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And Mo, my favorite Yankee of all, will get down on the ground and thank the Lord that I’ve come to watch him play.
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Yankees aside, I’m looking forward to having dinner with some of the media people who were so helpful to me during the ’07 season. Tampa has plenty of good restaurants, so let the fun – and the eating – begin!
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My Very Own Commercial – Watch!

The truth is, my goal in life wasn’t to star in an ad. I didn’t dream of selling bone density medicine like her…
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And as much as I love to dance, I never imagined myself pitching American Express like her.

But the reality of the publishing world is that you can’t just write a book and cross your fingers that the buyers at Amazon and Barnes & Noble will order copies for their customers; you have to entertain them so they’ll be dying to stock your book.
And so I made a video trailer for Confessions of a She-Fan – sort of like a movie trailer only without the actors. What I’m saying is that I didn’t have a clue what I was doing. Furthermore, it was 1,000 degrees in the studio the day we shot the video, and I nearly passed out. Good thing it’s only three minutes long.
Since the trailer has now been distributed to Yahoo, Google, MSN, YouTube and every other “portal,” I figured it was time to debut it here. The company that produced it, Expanded Books, tagged it: “Yankee-holic Hits Bottom.” That pretty much says it all.



Yankees Invite Me To Spring Training!

O.K., so my name wasn’t on the list of the 20 non-roster invitees announced today, and it wasn’t exactly the Yankees that invited me to Tampa. It was Barnes & Noble.

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But still. I’m going to spring training, which is no small thing. I’ll be signing copies of my book between trips to Steinbrenner Field, so if anybody will be in the Tampa area on Friday, March 6th at 1 p.m., please stop by the Carrollwood store and say hi. I mean it. Come. It’s humiliating to sit there all by yourself like a kid with a lemonade stand.
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This nice author is putting on a brave face, but inside she’s dying, trust me. What I’d really like to see is something more like this.
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A line, right. Just to get inside the store.
In fact, it would be gratifying if there was such a huge, unruly crowd that we needed help keeping the peace.
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With reinforcements.
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I’ll also be at the game that night (Yankees host the Tigers), and can’t wait to get my first look at CC, AJ and Tex in their Yankees uniforms.
As for those 20 non-roster invitees, which include everyone from the DFA’d Shelley Duncan to the well-traveled Angel Berroa, I was thinking….since the Yankees seem to be so democratic about the process….maybe they’d invite one more person? 
No, of course I’m not suggesting that I try out for the team. I stink at baseball. Tennis has been my game, and all I dreamed about growing up was playing like her.
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I was just wondering if I could sneak onto the field and take batting practice. It’s not totally unheard of.
Posh Spice did it.
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She even tossed the ball around.
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(Talk about throwing like a girl.)
Maybe they’d let me catch for an inning or two.
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Or steal a base.
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On second thought, I’d probably get in the way and cause something like this to happen.
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And the truth is, I’m more interested in hanging out with the players than being in the middle of a melee.
Will I find someone to hang out with?
Maybe?
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Yeah, that’s me. And him. But we’re just friends.