We had really good seats at Yankee Stadium today. Really good! Second row of the field boxes on the left field line. Due to a nice catch made right in front of us, we were easily able to find ourselves on the video highlight clips on the Angels web site. Not the Yankees site because it was Angles left fielder Reggie Willets who made the catch. Too bad it couldn't have been Yankee left fielder Hideki Matsui who made the play. If that had happened, I'm pretty sure that the two Japanese women sitting behind us would have fainted on the spot.
The clip is available here. MLB.com takes steps to prevent me from giving a direct link, and they've also got it rigged to prevent taking decent screen shots, so I can't post a still picture. You'll have to click the link labeled "Willets' Grab At The Wall" on the page I linked. I have to warn that you may or may not be able to view it, depending on what media plugins you have available.
If you pause the clip at the 17 second mark, I am the second from the bottom on the left edge. I'm right above the fellow with his back turned to reveal the name "Clemens" on the back of his shirt. The crowed booed those of us up front for not making the catch to prevent Willets from recording an out. The front row seats immediately in front of us had been occupied by three boys no more than 10 years old, but they were back at the concessions at the time of the play. There was nothing but the seat-backs between me and the ball, and I could have reached it with a good lean and a left hand reach. The fellow in the white lettered jersey might have had an even better chance.
The video makes it appear that the ball was in the field of play when it contacted Willets' glove. That makes me feel a little better about not having tried for the catch, but not entirely better. If it was in the field of play and I interfered, I would have been escorted out by the security staff. I'm certainly glad that didn't happen, but despite the video I'm not sure that the ball really was in the field of play. Camera angles can be deceptive. For example, in some of the perspectives shown in the clip, it appears that the ball landed right in front of the fellow wearing the white V-neck shirt, when in fact he must have been at least five feet further down field. He was either in the aisle, or across the aisle in the next box. I was three seats away from the aisle. The catch was made at a spot directly in front of second seat from the aisle. The occupant of that seat can't be seen because she didn't stand up. She was sitting between me and guy in the white lettered jersey. So, I'm not so sure that the video can be trusted to show that the ball really was caught within the field of play. The glove appeared as if out of nowhere. I was watching the ball, not Willets, and it happened in a split second. From my vantage point, the ball appeard to be heading for a landing just inside the wall. That's why I didn't try and lean over the front row seats to catch it. But when the ball landed in that glove, my eyes agreed with the crowd: it appeared to be directly over the wall.
BTW: if you pause the clip at the 23 second mark, you will see my daughter's bright green tank top and light blue cap, just to the left of me in the picture.
1. John05/29/2007 09:28:28 AM
Hello, I was right there at the game as well thanks for keeping the link up, I couldn't find it after sunday. Did you see that the picture made all the NY Newspapers on Sunday? I am in the video as well at the top of the screen with my left hand on the wall. I have a great still shot in color, if you send me your email address i'll shoot it over to you.
2. Richard Schwartz05/29/2007 10:51:02 AM
Hey, thanks for dropping by! I didn't see the papers on Sunday morning. Would love to see the still photo.
3. C Michael05/31/2007 08:35:18 PM
You are lucky you are visible. A good number of years back, I got the family some Yankees tickets for my daughter's birthday. At the time I was in advertising in NYC, so the Daily News provided the seats. They turned out to be 2nd row behind the Yankee dugout. We expected to be seen on TV, but never showed up, although I did get my daughter's name on the scoreboard.
Why, you might ask, would we expect to see ourselves on TV? It was David Wells' perfect game! I even bought the streaming video from MLB and you can't get a look near us at all.
Oh, and hello Richard Herschel Schwartz!