McDonald: New Yankee Stadium Has Become The New Fort Neverlose

With all due respect to the New York Islanders, Yankee Stadium has become Fort Neverlose.

After tonight’s 5-0 win over the Houston Astros, the Bombers are 6-0 at home this postseason and frankly, one win away from the World Series.

And in no small part, this is in thanks to the 10th man out on the field for the Yankees, the 49,647 fans in the stands tonight.

“This stadium is alive,” said Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge. “They come in force every game. In every pitch and I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Judge may not have, but anyone who followed the Yankees at least somewhat knows how loud and intimidating home field can be. Back when they played across the street, it was almost like the Thunderdome, where the cantilevered upper deck was tight in players faces.

When they migrated across 161st Street, that advantage was gone and even though a veteran Yankee team won in 2009, it just wasn’t the same. The new stadium was too sterile, too corporate, and too contrived. It was a palace without a soul and it made sense the ghosts decided to stay in the park.

But not this year. No sir. Because these Yankees are young and very likable, the ghosts decided to come over for a view and the fans made this new joint rock like the old one.

“I think (the players) feed off of it a lot,” said manager Joe Girardi And I think it definitely helps them. I’ve heard our players talk about it. It’s electric. It’s something that they haven’t seen. And you get it during the season sometimes, certain teams that we face. But this is up a whole other notch. It’s as good an atmosphere as I remember at this new ballpark.”

And don’t think it didn’t go unnoticed in the home dugout.

“The fans,” said third baseman Todd Frazier. “I think the aura. They are New York and New Jersey. They are going to tell you how they feel. I can tell you some of the outfielders today were not happy with what was said to them. I know that bullpen in the outfield was not happy either. I could see beer being spilt on them.”

Frazier has been on all sides of this. Coming in as a member of the White Sox, he said he was spared most of the abuse, but then again, that wasn’t during the postseason. It wasn’t October time.

This is probably the Yankees little secret they had all these years. Remember, no matter what the team, as long as they got into the postseason, they had a chance, because they let the fans take over.

To beat them you have to put your foot right on their collective throats and take the crowd out of the game. Let the Yankees score early and then you are dead. Even when the Astros had a lead like last night, all was needed was a Judge home run to get the asylum back running. It wasn’t just one run, but also a jump start.

Now they Yankees have to do it on the road. One win either on Friday or Saturday will do it. They won’t have the luxury of playing at home, but they didn’t in Cleveland either.

One more win in Houston is all they need and they Yankees will be back in the World Series.

Just wait until you hear the fans then.

Fort Neverlose is now in the Bronx.

About the Author

Joe McDonald

Joe McDonald is the founder and former publisher of NY Sports Day. After selling to i15Media in 2020, he serves as the Editor-in-Chief and responsible for the editorial side of the publication. In the past, Joe was the managing editor of NY Sportscene magazine and assistant editor of Mets Inside Pitch. He has covered the Mets since 2004.

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