Yankees: Tropicana Field catwalk nonsense almost screwed Gerrit Cole
By Adam Weinrib
The New York Yankees sent their ace Gerrit Cole to the mound to face the Tampa Bay Rays Wednesday night.
Unfortunately, they did so in a clown stadium designed by agents of chaos.
It only took two batters into the bottom of the first inning for Tropicana Field to become a main character in the second of a three-game set, in much the same way many artists consider Manhattan to be a main character in their insufferable New York films.
Cole busted Austin Meadows in on his hands, and the slumping lefty slugger proceeded to pop the ball up sky high towards Aaron Judge in medium-depth right field.
Unfortunately for Cole, Judge soon began wildly gesturing at first base, meaning either he lost the ball in the pale-colored tarp roof, or he knew exactly what happened to the ball, which is arguably worse.
It turned out Judge never lost track of the baseball, fully aware that it struck a nonsensical metal ring above the field, and was therefore in play, no matter where the carom left it.
Yankees ace Gerrit Cole felt the wrath of the Tropicana Field catwalk.
Yes, we play by “Happy Gilmore” rules here in Tampa. Play it where it lies, whether it flies true or hits carnival equipment or falling stanchions.
Can someone please explain why we can’t use logic here? This ball has 99% probability of being a simply fly out to right field. We can’t call it a fly ball to Judge and move along? We have to let batters run wild?
By the way, if current major-league hitters find it so easy to drill the catwalk with a particularly powerful pop up that it’s becoming a routine occurrence, maybe we change the rules instead of letting a stadium not built for MLB action change official games on a regular basis.
Or maybe we just change every game played at The Trop to an exhibition game. That could work, too.
Cole is an angry ace, so he buckled up and retired Manuel Margot on a grounder before whiffing Brandon Lowe, escaping the “trouble” brought about by the perils of 1960s architecture. If not for Cole’s nasty fastball, though, this could’ve been disastrous and avoidable.
By the way, you think you’re angry? John Sterling is even angrier.
Yankees icon Jorge Posada might’ve had the definitive take on this broken stadium, which is always worth revisiting.
Couldn’t have said it better ourselves. We tried to above, but we couldn’t.
Move this team to Montreal, put them outdoors, and do it yesterday. Nobody should have to worry about protruding metal rings while they’re trying to play tense AL East baseball.
These things will still be up there for the playoffs. Playoffs! Is that a freaking joke?