Leigh Hallingby |firstname.lastname@example.org
That’s exactly what SLA-NY’s generous vendor partner Leadership Directories, Inc., (LDI) did for about 20 of us on Thursday, June 20th, which was appropriately, the first official evening of summer. The occasion was a “subway series” game between the Staten Island Yankees and the visiting Brooklyn Cyclones, who reside in MCU Park in Coney Island. These two teams are part of the New York-Penn League, which for Minor League aficionados, is in the Class A Short-Season category.
LDI treated us to tickets in premium seats in the front row right behind the dugout of the Cyclones. Also included in the Leadership Directories treat was all the food and drink that we could consume, a baseball cap, and the opportunity to stay for fireworks after the game. And SLA-NY was welcomed along with quite a few other groups on the video screen.
Richmond County Bank Ballpark, a conveniently short walk from the Staten Island Ferry, was the setting for the game. Opened in 2001, RCB Ballpark replaced former B&O railroad yards. Designed to take advantage of the stadium’s location overlooking New York Harbor, it features sails at the entrances inspired by the Staten Island Ferry and the St. George Ferry Terminal. A replica of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge is located on top of the main scoreboard.
Those of us who attended SLA-NY night at the Staten Island Yankees game on July 20, 2011, cannot forget the overwhelmingly hot weather that night, which preceded a record-setting high of 104 degrees the next day. This year the weather was definitely toasty, but considerably more manageable, and made more so by an occasional pleasant breeze from the water.
The Staten Island Yanks – AKA “Baby Bombers” – got off to an early lead on a RBI triple in the bottom of the first inning. But alas they lost the lead in the top of the 4th inning on the most interesting play of the game. One of the Cyclones hit a long ball which ended up back in the stadium but was scored as a three-run homer. Some librarian-type research revealed that if a batter hits a ball against the scoreboard over center field, the ball is an automatic homerun even if it bounces back into the stadium. So the Yanks ended up losing their third game in a row 7-2, for a rather inauspicious beginning of the 2012 season. However they were the New York-Penn League champions last year, so there is still plenty of reason for hope.
Of course, this being the minor leagues, there was lots of in-between-innings silliness including a race around the bases between people who were each “wearing” four inner tubes from auto tires, a potato sack race along the first base line by a gaggle of children, and a mad dash by one man to scoop as many tickets as possible from the ground into a bucket.
To this author, who grew up in Westchester County up long enough ago to be an avid New York Giants fan, there is no better way to spend a lazy, hazy, crazy summer evening than in a ballpark, relaxing in the warm air and doing no “heavy lifting” at all mentally. Thanks to the organizational skills of our SLA-NY President-Elect Moy McIntosh and the generosity of our sponsor Leadership Directories, Inc., a fortunate group of us from SLA-NY were able to do just that.