Baseball and 9/11: Day Two, New York City and a Mets Game in One Day

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Wednesday morning, September 11, 2019.  I wait for my New York City bound Amtrak train on this calm and warm morning on the platform of Baltimore’s Penn Station. 18 years prior, on a normal Tuesday morning, passengers aboard four passenger aircraft’s heading toward California, 3 to L.A., one to San Francisco, would tragically have their lives cut short due to the tragic terrorist acts. 2 of the aircraft’s would knock down the Twin Towers, one would crash in The Pentagon’s west side and the other into a field in Pennsylvania. 

18 years have passed. We are reminded to Never Forget. To anyone born in 2001, now of college bound age, the tragic events of 9/11/2001 is indirectly linked to them.

Every year citizens are always asked to do something of significance on 9/11. Be it a community voluntary act or just living your normal everyday life as a reminder to the terrorists that evil acts will not stop us from doing what we enjoy in life. 

With New York City being a 2.5 hour train ride from Baltimore, I decide to make the trek to New York City and take part of the 9/11 tributes. 

20190911_095149Waiting for my incoming train from D.C. on the way to N.Y.C.

20190911_095041Our favorite lion, Bailey, making the trip with me to NYC. You’ll see why later…

As a rail aficionado, I look forward to my 2.5 hour trek to New York City, even if I know I’ll spend a good part of it catching up on some Zzzz’s. Just as well. The route from Baltimore to New York is void of any breathtaking scenery. However, I did get a couple of pics passing through Philly20190911_111142

Here’s one with the skyline in the distance of the Schuylkill River…

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New York City, 9/11

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Outside of Madison Square Garden, home of the Knicks and hockey’s New York Rangers. With the 9/11 Museum being closed to the public on this day, I had some time to kill. Madison Square Garden lies atop a bustling Penn Station.

Inside the lobby plaques are located throughout the floor paying tribute to famous athletes and entertainers who have made their mark here…

20190911_130712Dedicated to The Piano Man himself after his 100th performance at MSG…

With some time to kill before my planned 3 PM visit to the 9/11 pools, I head over to Katz Deli. This just may be the best pastrami i’ve ever had…

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A visit to Katz may have been reason enough to make the day trek to NYC. 

Never Forget 9/11

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The 9/11 Memorial Pool. The 2 pools lie on the footprint of the World Trade Center Towers.

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The mood around the Twin Towers pool isn’t as somber as I had anticipated but people we’re respectful of nonetheless, some even sharing stories of friends and families lost. Many came by mostly to witness and take part of history…

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Former L.A. Kings scout Garnet “Ace” Bailey, along with Mark Bavis, we’re among the lives lost during 9/11. In 2007, the Kings would introduce a lion as their new mascot, naming the lovable leo, Bailey. (I’m sure some of you have seen my posts of him with Blue Dog…)20190911_161909

20190911_162733The Survivor Tree…

Across the street from the WTC Pools, folks gather aroudn the FDNY Ten House…

20190911_154821Opened in 2014, the One World Trade Center

Citi Field

After a little over an hour at the 9/11 pool, I head over to Citi Field to catch the Mets against the DBacks. Citi Field would be the 17th active MLB park i’d pay a visit to, along with 7 other past yards. Somewhere down the line I still expect to hit the big 3-0. 

20190911_172916The 7 Line, made famous by John Rocker…

I really don’t care what John Rocker once said about the 7 Line it still get’s fans to the game. It’s a source of public transit, not a private limousine company! BTW, John Rocker is still a POS !!!

20190911_175546Citi Field from a distance out in the parking lot, dotted with plaques located on the spots where home plate and the bases we’re located during the Shea Stadium days…

A couple of huge pre-1988 World Series home runs took place here in Game 4 of the ’88 NLCS for the Dodgers. One by Scioscia and one by, who else, Kirk Gibson…

20190911_175926A famous ground ball took place here on a Saturday night in October ’86. It involved a former Dodger and was called by, of course, Vin Scully…

Baseball is a sport that creates memories that is truly passed down from one generation to another.  As I was taking pictures of the markers of the location of Shea Stadium’s bases, other fans of various ages we’re not only doing the same, but telling stories, taking pictures of themselves doing a pitchers windup on the site where the rubber was located. Some kids we’re even running along the path where the bases we’re. Thankfully, the lot was not full to the point we couldn’t capture such moments…

The famous Home Run Apple. Darryl Strawberry triggered that thing many a times at old Shea…

20190911_183704Inside the Ebbets Field themed rotunda. The chandeliers above are meant to mimic the old baseball chandeliers from Ebbets Field…

The grand entrance to Citi Field. Inside the entrance is this rotunda that pays homage to Jackie Robinson. Upon it’s opening in 2009, the tribute to Mr. Robinson was met with some controversy among certain Mets fans, not because of Jackie Robinson, but the fact that he did not play for the Mets. More tributes to the Mets history would be added years later, including a small Hall of Fame next to the rotunda. 

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Never Forget

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Prior to the game, a pregame tribute to the victims of 9/11 and to local law enforcement and fire department personnel. 

20190911_192503Citi Field, 9/11. DBacks vs. Mets

It’s really hard for me to grasp how I fully feel about Citi. It tries to be a retro yard but does not quite blend with it’s neighborhood surroundings. As for it’s attempt at a retro yard, it may have been a decade late upon it’s 2009 opening. I remember when I went to new Busch Stadium in 2006 telling my buddy Josh that I felt we’re at the point that parks are trying to “out-retro each other”. Also of note. Their current “Home Run Apple” beyond the CF fence. Aside from the Apple perhaps the Mets could have brought over some other elements of Shea Stadium?

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OK. So Citi does pay some respects to old Shea with this pedestrian bridge that connects the right and  center field stands above the bullpens…

20190911_204701The skyline that once highlighted Shea Stadium’s right field scoreboard, now above the Shake Shack in the outfield concourse. Note the ribbon on the Twin Towers…

As I like to do when visiting a yard for the first time, I like to take in the various vantage points. 

20190911_212134High above left field from the last row. Just a bit high and distant of an outfield location for my preference…

20190911_213425Back behind home plate. Middle 7th and on this night, 9/11/2019, God Bless America…

On this evening, the Mets would come out of the gates quick with a big 5 run 1st inning. On this night, 9/11, they would end up winning 9-0 on...9 Runs and 11 Hits

Back to The 9/11 Memorial, Tribute In Lights

With the game out of reach I leave after the 7th inning to head back to the 9/11 Memorial Pool to check out Tribute In Light. Tribute in Light first debuted on the 6 month anniversary of the attacks and has been on display every year on 9/11. 20190911_231902

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It was a point for me to also check out Tribute in Light from the 9/11 memorial. The lights can reach upward to 4 miles and is visible from a 60 mile radius. There are probably other magnificent viewing points throughout the city but on this day, as well as any 9/11 day, the location was appropriate. 

When I visited New York in 2006 the footprint of Twin Towers was known as Ground Zero.

Ground Zero, May 2006…

The area around the towers continues to draw people from around the world. Though many come to reflect, many also come to meet people and share stories. Proof that no matter the magnitude of the tragic events of 9/11/2001, the spirit and unity of folks around the world and the citizens of New York will never be broken. 

Recapping My Day in NYC, 9/11/2019

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New York City, regardless of whether your staying a day or a few days, is not the type of city you’ll do everything you want in one stay. Fortunately for me, I’ve done enough solo traveling and utilized many forms of public transit where navigating The Big Apple was anything but daunting. My itinerary was simple, check out the 9/11 Memorial, grab a pastrami at either Katz’s or Sarge’s (went to Katz) and catch a Mets game. 

With the Dodgers actually scheduled to play the Mets in the upcoming weekend, a few Mets fans kiddingly chided me, telling me I was a couple days earlier. One Met fan asked me if I could tell Dave Roberts to have our bench players start all 3 games over the weekend since we had the West clinched already and the Mets we’re in need of wins to stay alive in the Wild Card. A few Mets fans told me to beat the Yankees in the World Series, something I’ve heard a few times between the Mets and Orioles fans. Of course, let’s get there first…

New York in One Day in Pictures…

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