Saturday, May 2, 2009

Baseball and a Birth (Postgame Notes 2 May 2009, with Life Update)

I'm sitting in Yankee Stadium. My friend, Brent, and I, have seats on the Terrace level, row 7 out in right field.

It's very high up, but it's not too high--you can still see the players as people--and you can see the entire field.

The sun is shining, and though the day is chillier than it has been in a while, it's still good fortune, given the rain that had been forecast.

So we sit, and we watch.

We watch as the Yankees stake out to a 1-0 lead, fail to get another hit for, well, a while, and ultimately relinquish it.

We watch as there's a tremendous fight in the grandstand that diverts attention from Matsui's attempt to knock in Jeter, stranded at third.

We watch, as the father next to us teaches his young daughter how to keep score.

We watch, as the umpires seem to botch call after call.

We watch, as what seems to be the entire Angels bullpen gets up to warm at the same time, perhaps the only bullpen in the league right now that inspires less confidence than that of the Yankees.

Some time, in between innings, they play the Birthday song and on the video screen in center field, there's a list of names that flash past.

It's missing a birthday, that of my nephew, Eli. I can understand it: Eli didn't turn one today, he turned 0. If that makes sense.

Brent turns to be and says, "hey, you have an actual birth day!", and he is right.

Before the infamous sixth inning of doom, I wander to the team store and buy a baby Jeter t-shirt and a baby Yankee outfit. I am going to see Eli (and my family) after the game, and I know my brother will get a kick out of it. My sister-in-law, I'm not so sure--she comes from a family of Mets fans.

I want to burst out and tell everyone that I'm buying these clothes for my nephew who was born this morning, but I don't. I've got to hurry to get back to my seat.

I leave the game after the 8th inning. I would like to stay for the whole thing, but a 1-2-3 bottom of the eighth when you are not yet out of the game rubs me the wrong way, and I want to see Eli. I need to see Eli.

I wait forever for the D train, and it's hot and stuffy inside.

There's a pregnant lady that sits next to me. I can't help but to shake my head, and smile.

I get out of the subway at 59th street. I'm only out for a few minutes before I get a text: LA Angels 8, Yankees 4. My thoughts are: hey, we still scored four runs, and my kingdom, my kingdom for a bullpen!

From Columbus Circle I take a cab down to the NYU medical school. The driver weaves in and out of lanes and for a moment I think he thinks that *I* am the one who needs medical assistance.

I call my brother to tell him I am on my way and that I can't wait to see him.

The cabbie slows down after that.

I get to the hospital, take the elevator up to the 13th floor (guess New Yorkers aren't ones for superstition...).

My brother's in the waiting room, with my parents and his parents-in-law. They all come up to me and say congratulations to me and I am amused: I didn't exactly do anything.

They ask me about the baseball game, and then my brother asks me if I want to come see my nephew.

So I put my purse down and tell Mom not to peek--the present for my brother and my nephew is inside. She peeks anyway.

We go to see Eli and I am shocked at how tiny he is--although, technically, he's a big baby. He cries a little and opens his eyes just briefly. Just for a second, and in that second I am amazed it is in our power to create something so wonderful.

A little later, I give my brother the present. He doesn't just like the baby clothes; he loves them.

I tell him that Eli is a good name for a Yankee fan.

He agrees.