I spent a week in New York for the wedding of my former producer and friend David Salt and his fiancé Emma and as part of the experience I went to a baseball game to see the New York Yankees play the Baltimore Orioles. My first impression was that it is identical to rounders’ that girls played at school. Apart from being asked for ID when buying drinks at the stadium, no honestly I was. I was feeling quite chuffed until I found out that they ask every single person to show ID when buying drinks. However I digress –I found the game quite slow and boring to be frank however the way they treat the paying customers is brilliant. To start with 14000 youngsters were given a real baseball bat free as they walked in? Somehow I can’t imagine that would ever happen at a football match here in Britain!! The whole entertainment was first class during the innings and intervals and was totally interactive with the 50,000 fans in the stadium. Excellent sound system and jumbo screen that gave the fans a brilliant mix of current and past players etc.
Fans from both clubs mixed and chatted throughout the game although to be honest there were only a 1000 or so from Baltimore. We have the best sport in the world here in Britain but we learn a lot about providing a better match-day experience for the paying public.