A sea of navy and white pinstripes in the Bronx rivaled orange and blue in Queens, as faithful fans of the Yankees and the Mets turned out for their teams’ home openers at Citifield and Yankee Stadium on Monday. The Mets won their first game of the season against the San Diego Padres 11 to 2, and the Yankees lost to their long-standing rivals, the Boston Red Sox, 8 to 2.
Despite being anchored by the All Star third baseman and team captain David Wright, most sports analysts aren’t expecting a lot out of a relatively anemic Mets lineup. Expectations may not be particularly high – the tailgate consensus has them going about .500 – but that’s not doing anything to dampen fans’ excitement.
“If they stay healthy I think they have a chance to win 81 games, which will put them at .500,” said Brian Boyle, of Long Island. Gina Sansivero, also of Long Island, was similarly optimistic.
“We have a winning record on Opening Day and it always looks great,” she said. “We’ll see how it goes. We’re cautiously optimistic.”
And while the Yankees may have lost, fans said Opening Day is less about winning or losing, and more about fostering their hope for the new season. They were excited to see the veterans return to the field and expected slugger Robinson Cano to hit a few balls out of the park. They were also eager to welcome pitcher Mariano Rivera back to the mound for his final year. But they were also ready to see if new players like Kevin Youkilis would step up to the plate.
Allison Ugosoli came in from Danbury, Connecticut. She’s been a fan for as long as she can remember, but she did express some doubts about the team this year.
“I mean, [Derek] Jeter’s still injured, so that’s kind of a bummer. I’ve heard iffy things about the new shortstop, and I’m not sure about our pitching, so I’m definitely a little nervous,” she said. “But it’s so early, it’s tough to tell.”
Meanwhile Jennifer Phillips (right), who brought her 5-month old son Christopher to his first game on Monday, is hoping for a Subway series this fall.
“There’s nowhere like Yankee stadium, and with the Mets having their Opening Day today too, it would be great if we could have the opportunity for a win in the Bronx.”