America’s Game in the U.K.
LONDON—When I made the decision to come here for the two games played between the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox, I looked for a hotel that was located as close to Olympic Stadium as possible. That turned out to be Hotel Westbridge.
It’s not a big hotel, but the staff is universally friendly and helpful; the rooms are small, but comfortable; and the dining room offers a limited-but-adequate menu. What it does not offer is alcohol in any form—not beer, not wine, and definitely not Johnny Walker. Apparently, the family that owns the hotel belongs to a religion that forbids the consumption of alcohol. I’m not sure why that restriction should apply to hotel guests, but It does.
And “close to Olympic Stadium” means different things to different people. For me, it does not mean a 40-minute walk in the hot sun. That, however, is the reality.
The first of two games between the Yankees and the Red Sox was played yesterday and we have given he Brits a lesson in how the game should not be played. The final score was Yankees 17, Red Sox 13.
More to the point, it is now and forever clear that baseball games that matter should never be played in facilities design for soccer. I suppose there were some in that crowd of 59,659 who had a good view of the game, but I was not one of them.
Our tickets cost $166 each and from our vantage point in the upper level far down the left field line, the baseball itself was invisible to the naked eye and one had to deduce what was happening from the movement of the players. I can tell you with certainty that it cannot be done, certainly not for 4-plus hours.
We are supposedly in better seats for this afternoon’s game, which is when I will find out how much of the game I’ll be able to see for $432.