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DVD Review: Yankee Stadium - Baseball's Cathedral

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DVD: Yankee Stadium - Baseball's Cathedral
Release Date: July 1st, 2008

Last week marked the last final Star game to ever be played at _the_ Yankee Stadium. Of course, as you might already know, but most certainly would find out from "Yankee Stadium: Baseball's Cathedral" that the Yankee's had other homes but this is The House That Ruth Built.

This DVD provides a comprehensive review of the 85 year history of the edifice from an almost 100% baseball perspective. The only dalliances are some brief mentions of boxing and football and visits by the Pope - otherwise it's all baseball, and not just baseball, but 100% Yankees baseball. Yes, it's their stadium and this DVD set is directed to Yankees fans but in all the highlights of amazing baseball moments at Yankee Stadium, none of them belong to any other team, as if no other baseball team stepped into the Stadium and had a historic play or game.

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This is kind of ridiculous and disappointing and lessens the impact that the DVD could have had. Beyond than this the only other drawback, and this is a serious one, is the narration by Chazz Palminteri - why is it that anything that is associated with New York has to have him involved with it? It sounds like he can barely read the script and you find yourself really wishing that the next interview or chunk of vintage gameplay comes up as soon as possible.

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What doesn't disappoint is the great historic footage and the explanations of the changes that the stadium has gone through over its lifetime. I had a chance to go to the July 6th, Yankees-Red Sox game at Yankee Stadium - my first time there. The DVD really prepared me to look for certain spots on the playing field where key plays had happened over the years; to go over to the edge of the bleachers to look down into the Memorial Park, with its bronze plaques, Lou Gehrig's baseball bat atop the flagpole, etc.

It was a great game (despite the Red Sox losing) but the trip to the stadium was actually that much better because of the DVD. For expatriate Yankees fans, its a no-brainer to get them this video - lots of cool bonuses include the entire Lou Gehrig speech and Mickey Mantle's '64 World Series Game 3 Walk-Off home run. For anyone else, the DVD is a chance to get a tour of a place that is experiencing its last year of active existence. Even if you're a Yankee-hater, the imminent demise of Yankee Stadium is bittersweet for any baseball fan.

Pics by via Tom Lewis' aka Tomdog's Flickr