This season’s New York Yankees team yearbook, along with the separate magazine published by the team, contains a full-page advertisement for a remodeled piece of Yankee Stadium history. A video version of the offer also has aired on the team’s YES Network.
In the print ad, the headline reads: “The Tradition Continues…New York Yankees Replica Stadium Model.” The picture in the advertisement displays a miniature replica of the front gate of the old Yankee Stadium. That is the stadium that an older generation will remember before the ballpark was remodeled during the 1970s.
The ad states that the replica is “Made From Authentic Original Yankee Stadium Façade.” Then, just below this statement, the copy indicates that any Yankees fan “will tell you it was that regal concrete frieze….that wrapped around the top of the ballpark like a crown” that was a distinctive feature of the old Yankee Stadium.
Old Authentic Versus Recent Authentic
The authentic original Yankee Stadium façade, which more accurately was known as the frieze, does not exist. On the original stadium that opened during 1923 and had grandstand additions through the 1930s, that frieze was the decorative copper, not cement, trim that was attached to the roof of the old ballpark.
The frieze was destroyed during the 1970’s remodeling of the ballpark. Newspaper and magazine pictures from that time show its removal from the upper deck. The frieze was lowered to the field and hauled away as scrap.
For the remodeled stadium, the frieze was recreated in concrete and positioned above the centerfield scoreboards and billboards. The concrete version was not “wrapped around the top of the ballpark like a crown.” A portion of it can be seen today in the park that now occupies the site of the old ballpark.
For the current stadium, the latest version of the frieze is fabricated from a modern lightweight material. It was installed around the upper deck at the new stadium to replicate the original copper crown of the 1923 ballpark.
A Keepsake In Cement
According to the print ad, “Steiner Sports delicately dismantled the old frieze, section by section, crushed it up, and had these amazing 1923 Gate 4 Yankee Stadium replicas produced.” The ad ends with: “Take home this amazing piece of the original Yankee Stadium, which comes complete with a Steiner Sports Certificate of Authenticity.”
The advertisement requires a more accurate description for this new sports collectable. Fans need to understand that it is not made from copper and it is not from the original Yankee Stadium frieze. The collectable was created from the cement replica frieze that was added to the “shell” of the original Yankee Stadium after the ballpark was remodeled.
Put an “E” on the scoreboard for “error” for the ad copy that was used to sell this sports collectible.