Over the past month, I had the chance to attend 3 games New York University Violets games at MCU Park. After not having a baseball program for many years, New York University, which is a Division III school added a baseball program. Until (not to mention, if) they get their own facilities, they will play their home games at Coney Island’s MCU Park.
MY THREE TRIPS
The first time I went was on Tuesday, April 7th, when they took on the College of Mount Saint Vincent. They fell to the Dolphins by a score of 10-5 on a cold day. My original plan was to head out to the College of Staten Island, but they were rained out.
The second time I went, the Violets had a twinbill with the Cairn University Highlanders on Tuesday, April 14th. The Violets swept the doubleheader, winning Game 1 by a score of 10-4 and shutting them out 3-0 in Game 2.
My final trip was their regular season finale at MCU Park. The Violets swept the City College of New York by winning 9-8 & 9-3. You couldn’t have asked for more beautiful weather at MCU Park, as it was 68F, clear skies with a nice breeze coming off the water.
On April 7th & 29th, someone from NYU was serving as PA Announcer. The twinbill vs Cairn on April 14th had Mark Fratto, MCU Park’s PA Announcer, calling up the batters.
Originally, the NYU Athletics website said that all games were free, but when I got there the 1st time, I was told it was $5. They let me and a few others in for free, but changed the website’s info the next day.
Due to the timing of the games, the crowds were tiny, as they were afternoon games in the middle of the week, when most people have work or school. The crowds are composed of mainly family members and athletics staff. On April 7th, which was during Spring Break, I would say about 80 showed up. April 29th had about 40 throughout the 2 games. For the April 14th, only 1 person, (David Zubin) actually paid for his ticket. Everyone else got in for free, as they were families of players, NYU & Cairn Athletics staff, one alumni (Robert Bloom), a reporter (myself). The crowd was at best 20 people.
The nice thing about an empty ballpark is you can sit anywhere you want, so I generally sat on the concourse behind home plate so I could get a great view.
WHAT NEEDS TO BE IMPROVED
The games are not that bad, considering it’s a D3 team in their 1st season. They finished with a 21-23 overall record. While most were high scoring games that required rewriting part of my scorecards, some we well played.
The biggest issues I have with the games are the prices. As someone who has attend baseball games at various levels, I feel $5 for a D3 baseball game is a lot of money. Nearby Division I schools like Columbia, and New Jersey Institute of Technology don’t charge admission for baseball games. St. John’s has free admission for non-conference games and up to $6 for Big East Games. In addition, most DIII schools, like the Baruch College Bearcats, who also called MCU Park home this season, do not charge admission to any sporting events. I was also informed that the D2 Adelphi University Panthers, who had a home game at MCU Park did not charge admission.