Top Stories

Yankees players worried about NYCFC’s use of Yankee Stadium

YankeeStadiumSoccer1 (Getty)


New York City FC has yet to play its first game at Yankee Stadium and New York Yankees players are already expressing concerns about sharing the same field.

In the same week that NYCFC is set to host its home opener against the New England Revolution, several Yankees players revealed their uneasiness over the potential conditions of the grass at Yankee Stadium. Measures have been taken to help ensure the field is in the best possible shape when switching between sports, but Yankees players are still fretting over how the field might play during baseball games.

“It’ll definitely cause an issue, but it’s nothing that we can control, so we can’t worry about it,” Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira told the Wall Street Journal. “It’s terrible for a field.”

Aside from one instance, the grounds crew at Yankee Stadium will have a minimum of three days at a time to change from one sport’s field to the other. A system that uses mobile lighting to regrow grass will be used, and the pitcher’s mound will be away from the soccer field and left alone.

Yankee Stadium has been used for soccer in the past, but only for one-off events and not an entire season. NYCFC is set to play 17 games from March to October at the stadium it is using temporarily, raising fears over injury.

“They have had a couple (games) there in the past, and that doesn’t mess it up nearly as much as a concert, or a boxing match, because the guys are just playing on the field, and there’s not 40,000 people trampling on the field,” left fielder Brett Gardner told the Wall Street Journal. “Problem is the root system. After you put new grass down, there’s no root system, so essentially you’re running full speed on top of AstroTurf that’s sitting on top of cement, and that grass will give way, and you blow something out—knee, ankle.”

NYCFC opens its home schedule against Eastern Conference foes New England on Sunday.


What do you think of the Yankees players’ concerns? Think the grounds crew can keep the field in good condition for baseball and soccer?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. For the short term. Just put some bleachers up across the street at the old Yankee Stadium location. Get a couple of hotdog carts and you got your concessions. If you got go, piss in the bushes.

  2. This whole thing is really a non-issue. The WSJ reporter seems to have been walking from Yankee to Yankee asking if they had a problem with soccer being played in Yankee Stadium. Brett Gardner (an outfielder, or one of the three guys who plays his position on the grass for you baseball-haters) gave an honest answer that it’s no big deal unless the whole field needs to be redone at some point.

  3. I can’t wait to listen to Mike Francesa the day after somebody destroys their ACL.

    It’ll be “yooj”

    • and how many years of this will we have?…

      don’t get me wrong I think they have a great thing in the works but couldn’t they have waited a bit for the stadium deal to be secured?, maybe use Yankee Stadium as 1 year temp while the new one was under construction.. Don totally jumped the gun on this one.

      • They’re going to be in there for ages and/or they will move to Westchester and still proclaim they’re the true NYC team. There is nowhere in the city for their stadium and no one is going to go out of their way to help a team owned by Sheikh Mansour.

      • They might move to Westchester but red bull will still be the less popular team in the area. You’ll be fighting for whatever crumbs are left with the f.cosmos until red bull strips you down even more and focuses on Leipzig. Then you’ll be behind the minor league cosmos who already humiliated you last year at their lacrosse stadium in the middle of nowhere.

  4. Baseball is hardly even considered a sport!
    These fat gum chewing babies need to stop crying, why do they care for quality of the grass anyway?? They can play on concrete for all I care. They dont have to pass or stop the ball on it like you do in soccer.

      • Key words are “on” and “it”…they either pick up the ball or catch it in the air. There is not trapping, dribbling, or passing the ball on the ground in baseball. I think that is what he is saying.

      • If a ball is rolling in the outfield they have to stop it. Far more importantly, they have to run on the grass, which is where injuries could occur. I actually think it’ll be fine though.

  5. There should have been a viable stadium option, in place, for NYCFC before beginning play IMO…why not have them share Red Bull Arena with NYRB, until their stadium is ready? If my LA Galaxy could share with Chivas USA, why not the NY teams…mind you, I could care less about the Yankee players’ concerns, since I don’t care for base-bore!!

  6. And I know I may get flak for this but truly Toronto FC is the only “big club” in MLS.

    – They own stadium that is the biggest SSS in North America
    – Huge signings
    – Supporters have set records for away matches despite poor on field performance
    – Hugely relevant in the city of Toronto which is the 3rd biggest in the league

    • And zero playoff appearances despite it being fairly easy to make the playoffs in MLS. Maybe we just have different definitions of “big club” or you were just being sarcastic and it didn’t come through.

    • ya, the biggest club in MLS history that has never finished in the top half of the league! Although the teams that started last week might try to claim that title too.

  7. The single greatest part of NYCFC’s creation is how fun it will be to make fun of Yankee Stadium. Their embarrassing try to rep South Bronx hip hop is a close second. All jokes aside though, it is absolutely amazing to me they’ll be playing there at all. Could you imagine a Real Madrid or a Manchester United ever sharing their grounds with a baseball team??

    • Yes,

      “Old Trafford has also been used for purposes other than football. Before the Old Trafford football stadium was built, the site was used for games of shinty, the traditional game of the Scottish Highlands.[87] During the First World War, the stadium was used by American soldiers for games of baseball”

      “Old Trafford has played host to both codes of rugby football, although league is played there with greater regularity than union. The Super League grand final has been played at Old Trafford every year since the introduction of the playoff system in 1998, and is set to continue to do so until 2017”

    • Yes, because a feeder club in the USA is totally comparable to Real Madrid and Man Utd….

      NYCFC is small time. It’s like Manchester City’s younger brother driving around in the older brother’s car trying to pass off as him. It’s pathetic and you’ll never get close to the level unless you differentiate.

      • NYCFC have been less then two year, yet have 15k season ticket holders & more fans then most soccer teams in the US.

      • CSD – I specified baseball. Do you have an example of that?
        John – You assumed I was equating NYCFC with Real Madrid / Manchester U. I was equating the NY Yankees with those two teams, because that is what they are for the sport of baseball.

    • MLS teams even ones with SSSs like Houston and Dallas often share with football. BBVA has also hosted rugby.

      Stamford Bridge has “hosted numerous other sports, such as cricket, rugby union, speedway, greyhound racing, baseball and American football.”

      Craven Cottage hosts rugby.

      Wembley hosts NFL.

      Hull groundshares with rugby.

      The “football lines” type arguments are made all the time but the reality is many soccer primary venues still host other sports. In reality it’s more about control and dominance than exclusivity.

  8. How ironic would it be if they ended up playing in MetLife? Or if Red Bull becomes their jersey sponsor and they play in Red Bull Arena?

    • Playing in Metlife would be hilarious given the NYC portion of their name. Wouldn’t put it past them though. And NYCFC fanboys would still talk about how they’re the true NYC team.

  9. I know some people out there love baseball but baseball is so boring and slow. (no bad intentions)
    If NFL, MLB, NBA would speed up their games with new rules and a shorter season, then probably it would grow in other countries and be bigger than soccer one day, but they love their commercials. ( I know that the nfl has a short season)

    • Baseball and basketball are played fairly widely outside the US, especially basketball. None of the US “big 3′ sports will ever be bigger than soccer globally though.

      • False. Basketball is the number 2 sport in many European & African countries. In many Asian nations, it is the number 1 sport.

      • Ok but what did I say that was “false”? I said basketball was very popular globally. I’m not sure in which Asian countries it’s #1, other than the Philippines, but even so it isn’t anywhere close to soccer globally, which was my point.

      • The Chinese Basketball Association is a pretty big deal actually. FIBA is nothing to sneeze at – its growing at a quick rate.

      • Yes, I said all that although I don’t think the CBA is anything special. However, is basketball anywhere near soccer in terms of global popularity? Of course not, which was my point.

      • I’ve been hearing the basketball people say that basketball will overtake soccer in global popularity “real soon now” for the past thirty years. It hasn’t happened yet and I see no evidence that it is going to happen in the next 30 years, either.

  10. If any of the players on the Yankees have an issue, they should take it up with the club OWNERSHIP. They are the ones invested in NYFC and they are the ones that decided to allow NYFC to play at Yankee Stadium. FWIW, I remember back in ’76 when the Cosmos used Yankee Stadium, the club management was pleasantly surprised that the soccer players were not wrecking the field.

    • Amen, ownership signed the contract. Done deal, work with it.

      Also, complaints before the season start are fake and rhetorical. What do they even know. Once the groundshare starts then we can talk turkey from a proof standpoint. But right now it’s just people beefing based on isolated exhibition games.

  11. NYCFC players are worried too. They have to do a lot more moving and running and cutting than baseball players. Right fielders, pitchers, 3rd basemen and catchers will be minimally affected.
    I’m worried for the people that will pay way too much for crappy seats.

    • Lost in all the rhetoric is, what are the two teams basically doing with the field? Normal baseball field for the Yankees and NYC will play on the same field including baseball diamond with bases removed? They’ll cover the infield dirt with roll out grass? Roll out a field over the whole baseball field? What’s happening? The article gets into the rhetoric but doesn’t tell me before doing so what is actually happening.

      NYY made a deal with NYC at which point complaints before it even starts are silly, you have to look at solutions.

      I agree, baseball players are used to running on infields and tracks with dirt that may be chewed up. They have different cleats. I’m more worried about soccer players on the surface(s). One friendly players might go through the motions trying not to get hurt. A full season people will want to play hard.


Leave a Comment