Citi Field Won’t Tolerate Even the Most Mundane of Heckling

04.27.09 Bucky Turco


The Mets, like their crosstown rivals the Yankees, are also proud of their shiny new Bellagio-like Stadium and wish their fans would treat it, and their team, with equal reverence. That’s the only explanation as to why stadium security would take poor Ramon Batista’s sign that said the completely harmless “Fire J. Manuel” on Friday night. Here’s his retelling:

Ok, this is what happened, Alex Cora (second baseman) saw the sign and started pointing towards me and told something to the security on the field and then they started looking at me and then called another security. I thought they were going to take me out of the game and asked me if I was the one with the Jerry Manuel sign and he needed to take it with him and hoped I understood the reason (they never gave me one). So i just gave it to him cause I didn’t want to get thrown out, I didn’t want to loose my $230 in tickets.

This wasn’t the only noteworthy sign confiscation this week. On Wednesday night, Citi Field’s Signage Crackdown Squad (SCS)* made three college kids hand over their traditional “K” signs because they were blocking those kajillion dollar LCD ribbon boards, which left many Mets fans longing for the days of Shea when cardboard K’s could adorn the right field upper deck without consequence. Mets PR man and professional fire-putter-outer Jay Horowitz had the gall to add this reasoning: “They were afraid the signs would damage the board.” Because these K signs were made of Italian marble, you see. That shit scratches. But Horowitz also explained that the Mets don’t “have a policy against signs of any kind” at the stadium. Except for Ramon Batista’s apparently. Update: Horowitz responds, telling ANIMAL, “We don’t have a policy on signs, but if they’re really negative or inciteful we might ask that they take them down.”