Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Friday’s Mashup: Yankee Stadium ranks highest in food safety violations, Yankees deny investigation report

Lucy Burdge
December 14, 2018 - 7:34 am

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NBA: Atlanta at Boston, 7 p.m. (NBCSB)
NBA: Indiana at Philadelphia, 7:30 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: Oklahoma City at Denver, 10 p.m. (ESPN)
NHL: Boston at Pittsburgh, 7 p.m. (NESN)


-- ESPN conducted an investigation of food safety in major sporting venues across the country and Yankee Stadium came in dead last in MLB venues with a violation rate of 79.07 percent.

The investigation is based on reports from 2016 and 2017.

Of the 43 outlets inspected at Yankee Stadium, 34 contained high-level violations. The issues included problems with food handling and the report found multiple locations where food was “adulterated, contaminated, cross-contaminated, or not discarded” properly.

There were also hygiene violations, including a concession stand in which inspectors found “personal cleanliness inadequate” as an “employee’s outer garment was soiled with a possible contaminant.”

Inspectors also found hot food at improper temperatures (below 140 degrees) and “filth, flies or food/refuse/sewage-associated flies” in food and/or non- food areas at a Legends Club location in 2017.

The Yankees responded to this report in a statement on Thursday.

“We treat food safety with the utmost care,” Dan Smith, president of Hospitality at Legends, food service provider at Yankee Stadium, said in the statement. “We disagree with the ESPN report, whose methodology is unexplainable. We work closely on regular inspections with the New York City Department of Health, whose rigorous participation is welcomed. We also complete our own independent assessments with various consultants and auditors, including food safety companies. If any violation is pointed out, it is addressed and corrected immediately. As a result, in 2018, all of our food stands received an A-level grade, which is the highest level in New York City.”

ESPN’s investigation included 16,000 reports on food quality at 111 sports arenas around the country.

Gillette Stadium ranked among the best in terms of health and safety in the report and TD Garden and Fenway Park also ranked in the top quarter of venues investigated.

Inspectors at Fenway found at least two temperature-related issues, such as the soiled interior of an ice machine.

Out of the 54 outlets inspected at TD Garden, nine had high-level violations, while 10 of the 58 outlets inspected at Fenway Park had high-level violations.

-- Steph Curry has taken NASA up on the offer to visit after Curry said/joked on a podcast he doesn’t believe the United States has ever been to the moon.

"One thousand percent," Curry said on Wednesday of accepting the invite. "One thousand percent. Obviously I was joking when I was talking on the podcast. [Then] I was silently protesting how stupid it was that people actually took that quote and made it law as, 'Oh my God, he's a fake-moon-landing truther,' whatever you want to call it, yada, yada, yada. So I was silently protesting that part about it, how the story took a life of its own.”

"But in terms of the reaction that I've gotten, I am definitely going to take [NASA] up on their offer,” he continued. “I am going to educate myself firsthand on everything that NASA has done and shine a light on their tremendous work over the years. And hopefully people understand that education is power, informing yourself is power. For kids out there that hang on every word that we say, which is important, understand that you should not believe something just because somebody says it. You should do your homework and understand what you actually believe. But I'm going to go to NASA and I'm going to enjoy the experience wholeheartedly."

Curry first made his comment about the moon landing during an appearance on The Ringer's "Winging It" podcast.

Curry said he was surprised it became such a big deal.

"This one got me," Curry said Wednesday. "This one got me. Because of the setting that I was in when I was talking -- if you actually listen to the podcast, we were talking about all sorts of wild stuff. We went from Trae Young comparisons to 'What sound does a dinosaur make?' [From] 'What's your favorite brand of golf club?' to conspiracy theories. And literally out of an hour-and-10-minute podcast, that five-second comment of me asking, 'Did we land on the moon?' was the only thing people got out of that ... Again, part of why I just kind of let it sit out there is just because I was like, 'What is this?' There's way more serious stuff that's going on in our world that this doesn't necessarily deserve that much attention. But again, I got a NASA invite out of it and I am going to enjoy it."

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “Just playing ball. Just going out and doing what we’ve got to do, preparing throughout the week and going out and executing. Just executing playing and that is what we have to keep on doing. Been having a good practice week this week. Got to keep on building chemistry out there with the whole offense. When we go out there Sunday we have to be prepared mentally and physically and we have to execute plays in order to put up points.” -- Rob Gronkowski, on why he’s so good against Steelers