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By Jon Weisman
Dodger fans — specifically the group from Pantone 294, whose name helps color-blind people like myself identify the precise color of Dodger blue — made national news Monday in New York, cheering boisterously, flying their flags, co-opting the Yankee Stadium roll call and generally dispelling the myth of the apathetic Dodger fan.
If you were watching the game, you couldn’t avoid noticing them. Here’s some East Coast perspective, starting with Billy Witz in the New York Times:
… While jerseys from Koufax to Kershaw and from Valenzuela to Gonzalez dotted the entire ballpark, the heartiest fans congregated near the left-field foul pole. Among them were 1,300 from a fan group named Pantone 294 — the paint code of the Dodgers’ distinctive shade of blue.
The members of the group, who also traveled to San Diego and Toronto this season, came mostly from California, arriving from three airports on seven chartered planes and staying mainly in three hotels in New York.
They arrived Saturday on red-eye flights and have traveled around the city since. They rented out two 600-capacity yachts for a sunset cruise up the Hudson River on Sunday and visited many familiar sights (Rockefeller Center, Central Park and Coney Island) and some less familiar ones (the site of Ebbets Field — the Dodgers’ old home in Brooklyn — and Jackie Robinson’s grave at Cypress Hills Cemetery).
“We’re a big family,” said Alex Soto, a Pantone 294 organizer. As if to prove it, he pointed to his napping daughter. “I have so many babysitters,” he said, pointing around him. “You come with strangers and leave with friends.”
Four times during the game, the fans in the left-field corner unfurled tifos, the enormous flags that are common among soccer supporters’ groups. The largest was a 30-foot-by-30-foot blue banner with the team’s interlocking “L.A.” The fans had received permission to take the banner into the stadium, but it was so large that it came in four sections that were zippered together. …
Brendan Kuty for NJ.com:
… Desiree Garcia, 32, of Cudahy, Calif. — the group’s social media guru — said Pantone’s version of the roll call wasn’t a shot at Yankees fans, though.
“It was all in good spirits,” she said.
Yankees left fielder Brett Gardner took notice.
“It’s unusual,” he said. “When you’re playing the Red Sox, they obviously don’t have as big of a following or they’e not quite as rowdy. So, yeah, it’s a little bit different but I thought it was a good atmosphere.”
So did manager Joe Girardi.
“Usually they’re more spread out, in a sense, so I felt the Giants, when they came into town, were well-represented as well,” Girardi said. “But they were in one section, which is unusual.” …
At a game in which the Dodgers scored their most runs at Yankee Stadium since the night they won the 1981 World Series, a good time was had by all — in Dodger blue.