Yankee Stadium Empty Seats – MLB BaseballTuesday, October 16, 2012 20:36
Yankee Stadium empty seats–a lot of them–for the ALCS. When did the pride become shame?
The Deride of the Yankees
You couldn’t miss it if you happened to watch the either of the first two games of the ALCS:
A sizable number of seats at Yankee Stadium remained empty.
During the heyday of the Atlanta Braves in the nineties and early oughts, the franchise was frequently derided for the vast number of unsold seats after the team had established itself as a perennial playoff participant. Fan complacency–“Oh, the Braves are in the playoffs again. Call me when they reach the World Series.”
But Yankee Stadium? The most storied, proud and successful team–as much as Red Sox fans such as myself hate to admit it–not just in baseball, but of American pro sports?
And the situation in New York is far worse than it was in Atlanta; the litany of problems runs far and deep:
- Everyday fans have been priced out of attending games at new Yankee Stadium by exorbitant face value ticket prices.
- Fans expect the Yankees’ bloated $200 million payroll to generate results which are not being realized on the field, completely dominated by the Detroit pitching staff save for one good inning against Tigers closer Jose Valverde.
- Individual players are throwing up–in terms of vomit–numbers of epically woeful proportions. Going into Game 3: Alex Rodriguez, 3-23; Nick Swisher, 4-26; Robinson Cano, a playoff record 26 at-bat hitless streak.
- Alex Rodriguez being so tuned out of the game that he threw a ball to some girls in the stands asking for their phone numbers; when they returned the ball, he smiled at them.
And as disgusting as the Yankees’ ticket price greed is–and as understandable as fans’ unwillingness or inability to pay such prices may be–tickets on the secondary market are now selling well below face value because people simply aren’t buying…not even at bargain basement rates (some as low as $15 for the ALCS).
Which means the combination of above factors translates to even the mighty Yankees experiencing at minimum fan apathy, if not outright disgust.
Did anyone ever think that the Bronx Bombers, of all teams, could generate such fan disinterest?
If you had taken bets down the Garden State in Atlantic City, cross the country in Las Vegas, or online at 5dimes, you would have scored quite the hefty sum on those odds.
Matters at new Yankee Stadium–and new deserves to be emphasized, since such a situation was inconceivable at the House that Ruth Built, with all of its mystique and history and fear-inducing in opponents–have sunk so low that ushers have been instructed to move fans from the cheap seats into empty chairs closer to the action so that the crowd would appear less sparse on TV.
Never mind an ALCS victory, or even a victory of a single game in that series, the Yankees are now searching for a soul.
Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle and so many other pinstriped greats must be rolling in their graves.
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