Saturday, January 24, 2009

Will Yankee tickets even be on sale for the general public this year?

Buried in this article about the Yankees and Mets' struggles to sell their premium seat offerings is the following bombshell:
While the Yankees point out that every non-premium seat in the house is sold out for 2009, they’re still looking for the payout from the more expensive real estate.

Seats that range from 350-$2,500 a game are now being marketed by Prudential Douglas Elliman, a prominent residential real estate brokerage. In a story that was recently reported by the New York Times, the Yankees’ decision to rely on a third -party was borne out of simple math: Seven luxury boxes out of 59 remain unsold. And of the original 4,000 premium seats, some 1,000 are still available.
Woah, lets back up for a second. If every non-premium seat in the New Yankee Stadium is sold out, that means they would have had to CONSIDERABLY oversell their non-premium season ticket plans. In this economy, there are sure to be season ticket account holders who just can't make their payment. The Yankee assertion that non-premium seat offerings are completely sold out means that they have season account holders waiting in the wings for the deadbeat's seats.

For the average baseball fan who can't afford to buy season tickets, this is very bad news. According to this NY Times piece from last week, the Yankees have sold the equivalent of 39,000+ full-season plans - leaving only approximately 14,000 other seats in the Stadium for other fans to snatch up. With all of the news recently about the Yankees struggling to sell premium offerings and claiming non-premium is sold out, you would have to assume that the only seats available for a public on-sale will be the really expensive seats.

As a season ticket holder, I am thrilled at this revelation. At the same time, I am well aware that the general public won't be so excited. When general on-sale date comes in February and these fans are forced to pony up a few hundred dollars for a pair of "premium seats," all hell may break loose. Should be fun.

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