Friday, April 17, 2009

Madison Square Garden In The Bronx - Empty Field Level Seats At The New Yankee Stadium

Thanks to Anthonyny on Twitter for the screengrab

Have you ever been to Madison Square Garden and noticed that while the cheap seats in the uppers are packed with fans, the expensive purple seats closer to the floor are empty? This is because while the Dolan's ran the Knicks and Rangers into an abyss of irelevance, they also raised ticket prices exponentially, forcing the real fans into the only semi-affordable seats in the house.

With today's home Yankee game being the first non-premium game (and even worse a day game during the school year), we now have a chance to see the "Levine/Trost effect" at the new Yankee Stadium. Basically, what we have been blogging about for months is finally coming to fruition. The Yankees have overpriced all of the good seats, and have forced the average fans away from the field of play. The "Levine/Trost effect" is painfully obvious on the telecast, even when YES cameras have the centerfield camera as tight as possible during the pitching sequences...

The Yankees will be forced to lower ticket prices next season, but right now they are stuck between a rock and a hard place. There is no way that they can lower prices in order to move inventory without giving refunds to the suckers those who have already paid for the best seats. They also are going to look pretty bad every day on TV if non-premium games feature rows of empty field level seats.

We here at NSI believe in a solution-oriented approach. If we were the Yankees, we would dump the tickets at wholesale costs (read: discounted) to a mega-broker that sells their tickets on Stub Hub. The onus would then be on the broker to move the now considerably cheaper inventory, and the Yankees would get kickbacks on the Stub Hub commission. Obviously, this will never happen. For legal purposes, the Yankees would have to be transparent about something like this, and at that point, they would still be pissing off the suckers loyal season ticket holders in the most expensive seats. We also tossed around the idea of letting standing room only ticket holders "stand-in" as field level seat occupants, for the sake of posterity. That idea was also shot down because it wouldn't be fair to the suckers ticket licensees in the expensive seats.

Needless to say, we don't really feel bad for the Yankees, since upper-management greed put them in this position. We do feel bad for the average fans (including us!), who will never have the privilege to see a Yankee game from the prime viewing areas at the new Yankee Stadium.
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