Apr
17

All the lonely people

By

On Opening Day 2008, the last at the House that Ruth Built, a capacity crowd packed into Yankee Stadium. 55,112 fans filed up to the Bronx to watch Chien-Ming Wang and Roy Halladay battled for two hours and 31 minutes, and the Stadium was rockin’.

Yesterday, the Stadium was also rockin’ but more so with Indians’ runs than with anything from the Yanks. While Thursday was certainly a historic day for the Yankees and the new stadium, the crowd was noticeably smaller this year than last. Officially, the Yanks’ paid Opening Day 2009 attendance was 48,271, about 13 percent less than last year.

The Times’ Joshua Robinson, in a story about the widely divergent ticket prices as the new park, wonders why attendance was so low.

Basically, the Yankees claim it was a combination of factors. First, the team doesn’t count sponsored tickets. All of their marketing partners who probably negotiated for free tickets to yesterday’s game don’t count in the paid total. Second, the team is not yet selling standing-room only tickets. The team — or at least The Times’ article — offered up no explanation for that last point.

To me, the attendance numbers is indicative of a larger problem. Simply put, fewer people can go to Yankee games this year. I tried to get Opening Day tickets and couldn’t, and I would have been more than happy to shell out a few books for an SRO ticket to roam the stadium, camera in hand during yesterday’s historic day.

So basically, as the Yankees start playing in a stadium with an attendance of 52,325, including standing room, the team is further depressing supply by not selling the standing room tickets. The Yankees shouldn’t have had a paid attendance on Opening Day of less than 50,000, but they did. I don’t like the whole thing, but what can you do?

Categories : Yankee Stadium
  • Chris P.

    Alot’s been made of the fact that the crowd seemed much quieter yesterday than usual. Hopefully that’s only because the game was pretty uneventful for the first seven innings, and then a blow out afterwards.

    • LiveFromNewYork

      I didn’t see this when I responded below but that’s what I heard, that it was a low energy game even if the Yanks had won.

  • http://www.freewebs.com/ps3tf2/ Double-J

    Honestly, not being from the NYC area, and as a poor doctoral student, I’d be more than happy to shell out $5 and sit in the obstructed sections. Just getting a set there would be enough for me, especially for cost-control measures…

    • http://www.freewebs.com/ps3tf2/ Double-J

      Just getting a seat there would be enough for me

      Fixed.

      • LiveFromNewYork

        I’ve heard this a lot. And you can walk around the Stadium and watch the game from other places in the park.

  • Mark M

    I was at the game yesterday and I have to agree that there was not the usual buzz. I also think its because of the clientele that you are going to get when the ticket prices are what they are. We sat in a $20 face seat and the people behind us payed $300 each for theres. Pricing out the common fan….

    Side note….the food has not improved at all. Same dog and cold fries…very disappointing.

    • http://nyfaninboston.blogspot.com/ Manimal

      Any sort of food establishment struggles its first week or so, give it some time to work the kinks out.

      • Brian

        BTW, for the Giants fans amongst us: For every dollar you spend on concessions at New Yankee Stadium, 50 cents goes to the Dallas Cowboys.

  • andrew

    From what I’ve heard, the construction company received 2,000 tickets to yesterday’s game. That alone brings the total to nearly below 50,000. It’s one game, they won’t be handing out tickets like that all year.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Benjamin Kabak

      What exactly did you hear and from where did you hear it?

      • andrew

        Yea sorry, I should’ve prefaced my earlier comment. It should be taken with a grain of salt. One of my good friends was in the Tommy Bahamas bar yesterday and the owner of the construction company was there. My friend happens to work in construction so they struck up a conversation and that’s what the owner of the construction company told my friend. Definitely not an official source, but when you take the official attendance from yesterday, it sort of fits the story.

  • Mark M

    Not sure about the kinks…but the quality is all so familiar.

  • Yankeegirl49

    I still say this is media hype/anti Yank bias. Yes, I was upset not to have tickets for yesterday’s game. I have been to every opening day since the early 90s, but was NOT spending 200 bucks for bleacher seats. Like anything else, its a matter of supply and demand, tho they should have sold the standing room tickets.
    However, I have tickets to more than 25 games and the most expensive ticket with the fees was $27, this includes all the series vs the Sox. They are upper deck or bleacher seats, but I’d rather be at the games in those seats than not be there at all. Some of the games were the $5 nights so my tickets for those were a whopping $9.50 a ticket.
    If getting “affordable” seats is a priority for people, they needed to have planned accordingly and bought the tickets the day they were put onsale as I did, the same as I do for any event I want to attend.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Benjamin Kabak

      This comment — especially the last paragraph — simply ignores the reality of the new stadium. It was next to impossible for people to get single-game tickets, and those that were available were far from affordable.

      I don’t have time now to tear this argument apart, but it’s not in line with the current economic situation inside the stadium or the way in which the Yanks went about making tickets available to the public.

      • Yankeegirl49

        But Ben, thats exactly how I got my tickets…when single game tickets went onsale. Some I got thru a presale..and got the password thru word of mouth, but the majority I got from the public onsale. Maybe I got lucky, but it was do-able.

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Benjamin Kabak

          But now you’re just making the conclusion that, because it worked for you, the system is not flawed. That’s not a valid way to resolve the issue either.

          • Yankeegirl49

            It worked for me and a bunch of my friends, I can’t speak to anythign else because thats all I know.

            • Chris C.

              “It worked for me and a bunch of my friends, I can’t speak to anythign else because thats all I know.”

              So if you can’t speak to anything else, why are you coming across like some kind of expert, even throwing the good ol’ “media Yankee bias” out there?

              “They are upper deck or bleacher seats, but I’d rather be at the games in those seats than not be there at all.”

              I’d rather be on my couch or in my favorite bar, then spending that kind of scratch for those bullshit seats. My last few years with season tickets I was starting to feel like a sucker. Thankfully, I’ve sobered up.

              • Yankeegirl49

                I never claimed to be an expert. I gave MY opinion based on MY experiences.

                If you would rather be on your couch, that is better for me, one less person trying to get tickets.

      • Brian

        Um. I got single-game tickets. It was REALLY easy, and I paid like $14 for bleacher seats.

      • LiveFromNewYork

        There are bleacher and grandstand tickets on stub hub for very reasonable prices. It seems more than do-able to get single game tickets for a good price.

  • http://forums.projectcovo.com/images/smilies/e6omir.gif Expired Milk

    I refuse to go to games until they lower prices. Until Im fine watching it on my HDTV and soon as I get my 55″, it will be better than being there.

    • http://8thinning.blogspot.com VO

      Your getting a 55″ HDTV and your complaining about ticket prices?

      • http://forums.projectcovo.com/images/smilies/e6omir.gif Expired Milk

        55″ are alot cheaper than they used to be.Anyways I’m not allowed to complain about prices because of that? I wanna be near the action without paying the price of a 55″ tv is my point.

        • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          True.

          The cost of a wicked good big HDTV is pretty equivalent to some season ticket packages, but you don’t have to keep rebuying the TV every year to get to keep watching the games…

  • Tom

    “The Mall that the business people from Tampa built” just doesn’t have the magnetic pull they thought it would.

  • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside
    • Andy In Sunny Daytona

      That song changed the course of reggae’s future.

  • http://8thinning.blogspot.com VO

    You know at first I hated the new stadium, I started to like it, but now I am just back to disliking the whole thing, because of ticket prices, reviews, etc.

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  • Brian

    I won’t be making my first appearance at the Stadium until May 24th. I’m bringing my Phillies fan-friends up there and hoping that they don’t start sh*t.

    I’m reserving judgement on the House that Jeter Built until then.

  • LiveFromNewYork

    I’ve heard from people who went that they were pumped to be there, gave Bernie and Paulie and others standing O’s and were ready to rock the place for a great game but the game simply sucked. I mean even if the Yankees had gone on to win, it was just a low energy game for the most part.

  • Nick

    I was at the home opener, paid $500 for 2 first row left field bleacher seats right behind johnny Damon on ebay, was skeptical at first but was definitely worth it in the end.

    Its impossible to buy on yankees.com, either way they are expensive for any seat to any game.

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  • http://www.freewebs.com/ps3tf2/ Double-J

    I can’t believe that Matsui is a professional athlete but literally can’t run a few hundred feet without getting hurt.

    That’s what happens when you have two surgically repaired knees…

  • Chris P.

    Apparantly not repaired well hahaha