Once upon a time, I went to a few classic post-season baseball games in the Bronx. I saw the first home game of the 2001 World Series, Game Six of the 2000 ALCS, Game 1 of the 2000 World Series and that fateful Game Two of the 1998 ALCS. I had tickets to Game Five of the 1999 World Series and Game Seven of the 2003 World Series. Those both proved to be unnecessary for vastly different reasons.
Yesterday, with the Yanks’ Magic Number at 27 before their Monday night win over the Orioles, the team announced their potential post-season ticket pricing plans, and once we wade through the licensing fee language, tickets for post-season games wind up being cheaper than those for the regular season. As the Yankees note in a press release detailing the pricing schemes, “prices for the vast majority of postseason tickets are less than those that were charged by the Yankees for equivalent seating in the 2007 postseason at the original Yankee Stadium.”
The details please:
Regular season ticket prices for full-season ticket licensees (non-Suites) will be replicated for the 2009 American League Division Series (i.e., a Main Level ticket that costs a full-season ticket licensee $60 in the 2009 regular season will cost the same licensee $60 for the ALDS), however, full-season ticket licensees (non-Suites) of $325 Field Level seats may purchase their seats for the ALDS at the lower price of $275 each.
For full-season ticket licensees (non-Suite), prices will range from $5-$275 per ticket for the ALDS, $10-$350 per ticket for the ALCS, and $50-$425 per ticket for the World Series.
Full-season Suite licensees in the Legends Suite, Delta Sky360° Suite and Jim Beam Suite, have all already paid their Suite license fees. Accordingly, they will only be required to purchase their Suite tickets, which will range from $65-$275 per Suite ticket for the ALDS, $115-$350 per Suite ticket for the ALCS, and $150-$425 per Suite ticket for the World Series. As with the regular season, Legends Suite licensees will also be required to pay a per-game food and beverage fee, but not a Suite license fee.
There is, however, a rub: Those of us without post-season options in our season ticket packages — or those of us without season ticket packages at all — will be at the mercy of the secondary ticketing market. The Yankees are going to give season-ticket holders first crack at the post-season apple, and the team also made sure to blame Major League Baseball when many fans are faced with the sold out reality of October baseball in the Bronx.
Please note that the quantity of postseason tickets available to those who are not 2009 season ticket licensees will be limited and vary for each postseason round. Yankee Stadium has a seating capacity of 50,235, excluding standing room. For each postseason game, the first opportunity to purchase tickets is provided to current season-ticket licensees, which represent in excess of 37,000 full-season equivalent ticket licenses. Major League Baseball directs clubs to dedicate approximately 3,000 tickets per game for players of the participating clubs and to accommodate the media. In addition, Major League Baseball requires approximately 5,500 tickets per ALDS game, 7,000 tickets per ALCS game and 9,500 tickets per World Series game.
Considering that the Yanks have yet to hit that 50,325 barrier, the team is playing a bit fast and loose with their attendance figures. Still, for the early rounds of the playoffs, the team will make at most 5000 per game available to those who do not hold a ticket license. Such are the economics and costs of success.
What the Yankees should do before the post-season, though, is work out this standing room aspect of the stadium. The team continues to mention it in official attendance figures and ticket-related press releases. I have yet to see, however, a single standing-room only ticket. What better way to inaugurate this new aspect of the new stadium than with some October baseball.