Yanks announce ’11 tix as bleachers up to $15

With Lee, Yanks would have to increase payroll
Open Thread: Why signing bench players isn't worth it

The Yankees unveiled their 2011 ticket prices this afternoon, and while most prices will not go up, the team announced increases for six price points including the bleachers. While most tickets that are witnessing an increase will go up by $5, the $12 bleacher seats will now cost $15 for both season-ticket packages and single-game sales. The $5 obstructed-view seats will remain as such, and the Yankees are not cutting any ticket prices this year.

Yankees’ COO Lonn Trost spoke this afternoon with Mike Francesa about the rationale behind the ticket increases, and he explained how the team used the secondary market to gauge demand. Since the Yanks routinely saw bleacher seats sold at 175 percent mark-ups, the team determined they could raise the prices and opted for a 25-percent mark-up. The 2011 ticket prices are listed at the Yankees’ website, and I’ll try to summarize the key increases.

While 54 percent of Yankee Stadium seats will still be priced at $50 or less, a good portion of the seats in the lower levels will see increases. In the Main Level, Sections 205-209 and 231-234, prices are increasing by $5 from $45 to $50 for a full season and $50 to $55 for partial ticket holders. Seats in sections 210-212 and 228-230 will rise from $60-$65 for full packages, but partials will stay at $70. Main level seats in sections 213-214b and 226-227b will increase from $75 to $80.

At the field level, rows 12-30 in sections 116-124 will increase to $260 full plan holders. Game-day ticket prices for these seats will increase from $300 to $325. Season tickets for the field level, rows 15-30 in sections 112-113 and 127b-128 and rows 1-14 in sections 108-11 and 129-131 will now cost $110 for a full plan holders and $115 for partial plan holders. Rows 15-30 in sections 108-111 and 129-131 will now cost $80 for full plans.

In addition to the prices that are going up, Trost mentioned that the team will soon be selling ticket packages for multiple seasons that are locked in at the purchase price. For example, fans who buy tickets for three years at the 2011 price point won’t have to pay for price increases in the years that covered by the initial purchase contract.

Of course, no one wants to see ticket prices increase, but Trost’s claims bear out the increase. He says that the Yanks are constantly playing to 95 percent capacity, and even when the seats appear empty on TV, the tickets have been sold. Either fans are no-shows — which happens a small percentage of the time — or they are wandering the stadium. The Yankee Museum, Trost said, has been a very popular in-game destination, and the various bars and restaurants have drawn fans away from their seats as well.

Essentially, the increases are a prime example of ticket economics at work. The Yankees might be increasing their payroll and know that the secondary market supports higher prices. The team wants to and can capture that revenue. Thus, many people will be paying more for their tickets come 2011.

Yanks “expecting a sell-out” for Saturday’s Army/Notre Dame game

During his interview with Francesa, Trost spoke about the debut of college football at Yankee Stadium. Because the new stadium cost so much to build, the Yankees need it to become a year-round venue, and Trost has spent a lot of time working to ensure a smooth game on Saturday. If ticket sales are any indication, he will succeed.

The team has sold 51,000 tickets for the game, and while a few seats remain, the club is “expecting a sell-out.” Astute readers will note that Yankee Stadium’s baseball capacity is under that 51,000 mark, and Trost says they’ve added seats by installing temporary bleachers in the bullpens and on the field. For those heading to the game, Metro-North is running extra trains as well.

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With Lee, Yanks would have to increase payroll
Open Thread: Why signing bench players isn't worth it
  • Granderslam

    If it means more money to re-invest into the team, I’m all for it. As long as the ticket prices do not rise too drastically. What bothers me most is the price of parking. I’m from Jersey and the commute to the city is already expensive enough…but the parking prices are out of control. I had to pay $40 in parking when I attended ALCS Game 5.

    • Ed

      I don’t know if this will work for you, but look into NJ Transit. There’s a Park and Ride in Secaucus next to the train station. After 4pm it’s $5 for up to 12 hours. Park there, take a 10 min train ride to Penn Station, then catch the subway. I think it’s about $10/person for all the train fares to do it that way.

    • John

      Joe – Yankee Season Ticket Rep,
      I just got my season ticket renewal and let me tell the change to all the 41 game plan ticket holders for postseason tickets is an absolute joke. I think I have been a season ticket holder for 12 years now and first I was moved from the best section in the old stadium Bleacher Section 39 to the worst section facing a wall. I can’t even see the left fielder but as long as I was in the stadium I was happy. Of course you would think with all the money we “the fans” pay you could install a screen we could actually see in Row 23. The 3 small screens on the walls in the bleachers are smaller than the ones I have in my house and I have 8 of them in my house. The new postseason change is an insult and slap in the face to long term ticket holders. No warning of such a change because you guys know all of us 41 game plan ticket holders would be pissed off about it. You guys have the nerve to move me from Section 39 in the old stadium to the worst section in the new stadium and not to mention the second to last row in section 201, Absolute joke I have my own business and I would never do what you guys have done to long term clients. Under George’s watch this would never happen. Pass on to your superiors and hopefully to George’s two sons keep treating it like a business and you see how quickly you lose fans if the team ever stops contending for a year or two. The Mets lost this town in a heartbeat and keep making decisions like this and you will lose your most important asset which are the fans. Keep squeezing a guy like Derek who is the heart and soul of the team and watch and see what happens in the long run. Absolute terrible decision making which spits in the face of long term fans. You guys have some nerve cutting the playoff tickets in half for 41 game plan ticket holders. Also I don’t care that I only pay $5 for my tickets because I am not the one who put me in a section that has a 40 foot wall blocking half the field. The roll call on opening day should consist of a walk out by the long term fans protesting this joke of a change!!!!!

  • Ed

    he explained how the team used the secondary market to gauge demand. Since the Yanks routinely saw bleacher seats sold at 175 percent mark-ups, the team determined they could raise the prices and opted for a 25-percent mark-up.

    That’s a key quote on how the team’s finances work. They research what people are willing to pay for tickets and set the prices at the level they think will maximimze revenue.

    Payroll then gets set based on total expected revenue. You’re not paying more because Jeter is getting a big contract. Jeter’s getting that contract because the team knows they’ll make enough to support it.

    • king of fruitless hypotheticals

      yeah there’s some fine line between maximizing revenue and turning fans away from the game because of ticket prices or a perceived aggreivance. all the price increases seem pretty reasonable for the product they’re putting out there…

    • larryf

      Darn it. So we won’t see “Yanks lower ticket prices across the board and announce new family friendly packages” as a benefit of not resigning Jeter for 4/80?

      /shocked

  • Slugger27

    isn’t the reason behind a lot of the empty seats in Legends because of that bar/restaurant they get access to?

    • Corporate Scum (formerly Joe West’s Music Career)

      Yes. people wander in and out, and whenever the seats appear empty, the bar is overflowing.

  • Steve Hecknauer

    I get real sick and tired of having to go through “Stub Hub” to get tickets! They inflate the prices with their “bid” sequence.

    • Coleman

      Steve – What do you mean? There is no “bidding” on StubHub anymore (there was an auction option, but it was seldom used and therefore (seemingly) done away with). I’m a season ticket holder, sell some extras on StubHub, buy more when I need more on StubHub, and find it a great service. Yes, they make a ton of cash (15% from seller, 10% + shipping from buyer), but clearly there’s a value in it, because it seems very popular.

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

      I’m echoing Coleman here. I buy most of my tickets on StubHub, and the only times this year I paid above face value were for Red Sox games. Even when the Phillies were in town, we found four seats below face. If you’re paying inflated prices on Stubhub, you’re doing it wrong.

      • Corporate Scum (formerly Joe West’s Music Career)

        This. Most of the time, I get significant discounts to face value on Stubhub even factoring in the commission. For instance, I got section 120 tix to game 6 of the 2009 ALCS for $75/ticket less than the season ticket price, after commission.

      • Big Stein

        then why is Trost saying tickets on the secondary market for bleacher seats go for nearly triple the face value?

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

          Because they do.

          But I don’t sit in the bleachers, and there’s a reason why the Grandstand seats aren’t going up in price this year.

          • Big Stein

            so your comment, “If you’re paying inflated prices on Stubhub, you’re doing it wrong.” doesn’t apply to bleacher seats?

            I am only asking because I haven’t bought or sold a ticket on the secondary market.

            • Mooks

              That is pretty much the only section that has inflated prices and by inflated I mean just a few bucks. They usually sell for about the same price as grandstand seats.

              I love StubHub. Getting tickets the day of the game is great because you can usually get them dirt cheap and you never end up going to game if the weather is crappy.

              I went to about 15 games last year and the only ones I paid above face value for were 3 against the Sox.

              • Big Stein

                do prices fall/plunge as game time nears?

                • Mooks

                  Normally they do. I usually get them the night before or morning of.

          • King of NY

            Incorrect. Grandstand Outfield seats, so half of the Grandstand, are increasing for season packages from $20 (for the last 4 years) to $25.

            I do not understand why this is the case–especially given their secondary market logic–when Grandstand Outfields routinely sell for at or often less than Bleachers.

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

              Do you have a source for that? I think you’ve misread some reports. The Grandstand prices, the team made clear in the press release, are not going up.

              See below for more.

  • http://twitter.com/Mattpat11 Matt DiBari

    Ten more dollars to watch the game on TV

    • http://twitter.com/Mattpat11 Matt DiBari

      never mind. Need to read the whole article

  • http://twitter.com/kschmidt2 Kiersten

    If the extra 43 for bleachers goes to Cliff Lee’s contract, I’m all for it.

    I also now live in Florida and will be attending 0-1 games per year, so it really doesn’t mean much to me.

    • http://twitter.com/kschmidt2 Kiersten

      That would be $3*

  • nathan

    Yanks prices will go down when Joba starts a playoff game for us (yeah, pretty unlikely). The 2013-2016 Yankee teams will have some ugly old Yanks on the starting 11. Oh my!

  • Big Stein

    This is a croc of shit

    The money won’t be going to the team. The yearly budget hasn’t changed since 2005 even though ticket prices climb. They’re intent on keeping the budget around $200 million because of the upcoming collective bargaining agreement.

    Using the secondary market to set ticket prices argument is bullshit. Only a portion of ticket holders will ever resell their tickets. On any given night, maybe 500 to 1000 tickets are online. The vast majority of people attend. That’s why the mark-up on the secondary market can by as high as 175% because there’s only few tickets available.

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

      2010: $213,359,389
      2009: $201,449,189
      2008: $209,081,577
      2007: $189,639,045
      2006: $194,663,079

      In 2005, the team had a $208 million payroll, but that was unsustainable, and thus it fell over the next few years. Clearly, the team has been steadily raising payroll for the last 15 years. You also have to factor in the rising luxury tax payments the Yanks have made over the last seven years and their revenue sharing obligations as well as bond payments for the stadium construction. The money’s going somewhere, and even with the new ticket prices, the park will be just as full.

      • Big Stein

        my point stands, the yearly average = $202 over the last six years. The team has NOT been raising the average payroll since 2005.

        • king of fruitless hypotheticals

          …which is why there are other metrics than average.

          for example, you could have made a much better argument using a pitcher’s wins…

          • Big Stein

            i didn’t want to bore people using mean, mode, median, and standard deviation.

      • Jimmy McMillan

        The ticket prices are too damn high!

    • Mooks

      I don’t think you have any idea what you are talking about honestly.

      I sell a lot on the secondary market and the average Yankee game sees around 8,000-10,000 tickets changing hands on there, even higher for Red Sox games And that is only StubHub. Ticketnetwork also pushes a huge amount of tickets. I would say at least about 25% of the crowd got their tickets off the secondary market.

      The secondary market for Yankee tickets is exceptionally liquid. The prices paid on there are truly determined by supply and demand and very accurately reflect what the public is willing to pay for tickets. The Yankees are just fine tuning their prices to maximize their revenue. They would be stupid not to.

  • son of stu

    I can’t believe people are complaining about 15 dollar bleacher seats. Go ahead and look at the lower end costs for all the other teams, if their cheaper, I guarantee they jack the prices up for when the Yankees come in town, or make you buy tickets for Tuesday a night Pirates game (Dodgers did this year). If you want to see a top of the line product, then you have to pay a little more.

    • Big Stein

      well, excuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuse us, moneybags.

      I mean when the price of gas goes from $3 to $4 the entire country has a meltdown.

      • king of fruitless hypotheticals

        i buy one Yankees ticket a year.

        i buy 40 gallons of gas a week.

        The nation buys ~85 x 51,000 tickets a year to NYY home games.

        The nation buys 3.28 BILLION barrels of gas per year.

        (2…3…4…138 billion gallons)

        • Big Stein

          this doesn’t follow Chebyshev’s theorem of rearrangement inequality.

  • Neil

    I don’t care what Mr. Trost says I don’t believe all those Legends and Champions Suites seats are sold(maybe 95%). As a partial season ticket holder I’m content that my seats (main level reserved sec 212) did not go up in price but I still have a hard time with not getting any post season seats. Phillies fans with partial plans receive post-season tickets. In the old Stadium I would get one game per post-season series. StubHub definitely serves a purpose even with the 15% fee to sellers. I would not be able to afford my partial plan if I couldn’t sell a Red Sox or Mets game to offset the expense.

    • Big Stein

      I wouldn’t be surprised if a number of the post season tickets go to their tee vee and billboard sponsors.

      • Neil

        I’m sure you’re right. Also I was at Game 4 of the ALCS and noticed that a large part of the OF grandstand (probably at least several hundered seats) in RF was set up for expanded press coverage but at most only half of that press area was being utilized!

        • Section 203

          Nothing you can do about that section. It is required by MLB. They have always had that extended press section and rarely, except for the WS, is it ever full. Still, they are not allowed by MLB to sell those seats elsewhere, even if they know nobody is coming. Gives the press folks their “privacy” to type I suppose.

  • Ross

    You forgot to mention that the crappy grandstand outfield prices are going up to $25 from $20

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

      I didn’t forget. Those prices aren’t going up. Per both the press release and the ticket site, the OF Grandstand seats are $20 for full and partial plan holders, $22 for advanced individual purchase and $23 for day-of-game purchase. That’s how they were priced in 2010.