So earlier today the Yankees announced that they will slash their highest ticket prices when (gasp!) few people wanted to spend $2,600 to watch a baseball game in the midst of a financial crisis. I am shocked! Shocked!
I actually wrote my SI.com column last Friday about the ticket issue, which leads me to an obvious conclusion: I, Jeff Pearlman, have singularly changed the pricing at new Yankee Stadium! I, Jeff Pearlman, am important, dammit! I really am! (True story: When I was a kid, I used to call in every Sunday morning to WVIP Sports Talk with Tim Malsbury and Joe Bucchino. I was usually one of, oh, three callers, and Joe would always greet me with “My man! My man! My man!” Anyhow, once I suggested on air that the Yankees sign Ivan DeJesus, who had been released by the Cardinals. Low and behold, a few days later they signed DeJesusâ€”and I was convinced George Steinbrenner stole my idea. Alas, this would be unlikely, considering there were three of us listening: Me, Mom, Dad).
I digress. Now that the Yankees have cut ticket prices, you can expect the inevitable, “We love our fans, they’re the best in the world and blah … blah … blah” spin. But the truth is, the Yankees trapped themselves. They thought they could milk their diehards out of, literally, millions of dollars, and when that didn’t work they were left with two ugly choices:
1. Empty seats.
I’ve made this mistake before, but this really smells like a bad season for the Yanks. The new stadium just doesn’t look right; the team, once again, seems stale, old and listless; the Red Sox are better in myriad ways. I’ll go out on a limb and say Joe Girardi is out of a job come, oh, July 1. I hope not, because I actually think he’s a quality manager. But it’s probably not in his control.