It didn't seem like nearly as juicy a story as the Kevin Youkilis signing, but it's something that will actually have a lot bigger impact on us as fans than any free agent signing this offseason. I'm sure many of you heard or read the news earlier in the week about the Yankees opting out of MLB's new deal with StubHub and deciding to go with Ticketmaster as their official re-sell outlet for tickets. If you haven't, well you just did.
The Yankees called this move one that was more "fan friendly" to folks looking to pick up cheap or cheaper tickets, which, as Brien Jackson of IIATMS pointed out, is complete BS. This was a move designed to put more money into the Steinbrenner's pockets, much like the YES deal with News Corp., and that's the bottom line. And truth be told, I'm fine with that. At the end of the day, they are still running a business and they've made it very clear that their goal in running the Yankees is to make more money for themselves. At least they're being consistent, right?
As someone who lives too far away to attend Yankee games regularly, this isn't going to have much of an impact on how much I get to see the Yankees. As it is I can only catch them when they're on TV, and I go out of my way to make sure I can watch them when I know they're going to be on. As a diehard fan who promised himself he was going to make it to The Stadium for a series next season A) because I still haven't been there, and B) because I want/need to see Mariano Rivera pitch one more time, this is going to be an inconvenience and hurt me some in the wallet. I've used StubHub before, I know what kind of good deals you can get on there, and I can totally see why a lot of fans would be upset about this. Going to a Yankee game at The Stadium these days is hardly cheap, and now one of the options available to help people save a little money has been taken away from them.
I've called out the Yankee Stadium crowd for being weak before, and it was painfully obvious that The Stadium was not full and not loud in the postseason this year. But I'll say this, if the Steinbrenners think that this switch to Ticketmaster is going to help bring people back to fill the seats next year, I think they're going to be sorely disappointed.
(For more reading on the StubHub situation, check out William Juliano's take over at Pinstriped Bible and Brien Jackson's follow-up post from yesterday.)