They haven’t gone away – all those empty seats in the new stadiums that are home to four of the major league teams in the NYC area.
Yes, I’m talking about the ‘new’ Yankee Stadium – self explanatory.
Citi Field – the new Mets Stadium named by the Wilpons in exchange for 20 years of cash.
And the new “No Name” Stadium shared by the NY Jets and NY Giants – two teams that are named for New York, yet play in New Jersey and take turns having to redo some areas with team names in the stadium overnight between games.
In fact, those of us watching at home, are now quite used to the empty seats behind home plate – rumored to cost thousands of dollars per game, but nowadays often ‘comped’ to any celebrity who wants to see the game and have the TV audience see them. I’m not sure how much PR you can get from this ploy, but they all try it.
Somewhere along the line, I heard about the complicated way that TV counts the empty seats for the NFL– apparently there is a limit to how many you can have, before TV dumps you and goes elsewhere for that game. Not sure about this, but it sounds plausible.
However, the planning went astray – didn’t anyone check the economy in the NYC area? It’s awful and fans are looking for bargains. Almost every seat in these stadiums has increased by many dollars, and the football stadium has another costly price tag that costs extra – the personal seat licences, more commonly know as PSLs.
So, instead of ‘manning up’ and telling the truth about the teams and their finances, all of these powerhouses dream up some really great stories for the fans and why they can’t get this or that player. The Mets do a really good job at this.
However, there’s a line from “Moonstruck” that is really appropriate here – it’s spoken by Loretta Castorini’s father in the movie – Cosmo Castorini played by Vincent Gardenia to Cher:
He says “Just tell the truth, Loretta, they find out anyway”.
And, we have.