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Yankees Exec Lonn Trost Wants to Keep The Riff Raff Out of the Expensive Seats

The Yankees are the worst. (Except A-Rod).
February 18, 2016, 10:45pm

It hardly needs saying at this point, but Alex Rodriguez is the only redeeming part of the New York Yankees. The team recently announced they were discontinuing a fan-friendly ticket feature that allowed ticket owners to send PDF versions of the tickets by email, either for sale or just between friends and family. The Yankees claimed this was an effort to combat fraud, but really it was designed to undercut secondary ticket markets like StubHub and force fans to use the Yankees' own secondary market, powered by Ticketmaster. Today, Yankees Chief Operating Officer Lonn Trost expounded on that during an interview on New York sports radio station WFAN and, hoo boy, is he an elitist asshole.

"The problem below market at a certain point is that if you buy a ticket in a very premium location and pay a substantial amount of money. It's not that we don't want that fan to sell it, but that fan is sitting there having paid a substantial amount of money for a ticket and [another] fan picks it up for a buck-and-a-half and sits there, and it's frustrating to the purchaser of the full amount…And quite frankly, the fan may be someone who has never sat in a premium location. So that's a frustration to our existing fan base."

As if the absurd prices of premium seats aren't exclusionary enough, now Trost wants to keep otherwise valid yet loutish ticketholders from enjoying the good view in order to protect the genteel ticketholders already sitting there. To hear Trost explain it, they want to simultaneously protect wealthy fans from taking a loss on tickets should they not go to games, and also protect the ones who dp go to the game from the riff raff buying those tickets on the secondary market.*

I'm not even sure how this logic works. I'm pretty certain any person—especially someone who is in a position to afford tickets in premium sections of Yankee Stadium—has enough business savvy to realize they'd rather take a bath on the ticket than have it go unused and completely waste all that money. Also, if you're selling tickets on StubHub, you can set a minimum price for sale, so that's their choice to sell it for "a buck-and-a-half." OR, and this is just me being crazy right now, why not build a team on the field that people actually want to watch, and sells out every game, and actually creates demand for your tickets? This way you don't have to create an artificially-inflated market that no one wants to use!

The truth of the matter is, the problem for the Yankees with below market pricing is that other people are profiting off their tickets, when the Yankees could be profiting twice off the same ticket. Naturally that has to stop, and all this stooge Trost did was make the case by throwing a bone to the New York Glitterati he so desperately wants to come back to the stadium. "Please, come to the game. We promise Joe Six Pack won't be fouling the place up with his budget fandom."

*Non Yankee-approved secondary market.

h/t HardBallTalk