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News of the Day – 11/12/08

News you can use …

  • At the Times, Tyler Kepner lets Brian Cashman give his impression of how the Yankees will be involved in this year’s free agent market.
  • The economic downturn is indeed impacting sales of some of the pricier seats and suites at the new Stadium, as reported by USA Today.  Seven luxury boxes down the foul lines priced at $600,000 remain available for the 2009 season. The team still had seven available in August, too.   As of August, 3,500 of the 4,300 premium seats had been sold, including the $500-$2,500 per-game tickets near home plate in the first nine rows of 25 sections ringing home plate.
  • Over at WasWatching, Steve Lombardi points to a Gotham Baseball article which quotes an unnamed Yankee exec suggesting that Jim Edmonds might be a nice CF stopgap until Austin Jackson takes over.  (Oy!)
  • MLB.com reports that the Yankees and Cisco Systems held a news conference Tuesday to announce the technological enhancements fans will see in the new stadium.  They include:
  1. Live game broadcast on HD video monitors displayed throughout the stadium, including concession areas, the Great Hall, the Yankees Museum and other in-stadium restaurant and bar locations.
  2. Premium luxury suites will be outfitted with touch-screen Internet Protocol (IP) phones that will allow fans to order concessions and Yankees merchandise for delivery to the suite.
  3. Going forward, the new stadium is equipped to support future fan use of mobile devices for ordering concessions from their seat, viewing instant replays or chatting in real time with friends inside and outside the stadium.
  • At that same press conference, Hal Steinbrenner was asked what his primary concern was for this off-season:

“I would be remiss if I didn’t say starting pitching,” he said. “The injuries to (Joba) Chamberlain and (Chien-Ming) Wang certainly didn’t help us last year. We need to build the starting pitching.”

  • Still within that conference, Hal denied that his and his brother’s goals were different from Brian Cashman’s philosophy of trimming payroll and developing talent from within.

“Brian is the head of baseball operations,” Steinbrenner said. “The goal, as far as I’m concerned, is balance. Young players built from within and veteran mentors.”

  • According to the Boston Herald, Mariano Rivera and A-Rod will be appearing at David Ortiz’s charity golf event in the Dominican Republic next month.  The event helps fund medical care for critically ill children in that country and New England.  (Don’t worry, Mo won’t be swinging a golf club so soon after having had shoulder surgery)
  • Happy 36th birthday to Homer Bush.  Homer’s claim to fame may just be that he was included in a trade that brought Roger Clemens to Gotham.  A happy 47th to Greg Gagne, drafted by the Yanks and soon included in a 1982 trade that brought back the immortal Roy Smalley.
  • This isn’t a Yankee birthday, but gotta include it.  On this date in 1865, the one and only Archibald “Moonlight” Graham was born. 
  • On this date 50 years ago, Bob Turley, who had 21 wins and 19 complete games, is named the Cy Young Award winner (only one award given back in those days).  Turley gathers five votes to four for 1957’s winner, Warren Spahn.
  • One year ago today, Jorge Posada re-signed with the Yanks for $52.4 million over four years. This makes Posada the highest-paid catcher in MLB history, edging out Mike Piazza’s $13 million average from 1999-2005.

Categories:  Diane Firstman  News of the Day

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1 FreddySez   ~  Nov 12, 2008 11:46 am

To: Lonn Trost
Re: All the digital magic you're installing in the new Stadium

Mr. Trost,

If your aim is to "elevate the fan experience," I can save you a whole lot of money if isn't too late. For about $3.00, you can buy a plastic component called a "volume knob" at most electronics stores. What you do is, you attach it to the Stadium's audio system, *turn down the noise*, and let your patrons speak with each other while they enjoy the ballgame they came to see.

My sarcasm aside, I really feel the Yankees have misread the public's appetite for non-baseball amenities. And no one I know goes to a ballpark seeking "luxury," which has to be the most-used word in the team's online virtual tour. Even the people who can afford a ballpark version of "luxury" are probably accustomed to getting the real thing elsewhere in their lives.

I don't need to be able to order a hot dog on my iPhone. I'm perfectly willing to leave my seat for it if I know the concession stand will be staffed by people who give a damn and get me back to the game in less than 45 minutes.

People. Go. To. Ballgames. For. BASEBALL. When you look at all the nonsense the Yankees are acting so proud to have stuffed into the new building, you see that a disturbing percentage of it doesn't "elevate" the experience of the game itself -- it gets in the way.

2 Diane Firstman   ~  Nov 12, 2008 12:15 pm


I second that emotion ....

3 Shaun P.   ~  Nov 12, 2008 12:39 pm

[1], I agree too, but they can't charge you a $.25 convenience fee and a $.50 delivery charge if you stand in line to get your hotdog. They can if you order via iPhone and don't leave your seat. I suppose they could just jack up the price of hotdogs, but they'll probably do that anyway - and still tack on the ordering and delivery fees.

This is my roundabout way of saying, luxury = fans spending more cash = increased revenues. Its not about the baseball, or the experience (though that's part of it), its about how to extract even more coin from the folks who will already pay big bucks for tickets and concessions and all the rest. Letting people use their gadgets does that. I'm not sure why people gladly fork over that extra cash, but they will. (I also can't understand why people pay extra money to type out multiple short text messages on their cell phones when they could just, you know, make a call, seeing as they've already paid for the ability to do that. But what do I know?)

4 Chyll Will   ~  Nov 12, 2008 2:25 pm

Tickled by the impression of Tyler Kepner letting Cashman give his own impression of the Yanks' involvement in the free agent market...


Kepner: Who's there?

Cashman: It's me!

Kepner: (rolling eyes) Ughh, what now?

Cashman: Well, I just want to share a bit of info about how we intend to approach this year's free agent market...

Kepner: Awwww!

Cashman: Aw, c'mon, please?

Kepner: (sighing) well, I am getting over the election now, so... you have two minutes...

Cashman: Cool! Check this out, Yo Hank! Bussit... (Hank beatboxing) Watch these rich Yankees get all up in yo' gut/Abreu and Giambi certainly are gettin' cut/CC Sabathia's the first one that we touch/$150 million-six years isn't much...

Kepner: A-hem!

Cashman: What? You messing up my flow...

Kepner: Nuh-just, never mind...

That's just one way of looking at it >;)

5 ny2ca2dc   ~  Nov 12, 2008 3:34 pm

Dudes I'd pay $0.75 to be able to order a hot dog (or martini ;) from my iPhone (if i had one, but that's another issue). Then I wouldn't have to leave my seat and miss any of the game. No matter how fast the concessions (obviously we're talking parks other than the stadium, where they have been terrible) are, I always seem to miss some action. And the real good concessions are always far from my seat, and it seems the vendors rarely get up to the nosebleeds with food. Plenty of beer though.

As for all the other wiz bang stuff, I read it as a way to get you MORE baseball - screens with the broadcast in the concourses etc. I hope they have screens with the game on in the bathrooms, that would be awesome. Never miss a second. It all depends on where they take it - more cotton eye joe nonsense, or use all the technology to show us, say, clips of classic ballgames or something. I think they just might get it right.

6 rbj   ~  Nov 12, 2008 3:50 pm

OK, who's the idiot who didn't vote Maddon MotY? That person needs to be stripped, tarred and feathered and run out of town on a rail.

7 OldYanksFan   ~  Nov 12, 2008 5:59 pm

Associated Press
NEW YORK -- Left-hander Damaso Marte and the New York Yankees agreed Wednesday to a $12 million, three-year contract that includes a club option for 2012.

8 OldYanksFan   ~  Nov 12, 2008 6:03 pm

ESPN.com news services
Citing a source close to the negotiations [with the Dodgers], the Times reported that Ramirez would earn $15 million next season, $22.5 million in 2010 and the same in 2011 if the team exercised its option. The final year can be bought out for $7.5 million.

The offer stands until Thursday when the Dodgers lose exclusive rights to negotiate with the free agent.
Thats 2/$45m or 3/$60. Does Manny Bite?

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