• Wild Thought: When Will The Stein Sons Sell?

    Posted by on April 23rd, 2009 · Comments (28)

    Today’s wild thought: How long will it be until the Brothers Steinbrenner (Hank and Hal) realize that it’s not going to work in Yankeeland…meaning having two parties leading the organization who are somewhat not fully -engaged and who lack the über-controlling nature of the predecessor owner, their father, who was on top of the team, twenty-four-seven, like a fly on a road apple…and then elect to sell the team?

    Will it be two years from now? Five? Seven? Ten? Or…never? What do you think?

    Comments on Wild Thought: When Will The Stein Sons Sell?

    1. bfriley76
      April 23rd, 2009 | 10:12 am

      Dear god don’t let them sell the team to Dolan.

    2. clintfsu813
      April 23rd, 2009 | 10:21 am

      Not while George is alive, i’ll tell you that.

    3. MJ
      April 23rd, 2009 | 10:27 am

      who lack the über-controlling nature of the predecessor owner
      ——-
      That’s not what being a good owner is about. If anything, that made George a BAD owner, not a good one. The best owners hire smart people and let them do their jobs. John Henry comes to mind.

    4. MJ
      April 23rd, 2009 | 10:27 am

      bfriley76 wrote:

      Dear god don’t let them sell the team to Dolan.

      Agree completely. The Dolans and Donald Trump are the two folks that I don’t ever want to see associated with the team.

    5. Raf
      April 23rd, 2009 | 11:23 am

      How long will it be until the Brothers Steinbrenner (Hank and Hal) realize that it’s not going to work in Yankeeland…meaning having two parties leading the organization who are somewhat not fully -engaged…
      —————–
      Who’s to say that it isn’t working now? If it were a case where you had two owners that hated each other or otherwise didn’t get along, I’d understand, but I see no reason why they’d want to sell the team, other than a money grab.

    6. lisaswan
      April 23rd, 2009 | 11:31 am

      Raf, do you really think it’s working now, when there are so many empty seats in a brand-spanking-new stadium? The fact that Randy Levine and Lonn Trost still draw paychecks from the Yanks tells me that it isn’t working.

    7. Raf
      April 23rd, 2009 | 11:38 am

      I’d rather wait until the economy turns around before I declare YS2.0 a failure.

      Anyone have numbers from attendance around the league? Is it the same, better or worse from last year?

    8. April 23rd, 2009 | 11:58 am

      Raf wrote:

      Who’s to say that it isn’t working now?

      Well, sure, one could say, when asked if things in Yankeeland have been funereal since that church service for Otto Graham (back in December 2003) or not – when Big Stein seemed to check out – that things in New York are fine.

      After all, the last five years, prior to this season, have been good in terms of wins, post-season appearances, attendance and revenue – yes, no question.

      However, it’s also fair to look at how the team is drawing at home this season, and how they finished in 3rd place last year, and also wonder if this is just a small dip for the Yankees – or, is it the start of a downward trend line that was kicked off by the way the organization has been run the last five years (without George). Hence, this wild thought today…

    9. Pat F
      April 23rd, 2009 | 12:03 pm

      raf – have seen in a couple of places (including i believe here the other day) that attendance is down about 6-8% league wide. there are a lot of empty seats, but people (the mainstream media, in particular) have decided that the economy doesn’t affect yankees’ fans, and keep talking about the empty seats at field level (which quite honestly, makes sense given the economic climate, and is happening around the league). we still lead the league in per game attendance average, so things aren’t nearly as awful as those empty seats make it seem.

    10. Pat F
      April 23rd, 2009 | 12:05 pm

      (although they certainly aren’t good, either. those empty seats are embarrassing no matter how you slice it.)

    11. Pat F
      April 23rd, 2009 | 12:08 pm

      and my point on the media is that in most (not all) cases, they talk about those empty seats as if this is some major issue. outside of looking bad at the park and on tv, it’s not some monumental issue that the yankees are dealing with more than any other team, as evidecned in the fact that they lead baseball in per game attendance this year. it’s a problem, but not a problem unique to the yankees, or one that is going to cripple them or even be a major issue as some will have you think.

    12. Raf
      April 23rd, 2009 | 12:09 pm

      However, it’s also fair to look at how the team is drawing at home this season, and how they finished in 3rd place last year, and also wonder if this is just a small dip for the Yankees – or, is it the start of a downward trend line that was kicked off by the way the organization has been run the last five years (without George).
      ————–
      We’re concerned about Yankees attendance after 6 games in April? Really?

      As for the 3rd place finish, from the looks of it, moves have been made to improve the team.

      The Yanks as an organization aren’t performing with smoke and mirrors, they have a solid foundation in place. Let’s see where we are after the season before we start to “worry” about things.

    13. lisaswan
      April 23rd, 2009 | 12:10 pm

      Raf, I’m not buying the Yankees’ “the economy is bad” excuse. In many cases, the Yanks doubled, tripled, and quadrupled their ticket prices in one year. How could they think that would be successful?

      Even in the best of times, the market for people willing to spend $325-$2650 for one ticket for one baseball game is pretty small. Heck, those tickets are much higher than an NFL football game, where there are only eight home games a year.

      Nobody else in baseball has ticket prices as high as the Yankees. Nobody. The prices for the expensive seats are literally hundreds – and thousands – more than any other ballpark.

      Even the Red Sox, which used to be known as the most expensive ballpark in baseball, sell their dugout seats for $325. The Sox also had a ticket price freeze this year, as did a bunch of other teams, in being sensitive to economic conditions.

      This all happened at the same time Trost and Levine were arrogantly pushing ahead with these ridiculous prices, thinking more advertising would do the trick. Hasn’t worked yet.

      If having a brand-new stadium with terrible buzz, empty seats, and angry fans isn’t a failure, then what is?

    14. lisaswan
      April 23rd, 2009 | 12:15 pm

      Pat F wrote: “we still lead the league in per game attendance average, so things aren’t nearly as awful as those empty seats make it seem.”

      I wouldn’t get too excited over that. Do you really believe the Yankees had 43,000 at yesterday’s game, like the team’s front office claimed? Or 42,000 at Tuesday night’s game?

      And if those attendance figures are really based on paid attendance, why are so many of those who already bought tickets staying away?

      As for what Raf wrote about not judging this on six games, if you can’t get fans to fill the house of a brand-new stadium on the very first homestand, that is a failure, no matter how you slice it.

    15. April 23rd, 2009 | 12:16 pm

      Raf wrote:

      We’re concerned about Yankees attendance after 6 games in April? Really?

      Yup. You don’t think there should be a great demand to be there for one of the first 6 games – EVER – in baseball’s new “palace”?

    16. April 23rd, 2009 | 12:17 pm

      Lisa beat me to it by a minute!

    17. Corey
      April 23rd, 2009 | 12:24 pm

      its harder to get people to attend games when your playing mostly day games in april, wait till the kids are home and you’ll see a different story i’m sure (not the “legends seats” of course)

    18. Raf
      April 23rd, 2009 | 12:29 pm

      If having a brand-new stadium with terrible buzz, empty seats, and angry fans isn’t a failure, then what is?
      —————
      I have spoken to too many people who have said otherwise to pass judgement about the “buzz” and “angry fans.” And I will not pass judgement after 10 games (counting the exhibitions).

      Looking @ Baseball Reference, the Yanks are leading in AVG attendance and are 4th overall (267,014), behind BOS (339,054), LAA (334,197) & MIN (267,825). That tells me that it isn’t as much of a failure as it is being made out to be.

    19. Raf
      April 23rd, 2009 | 12:35 pm

      I’ll have to do some more research on this, I want to see how the Yanks did attendance-wise last year (I don’t think they sold out every game their first homestand), and will check to see how other teams did when they opened new ballparks as well.

    20. Raf
      April 23rd, 2009 | 12:43 pm

      Looking @ Baseball Reference, the Yanks are leading in AVG attendance and are 4th overall (267,014), behind BOS (339,054), LAA (334,197) & MIN (267,825). That tells me that it isn’t as much of a failure as it is being made out to be.
      —————
      Another quick look @ B-R shows the other teams have had more home dates than the Yanks

      BOS – 9
      LAA – 8
      MIN – 11
      NYY – 6

    21. Pat F
      April 23rd, 2009 | 1:10 pm

      lisa – those attendance numbers are official. so there is no question that the tickets sold. never did i say one way or another whether i believed that many fans were there or not. i have been to the stadium and watched every other game on TV – i know that many did not attend. as a fan, that is obviously concerning. but in terms of “TEH SKY IS FALLING!!11!!!!” that the mainstream media would have us believe, it’s not the case.

      i am not saying the yankees did not screw up here – or a “failure” as you called it. i think those ticket prices are absurd. but one, i know more sell in a good economy, period. how many i don’t know, but more. two, even in this “failure”, they still lead the league in ticket sales. so the fact that they fell short of general expectations for what the attendance should look like at a new park (a new yankees park, no less) is just not that big of a deal. because at the end of the day, the sky is not falling even with these mistakes, so imagine what will happen when they make some changes (ie. lower a ticket price or two)? everyone is so quick to rush to judgement, to the point where they are questioning the direction of a franchise – the most successful in all of sports – after six games without the chance to make any changes or (gasp) admit they are not infallible and made a mistake. imagine that. people should take a deep breath instead.

    22. lisaswan
      April 23rd, 2009 | 1:58 pm

      Pat, given that the Yanks are still planning on increasing premium ticket prices by 4% for next season, you’re darn right I’m going to question the direction of this franchise.

      And Randy Levine had the chance yesterday, via the AP, to admit the Yankees made a mistake. His response? “We’re done talking about seats. We’re not talking about seats.” What arrogance.

    23. MJ
      April 23rd, 2009 | 2:19 pm

      What arrogance.
      ———
      His personality is not really on-topic. You can be a bastard and still make the corrections necessary to address any potential problems.

    24. YankCrank
      April 23rd, 2009 | 2:45 pm

      Pat, given that the Yanks are still planning on increasing premium ticket prices by 4% for next season, you’re darn right I’m going to question the direction of this franchise.
      —-

      FWIW, a lot of people raise prices year in and year out no matter what. Most major University costs continued to rise a certain percent this year despite the economy, and it’s not arrogance…it’s just business. People will eventually buy those seats that are empty right now and in the grand scheme of things, how do a couple empty seats reflect the direction of the organization? Last I check they are stocking the farm system and still dropping money on necessary talent to win.

      The stadium is six games old, let’s all put the pitchforks and fire down before we overreact.

    25. lisaswan
      April 23rd, 2009 | 2:48 pm

      MJ, have you seen one bit of evidence that Levine is willing to “make the corrections necessary to address any potential problems”? I sure haven’t, when it comes to getting these tickets sold. Thus, his arrogant personality most definitely is on-topoic.

    26. Pat F
      April 23rd, 2009 | 3:52 pm

      lisa – yankcrank just made the important point. it’s been 6 games. anything said about ticket prices next year is just that – talk. it’s 11.5 months away. if it actually happens, and the seats don’t sell for a second consecutive year, that’s one thing. but i’m going to give a team that leads baseball in everything – everything – attendance wise every year (whether it’s any thanks to them or not) more than a few weeks and a couple of quotes before i start questioning the direction of the organization. everyone is so uneccesarily reactionary. give it a little while and let’s see what happens. my goodness. we are dealing with an ownership that continues, even without george, to be incredibly committed to putting an outstanding product on the field year in and year out, making a bundle of money in the process, and reinvesting a lot of that back into the team. they have been successful for a long time now doing it. questioning a group with that type of track record after 6 games in a brand new ballpark under the worst economic circumstances in 80 years is nothing shy of absurd. isolated mistake? for sure. more than that? maybe. but why don’t we give it, i don’t know, 7 games before we get crazy.

    27. deadrody
      April 24th, 2009 | 11:38 am

      Steve Lombardi wrote:

      Raf wrote:
      Who’s to say that it isn’t working now?
      Well, sure, one could say, when asked if things in Yankeeland have been funereal since that church service for Otto Graham (back in December 2003) or not – when Big Stein seemed to check out – that things in New York are fine.
      After all, the last five years, prior to this season, have been good in terms of wins, post-season appearances, attendance and revenue – yes, no question.
      However, it’s also fair to look at how the team is drawing at home this season, and how they finished in 3rd place last year, and also wonder if this is just a small dip for the Yankees – or, is it the start of a downward trend line that was kicked off by the way the organization has been run the last five years (without George). Hence, this wild thought today…

      I think such a significant suggestion requires a BIT more analysis. Maybe even including some kind of cause and effect consideration ? Not sure how sharing ownership duties would cause your starting pitcheing to need 55 starts from replacement type pitchers. Or how it would prevent you from anticipating a global recession, thus causing you to overprice tickets – especially odd to cause the same problem for another team across town.

      I don’t think there is ANY evidence to suggest the current ownership arrangement isn’t working just fine.

    28. May 16th, 2009 | 12:02 pm

      [...] they couldn’t fit into George’s shoes.”) Or, will we just have to wait until the team is sold to be free from the Law Firm of Levine & [...]

    Leave a reply

    You must be logged in to post a comment.