01 June 2010
I have a partial season ticket plan with the Staten Island Yankees, and one of the few perks I receive is free tickets to one New York Yankees game a year. Free seats being free and all, you're usually placed in undesirable areas of the park. In the old stadium you could expect to find yourself sitting in the extreme outer reaches of the Tier Reserve or the Left Field bleachers near the flag pole. In Yankee Stadium III the equivalent is the "partial view" bleachers.
In case you're somehow unaware of the obstructed view seating in the bleachers here is a summary: The Yankees decided to plop down a restuarant in the batter's eye area of Center Field without taking into account how it would affect the views from the nearby bleacher seating. Nobody noticed this really until the team opened up the new house to advance tours for prospective season ticket holders and the like and some pictures from the seats got out on the internet. There was a big whoopdy-doo about this (rightfully so), and eventually the Yankees discounted the block of seats they called "partial view" from their original price of $12 season ticket/$14 advance to a flat $5. Here's the infamous Lonn Trost quote about them:
There's a group of seats that are in the bleachers, that if you are sitting very close to the right field or left field side of the Sports Bar, you may not see the opposite side. We knew that going in, so we prepared to put televisions in the wall, as well as the big screen, so you don’t miss anything.My tickets in the obstructed area were 239, Row 23, Seats 11-14 and before getting into anything else, here are the immediate problems with Trost's statement in bulletpoints:
- You definitely cannot see the opposite outfield, and in some of the lower rows you can't even see the entire infield.
- From my seats the big screen was not viewable at all. You could not see any useful information on the scoreboard, not the pitchcount, not the big general area, nothing.
- The televisions they put up are okay but get a huge amount of glare and are therefore of limited usefulness. I imagine at night they are easier to see.
When you first sit down, the obstruction is obvious. My seats were not the most obstructed by any means (those would be the ones up against the wall) but it was no mystery that a chunk of the action would be blocked:
It obviously becomes much more pronounced when you turn to look at the opposite field:
While I was able to see most of the action from my seats anything that went a little deep into Right Field was cut off. I quickly adapted to look at the TVs and try to catch the action but for most of the game they had a very bad glare on them that made it hard to decipher what was going on at any given point. I relied a lot on the crowd reaction to figure out if a ball had been caught or not. During night games the glare is probably not as big a deal but sitting there on a Saturday afternoon it was rather frustrating.
Not being able to see the HD screen was annoying every now and then because I like to glance over at the out of town scoreboard, but I used my phone to check them when I was curious.
I would be wary of purchasing these tickets at anything more than their face value for anything but the most premium of games, but for $5 they are a great bargain especially if you don't plan to be sitting in them for most of the game. It's terrible that they exist but at least the team was embarrassed into dropping the price on them once the level of obstruction was revealed.
If you have any questions you'd like to ask about the experience, please leave a comment. I'll do my best to answer you.