Yankees' StubHub disaster is an impressive show of contempt

The Yankees' ticket resale debacle has circulated for a day or so, and that's good. It should've — and it should keep circulating, because it hits hard in a couple spots: It's infuriating, yes, and also very, very funny.Most of all, it's an impressive show of contempt for fans who have "never sat in a premium location," for fans in those seats and elsewhere who want to actually recoup some of their wasted money and, most hilariously, for the free market itself. MORE: A Simpsons meme for every team | Offseason winners/losersFirst, the specifics. These have been covered elsewhere with some degree of unavoidable tech impenetrability, but it boils down to one important point: The Yankees want to make it tougher for people to pay less for their tickets. They're doing this by, for all intents and purposes, taking printed .PDFs of tickets out of the equation. That is the easiest way to re-buy someone else's already-paid-for ticket on sites like StubHub and SeetGeek. If it's mid-afternoon and you decide, sure, let's go to the baseball game tonight, you hit StubHub and pay whatever you're comfortable with. In some cases, you'll be able to print out those tickets at home. In others cases, you'll be able to access the transferred ticket on your phone, then scan it at the door. Which options are available depends on the team. If they opt-in overall, the reseller has the option to do the same.This is where, it seems, Yankees COO Lonn Trost told his first lie. He said on WFAN on Thursday that fans, though unable to print their tickets, could in fact use their phones. StubHub says nah.“The only way we can transfer tickets is if the Yankees and Ticketmaster provide us with an API (application programming interface) feed that would allow us to do that,” a spokesman told Newsday. “It’s protected, and they have not granted us access, nor have they granted anyone access. If they wanted to grant us access, this is a different conversation.”The obvious irony here is that Trost, assuming he knows the reality of the situation, started a lie he chose not to carry to its end point. He should've milked the "We're trying to eliminate fraud" thing until the bitter end. See your lies through. Once you start to lie, lie until you can no longer lie. That is the first rule of lying.Instead, Trost took an unwelcome left turn into honesty. He started out slowly, but you could see where he was headed.“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," he told WFAN (via Newsday).And then he added the money shot: “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.”Theeere we go. That's the good stuff — that's the "screw poor people" center of the "eliminate fraud" candy bar. It'd be funnier if it weren't so gross; what a terrible liar. Lie better, Lonn Trost! You definitely can. You're the Yankees COO.PHOTOS: The life and times of Yogi Berra | Memorable Mickey Mantle momentsThis isn't a new sentiment from them, either. The new stadium is a palace designed chiefly for rich people who see baseball as a leisure activity or a networking opportunity. They added a net of 37 luxury suites, eight lounges and one moat. They removed bleacher seats and raised prices on the ones they kept.It's not for normies, and both cost (an average of $100 a game per seat last season) and attendance reflects that; the stadium was 77.8 percent full last season — a reflection of the actual number of people in the building, not the number of tickets sold. That was seventh in and down about eight percent from 2014.Good on Trost for spelling it out — a full stadium is a frustration for its existing fan base.Trost's dedication to those customers would be more admirable if he didn't realize one thing: When most ticket-holders can't go, they want to sell their tickets to someone who can. That's already a problem, and while the new policy isn't going to help, that's a bigger, largely unspoken issue.Another: Maybe the portion of the fanbase Trost is superficially catering to doesn't realize how much money they're wasting. Having a couple guys from Pelham Bay sitting next to you could make the lightbulb go off. Can't have that. Definitely don't want your whole business model dictated by the market. Safeguards must be in place. Remember all this the next time revenue sharing comes up.The biggest and best irony of all is that none of this may be that big a deal; there's a third-party StubHub pickup location near the stadium that allows folks to walk up and print out their last-minute tickets for free. If someone is industrious enough to score cheapies the day of the game, they're probably dedicated enough to see it through — and there's a pretty good chance they don't have a printer at home anyway, because who owns printers anymore, really?So, laugh at the toothlessness of it all, and bet that full-fledged electronic transfer will be in place eventually. Don't forget the motivation, tho

ugh, or the moment Trost slipped up and told the truth. That doesn't happen very often.

By sh1